my journey through the loss of my first son and the life of my second

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Fireworks

I remember laying in my hospital bed the first day I was admitted. There had been a steady stream of doctors and nurses in my room all day preparing me for the death of my unborn son.  I had had tests run, ivs started, and been prepared for the end. It was New Year's Eve. I was in a hospital in Orlando close enough to Disney that we could see the fireworks from the hospital room. I made ken close the curtains. And, I sobbed. I could still hear them of course. I could feel Trent kicking me.  But, I was being prepared for the end. I remember thinking "how can the world still be celebrating?"  

Maybe it is the hormones that come with pregnancy ... Maybe it is that all holidays are hard when one child is in heaven ... Maybe it is that tomorrow marks 3.5 years since I kissed his tiny face ... Maybe it is that grief is always there ... I missed him today.

At least a dozen times today I thought, "this is our last holiday as a family of three." Gracie will be here in a few weeks. But, I kept stopping myself. I don't want to imagine losing her too. But, it is always there. God willing, this is the last holiday we will share without her.

We let Ian miss bed time by 2 hours tonight. He was so excited by the fireworks. He was sure it was "popcorn." This boy brings me such joy. He fills my life with a joy I didn't think would ever happen again. I couldn't help but think tonight that someone, somewhere was hearing or seeing the fireworks and could no longer see the joy.

I thank God daily for my son and husband. And I pray his protection over Gracie. 

Holidays are never easy. But, I am blessed to have spent tonight watching my child's face light up as the sky was filled with fireworks.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

20 weeks

I am 20 weeks pregnant with my 3rd precious one tomorrow.  20 weeks! 20 weeks is a scary time for me.  I was admitted to the hospital with Trent at 20 weeks and 5 days.  He was born at 21 weeks and 3 days.  A woman with an incompetent cervix, like myself, will generally go into preterm labor with little to no signs somewhere between 18-24 weeks.  The chance of survival for a baby born that early is zero.  I am nervous.  NOTHING like the nerves I was feeling with Ian's pregnancy.  I would sob into the phone to my mom.  I remember one night she told me, "maybe just one glass of wine tonight would help."

I remember laying in bed night after night BEGGING God to let me keep Ian.  I would sob and sob.  I would plan his funeral.  I would plan how I would tell my family that I lost another one.  But, that wasn't my story.  Ian came into this world perfect and living!

This pregnancy is not nearly as difficult for me.  Yes, I still am throwing up almost every single morning.  (I was not sick this long with either boy!) Yes, my blood pressure is giving me some issues. Yes, I am still high risk. BUT, I have a precious baby boy snoring next to me.

I didn't know my babies could live during Ian's pregnancy.  An incompetent cervix is a death sentence without a cerclage.  I have come to know many, many woman who have lost one, two, three precious children before a doctor would agree to place a cerclage during pregnancy.  There is no "cure" for an incompetent cervix.  I will always have it.  But, thank the Lord there is a fix during pregnancy.  My cerclage has been in place for nearly six weeks with no trouble.

This pregnancy I lay in bed and worry about how I will juggle two car seats, how I will be able to nurse two babies (since Ian sees no need to wean), how I will ever get enough sleep, how I will ever love another baby as much as I love Ian.  And, there are the nights that creep in that I wonder what it would be like to have all three of them.

The next four weeks are a scary time. My nurse calls them the "danger" weeks.  I am trusting God, my cerclage, and the weekly injections of 17p to keep this little one safe and sound.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Core values

During my pregnancy with Ian I attended a workshop. One of the questions asked by the speaker was about our core values. A man sitting at my table said "I don't care what happens in life, your core values never change."

I disagree.

Three years ago tonight I was in labor with my first born son. The contractions were 3-5 minutes apart for hours at a time with no relief. I was very very sick with an infection in my blood. Doctors came in and out of the room all night. At 3 am I could no longer make decisions on my own. Ken had to decide if they would assist my labor to save my life. "You and ken can have other children. There will never be another you."

5 hours after the doctors started to help my labor progress my son was born. Living, breathing, kicking. I laid him on my chest. I kissed him. I held him close. 22 minutes later the nurse pronounced him dead.

They took him from me to weigh, measure, get hand prints. I asked for him back. "He is cold now honey."

Those words change you to the core.

The child you gave life too is gone and all that is left is his cold, lifeless body.

When ken finally arrived to hold him they wrapped him in warm blankets so ken could feel his warmth.

My entire life shifted that day.

Nothing that was important from before was important anymore.

It took months if not years to redefine my core values. But, they are different. I love different. My faith is different. My heart is different. I see the world different. Relationships changed. My whole world shifted. And not all for the bad. In fact most changes have been for the better. I am stronger than I knew. I love with my whole heart. I mother differently than i would have.

3 whole years
 
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