Yesterday was such an emotional day for daddy and I. After 3 long months we finally had our appointment at the high risk clinic at McMaster in Hamilton. We arrived almost an hour and a half early because we didn’t know how long it would take. We also were worried we wouldn’t be able to find it. But the hospital wasn’t as confusing as I thought.
We had so much time on our hands, I wanted to go have some breakfast first. So we went down to the cafeteria which was bigger than a mall! Had a delish breakfast sandwich and some milk. Looked around for a bit , and saw that they had a booth set up with purses and rings. I of course had to look. Purses are the only thing girly I like. So for only $10.00 I got myself a very nice black purse with silver flower on it.
Going back up to that room, was a little different this time. There were so many pregnant woman there. I didn’t feel anxious or upset though. This is after all a high risk clinic. Chances are 80% of them were expecting rainbow babies. Or maybe some were there because this was their first baby and they need to do whatever possible to make sure their child is healthy. I wanted to have some conversations but decided not this time. Finally when it was our turn to go into the room, I felt at ease. The nerves that were bothering me went away. We started off by talking to a nice nurse who welcomed us, and told me what the next few hours would be like.
We also talked in detail about what happen on the day I went for my last ultrasound. I relived every moment. I hadn’t wanted to talk about it yet again. Especially since we are going to be starting the group sessions at the Bereavement Families in two weeks. It was easy to remember. I told her about me having a bad feeling. She said that it was normal to feel this way, and that our body knows things, and that they would have taken us in right away. This made me feel so sad - thinking that If someone would have just listened to me and we would have been sent to this clinic from day one (when expecting you) things would be different.
*I fully understand that there are the what ifs, the should be’s, but I’ll never know. I will never get to know. All I do know right now is that there is this wonderful hospital that I already feel so safe in, waiting for your brother or sister to be conceived*
I told her about what I said to my midwife on Sat “I’m not feeling good. Something is wrong. I can’t explain it.” What was said to me “Go lay down. You are fine. Your ultrasound isn’t urgent”
Sunday I watched a movie in the afternoon on the couch, and tried to use the Doppler. It never did work for us so I tried to remain calm. On Monday (Oct 3), I went to the grocery store to buy bread. I also stopped in at the book store and got you a new book, and me a change purse. I was wearing a pink silky top and my black yoga pants. When I came home the biography of Aerosmith was on the television. I joked to your dad I didn’t want to leave. But we did. We went to the hospital, I was afraid. I tweeted that I was afraid to go in. I did though anyways. The technician told me she needed more measurements and left the room. I knew she was lying. I could see it on her face. She got a doctor he came in. Asked me how many weeks I was. How long it had been since I felt you move. How many children we had. Then he said “I’m sorry there is no heart beat.” Your daddy was in the room now. Not sure how he got there. He and I started to cry. I asked to go to the bathroom. I broke down. I freaked out. I demanded answers. I was numb. The doctor asked me “If you weren’t having any movements on Saturday why didn’t you come in?” Again I explained that the midwife told me I was fine. He shook his head. Offered to call her to come be with me. What?! I screamed at him no way I’d see this woman. They brought me up to the room. The nice receptionist that I just registered with a few weeks priior wanted to know if I was coming for a stress test for the baby. “NOOOOOO. My baby is Dead. Leia is Dead!” I screamed.
The nurse (at our appointment yesterday) wanted to know why it took 4 days for me to have you. I couldn’t answer this. I told her I was 35 weeks and that you were breech. I don’t understand any of it. I never will. The only thing I knew was I had a dead baby inside of me, I’d have to deliver the baby, and that you were breech. The midwife tried to come the room. Someone told her no. I could hear her outside the door. Smell the guilt on her body like cheap perfume.
Then after I went over my delivery and what it was like for me, she let me cry. I broke down and sobbed for a long time. She patted me on the hands, gave me Kleenex (the stupid hospital kind with the small box) and told me that this will never happen again to me. I told her about the fear I had of delivering you. The sick feeling of knowing I had something dead inside of me for almost a week. That something was my daughter. YOU. The love of my life. The sweet angel baby I had dreamed about for so very long. You were suddenly gone. She asked me when my waters broke. I said 7:30. She looked at the paperwork, and shook her head. “Around then yes 7:42 they wrote down”.
I wanted to know what time you were born at. She looked again at her paperwork. 5:30pm October 6th 2011 51 cm or 4.16 feet long. weight 4’11. Then came the hard part. The why part. For the last few months we have been carrying around information that I had a placental abruption. She held a piece of paper in her hand that said otherwise. She said the Doctor would go over all this information with us, and wanted to know about our family history.
- Diabetes in the family? Check
- Heart problems? Check
- Special needs or slow learners? Check
- Any miscarriages? Check
- Lung problems? Check
- Surgery’s? - Gosh yes Appendix, bowel resection, tonsils, bunions, wisdom teeth etc etc (all me)
- Heptitis C - No uncheck that one (then I thought about the time I told everyone I got this from Steven tyler - suddenly it wasn’t funny anymore)
- Religion (me - Aerosmith? your dad - Jedi?) - What is wrong with us!
- Date of last period
- Date of ovulation
After a quick exam she told me about the hospital and how things would work moving forward. As soon as we got a positive testing, I neeeded to get my OB now to refer me back to see them. They would see me at 12 weeks , then again at 14 weeks. If I felt any pain, bleeding, or was worried I could come back to hospital 24 hours a day and see a tech. This blew me away! 24 hours a day! No questions asked. Nobody would look at me like I’m a worried crazy person!?
More tears. I felt revealed and then the guilt of not listening to my body kicked in again. Tears became sobs. She told me to take my time and left the room. I hugged your daddy and waited for the doctor to come see us.
While waiting (the door was ajar) I could hear someone talking about me on the phone “Yes I’m calling about Angela W****** - she is a patient of yours and we are looking for information on blood work that was taken at the hospital” I couldn’t hear anything else because some girl was talking so loud about an ad she found on craiglist for a playpen.
Finally the nurse came back in after a half hour and said she was sorry. The doctor is trying to find out more information on the test results before she tells you them. I smiled weakly and thanked her. She shut the door tight.
Confusion set in again. I asked your dad “I had blood work? When?” I started to get upset wondering what was going on.
When the doctor came in she introduced herself. She was smaller and older than I imagined she would be. Then came the hard stuff.
- You didn’t have a full placental abruption
- You have something called Group B Streptococcus - Have or had
- If caught early it can be treated with antibiotics
- If you still have it then it’s dangerous and needs to be taken care of
- If you still have diabetes you need to meet with our dietician and get on insulin
- You are over weight *after stepping on the scale I realized by just how much
- The fetus (don’t use that word around me) died quickly probably bled to death
- The fetus was perfect size, length and weight suggesting that it (Again not an IT) would have been born healthy had this been caught
- Rare fluke occurrence that won’t happen again
- We treat everyone the same at this hospital though and nothing to worry about
- There was hydrops on the placenta
- You probably have a blood clotting disorder called Thrombosis
- Yes it can be dangerous but we will treat it and hopefully it was caught early (caught early? Its been 5 months today since you died - not came into the world but were actually found to be dead)
- It also could be Antithrombin (she leaning towards this one given my medical history
- Fetal Demise could have been prevented and moving forward you will be closely monitored
I openly cried hard. She told me everything will be okay now. How can it be? You are still gone. It’s wonderful that I’ll have the love, support and care needed. BUT where was it 6 months ago? This will not bring you back. The tears didn’t stop for a long time. The raw emotions were bubbling over and I couldn’t stop. I could hear her say she will give me a moment but all I saw were the words flashing inside my head. Not placental abruption, fetus bled to death, wasn’t over a long period of time - probably took a day .
I’m fully aware that you are dead. That I delivered you dead. That at some point I held you. (photos are to thank for that memory) But hearing someone else talk about it made it very real. I think I’ve been tricking myself into thinking maybe it wasn’t’ really happening. That I’d wake up and suddenly it would be all a nightmare.
Now I know this isn’t going to happen. So how do I move on? I think we are taking the proper steps now. Going to group sessions, making pro-active decisions about the future. Just the fact that I wasn’t angry when I saw these pregnant woman lets me know that I’m making progress.
On the way home from the hospital I checked my facebook. One message made me smile, and cry. It was from a good friend telling me they are expecting. I didn’t feel any sadness, or jealously. Then scrolling down my page I found out that 3 others are also expecting. Wow what a wonderful thing. I know that 3 have been in my shoes. 1 hasn’t. Will I treat any of them differently? No. Never. I know in my heart that we will get our BFP (Big Fat Positive) too.
I love you now and forever Leia. I am sorry for everything.