Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Tired and Sad

This will be my third day at my waitressing job...lots of food service drama up there and a few less than desirable employees but a job is a job, even if it's minimum wage. I just need to work long enough for us to be able to pay for lawyer fees for Rusty's son and for the $200 I need to pay my debt to the university so I can get a copy of my transcript and then pay my $40 fee for my background check with the local school district so I can start substitute teaching instead of running around all day with plates of burgers and fries.
I didn't just lose a baby when Jimmy died, I lost my career as well. With Becca and Scarlett's deaths, I have now lost any hope of a future as a mom of a little girl, or any baby for that matter. I need to focus on the kids we have and our finances and it's looking pretty bleak for the moment...we just need to get over this hump and I think we will be ok. But until we get over the hump, I'm feeling kind of down.
It was 2 weeks yesterday that I lost Scarlett and 2 weeks as of today that we buried her.
I'm still bleeding from the birth and that is really keeping me from moving on emotionally...I'm sad and disheartened. Physically, the bleeding combined with the working has gotten me pretty drained...especially since I don't get to eat lunch at work...I eat breakfast and then a snack when I get home at 3pm and then dinner.

I'm so drained and exhausted and sad. I just want to have a good cry and a nice long nap so I can wake up and feel refreshed and then maybe take the dogs for a walk or clean my room or something productive but not stressful.

I don't like my job. I thought I would love it. Turns out, it was just the excitement of the prospect of having a job and getting out and making money...but this is not the job for me...but we need the money so I'm stuck.

I wish I didn't have dead babies, this is not fun.

Lord, please help me make it through the next few weeks without falling apart either physically, mentally, or emotionally.

Friday, August 26, 2011

What An Odd Feeling..

...we had a neighbor that adopted a baby boy a couple years ago from a family member of hers.
She told me a couple months ago that the same family members were about to put up another baby for adoption.
I called her on Wednesday to ask her if they would consider me for placement of the baby girl, but she didn't answer her phone.
Last night, our other neighbors on the other side had a stork and balloons in their yard...they have no children of their own and have been wanting kids for over a decade.
I put two and two together, and it was confirmed this morning when I finally got my other neighbor on the phone. She said she didn't know we had lost our baby last week, and when she was making her decision she thought I was still, she said our other neighbors have NO children whatsoever and at least Rusty and I have kids even if its not with each other.
I am so happy for my neighbors because they are such a loving couple and have been wanting kids for so long. I am also trying hard not to feel sorry for myself because I have no right to be upset...that baby was not meant for me, that baby was meant for them.

God is sending my husband's teenage son back to us from TX...he doesn't like the school down there and wants to come home. This is a HUGE blessing for my husband. HUGE. We have to come up with money for the lawyer to draw up the new custody and child support papers and I have to remind myself that if God had given us that baby, we would be running around using that money to get a lawyer to do the adoption paperwork (my neighbors had to have it all done very quickly, they said it was a very hectic situation) and we wouldn't have been able to focus on my husband's son.

That baby was a blessing meant for our neighbors, not for us. That baby was the answer to their prayers, and my husband's son coming home is an answer to our prayers.

I hope God understands if I am still just a tiny bit disappointed that wasn't my baby...but I believe that He will resolve this whole baby desire issue for me in His time and in His way...look at my neighbors...they have prayed for a baby for over a decade and then all of a sudden in less than 48 hours they got a baby!!

Please God, help me to keep things in perspective and be grateful for the blessings I have been given.
Thank you so much for blessing my neighbors and answering their prayers, and thank you so much for answering our prayers and sending my husband's son back...please bless their relationship and help to mend the broken pieces between them. Please help me to be a good stepmother and continue to be a good mother to my son.

And in your time, please do something about this baby-sized hole in my heart!


Wednesday, August 24, 2011


At church tonight, one of my Sunday School class friends approached me about local adoption options.

I have to admit, the sliver of hope she provided was enough to put a little joy back into my heart.

My husband and I have a lot of grieving to do, obviously, and no one can ever replace any of our babies.

But I think after we have healed that we could definitely make room in our hearts for another baby....we have so much love to give and my husband and I are such a good team.

God, even if this isn't your plan for us either, thank you for the hope. That was a pretty quick response to a plea...thank you.

Is This Really The End?

Is this really the end of my childbearing years? What a tough pill to swallow.

Yesterday, the doctor told me that it was definitely a cord compression that killed baby Scarlett, and that in any other case he would say that cord accidents are not likely to happen again and to go ahead and try for another baby. But in our case, with 4 fetal demises in less than 2 years, he is pretty sure (and we have suspected this) that Rusty and I both carry some recessive gene for a fatal chromosome abnormality. This makes sense, since we were told that Jimmy had an unknown chromosome abnormality and he looked just like Rusty's sister who has something unknown, but much like down syndrome. This would mean that Becca's premature birth and subsequent death was most likely not the result of an incompetent cervix after all, but most likely it was caused by whatever chromosome abnormality we have that caused premature labor.

The doctor said we could have genetic counseling done, if our insurance will pay for it, but all that will do would be to hopefully give us a name of whatever gene problem we won't make us magically be able to have babies together. We might even get some odds from the geneticist, but so far we are 0 for 4....which is something else the doctor said. He said we could just play the odds game and keep trying for a living baby. He said one couple he knows with a similar problem had a healthy baby and then 6 losses before they had another healthy baby. Somehow, I don't think my husband would go for that....I would, but I'm crazy, so what do I know?? I could just as easily wind up with several more dead babies and the odds of us getting a living child might as well be one in a million...we gave it 4 tries, and we lost 4 times. Why on earth would the fifth or sixth or seventh be any different?
The only other option the doctor gave us would be to seek other spouses who were genetically compatible, but I don't think trading in my husband for a baby is really an option.

Barring a true miracle, a true act of God...for all intents and purposes my husband and I are officially genetically incompatible and unable to create a precious, healthy little being together that would get to stay with us.

That is so monumentally emotionally charged that I can't even begin to process it.

My son, Taylor, changed my life when he was born....I couldn't wait to have more babies...I worked my tail off, pushing myself to the limits, on the verge of giving up many times, and overcame HUGE obstacles to get through 5 years of college as a single parent so that once I had that degree I could finally pursue marriage and children...And then all that hoping and praying to meet the right man to marry and HAVE BABIES. I never married Taylor's dad, and I always felt bad that I was not able to give my son that complete family life...I dreamed of getting married, having babies with my husband, and having a beautiful, FULL, and complete family...I couldn't wait for Taylor to get to be a part of that and to have siblings and for me to have finally "done it right."

And now, after waiting my whole life to get married, finding the man I prayed for, and having my first, last, and only marriage and lifetime commitment....I also find that the second thing I have prayed for my whole life is not possible within this marriage??

I'm going to sit here and just watch the last of my childbearing years just slip away??

Aside from God, who has totally carried me through everything....the hope of future healthy babies is what has made this whole journey over the past two years bearable. The hope of a living baby has helped assuage the grief of the sweet babies that we buried. The hope was always there, and now it is gone. My biggest coping mechanism, HOPE, is gone. Where do I go from here, God? I need you!!!!

Lord, please help me cope with this. I don't understand, and it's really painful.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Time To Move On. Already?

Well, this definitely doesn't feel like our other losses. Surprise your baby is dead on Tuesday and born a few hours later, buried privately the next day, and almost a week later, starting to get "back to normal" already.
I have my post-partum check-up tomorrow, and I will be asking the doctor's opinion on what, if anything, we could do to have a living baby...I'd like to do whatever I can and wait a year and try again. I'm just not ready to face the reality of no living babies.
For now, I need to get on with my life for the sake of my sanity and for my husband and our kids.
So, after my appointment tomorrow I am going to apply for a job as a server at a local restaurant. (I know I have a college degree but there just are not any jobs around here and there is a good chance I can work lunches only which shouldn't interfere with the time needed to help my son with his homework in the evenings and me cooking dinner and spending time with my family.)
Maybe by next week I'll be working again. I also signed up to help out at church on Wednesday nights and I'll probably rejoin the choir and maybe even get back on my little side gigs making $50 a month playing guitar and singing locally.
Rusty and I had our first Financial class at church yesterday (2 hours every Sunday for 10 weeks) and I really feel like this is a great opportunity for us...we have both been super close the past week and still managed to get our homework done in preparation for this class. I think our marriage is going to be just fine.

Aside from a little bleeding, like a period disappearing, I'm physically fine and even wearing my pre-pregnancy clothes. I didn't have to deal with breast engorgement this time around either, thank God, although my breasts are a little heavier and fuller and do have some milk...I'm fairly certain it will all be gone within a few days.

We got one sympathy card in the mail, from a friend in Texas. We've had a couple of people give us a hug at church. But for the most part, it's like it never funeral, no flowers, no cards, no phone calls, no flock of sympathetic people hugging us to death at church.

I'd like to say I was upset about that, but really...I just want to move on. I want this to be over. I don't want anymore reminders that I won't be having a baby any time soon, or possibly never.

I just want to not have to be sad.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Anniversary & Family Time

Rusty and I have our 2 year anniversary on Monday, but we celebrated this weekend. A dear friend gave us a gift card and we went out to dinner and a movie.
You know what? It felt REALLY good! I bought a cheap (yet sexy!) shirt and accessories and got all dressed up, blew-dry my hair, put on make-up and heels, even a push-up bra...stuff I haven't done in a very long time.
It felt so nice to have a romantic evening with my really helps to know that we have each other and our lives are not over with the death of our children, even though it's heartbreaking....Lord willing, we may have 40 or 50 more years with each other and maybe these first 2 years will seem so...well, different and not so all-consuming after so many years together.

Part of me wants to just move on with our lives together, and another part of me is just so not ready to give up on trying again. Clearly, I must be insane.

God, please guide our hearts and our minds in the right direction.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Scarlett, you were beautiful... was hard for me to see...I wanted so much for you to be born full-term and fully developed. It was such a shock to see how far you had yet to grow...I'm so sorry I didn't hold you longer, and I'm so sorry I didn't kiss your forehead and sing to you...I was in shock. I know you were gone already in heaven, but please forgive me for not seeing your beauty right away.
I love you and I miss you with all my heart.



I'm Angry

I'm angry.
Just angry.

Packing up maternity clothes and baby things. Alone. Why do I have to do this alone?

I don't want to do this alone.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Gone With The Wind

Yesterday morning I was pregnant and full of fear and anxiety about going into surgery...I was afraid of losing the baby due to complications of the procedure and I was afraid of the surgery itself, but mostly scared that I would lose the baby.
As I was getting prepped for surgery, had my IV in and everything, the nurse did I routine check for fetal heart tones. She couldn't find any. The doctor came in and couldn't find any with the doppler either. A third nurse tried unsuccessfully to find the heartbeat while the doctor sat on the bedside waiting for the portable ultrasound machine to warm up.
And then we saw her...tiny little baby on the screen and I kept hoping for movement, holding my breath looking for a kick or a wiggle like last week when I had an ultrasound and the doctor and the tech and I rejoiced because everything looked perfect.
But there was no movement, and there was no heartbeat.
I remember saying "Shit! Oh Shit not again!"
I was induced right away with an oral medicine and vaginal suppository since at 15 and a half weeks, according to the doctor "the pitocin receptors aren't developed yet" so I had that dose, which didn't do too much but cause a tiny bit of fullness feeling down there. The second dose, four hours later worked rather quickly. I didn't have contractions like I would in a full-term delivery, it was just a constant pain with no breaks in between. But I welcomed the pain...I didn't even want tylenol. The only thing in my IV was that saline solution stuff.
When the pain and pressure became excruciating, I had the nurse go get the doctor...he didn't come for 20 minutes and in the meantime I asked if it was too late for an epidural, even though I knew it was. I didn't really want an epidural, I wanted to deliver the baby but I was tired of waiting on the doctor and the pain was becoming unbearable. I didn't cry and I didn't yell, I just gripped the side of the bed and told my husband that it hurt. I knew what my body was doing and I totally cooperated.
The doctor finally came in and I was ready to push. He reached in, told me to push, I cried out and then it was over.
It was over.
My body was instantly free of pain and I was in shock. I managed to snap a photo of the doctor holding my tiny little baby, still attached to the placenta. He showed me part of her umbilical cord, which looked as thin as a string in that section, and told me it looked like a cord compression. He told me there wasn't anything I could have done, and that other than the cord, she looked perfectly formed for her gestational age. He left and the nurse took the baby and brought her back.
She didn't look anything like Jimmy or Becca. She had perfect hands and feet and I could even see her tiny little fingernails! But she was all red, shiny, and squishy. She wasn't fully cooked...she was a "raw" baby. I saw all of the parts of her that had formed and saw that she had a long ways to go...she had one eye half open, bless her little heart, and her little ears were perfectly formed but just so tiny on her head...her skin had not formed yet. I saw the red veins in her little legs, and when I opened her mouth with my finger, I saw the beginnings of the tiniest lips and teeth I had ever seen in my life. And then I cried.
We took pictures, but we didn't have a real camera, just iPhones, so I don't know how well they came out...part of me is ok with that, because she just wasn't formed yet and I want to protect her...I don't want anyone to see the photos but me and my husband...she was our baby, no matter what she looked like.
In the photo in this post, I am holding me sweet little angel, I just have her covered up and protected.

I'm so confused and lost in this...I don't feel the deep, deep despair that I felt with Jimmy, and I don't feel quite the grief that I did with Becca either. I know part of it is shock, but another part knows that God will get us through this, just like he has every other time.

I'm really sad and hurt. Not just for losing this baby, but because I'm not quite sure how to grieve this baby...I have different feelings since it was so early and I wasn't as attached and she didn't look as much like a baby as Jimmy and Becca...I hadn't gotten to bond with her yet. I don't know how to feel. Just sad and confused.

The hardest part is this was our last attempt....there is no way that 4 baby deaths in 2 years can be a coincidence...there has got to be something wrong with either me or my husband or our compatibility. We do not have the resources either financially or emotionally to try and figure it out...he is almost 40, I'm 31, he is struggling to maintain a relationship with his 10 and 14 year old who just moved 8 hours away with their mother, and I have a 9 year old son who needs me to be fully present. As hard as my husband and I have had it, our children have struggled through a blended family and the loss of several of their siblings. They hurt too, and we can't do this to them again.

Somehow, we have to say goodbye to the idea of us ever having a baby, because it is just not going to happen and that breaks our hearts...we both wanted to give each other the gift of a living baby so hurts us both that we cannot give that to each other.

We have to focus on our family as it is, and our marriage....Monday will be our 2 year anniversary...I was pregnant with Jimmy on our wedding day, I was pregnant with Becca on our 1 year anniversary...and

God grant us peace and strength please.

I have to go to the funeral home now and make arrangements...we want her buried in between Jimmy and Becca, but we don't want a funeral. Rusty and I have just kept this so private this time, we didn't have anyone in the hospital and didn't tell anyone until Scarlett was born. (Well, we called and told the kids first.) I think its good for our marriage to keep this so close to our hearts.

Monday, August 15, 2011

When I was a kid...

...I wanted to be a hero some day.

After a traumatic childhood that warrants writing a novel (but I'm too lazy!), turns out I was pretty much beat down and cowardly...playing the victim seemed to be a role I was stuck in over and over until I went through years of therapy.

Now, after everything I've been through in life, and especially losing my babies, I sometimes feel like it takes heroic actions just to get through normal everyday things.

I don't suppose I'll ever get to be a hero like Mother Teresa or Joan of Arc like I daydreamed when I was a little girl, but that doesn't mean that I can't be an inspiration...and it doesn't mean that I won't have to be a hero in my own life...facing surgery tomorrow, seems like I'll need some of that courage I thought I had when I was a girl.

Maybe, God will give me a living baby this go 'round, and then I will get to feel like all of these things I suffered through the past couple of years were just heroic actions leading to getting my daughter here....

Off to my pre-op, and then surgery tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


Today, at 14 weeks and 4 days, I found out what gender the baby is. I also found out that if I'm going to get a preventative cerclage, I need to have it done within a week.

This is tough because there is a risk, small though it may be, of losing the pregnancy with this procedure. We don't know if losing Becca was because my cervix gave out, because I had a hole/small tear in the amniotic sac that led to preterm labor, or for some other cause.

We could always take the wait and see approach, which would be excellent if it turns out I don't have an incompetent cervix and I could just breeze through the rest of this pregnancy.
However, if I actually do have a cervical competency issue, by the time it became a problem (4 to 6 weeks from now when the baby's weight puts pressure on the cervix), I could dilate too quickly and lose the baby before we could do anything about it.

Looks like I may be having outpatient surgery next week.

I'm terrified, really, but I'm just praying that God has this under control and I pray that we are doing the right thing.