Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Rest of the World

I think everyone knows that feeling, whether you are going through something really great and exciting, or something really horrible and sad-- when you re-enter the real world, it seems almost cruel that everything has been working just fine in spite of your happiness or sadness. Sometimes you wish you had a sign on your back saying " I just got back from my honeymoon" or "I just found out I'm pregnant" or "I just pushed out a baby and she died". And of course sometimes you are glad to be anonymous.

I'm still feeling like I'm in a blur of reality. I drive myself home and can't really remember how I got there, or where I parked or when I even stopped for gas? My mind is just elsewhere. But I've decided to ease back in to work. I have always thrived on routine, so I figured having some normalcy back in my life would be a good thing.

I'm a lawyer and I work with criminals who are incarcerated. I don't really have an office, I practically live in a jail all day. It's not as depressing as it used to be, and contrary to popular belief my criminal clients are quite polite and some seem to be amazing people in spite of their bad choices or bad luck.

But of course, many of them are not the best people, and many of them have ruined their lives as well as their entire families lives. Many have children they don't know and many continue to have children they will never raise. Yesterday I was doing my initial client interviews with several clients in a row. I met with one who told me his top priority was to get out of jail so he could see his baby born. Now, understand this is a VERY common wish of my clients. I'd say over 60% of the time my clients tell me they have a baby coming in the next few months and would like to get out to be there (even if they were not there for the children they already have, or even for this woman who is carrying his next child). But of course, after losing my child, this "wish" hit me differently. As I always do, I then asked when the child would be born so we could do some math and see whether it was realistic for him to count on being out for the birth. This client casually answered, December 5th. It was like a knife in my heart. Bremy's due date. I looked at him for a long second and actually thought about telling him about my daughter. Oh, my I'm so glad I didn't. That would have been I brushed it off and continued with my interview, my heart a little heavier. I'd managed to keep my mind off of her for the previous 30 minutes. And there she was. Right back in my mind.

He left and my next cleint walked in. I started our interview . He then mentioned how important it was for him to be out for his son's birth. He had missed his first son's birth because he had been locked up. "Ok, what is the due date?" I asked. "December 5th" he answered. I cocked my head and stared at him. I seriously, honestly thought this was a joke. Did this guy know something? Was he messing with me? He looked back at me, a tear in his eye (he had gotten emotional telling me he'd missed his first son's birth)And of course I realized this guy had no clue I had also been expecting a child on December 5th.

Now, I really just wanted to let it all out and tell him to get over the fact that he mised his son's birth, at least his son lived. And for a few seconds I turned bitter and just wanted to let him have it. He had been selling dope and stealing cars so he missed his son being born. I had been living an honest life and I had to witness my daughter die. My heart turned cold and I just wanted to take it out on him. Ask him if he really appreciated the fact that he would have two children. Let him know not everyone has healthy babies in spite of their horrendous decision making skills. But I didn't. I just went silent, I felt like I was choking. I could barely breath. I acted as though I was furiously taking notes and thinking about his case, but really I was picturing my beautiful girl and having flashbacks of my Dr.'s big brown eyes, feeling my daughter lifeless between my legs, I was hearing the sounds I made, my husband's horrified face, my mom's reaction when she finally made it to the hospital and we had to tell her Bremy was gone. I was reliving the day I lost my daughter. Luckily, I kept the tears in my eyes and was able to finally breath and get back to my client.

The next day I successfully argued for each of them to be released in time for them to see their children be born. On December 5th.

Each day is getting slightly easier, but I'm so tired of these moments. I just want them to go away, I want the painful memories to disappear. I want to feel the way I used to feel. I guess I don't know if I ever will, but I'm growing impatient with myself. I don't want to cry in the car when as sa song comes on or choke up when I see a pregnant woman, or walk by the baby Gap where I bought her first outfit. I just want my brain and my heart to forget.

The rest of the world is still going, and I know my world will slowly grow to a new normal. I just wish I could be at that place already.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Love of a Dog

Maverick will be 6 years old at the end of the year. B and I make no qualms about how much we dote on him and treat him as though he is an actual child. We crate trained him, took him to puppy training school (can't say it worked any wonders!), researched the best dog foods and we also make sure we both try to attend his veterinary appointments together. Yeah, we're those dog people. Many have commented on how poor Mav is going to get a wake up call once a human baby arrives, but we hope we can maintain loving him just as much.
After our loss of Bremy, it was clear to me that Maverick also felt the loss. I had been a little disappointed when I was pregnant and Maverick did not seem to notice and did not seem to have that doggy intuition where he could tell mama had a bun in the oven. He wasn't protective of me and also never seemed to pay any extra attention to my belly.

On the day I finally returned home from the hospital after delivering our baby girl, I immediately sat nose to nose with my pup. He licked my face and nuzzled his big head into the crook of my neck. I made my way to our bedroom where he followed me. I was so exhausted that I plopped down on my bed, one foot hanging over the side and dozed off. B came in to shut the door, which woke me up. I looked down and saw that Mav had been sitting on the floor at my feet, facing the doorway of our room (not a spot he ever sat in). I expected him to follow B as he left, but he didn't. He looked up at me, then turned back, facing the door. Twenty minutes later, I awoke again and he was still there. Sitting up, head to the door. This was not his usual thing. I called out to him and he turned once again and licked the top of my foot and then returned to his position. My doggy knew everything.

Since then, Maverick has been my constant companion. He is normally a stubborn dog who doesn't necessarily come when you call. But since Bremy has gone he has been so sweet and loving to both of us.

A couple nights ago, while at my parents I was just getting into bed when I heard him stirring in his travel crate. I knew he wasn't too comfortable since this crate is quite a bit smaller than his normal bed, so I turned the light on and crouched down to give him a pet. I scratched his ears and rubbed his head until he laid down and drifted off. In that moment I couldn't help but think of my baby girl. And how much I wanted to be soothing her to sleep. As I looked at our pup resting peacefully I thought of how much I wanted to be a mother and how much I already was one. Even with this immeasurable hurt over our daughter, I felt thankful to have the unconditional love of our sweet dog.

I saw this picture today on facebook, and of course it made me well up. There were over one thousand people at this Navy Seal's funeral. And this is his dog. Chills. I love our Maverick so much, and looking at this picture, I'm grateful to be here with him, even if our girl is not here. I am grateful for his companionship.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Missing my Girl

Dear Bremy Belle,

I was finally feeling a little better. We've been going out with your grandparents, trying to keep busy. I have managed to smile and laugh in the last few days. But I still cry myself to sleep each night in your daddy's arms. He has been so incredibly strong and even though we don't say a word as I cry at night, his love is what is getting me through. His fingers on my forehead are what let me finally fall asleep each night.

Today was a hard day. We are home and trying to get the house and our lives back in order without you. The pain is just hurting me so bad. I've never ever felt this way before.

My heart is quite painfully broken. I have no less than one hundred thoughts per second about you, my pregnancy, the birth, your face, all the things I imagined for you, about another pregnancy, another baby, this happening again, miscarrying earlier, or later, not being able to have another baby, your toes, and then all those thoughts seem to explode in my head and that's when I just cry. I cry so hard and it hurts so much. I've never ever heard these cries come from myself. They are cries of real pain in my soul. And I know everyone experiences horrible things, even worse things, but this is a very specific sadness that very few people can understand.

Everyone keeps telling us we now have an angel looking down on us. It should be comforting but it is not. I wish there were a way I could still feel you or sense you. Obviously I miss those physical reminders of your life like your kicking and your bulge and the feeling of your weight in my abdomen. But what I miss more is that emotional connection. You were with me for every single second of my life for five months and I just miss that feeling of you being with me. I wish I could say I still feel you with me or that I sense you looking down on us but I don't. I don't feel it. Maybe eventually we will. Maybe I'm just too enveloped in my own sadness, but I'd love to know somehow that you are around.

There are positives to this experience, and I know I'm a changed person after this. You will have a legacy in this family. And it will be a positive one. I just have to get through this dark time to see that light.

Missing you.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Pioneer Woman's New Show!

A friend reminded me today that Ree Drummond's new Food Network show is starting this Saturday. I just watched the preview and I smiled the whole time. I love this lady and her recipes. I've read her blog for a while and really enjoyed her book about her love story.

Setting the DVR right now :)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

"The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears, or the sea" ~Isak Dinesen.

We are working on healing. I'm having a hard time. I feel so sad, so cheated, disappointed and traumatized by our experience. The actual delivery and birth were so much more difficult physically and mentally than I could have imagined. And the memories are haunting me right now.
We have both taken off work for now. We just need to digest this and grieve. On Wednesday B said he wanted to drive to see my parents and stay with them. He thought it'd be good for both of us. I didn't want to see anyone at all. I said I didn't want to go. But he pretty much packed the car and said we could just stay for a bit. I still resisted and wasn't too happy to get in the car, but I knew sitting around our house moping around wasn't going to do me any good.

I'm not much of a beach person. My parents live 10mintues from the ocean, and I grew up and went to school on the coast but I'd rather be at a pool or a lake so I can swim and be in a boat on calm waters. But as soon as we reached my hometown, I wanted to get to the beach.
So we went. The two of us and our dog. We walked and we stared and we listened to the waves. We got sandy and gave our pup lots of love. I listened to some music and shed a few tears alone while the boys splashed in the water. It felt cleansing.

I can't say it made me feel good, but it made me feel better.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Last Belly Shots

Here are my last pictures with baby Bremy still inside me. I was over the moon those last two weeks because I felt like I actually looked pregnant, finally.

What I wouldn't give to have her back in there. I am constantly rubbing my belly, forgetting she is no longer there. It's like it's a natural reflex now. Last night I felt a twitch in my lower belly and put my hand down there, without thinking. I burst into tears and cried for a long time once I realized that sensation was not my baby moving. I had been tear-free for a long time all day and that moment just broke me right back into a million pieces. But I'm patching myself back together, just taking it day by day.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Our Baby Has a Name

Bremy Belle

Bremy Belle is our baby's name. We thought of her first name years ago, but weren't sure if we'd ever use it. When we found out we were having a baby girl, we just kept coming back to that name. Then we started to call her that and it just felt so right. My parents really loved it. We got some mixed reviews from others, but everyone agreed that once they started saying it, it really seemed to fit.

Bremy is a combination of mine and my husband's name. I've always liked "cute" names that end in a y sound, and my husband just thought it was so cool that it had never been used before but didn't sound too off the wall.

Belle is a name I have loved since I was young. I liked it for a first name, but it just seemed to work as Bremy's middle name.

I'm so sad I will never hear this name called from a graduation stage or at her first sporting events. I just love the name so much and could not wait to see it on her monogrammed onesies. Or see her write it on her homework.

But we will always say it. We will always know it. And as B's cousin pointed out, it is a perfect name for our daughter who has passed. She has a part of myself and a part of B in her always, and her name reflects that perfectly.

We miss you Bremy Belle. Words cannot describe how much we miss you.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Everything Looks Different Now

***I sat into the car. The first time I'd been outside in five days. I looked at my hands. They looked like hers. I finally looked up and saw houses. Restaurants. Signs. Things I'd seen before. Many times before. But they looked so different now. They looked so insignificant. So small and unworthy of my glance. I was a mother now. A mother with a dead child who was sitting somewhere in a hospital I had just pulled away from. I had looked into the face of my child and counted her tiny toes. Every other thing on this earth was now being seen through eyes that had lain on my angelic daughter. Nothing would ever look the same***

My doctor took my head into both her hands and told me it was too early. She told me our daughter would not make it, and if she did, her life would be plagued with an innumerate amount of challenges and health interventions. I nodded my head in her hands. "I know" I cried.

Once I knew that we were in "worst case scenario" zone, my thoughts ran quickly. So many pictures ran through my head. " I don't want to make a choice" I kept saying in my mind. Since I had found out I would deliver early, I kept praying the same prayer, "If she is going to go, please go now. If she is going to be, please let her get to a week where her complications would be relatively minimal." When, at 6am I was told we were at worst case scenario at 23 weeks and 5 days, I felt the decision was being made for me. It was just so soon.

B finally got to the hospital. I could tell as soon as he walked in that he wanted to try to save her. I asked the Dr. to talk to him and tell him exactly, word for word what she had told me. He sunk his chin and nodded at her comments. His eyes so puffy and red, trying to stay strong. We looked at each other and cried. We both knew we were losing our daughter today.

My heart was so strong. My heart told me it was too early. That this was happening now, prior to 24 weeks for a reason. But looking at B I wondered if we could try. The Dr. said we could but she was so fearful that we would not understand the survivability of a 23 week old. We contemplated it, but my heart was so strong. I knew we had to get through this and mourn this.

A new OB was coming on shift and came in to get acquainted with us. He examined me and told me I would deliver very quickly. I told him I did not want to have a c-section. My only c-section option was a traditional, or vertical c-section which would mean I could never deliver vaginally afterwards. And it was real surgery I'd have to recover from.

I told him I wanted to deliver vaginally and he agreed it was best, even though baby was breech. We popped my bulging bag and I pushed. I pushed a lot of her body out, but they said my cervix had actually shrunk a bit after the bag was out, and I was not dilated enough to deliver the larger part of her body. I was so overwhelmed and disappointed. I just wanted it to be over.

We tried again but I was so upset I could not focus. His every touch sent me squirming. I just couldn't do it. He wanted me to get an epidural. I did not want one. I just wanted it over. But I got one, and soon thereafter it was over with no more pain.

My tiny daughter was handed to me in a blanket that dwarfed her. She took my breath away. She was so incredibly beautiful. She had his nose. She had my lips.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

A letter to my daughter

Dear Baby girl,

My God you are so beautiful. I was not expecting that. I wasn't sure what you would look like. But your perfect rosebud lips, ladylike fingers and button nose were almost too much for mama to handle. Even though you were not breathing when they placed you in my arms, I felt so connected to you. I hear not all moms feel that way when they are handed their babies. Even perfectly healthy babies. I'm so glad I did. I'm so glad I recognized you as the little girl I've been chatting with for five months. The girl I felt kicking her mama every day since week 15. I knew it was you the second I laid eyes on you, my beautiful girl.

It was very hard on Daddy to see you. He thought maybe he didn't want to see you, but he was strong and he looked you over with me. You were so perfect in your miniature way. Your toenails, your elbows. Everything.

Sweetheart, I miss you already. I miss feeling you as I walk. As I sit and as I breath. I miss that hard bulge in my tummy and the feel of your jumping and turning and kicking. I miss whispering to you and singing to you as we fell asleep. I'm having trouble remembering you are no longer within me. You are supposed to still be with me.

But I know you are at peace now and looking down on me and your daddy. I know you know how much we love you and will always love you. I will still talk to you, even though you are so far away now. I will still sing with you.

Darling, you will always be my first child and will always be my mama girl.

Thank you for blessing me with 23 weeks of excitement and joy. I've never looked forward to anything the way I looked forward to you. We will continue your memory, baby girl. I love you so much.


Our Worst Nightmare Come True

***The warm air slammed my face. The sunlight pierced my eyes. It shouldn't be summer, I thought. It shouldn't be warm when I leave the labor and delivery floor of this hospital. It should be the chill of winter that hits my face. The icy wind that pierces my eyes. I should have a warm bundle of child wrapped in my arms. Not a bare lap. Not tears in my eyes. I wasn't supposed to deliver my daughter in the summertime. I wasn't supposed to leave the hospital without my daughter.***

Today. I lost my first born child. Today I lost a piece of myself. Today I lost my pride. And my joy. Today it felt as though I lost everything.

At 1am this morning my new nurse entered my room to give me a pill. She was about an hour late. The pill was meant to stop contractions. Contractions I wasn't feeling, the contractions that were very sporadic. Only a couple an hour. I was annoyed she was so late. I was trying to get on a schedule. I held my arm out begrudgingly as she took my blood pressure. I swallowed my pill and turned my TV on so I could find a way to get back to sleep.

I watched an episode of Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta. It made me remember what it was like when my weeks revolved around wedding planning. How fun it was. How insignificant it felt now. Now that I was fighting to keep a baby inside me.

The show ended at 2am and I was still awake. Just as I reached for my remote to turn the TV off and head to sleep, I felt something. Something I've felt before. A period cramp. It was in my lower right tummy. I put my hand down and felt the tightening. The feeling everyone told me I'd feel, eventually, but had not felt yet. I swallowed. It's ok, I reminded myself. It wont keep up. Fifteen minutes later, another in the same spot. I called my nurse.

She seemed unconcerned and wrapped my belly in a belt and put me on a monitor. She came back and gave me more medicine and told me it looked like I was having uterine irritability and the meds would make it go away.

It didn't.

More meds.

More cramps.

At 5am I told her I wanted a Dr. She told me the Dr. was in a c-section. I was so upset. "Find someone else!" I screamed. I knew this was not good.

At 5:45 am she told me the Dr. was on her way. I called B and asked him to come.

The nurse came back at 6 and asked if maybe I needed to use the bathroom. In my head I knew that being constipated would not cause these pains, but I rolled out of my bed for the first time in 36 hours and sat on the bed side commode. I couldn't go. But something did not feel right.

I took at look at my toilet paper. It was red. I could not help but panic and fall back on my bed. "This is not happening" I repeated to myself, my hand covering my eyes. I looked down into the makeshift toilet and saw a pool of blood.

The nurses rushed in. Moved everything in my room. Moved my bed. No one said a word. They just worked. And rushed.

I felt more cramps. I groaned. "what is taking the Dr. so long". They told me she was wrapping up a c-section. I cried and I shook and I groaned.

Finally she arrived. She tried to be positive. Said she wanted to look. She looked. She felt. "This is the worse case scenario, Amy. " She said, " You are fully dilated and your bag is out." I didn't even react. I already knew.

I called my mom. I called my best friend. I called my amazing OB friend, K. In my heart I knew it was over.

B came. The Dr. came. It was about 7am. They went over my options.

Friday, August 12, 2011


From the moment I was told I have an incompetent cervix and would deliver early, I was casually reminded that I will have to make "some choices". I didn't like this idea and kept brushing it off. The nurse from the NICU has come to our room to give us some information about how their nursery works, but she reminded us we would need to visit with a neonatologist to go over "our choices". I did not ask her to elaborate.

Since the beginning, I have prayed that if our girl is not meant to be, please take her now. If she is meant to be, please get her to a week where she will definitely make it. I am ok with the challenges she will have, but please don't put her in a position where we have to make choices.

The Neonatologist came to our room yesterday. She was chubby, so I instantly liked her (I don't know why but I just like people with a little meat on their bones. It's like she's actually human). She said she was just coming in to answer our questions, and wouldn't be throwing statistics and empty numbers at us. I liked that. I gulped and finally asked her what everyone meant when they told us they wanted us to make choices.

She explained that since we are here on bed rest, I have the "luxury" or curse of having time to learn and gain information about preemies and about a NICU stay. She also said that our decisions are fluid and most of our decisions cannot be made before we meet me daughter. I was so relieved to hear her say that. i just envisioned me signing on a dotted line, and her coming out thriving and the dr.'s not doing anything because we had signed her life away. She smiled and said that would never happen.

Right now our choice is to give our daughter every chance to live that we can. If we find out after that she will have major issues that will cause her to suffer, we will reevaluate, but for now, I have a feeling no matter when she comes out, she will surprise everyone with how strong she is.

Here is to at least 30 weeks!!

Right now everyone is rooting for us to make it to the 'viable' age of 24 weeks. But I'm still rooting for 30. I want to get out of these scary 20s. I just have to.

Hospital Bed Rest

On Monday night I went to bed uncomfortable. I could feel our girl kicking, but she was pushing and moving really, really low and it was hard to sleep. I kept talking to her and rubbing my belly but she insisted somersaults were essential at 11pm. I then started to worry that maybe it was something else I was feeling. I finally made it to sleep.

I woke up Tuesday morning and found an unsightly amount of discharge. My heart sunk. I called my Dr. and they told me to head to labor and delivery. The pressure and the mucous were things they wanted to check out.

The hospital moved pretty quickly. My nurse in triage was outstanding. They ordered an ultrasound and about thirty minutes later two men entered the room to conduct my ultrasound. They saw my cervix was about 2cm open this time. I instantly burst into tears. I didn't want to hear that anything was worse. The ultrasound tech rubbed my hand and told me in his soft-spoken accent "Amy, please do not cry. You only make it worse for baby". My husband, mom, mother in law had all told me this about 100 times, but for some reason his soft way took my tears away. I let out a huge breath and relaxed.

I was then admitted to the high risk maternity ward. The on call perniatologist came into my room. I had been warned that she could be "cold" by the nurses, so I put my big girl face on when she came in. She told me that the ultrasound tech had taken the measurements differently than she had wanted, and I was really closer to 1cm. I let out a big breath. She was slightly hopeful but warned us that at 23 weeks we were still in a really rough spot.

It was surprising to me how being in the hospital calmed my nerves. They were monitoring me, had me in a deep trendelendburg position and had me using a bed side commode so I would not be walking anywhere. It felt nice knowing that I could buzz them for every single thing I felt and they were happy to check for me.

Wednesday I just laid low. My mother in law stayed by my side and tried to keep me busy. I was getting to know the bedside routine and learning more about how this hospital thing was going to work. I was feeling more pressure wednesday night so they hooked me up to the monitor to see if I was contracting. I had had 2 contractions earlier when they had checked me, but they were spread out and they insisted that was normal. On Wednesday night I was happy when they reported I had zero contractions at that hour.

The Dr. came in to tell me they were putting me on two different medicines. One was to prevent contractions from happening the other was to try to reduce the amount of fluid around the baby to take the pressure off of my cervix. They are only giving me this drug for a few days so they do not reduce the fluid by too much.

Sleeping in trendelenburg (aka on your head) is, in a word, interesting. But I'm pretty sure I would hand by my toenails right now if it meant I'd have a healthy baby.

Yesterday I had a second ultrasound with the perinatologist. Unfortunately I have now dilated to over 2cm. I was seriously so optimistic going into the ultrasound, so when she pursed her lips before telling me the news, I almost couldn't believe it. She did say there was good news. My fluid sac was still relatively high and was not bulging and had not ruptured. I tried to just focus on that news. The Dr. was pretty negative after the ultrasound and made me feel as though getting to 24 weeks would be the best I could hope for.

I was upset. My nurse came in and sat by my side and recited all of the success stories they had seen lately. I instantly felt better, remembering that there are no guarantees, that I can go further. I've made it over a week already and I know I can do more.

The nurses here could not be better. I just light up when they come in the room. So positive and two of them have actually been in my exact situation and ended up with very favorable results. So good to hear.

I have some dark moments, but I'm just focusing on all the great stories I hear. I am obsessed with getting to 30 weeks. Right now, I'm being told that is an unrealistic goal, but I've just heard too many people who have made it there or past. I have to have a goal, and that is it.

Friday, August 5, 2011

22 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

This week has been tough. I went in for my appointment on Wednesday and found out that you are perfect, but your mommy's body is not. It was the toughest news I've ever gotten. Ever. It was very unexpected and left me feeling very raw and very shocked.

Instantly, all of our loved ones gathered around us and embraced us with love and hope and offers of support. It was overwhelming but not surprising. We have some amazing family and really great friends. They will love you and adore you so much. In fact, they already do.

You are really kicking up a storm in there. Mommy's tummy is getting nice and round which I love. I really enjoy being pregnant and having others know I'm pregnant. It's such a significant thing. I've heard people call it a privilege and that's really a great word. Not everyone experiences this and I've just loved every bit of it.

The reason our bad news was so shocking is because I've been feeling so great. I have energy, have been getting exercise and eating so well. Daddy takes amazing care of us and is so happy to know you are in there dancing around. I can usually feel where your head is right now, and he loves feeling that little round bulge. He's still waiting for you to kick for him, though!

Baby girl, I hope you continue to grow and grow. I hope mommy's body cooperates and you arrive here safe and sound. We know it will be early, but we're hoping not too early. I already love you so, so much. I talk to you everyday in a really annoying baby voice that I'm sure you will grow to hate. But I can't help it. So far your nickname is "mommy girl" even though I'm pretty sure you'll be a daddy's girl all the same.

I love to rub my belly and feel you move. I love to try to guess which position you are in since you seem to move all the time. Every single doctor has commented on how active you are. Sounds like you will keep me on my toes!

I'm not giving up on you, baby girl. No one is. You are perfect and I just hope I can keep your pretty little being safe and sound for as long as possible.

I know you will be early, but how about you give Auntie K a nice birthday present and come on her November 5th birthday? Boy, that would be nice. Although the doctors don't expect you to make it that long, that's my own little goal for you.

Love you so much already!


When Nothing Else Matters

So, I took the advice of my friend K who is an OB at UCLA and went to UC Davis med center for a second opinion. I was so shocked at the news at my appointment that I hadn't asked a lot of detailed questions about what else was going on with my cervix and the baby. Was I in labor? Was I leaking amniotic fluid? Was there anything the Drs could do? I could not get ahold of my OB or my Perinatologist so at 8pm we went to the hospital.

I was met with a little attitude, asking why I was not at my normal hospital and why I was even coming in. Luckily I had K's information on hand and said I had some unanswered questions and wasn't going anywhere. It's amazing how being so upset can make you so timid. I didn't even recognize myself. It's like my fear just took over.

Of course it was super busy in labor and delivery so we had to wait a long time to be seen. They did a speculum exam and could easily see my cervix was open. The resident immediately called for the Chief resident which literally made me shake so much I could hardly keep my legs open. Was there a new problem? Turned out, all was the same as the day before, she just wanted to get the chief in to explain things to me. They had planned on taking a sample of my discharge to see what it was exactly, but because my fluid sac was right there, they didn't want to risk infection or rupture I guess.

I had an amazing RN, resident doctor and chief resident who were all really, really sweet and obviously concerned. Their prognosis, advice and recommendations were pretty much right on with what my perinatologist had said the day before. They did say my cervix was nice and long and 50% effaced and that a cerclage was definitely possible, but not without risk.

They told me they weren't sure how far I would go even with bed rest. Even 26 weeks sounded far to them. Even though I knew that, it still stung so much to hear what I'm being faced with.

I asked them to list every option I had. They started with termination which was really hard to hear and ended with my going home. They put me in a private room to think it over with my family (may parents had arrived that afternoon). I cried for about two minutes, my family comforted me and I felt like I wasn't sure what to do. Should I risk the cerclage? Stay in the hospital?

As I wiped away some tears I felt a really strange sensation come over me and I instantly calmed down. I knew I wanted to go home, use the progesterone they had prescribed and continue on my strict bed rest. It was like there were no other options. It was a really strange feeling. I was thankful for it, because moments earlier I seriously had no idea what to do. I was completely calm the rest of the night, which is very out of character for me, especially when my parents are around. I usually just let it all out. But I felt really confident that whatever was meant to happen would happen.

Today has been easier than yesterday. Again, I have a really strong sense that everything happens for a reason. If this baby is not meant to be, that is ok. If this baby is meant to be a little peanut survivor, that is awesome. If this little girl surprises us all and stays put for a couple months, well then, I'll sure be glad I didn't terminate or risk a cerclage. I know there is a reason for all of this.

Of course, those first two options will be difficult and I know I will fall apart now and then. And things are going to get tough. But I've never faced anything I can't handle.

If my little girl is anything like her mama and daddy she is stubborn as a mule and will not go down without a fight.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Bed [Ar]rest

We got some not so good news yesterday. After our little girls head measurement came back abnormal, my dr. sent me to a perinatologist to get her re measured to makes sure nothing was actually wrong. Turns out baby girl is measuring perfectly, but my cervix is not.

They performed a vaginal ultrasound to take a look and found that my cervix was dilated to 1cm and my fluid sac had descended. I had never met this dr. before and she was literally horrible at delivering the news. I know this is very serious, but she could not have made it seem any worse.

Unfortunately I was at the appointment alone as it was too early for B to get there from work. I cried as she told me there was zero possibility of me taking this baby to term. Our new goal was to get her to an age where she would survive and have a somewhat normal quality of life. Do you know how much that statement stung?

I was a 10lb+ baby and my hubby was over 8lbs. I have never once thought of the possibility of a preemie. I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes, so this whole pregnancy has been focused on making sure she doesn't get too big. I just couldn't believe what I was hearing.

I'm pretty sure this Dr. has never been pregnant. She was so clinical and offered zero reassurance. She also advised I take a formal tour of the NICU so that I can make an informed decision on whether to keep my baby alive if she is born at a questionable age.

She told me to go on strict bed rest and to come back in a week. I am self employed so this is absolute financial devastation for us. I have no idea what we will do. I've been trying my best to save for her arrival, but I had a long way to go.

I will be 23 weeks on Monday. I'm praying she makes it to 35 weeks, but was told it's a long shot.

I'm still in shock and don't really know what to think or do. I'm home with my feet up fighting back the tears, trying to stay as calm as possible for our little girl.