It becomes easier to accept, but you never get over the loss of a child.
January 28, 2013 by
There are some events in a person's life, that are so memorable (even if they are bad memories), that you can remember just about every detail. For me, January 28, 2005 is one of those days. Years ago, my husband and I were so excited to find out I was pregnant, that we told everyone listed in our phonebooks. Most people would wait until after the first trimester to break the news, but we couldn't help it. I couldn't wait to feel little kicks and see my belly grow. Unfortunately, I never did feel kicks.
I was 7 months pregnant, and although the average person would start feeling kicks around the 4th or 5th month, I never did. Since it was my first pregnancy, my doctor told me it was not uncommon for a mom-to-be, not to notice those tiny kicks until later on. Because of this, I became an Internet junkie, signing up for every web pregnancy site like babycenter, pregnancy.org, etc. I joined forums and would continuously ask, "is this normal" types of questions in the groups. Anytime someone would write "yeah, I had that", or "yea, me too" I always felt at ease. Especially since I would at least feel him rotate.
There were a few days that I didn't really feel much of anything. I would head to the ER freaking out thinking the worst. Each time, I would be given a sonogram and assured that my baby was ok. But, on January 21, 2005 I did not feel any fetal movement. I called my doctor's office to let him know I felt no movement and he told me to come in. Since he was right across the street from the hospital, I listened. He had me undress and did a Doppler ultrasound. A nurse's assistant came into the room and told me I shouldn't have to undress for a simple Doppler exam and it wasn't until that moment that I realized something was up. I told her that he always had me do that so I didn't know and they just gave each other a look. Every exam I had during this pregnancy, the doctor would do a vaginal exam and check my belly using the Doppler. Not knowing any better, I did what I was told. He heard a woosh woosh sound and said my baby was fine. I reminded him that I felt no movement and asked him a few times for a sonogram. He told me he would not sign for a sonogram because it was unnecessary. Being the naive person I was, I believed him when he said I was just overreacting because I'm nervous since it's my first time.
On January 27th, for my sister's birthday we went to dinner with my mom, sister and her friends. Her friend's sister was there and she recently had a baby, so I started questioning her on the norms and what she experienced during her pregnancy. After speaking with her, I was super scared and told my husband we're going straight to the hospital.
A little after midnight, January 28, 2005: At the hospital I told the nurse what was going on. After I was admitted, I remember laying in the bed and the sonographer checking me and then running out of the room. She came back with two doctors and a nurse and they were all taking turns checking to see what was going on. That's when one finally came over to me and in her most loving way told me there was no heart beat. Once my husband heard that, all I could hear was things being thrown around the room and my husband crying loudly. I was asked if I wanted a c-section or if I'd prefer to push him out and I chose to push. They gave me pills to induce labor and after a few hours I felt the most intense pain I could have imagined. I was hurting physically and emotionally, but since this was the only experience I was destined to have with my baby I decided to endure all of it with no relief. My husband made the phone calls letting our family know and they came to the hospital. Everyone had red eyes from crying, but played strong for my benefit. We could hear a couple of babies being born and newborns crying and that made this experience even more painful. After a couple of hours I felt the need to push and my husband called the doctor. The doctor came in and rudely said he cannot stay long because he has live babies to deliver. We were all in disbelief. My husband was so close to punching him and I was just wishing someone would wake me up and tell me I was just having a nightmare. I chose Jamaica Hospital in Queens, NY because of the pleasant experience my cousin had, but it turned out to be the worse choice for me.
I delivered my son myself, with my mom and husband nearby. It all happened under a sheet, so no one knew he was already out, but a nurse came into the room and I asked her to check. She lifted the sheet that was covering me and wrapped him up in a baby blanket. She was ready to hand him to me, but I wasn't ready to see him, so she handed him to my mother, then my husband. I was finally ready to hold him. He was extremely dark, deteriorating, no sign of ever having life. Fast forward to the autopsy, we found out he was dead for 9 days. Already deceased when my doctor did the doppler and told me everything was fine. I can't believe he was gone so long and I didn't know. Well, I felt that something was wrong, but I never listened to my God given intuition, I had more faith in a careless doctor.
The morning after delivering my son, I had the pleasure of meeting the kindest nurses. Ones who actually cared enough to talk to me. Because I couldn't cry then (for some reason I was more angry then anything), I kept being asked if I was ok. Seriously? Why would I be ok? While speaking with a social worker, in the background the TV had a news report of a baby found in the trash. I remember hating God in that moment, wondering how someone who wants no kids enough to kill their child can have a healthy baby and toss it in the trash, while someone like me who wants a baby badly would have to suffer a loss. My father said it's no coincidence that the news reported that. I told him I hate God and he told me never to say a crazy thing like that. For a little while I was so consumed with hate that I didn't even think of the things that could've happened. God doesn't give a person more than they can handle and I know for a fact it would've been harder to me to handle losing him after I heard him cry. I was reminded that even though no one is replaceable, I need to thank God for what we do have. I had a family that would not leave my side, a husband who was and is compassionate and I still had my health. Even though it sounds very strange to a lot of people who never had a stillborn baby (and even some who have), I am thankful that he survived 7 months and I was able to deliver him. Because he survived as long as he did, I am able to have keepsakes. I was able to dress him in a onesie and I was able to hold him. I was able to take pictures of him and able to remember what he looked like. My family took pictures with him too. I spent 4 days in the hospital, just so he can be brought up to me every day. I would've stayed longer, but by day 4 he was literally withering away.
After speaking with the nurses and social worker, I was told I should request my records from the doctor. I didn't even want to go home because I had baby items there, so after I was discharged from the hospital we went across the street to my doctor's office. I requested my records and was told it has to be requested officially and would be ready in two weeks. After one month, nothing. After two months we were still being given the run around. We contacted an attorney and was told since I didn't die I wouldn't have much of a case. I really couldn't take it anymore, the NY attitude was really getting to me and I was tired of trying to fight. A few months later we finally received the records, BUT it wasn't complete records. Lots of appointment information was missing and there was no record of my last visit, hmmmm. I didn't want to give up pursuing this but after months of dead ends and having to move from one house to another, I felt like I would just leave the rest in God's hands.
A new home would mean new memories for us. Although things didn't turn out the way we hoped, we still had hope. In 2006 I gave birth to a healthy baby boy and another healthy baby boy (<---a crazy birth story) in 2008. I think about my baby Dillon a lot and I will never forget him, but life and every experience we've been dealt gets easier to accept as time passes.