First of all I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart to every person who left a comment on my blog or forum journals…. it means so very very much to us that so many people care. I read every comment – tears streaming, but of gratitude as well as sorrow. Den read and cried too, and told me I have so many wonderful friends.
March 6, 2008 was the worst day of our life.
At my midwife appointment she couldn’t pick up anything on the doppler. She was really very good, she didn’t let on the true weight of it. She sent me for an immediate ultrasound. I was panicking, but just waiting for the ultrasound tech to say, “Oh there it is.” My fear level rose with every second that passed, until the tech said, “I’m so sorry.” There was no heartbeat. Nothing. There are no words to describe that moment. None. I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t think, I just wanted my husband there with me.
And then to realize that he was still inside me, and had to come out. The thought made me sick. Labor and delivery with no baby to take home. WTF kind of cruel joke is that. I just wanted someone to wave a magic wand and make it all disappear. Every time I passed by a mirror my pregnant body mocked me.
They started the induction at 1:00pm with some pills. They intended to add pitocin once my body was ready, but they never got that far… just the vaginal pills did it all. I had no delusions of going natural, given the circumstances. I did manage to get a shot of something in my IV that made me loopy for about an hour and took the edge off. When it wore off I just wanted more loopy, the pain of contractions really didn’t seem all that bad to me, but decided to get an epidural to make sure it was in place for delivery. They never got it in me. I can’t believe how fast it went. I delivered Devin without a drop of medication in my system (the loopiness had long since worn off). I find it ironic – I got my natural birth, and I hadn’t even intended to. I’ll be working on writing everything about labor and delivery down.
Devin Alin was born still, at 6:58pm. He weighed 4lbs 10oz and was 17″ long.
I am physically fine and recovering well. I had a very minor tear that required one stitch. I am tender down below, but it’s hardly bad enough to take anything for. That’s it. No cramping, no pain. My stomach feels… flabby. Weird. I hate that I still look pregnant. Another reminder.
They say he passed a few days ago, a thought that haunts me… I can’t process it. They have no answers for us, and say they may never have answers, but they are going to run tests try to find out. They say it happens – could be just a cord accident, a placental accident. An accident. We of course can’t stop thinking the “what-ifs.” They tell you not to, that it does no good to blame yourself, to wonder. But how can you not. What if… what if. As if you could somehow go back and change things.
We got to see him, hold him. He was perfect. It was horribly morbid in so many ways – he had obviously passed. Things weren’t “right” about him. But he had the cutest little nose. Some brown hair. What really got us was his hands. Perfectly formed hands, with long skinny fingers, just like his mama. My finger fit just perfect in his fist. We stroked his perfectly formed little fingers and just cried and cried.
He was our little boy, our Devin Alin. We hope to someday get pregnant again, light willing. But there will never be another Devin. I don’t want another baby – I want THIS baby.
Den was wonderful through it all. His way of dealing is to dedicate himself to taking care of me. He held my hand, he encouraged me, he reminded me to relax through contractions and get through them. We are as one, dealing with our grief. I don’t know how I would have gotten through anything without him at my side. When the grief strikes hardest, we cling to each other. As long as we have each other we can make it through anything. I am just so thankful to have him at my side. We give each other strength.
The hospital was really great. They took very good care of us. With one exception, everyone who came into our room was prepped on the circumstances and so very kind. Our nurses (who changed with the shifts) appeared to be dedicated to us and Devin. She took photos of him (which I have not gone through yet), she dressed him and cleaned him up for us and brought him to us, she gave us footprints and handprints, which I plan to hang on the bedroom wall. I am thankful for those momentos. I asked her specifically for handprints, to have them. To always remember.
It’s like I stepped out of one life and into another, one I never in a million years thought I would be in. I used to be Natalie, pregnant infertile and soon to be mom of a newborn. I am now Natalie, mother of a stillborn child. My stomach twists when I think that. My head reels. I don’t know who I am anymore. I know we will get through this, but we can’t see how.
Our son is gone. My stomach is empty and flabby, yet I have no child to hold. My heart is forever broken.