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Old 12-13-2001, 12:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Although I am so incredibly happy that I am pregnant again, I think about my sweet Clara everytime I feel my new baby. Some days I am too terrified to go through this again.

Clara's story: I had a planned homebirth, everything was fantastic. About 1 week before EDD I went into labor, a long one, and everything was fine until I was at 10 cm. When I was just about to push, the midwives checked Clara's heartrate another time, and it was really dropping with each contraction. The ambulance was called immediately (the paramedics treated me and my midwives like dirt by the way, it was awful) and at the hospital the baby had a heartrate but still dropping with each strong contraction. Immediate C-section but Clara didn't make it, she never took a breath. Nothing was wrong with Clara or me. The hospital tossed the cord and placenta so they wern't autopsied. The doc that did the C put as cause of death, fetal distress. What?? There had to be a reason. My midwives and I suspect cord compromise. What else could it be? The hospital was so insensitive, they put me in the same wing as live babies, if you can imagine. The recovery was awful. The memorial for Clara was beautiful, everyone (except for some family members who blame me and a home birth for the whole thing) was supportive and devestated. We are lucky that we have a beautiful picture of Clara which hangs in our living room. I love to talk about her, she is so amazing, my little angel.

I hate to get into it with people casually so I tell people this is my first child...I feel guilty about this though. What really kills me is people I talk to in passing and give me pregnancy advice and tell me what to expect.

I have so many fears, I am afraid that I am going to project this on my current pregnancy. My body failed me the first time, why not again? I don't even want to discuss my birthing choice with people because I don't want to be judged again (This time,Midwife, drug-free VBAC in hospital by the way).
I am really happy that I found this site, I just needed to vent a little and it is so nice (even if I was sobbing) to hear others with similar experiences. I know people who have miscarried (awful enough) but no one else who has had full term still born's.

Sorry to be so longwinded but I really wanted to say something after I read on another thread about people who had bad births (but had thier babies) saying that the saying "At least you have a healthy baby" is crap. Well, it's not. Although I may have felt differently before. All I truly want this time is a healthy baby. Cut me up, shoot me, whatever.
Thanks...I don't even know if any of this made sense, sometimes my thoughts are going faster than my fingers.
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Old 12-13-2001, 01:14 AM
 
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islandgirl - my heart is just aching about Clara and that she never got to live in this world and grow with you. However, I beleive that she knew your love for her.

I lost my first child Amanda Leigh. I was full term and one day there was a gush of blood and the heartbeat vanished. I gave birth to a perfect healthy stillborn baby on December 14, 1993.

Reading your thoughts and fears on this pregnancy brought back so many familiar feelings. I felt almost exactly like you when I was pregnant with my son.

Thank you so much for sharing with us your story. How long ago was Clara born? I got pregnant 3 months after Amanda was born and I was still grieving.

You have a lot to go through over the next couple of months. Please feel comfortable to come here and share with us when ever you need to.

My only advice to you would be; Allow yourself to feel. Sadness, fear, anger. Whatever you feel, allow yourself to move through it. Know your limits and do what you need to keep yourself relaxed and healthy.

If you'd like some information on support groups, books or other resources on subsequent pregnancy, please post here and I'll be happy to post it for you.

I'll be thinking about you, please keep us posted.

I posted this poem on another thread.


A NEW HEART BEATS

I think of you still my first child
as a new heart beats in my womb
I should be thinking of him
but instead...
...I'm thinking of you

we waited so long for you to be
but you had no breath when you came to me
born a dream
a distant memory

Now a new heart is beating
your an older sister
and you've only been gone
six short months

Why are you gone?
I should be loving this new life
but instead I'm still mourning you
what's a broken hearted mother to do?
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Old 12-13-2001, 07:45 PM
 
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island girl, child loss is so hard to bear. I grieve with you and for you and your sweet daughter, Clara. Thank you for sharing your story. I have a similar one.

My first child was born still at 42 weeks in 1993. I had an emergency c-section after my baby's heart rate dropped dramatically and he passed a large amount of thick meconium. We will never know why or what really was wrong. It is something we have had to live with.

I've had two more babies, both healthy and born by VBAC. I felt fearful off and on during both pregnancies, but found that as Ms. Mom posted, allowing myself to grieve as completely as possible helped me to remain calm. If you have any friends or relatives who will listen to you unjudgmentally, please take advantage of them, or even a grief counselor might be helpful. Talking about your fears helps you to deal with them constructively rather than letting them control you.

On my pregnancy after my loss, I was essentially in post-traumatic stress syndrome during labor after baby passed a small amount of meconium. It was hard to relax at that point and I would have liked to have more emotional support beyond just my husband. I had a midwife the first time around and went with a sympathetic OB the second time who went out-of-town the day before I went into labor. I was scared to death, because no one else would know my history and fears. I'm glad you have a midwife to help you. I hired a doula for my third pregnancy and was so glad that I did.

On my second pregnancy, I always shared with people that that child was not my first. Some people didn't know how to react, but I usually put it matter-of-factly and then went on with the conversation. I didn't expect them to take care of me, but I needed to acknowledge my first child. You ARE a mother already and it's okay to tell people that. However, I understand the emotional drain that goes along with it. I have mixed feelings about the "at least you have a healthy baby" line. While many births are traumatic and must be grieved, the ultimate loss is the death of one's child. That puts it all in perspective. In my heart of hearts, I agree with you.

I apologize for writing a book and not very eloquently, but I wanted to share my story, hoping that it would give you hope to have a healthy living child born the way you want. Thank you again for sharing yours and helping me to grieve my own loss a little more. My love to you and I wish you many blessings.

A note to Ms. Mom: My thoughts will be with you tomorrow on the anniversary of your dear child's birth and death.
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Old 12-14-2001, 12:33 AM
 
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I carried twins to 34 weeks, and when they were born by cesarean due to eclamptic seizures, my son was stillborn. Even though I have a surviving daughter, I struggle with some of the things you do, islandgirl. What do I say when people ask if she is my only child? I decide differently at different times with different people asking. I usually say, "She is a surviving twin, her brother was stillborn." Sometimes I leave the twin part out and just say, "I have a son who was stillborn." I think if you leave it up to how you feel at that particular moment, and answer true to your feelings, it will help you grieve. There have been times when the thing I need most is for someone to acknowledge that there were two! There are times when I need to feel proud about both of my children, and mentioning my son's name helps.

I wonder how I will handle my fears in any future pregnancies. Like you, I don't want to live under a cloud of anxiety, but I also want to remember... does this make sense? Dh and I talk about this a lot, and whether we'll be nervous wrecks 'next time'. I think reading up on your situation will help you. Could you schedule and appointment and sit down and talk to the doctors who delivered Clara? Would they be willing to answer any questions that you have? Honestly, I think that is one of the things that helped me most, asking questions, over and over again, if necessary, until I was certain I had all the information I needed to process my son's death.
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Old 12-14-2001, 02:18 AM
 
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oh, these stories sound so famliar ... I was in labor at home and 8 cm when there were six gushes of blood and we never got Jacbo's heartbeat again. We rushed to the hospital, and by the time I got there it was time to push him out, even though I knew he was gone.

I am so grateful that the hospital staff were well trained and kind, caring, supportive souls. I'm so sorry islandgirl, that you had to experience the insensitivity of ignorant people.

Ms Mom, I too was pregnant again 3 months after Jacob was born. His brother's birthday is 2 days after his.

What helped me most was not having to have the "what ifs" - I was reassured by all opinions being that what Jacob experienced was sudden, catastrophic, and that he probably would have died even if I had been on the operating table.

That helped me with Noah's birth in some way - knowing that the worst DID happen, but it was a total lightening strike and very unlikely to happen again. And it didn't. Noah was born 10 minutes after I got to the hospital (really, I didn't plan it that way!) and he's 2 now.

There's no real way to have a worry free pregnancy after losing a child - but as mentioned several times, having supportive care providers who are willing to work with you through all your fears and concerns, and be there whenever you need them - even if you just need to check the baby's heartbeat to make sure everything is ok- is sooooo important.

And don't be afraid to voice your fears. EVERYTHING YOU FEEL IS NORMAL!

I'm pregnant now with #3 and I mostly tell people that our first child died. Even though Jacob is not with us now, he made me a mother and I honor his spirit by acknowledging his existence, however short.

You are not alone in all this

blessings

Barbara, mother to Jacob (10/23/98) Noah, (10/25/99) and EDD for ??? of 4/22/02
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Old 12-14-2001, 07:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all for your understanding words, it feels really great to know that you GET IT.
Clara was born July 7, 2000 and after a traumatic c-section, it was advised if I wanted to try for a VBAC I would need a year to heal. We have waited almost exactly a year, I concieved immediatly upon trying. I am a mom with no-one to hold in my arms and it took all my willpower to wait, I think I probably was emotionally ready to try again a lot sooner.
There was absolutely NO information about Clara other than that she was healthy. That has been really frustrating. Not knowing truly if this was a singular 1-in-a-million case is hard.
Msmom, I love that poem and I will light a candle for Amanda tonight, I picture that she and Clara are dancing with each other.
PS. I would love to know of any relevent resources, something to help me on my hard days of this pregnancy?
Thank you all!
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Old 12-16-2001, 06:05 PM
 
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I really have nothing to add. I will be thinking of all of you. I cannot imagine going through a loss like these. I had a mc at 13 weeks and thought I would lose my mind. I cannot even imagine and I am so sorry.

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Old 12-17-2001, 05:56 AM
 
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when dd was born her cord was in knots and was too short to enter the birth canal....I had had an emergency c-section after dd went into distress.....I shudder thinking of what she went through to be born and I almost lost her....

a month later my neice was stillborn because of her umbilical cord....

it upsets me when people feel they have to "morn a c-section"....I mean they have a beautiful baby and they have to get all hung up on having had a c-section....I was on my knees thanking God for my c-section cause it saved my babies life!!

people don't realise more babies die from umbilical cord accidents than SIDS.

feeling emotional and weepy so I better go now...

Not all those who wander are lost 
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