I have been meaning to record this for a while now, but I need to now before I forget all these precious details.
On December 28th, 2010, I realized that I was late. Without telling Samuel, I bought a pregnancy test on my way home after work and tried to keep it secret while I took the test. He discovered what I was doing while the test was in progress and when I told him what I was doing, he got a little smirk on his face. A couple minutes later, there was a faint second pink line...positive. I was so excited and a little scared...could I handle a 3rd baby at home and what would Malachi and Sapphira think about a needy, screaming baby at our house?
I called my OB's office the next morning to get a blood test before work. A couple hours later, we got our confirmation. ♥
On January 4th, 2011, I had my intake appointment. I had to sit and politely listen to an insensitive nurse tell me that I needed to have an ultrasound because what happened to Natalie could be happening to this baby about that time. She sent me to the imaging department with a referral stating "history of neural tube defect". I left feeling pretty discouraged even though I knew what happened to Natalie was such a rare problem. I really try to not let insensitive people get to me, but when it comes to my babies...humph
On January 6th, 2011 I had my first ultrasound. I thought I was 8 weeks along, so we took the kids with us and were super excited to see our little one starting to take shape and see a heartbeat. We were bummed to discover I was only 5 weeks along, so there was no baby or heartbeat to see, but only a little sack. The technician said everything looked good for a 5 week pregnancy, but I was so disappointed and upset. I kept wondering if the baby had died early on and stopped developing. When we got home, Samuel reminded me that I had three cycles in October and November, so the measurements made sense. I comforted myself with the fact that my OB is so understanding and would let me have an ultrasound if I asked for one before my next appointment in three weeks.
On January 27th, I visited my OB for the first time. He gave me another ultrasound and our sweet little one measured 8 weeks and 1 day. We saw the wonderful heartbeat and our little bean moved his head back and forth and wiggled a little for us. Both of the kids were with us so they got to see the baby in Mommy's tummy and were very excited. Sapphira kept saying "baby, baby" and Malachi asked Dr F for his own picture to take home when he saw him give Mommy one. He carried it around with him for a couple days and made sure to show it to everyone he saw.
Such a proud big brother :)
During the weeks between my intake appointment and my first appointment with my OB, I started to feel a bit of morning sickness. I used Preggie Pops, toasted and buttered bagels and homemade Orange Julius drinks to help keep my stomach settled. Shortly after my visit with Dr F, it subsided, but this was the way my other three pregnancies behaved.
February 21, 2011 brought our second appointment with my OB. I was 11 weeks and 5 days along, so we were hoping to hear the heartbeat. My doctor couldn't pick it up on the doppler, so the ultrasound machine was wheeled in. He said not to worry. My heart sank. I had a bad feeling going into this appointment, so not hearing the heartbeat was just the last straw...I knew in my heart the baby was gone, but I was too afraid to say it out loud. My doctor looked at the baby for a couple minutes and I was afraid to look at his face because I didn't want to see his reaction so I kept my eyes glued to the screen. The baby wasn't moving and didn't look any bigger or different than the last time we saw him. I looked away and stared at the wall and then he said, "I'm so sorry, but your baby doesn't have a heartbeat." I wept out loud. I haven't cried like that since we lost Natalie. My wailing scared Malachi and he jumped up so he could see my face and kept asking me, "What's wrong Momma? What's wrong? Daddy, why is Momma crying?" My OB kept scanning for a couple more minutes before letting me sit up. Malachi crawled into my lap and asked me for an explanation. I told him that the baby in Mommy's tummy died and went to Heaven to be with Jesus and Natalie. When he asked why, I told him I didn't know and that we'd have to ask Jesus when we got to Heaven. After I had a minute to calm Malachi down, give him some hugs, and stop crying myself, my OB told me that sometimes these things just happen and that he didn't see anything in the ultrasound that would make this happen. He also said that the baby measured 8 weeks and 5 days...he died just 4 days after we saw him last. He gave me the options of letting my body take care of things on it's own, but that could take several more weeks, taking medication to start things up, or surgery. I told him that I'd call him in the morning.
Malachi struggled for a couple days. He was really talking about having another baby at home and even though he said he wasn't sad about the baby, he was acting out and even once yelled at someone "I just want my baby to come back!". Poor thing. He is also convinced that if we could turn into robots, we could go up to Heaven and play with Natalie, the baby and Jesus and hug them and then come home. The idea of going to Heaven forever terrifies him, so we would just visit a lot. Sapphira seems to notice our stress, but I don't think she has any idea what is going on.
The next day, we called to let him know that we'd try the medication since he indicated it might happen in a couple days. Samuel was home until Friday night and I didn't want to risk having things happen when I was home alone with the kids. I took my first dose on Tuesday night while the kids were staying the night at my in-laws house. Nothing happened. Wednesday and Thursday came and went with still nothing. I was so discouraged.
Sapphira woke up early Friday morning and I got up with her so Samuel could have a full night's sleep for his shift on Friday night. Sapphira and I fell asleep in our recliner. Malachi woke me up around 8:30 and I realized that things had started happening while I slept. Without being too graphic, it was horrible. Once things calmed down, I felt so faint from losing so much blood, and all I could do was lie down in bed. I dozed on and off until 11:00, when I called my doctors office to see what else to expect. The nurse thought I was done with everything, but when my OB called to check on me, he wasn't convinced I was done, because there is usually a lot of pain associated with miscarriages and I didn't experience that at all. He told me to take the rest of my medication and call with any questions.
Monday morning, February 28th, I called my doctor because I was just so discouraged and sick of the waiting game. Plus, I needed to go back to work since I had missed the entire previous week and wanted to be sure where things stood. I begged for an ultrasound, and he obliged. He said the ultrasound looked like everything was done and all I should have left was a heavy cycle. I left feeling pretty bummed. I guess I was hoping to see our baby one more time before he left and I was secretly praying this had all been a huge mistake or the Lord had performed a miracle. I kept it together until the doctor left and then I cried on Samuel's shoulder. Back to "normal" life.
Wednesday at work, my bleeding picked up severely and I went home. By the time I got home, I was bleeding very heavily and passed a clot the size of a small apple. I called my doctor's office and they told me to got to the ER. My mom came over to sit with the kids who were napping and Samuel rushed me in. We spent the evening in the ER, getting an IV bag of saline and they monitored what was going on. After several hours, they said that I was kind of in a gray area...they couldn't tell for sure if things were either tapering off, and things could get bad again in the next 12-24 hours, which would indicate surgery. Thankfully, my body seems to be tapering off.
Since I was nearly certain this little one was a boy (I have been right about the gender of all of our kids), we decided to name our sweetheart Asher, which is Hebrew for lucky, fortunate, blessed. We feel like he is very blessed and fortunate to have bypassed all the suffering of this world and go right to Heaven with his sister and our Lord.
Emotionally, we are doing ok considering. We have both been struggling with anger with the whole situation, but our pastor reminded us that even David, who God called a man after His own heart, was angry with God sometimes, and as long as we dealt with our anger so it doesn't come out as shrapnel, these feelings are ok. I had really forgotten how dark, deep and desperate the grief of losing a child is. Nothing will replace Natalie or Asher, and sometimes missing them is so overwhelming. I am so thankful that we know a God who promises us Heaven and that we know we will see them again one day. I just can't wait for the day when I get to Heaven and Jesus is waiting for me inside the gate and I get to run and jump into His arms and then right behind Him will be my two sweethearts who will run into my arms and I will get to hold Natalie again and see Asher's sweet face for the first time. How wonderful that will be!
Sorry for the lengthy post, but I wanted to make sure I got all these things recorded while I still remembered them. We are so thankful for all the prayers that have been lifted up on our behalf and all the love shown us from our wonderful friends and family. This would most certainly would have been a much harder and darker situation without all this love! ♥