Something Wasn’t Right

Told by: Patricia

I had a miscarriage- still birth at 18 weeks. My pregnancy had been going okay with no complications. A scan showed a healthy active baby. I thought all was going well. In hindsight I noticed I had moments where I just didnt feel pregnant, yet I dismissed it as I never really had strong pregnancy symptoms in the first place. I thought everything was fine. I didn’t feel movement but with my first two it wasn’t until much later on I felt the first movement. I remember at night laying very still trying to concentrate on any movement but with no success. But this really didn’t concern me either- I figured since I was overweight it might be a while longer until I could detect it. I was growing and I definately was showing. On my day off, a Friday- I noticed very light spotting on the toilet tissue after I used the restroom. I had been busy all morning scheduling my next prenatal appointment. Yet when I saw the spotting I knew something might be wrong. I was very upset and decided to go to the ER. I remember the lonliness and emptiness I felt as I waited in the long line to triage. It seemed like I waited forever. Next was the waiting period for the ultrasound. I was so nervous and afraid. I knew right away by the tech’s cold and detached demeanor that it was not good. The screen was turned from my view and she was unusually silent, concentrating. After the ultrasound I went to the restroom and when I wiped I saw bright red blood on the toilet tissue. I knew the worst had happened and was overcome with grief. I felt very alone as I waited to return to the ER. The doctor came in with a grim, yet sympathetic look and shook his head and simply said “I’m sorry”. I could barely believe it. I was told the baby had passed a month early and that I had been carrying my demised baby for a month. Shortly after the obgyn came in to measure me and said I measured at 18 weeks. Apparently my uterus continued to grow. I was told I’d have to be admitted to the labor and delivery unit to deliver. I was induced that afternoon and the next morning I delivered.

I was unprepared to actually be going to the labor and delivery room. It was surreal- as if it were a dream as I was whisked by wheel chair to labor & delivery. I had to pass by the festive baby themed entrance, as I heard the staff nurses softly whisper to themselves “this is the girl from the ER”. Moments later I was in the delivery room and memories from my first two children’s birth flooded back. Only this time I was not delivering a live baby.
It was not long before supportive nurses and staff came to see me and offer comfort and support. I was induced with medication, a nurses frequently came to check on the progress of my dilation. It was eerie- the labor process was so similar to my first two children, and yet longer. There was no physical pain, just the emotional pain of loss, and despair. I refused to have my contractions monitored figuring what is the point if it wasnt to check on the well being of a baby. That first night lasted forever as I waited to deliver. Finally the next morning I expelled a large quantity of blood and my water broke. I was so fearful I had delivered the baby in the restroom. But I hadn’t. Yet I felt something outside of me- delicate, like soft brushes touching my skin down there  and I asked the nurse and she told me it was the baby. She gently delivered it and with respect placed the baby in the newborn bassinet. I did not deliver the placenta so the doctor came in to assist. All I could think about was seeing the baby, but I had to wait. I had no pain whatsoever until the procedure to remove the placenta.
I immediately got off the bed to look at the baby. I had a rush of emotions- anger at death in general and sadness of what could have been. The baby was small and perfectly formed- yet incomplete at the same time. I opened the baby’s mouth and saw teeth buds and a tongue. All the limbs were there. The cause of death obvious- the cord was wound tightly and tied in a knot around the baby- its legs, foot and belly.  In fact the baby’s body bore the dark scars of the tight cord even after I unknotted the cord. The small strong red cord was dried, it resembled a thick string and it was the cause of death. Apparently the baby had to have done some complicated acrobatics.
I gave the baby a bath and she was placed in a special knitted blanket. I had only a short time with the baby but the baby was given a dedication to acknowledge her life. My faith pulls me through. I have more remorse for myself as I know the baby is in heaven with God.
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This entry was posted in 14 weeks, 15 weeks, 16 weeks, 17 weeks, 18 weeks. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Something Wasn’t Right

  1. Cindy says:

    Dear Patricia,
    Today is 3 days after your post. I am currently in the L&D unit trying to deliver my 16 week gestation baby, even tho I am at 20 weeks now. I have been carrying my *dead* baby for 4 weeks. I was due June 25. This is not my 1st baby either. I, too, was showing and the placenta continued to grow. I was fortunate…my ER doc and ER ultrasound tech were very supportive, both men, who fought back tears. My 5 other children (ages 6-11) are so sad, and I’ve been in the hospital for 2 days trying to deliver. They miss me. I am overwhelmed with grief. I don’t know yet why my baby died. It is too early for me to ever know if it is a boy or girl. Thanks for posting, and God Bless.
    Cindy

  2. Laura says:

    I went to my ultrasound on January 5th to find out the sex of our baby. My husband and 5 sons (17- 8 months old) were there when we found out that our baby had died. We were all devastated. I went to the hospital with my family to deliver my baby the next day. Our son, Nathan, was delivered January 6th 8:48 pm with all of us there. The cause of his death was that his cord was wrapped tightly around his neck and arm. He was 4 ounces 7 1/2 inches long. He measured 16 weeks 6 days, I was 19 weeks 6 days into pregnancy, and I was showing as well. We had him cremated and now have his small urn home with us. I am so sorry for both of your losses. Since this happened I have been amazed by the similar storied I have read or heard. The Lord had a plan for each of our children’s lives, and though we may not know what it is right now, and we may never know, I have to trust HIM. His ways are not our ways. I am thankful that I was for the time I had with Nathan and Look forward to a sweet reunion with him one day. God Bless you both.

  3. Cindy says:

    Dear Patricia and Laura,
    I just had to write again and update. After 50 hours of induced labor, I was able to deliver my 16 week gestation baby, identifiable as a boy! He weighed 5.4 ounces; the nurse didn’t measure him. She got me his handprints and footprints, though. I took no pictures of him, which I deeply regret…I feel that I didn’t gather enough “evidence” of his earthly life. We named him Raphael Jude and buried him in the church cemetery.

    Laura, how wonderful that your kids were there for the delivery. My by the time I was discharged from the hospital, I’d been gone from home 3 3/4 days. I did not see my 5 kids during those days, and my husband didn’t want them to see Raphael. Your family sounds lovely.

    Unlike you, Patricia, my labor was extremely, excruciatingly, ridiculously painful! I got IV pain meds 1x, but it was only mild relief, and lasted only 30 minutes. I tried to offer up the pain for other people who needed God’s grace more than I did, as I knew I could get an epidural at any time. I delivered 2 of my other kids without pain meds and was shocked at how violent this felt.

    Patricia, I could have written your post…it was exactly the same…no fetal movements, not feeling pregnant at times, and a general sense that something was “not right.” I remember feeling relieved at the baby’s 15 week checkup when I heard his heartbeat…I had myself convinced there would be none. How odd that his measurements suggest that he died 1 week after that checkup. During Raphael’s 16th week of gestation, I awoke with contractions, but I prayed for them to go away and rolled onto my side and forced myself to sleep. In the morning, the contractions were gone, and I resumed normal life. I tried to tell myself that I was being paranoid, but, being my 6th child, I just knew there was a problem.

    There was no identifiable cause of death. I opted not to have an autopsy to test for trauma, genetic issues, etc.

    I, too, find comfort in my faith. In my faith denomination, we believe our loved ones are in heaven and are our own private intercessors, praying for us constantly, straight to God. Archangel Raphael is said to be the patron of ‘happy reunions’ and I can’t wait to see my son some day in heaven. I feel like I’ll never be the same.

    God Bless, Cindy

  4. Subi says:

    dear patricia,
    i too had similar experience.yesterday i lost my baby and did a D&C.I was 18weeks but the gestational age of my baby was 14 weeks.i am sad and feeling empty.still cannot accept the fact that i lost my baby.dont know what to do

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