It has been a very long time since I have posted. I had been working on an article for the website on suffering. Ironically, the article included a story about a mom we met who lost her teenage child over a year ago. Now, I am writing this post to relate a similar story but this time, I am the mother who has lost a child, our beautiful 17 1/2 week old who died within the womb. This is our story:
Not long before, October 26, 2010 our miniature white rose plant in the kitchen bloomed one single beautiful miniature white rose, the tallest stem on the plant. On October 26, 2010 our lives changed.
Early in the wee hours of the morning, we suddenly miscarried our little 17 week old baby. Before the paramedics came, I kept thinking, “No!… No!…. Lord, You can’t take my baby! I can’t believe this is happening. My water is not suppose to break now!”
The positive result on an old amniotic fluid stick from our second pregnancy confirmed that I was truly in labour. I did not want to let go of the baby but my worst fears were about to come true as I stood up to lie on the stretcher.
I did not want to get off the bed. I wanted to stay there. Once I stood up, our little baby came out. I yelled to John who was in the next room, “The baby came out!”. I will never forget the numbness at looking at our child still attached to me lying on the stretcher with all the fingers and toes the size of a Barbie’s fingers and toes.
Earlier that morning, I remember tapping on John’s head, saying, “Something is wrong, something is coming out. John immediately knew he needed to get some Holy water to baptize our baby just in case. And this is what he did as soon as he got back in the room.
From then on, it felt as if everything was in slow motion. We arranged for someone to come look after the kids. The ambulance brought John and I to the hospital, and the emergency room was actually unusually quiet. They hooked me up on IV’s. The emergency doctor finally came to examine me.
Eventually, he asked John if he wanted to cut the umbilical cord, so he did. I had a closer look at our baby but I was still so in shock, it was difficult to savour the moment as I looked at him in the kidney basin the doctor had put him in.
I now regret not picking up that kidney basin and just holding him. Since the placenta had not come out yet, I was still haemorrhaging … a lot. My obstetrician was actually on call that morning performing a C-section up in the OR. That was a miracle in itself since my doctor is on hospital rounds only once a week.
One nurse was kind enough to ask if we would like a chaplain to come in. We agreed and they were a great support with their prayers, presence, and resource information. The chaplain also got our parish priest to come and give communion. We were very thankful for that.
Finally, my obstetrician arrived about 5 or 6 hours after our arrival at the hospital. Prior to that, the nurse prepared me for a possible blood transfusion since my blood pressure became quite low. I was so relieved to see my doctor. She knew exactly what to do to help me expel the placenta.
Later in the day, the ultrasound showed no tissue in the uterus so we were able to go home without having to go to OR for a D&C and no need for a blood transfusion. Praise be to God. Our prayers were answered in that regard. My only real regret though was that I wished I would have asked to hold our baby before we left the hospital. With everything that happened, and being so tired I didn’t even think of it.
When we turned the corner to leave the hospital, my heavy empty heart sank. The reality that we were leaving our baby behind in the hospital really set in. I couldn’t stop sobbing. The reality of our baby being out of my body so early set in even more.
Once we finally got home, the reality of having to tell the kids what happened pierced my heart. As my husband and I drove in the driveway, I got out of the truck, numb, shocked, and pale. I just stood there looking at my kids looking at me through the front door window and our middle child playing in the snow outside.
I slowly walked up to the garage door weeping before entering. As I got the courage to open the door, there sat John’s Dad on the couch looking at me intently with loving eyes. After spending a little time with the kids, I needed to find a name for the baby. I started to look up the names of the Saints that day on the computer. John and I later decided on Dominic or Dominique since we were not totally sure of the gender of the baby at that point.
After over 2 weeks of waiting (Dominic(que) needed to be sent to pathology for examination), once all the arrangements were finalized, we finally had a little private Mass offered in the basement of our house, then off we went to the cemetery where the Knights of Columbus had a special location to bury miscarried babies. We were so thankful for that. We feel at peace to know that we have a special place for our baby and a place to go if we ever feel the need to be with Dominic(que) at the cemetery.
When all is said and done, after looking at our baby while at the hospital John and I could tell that we had a boy even though pathology said the gender was undetermined. The Knights of Columbus will engrave the name of our baby, “Dominic Jacob Everett”.
Dominic, I know you rest in peace in perfect happiness forever in heaven till we meet again, my precious child.
My husband encouraged me to write and now I want to write more reflections on the spiritual, psychological, and physical aspects of miscarriage.
A few days ago, I cut down our miniature white rose from the plant as it was starting to dry up after over a month of being in bloom. I truly believe this was a gift for us from heaven as we grieved the loss of our beloved baby Dominic.