I'm not looking for a sympathy fest here, but I just needed to write my thoughts out.
My due date was October 29--this coming Saturday. But my sweet baby decided to come early! 13 days early--on October 14. It was about 2:00 am Sunday morning, when I went to the bathroom and experienced extreme bleeding. I woke up my husband and we called the hospital right away to see if we should come in. I had heard about "the bloody show" and thought maybe that's what was happening. But there was LOTS of blood...I thought, too much for my mucus plug. The hospital told us to come in right away. When we got there, they hooked me up to check the baby's heartbeat, etc. The heartbeat was very low--in the 60s, I remember them saying. All of a sudden there were about 4-5 nurses in the room, hooking me up to all sorts of things. I had no idea what was going on--so I asked. "We're going to perform an emergency c-section." They quickly tossed my husband some scrubs, thinking he would be able to watch the c-section. He went in the bathroom the change, and they took me away. All I remember is asking if my husband knew where we were going--he was still changing. They said, "Sorry, you're husband won't be able to be here during this operation." I was rolled onto a table, and some more things were hooked up to me. I kept hearing them talk about the heartbeat, "It's in the 60s." "Where's Dr. __?" "He's coming; he's about to walk through the door." Then someone behind my head put this thing over my mouth, and told me to breathe deeply. I knew it was to knock me out, and I wanted more than ever to be knocked out fast so they could deliver my baby. "Sweet dreams, kiddo..." And I was out.
I woke up later to a nurse telling me that my "little guy" was delivered. "It's a boy?!" We had kept it a surprise. I was so excited and wanted to see him right away. But my precious Isaac Benjamin was born with no heartbeat. I'm not sure exactly what they all did to him, but after 23 minutes, they got a heartbeat. They were going to fly him down to Children's Hospital in a nearby city.
They rolled me to a recovery room, and the next hour or so, all I remember is the nurses constantly checking my stomach/uterus, which was extremely painful. I wanted to scream, but was in too much pain to even do that. They were able to wheel in Isaac to my room for me to see...I could hardly see him because he was in an incubator (sp?) and hooked up to so many things...with something taped around his little mouth. They said they were going to bring him to Children's Hospital. I did get to see him one more time, very briefly before they brought him there.
For the rest of the day, I didn't get to see him, other than through Skype, for about an hour. We just watched him lay there with, what seemed like 100s of tubes hooked up all over his little body. I couldn't wait to see him, and hold him.
The doctor released me early the next day, because he wanted me down there with my precious baby. I showered and headed out to make the hour drive to see him. When we got there, we saw him for a just a few short minutes, before his Dr took us in another room to tell us more about his condition.
What happened, was that when I was bleeding--it was all the baby's blood. The umblical cord tore -- 2 of the 3 sections. (This is a totally random and very rare thing to happen. My pregnancy was absolutely perfect--no morning sickness or any complications.) So what happened was Isaac had lost 3/4 of his body's blood. When he was born, the dr's did everything to get him breathing again. Usually after 10 minutes, if they don't get a heartbeat, they give up. But my dr's kept trying. After 23 minutes, there was a heartbeat. Isaac's APGAR score was 0. Basically nothing in his body was functioning on his own. He could barely breathe on his own, he wasn't producing any urine, his kidney's weren't working properly, and his blood pressure was very low--among other problems. They did a few brain tests on Sunday and Monday, and it showed no brain activity. The machine was doing all the work for him. The doctor told us that if Isaac were even to survive, his body wouldn't be able to do anything for him. He would be in a vegetative state. He suggested that we discontinue the life support.
There was no way that I would be able to live with myself and give up like that. My husband and I were on the same page with that. We said to continue the support. The next day (Tuesday), the doctor wanted to talk to us again. He told us that his condition wasn't getting any better--probably worse. Since he wasn't producing urine or getting rid of any body fluids, he had gained 2 pounds. You could see it all over his body--he was swelling and his head was so squishy from the fluids. They said that after a few days (if that long, even) of this excess fluid, he would die. He suggested that we take him off support, so we could hold him before he would die on that table, and just let him die peacefully in our arms.
I still did not want to take him off the support. I had hope that he would recover...but after talking with my husband and my parents, we knew what we had to do, even if it was the most painful, heart-wrenching thing we could do. The fact was - he was going to die; there was nothing else they could do. Whether he would slowly die on the table or in our arms.
Around 11:30 am on Tuesday morning, the nurses brought Isaac to a private room, where we could hold him -- tube free. He was the most beautiful, perfect baby boy I've ever seen. He looked just like his daddy, too. I held him first. He was able to breathe on his own for just a few minutes, before he started to go. Those few minutes of holding him I will cherish forever. I handed him to my husband, which was the most beautiful picture. Knowing how much he wanted a baby--especially a little boy.
We were so thankful that both of our families were able to be there with us, and everyone got to hold our little Isaac. He will forever be our firstborn. It was so hard to come back to our apartment and see our nursery all set up, waiting for a baby. I keep hoping that I'm going to wake up and this will all be over, and I'll be holding Isaac in my arms. But, I know that won't happen. I don't know why things like this happen, but I just trust in God that he'll carry us through this. I know that God doesn't want things like this to happen either--he's crying with us. But knowing that someday we'll see sweet Isaac again, it's was keeps us going right now. My husband and I covet your prayers so much.
Give your precious baby a kiss today, and thank God that he has blessed you with a healthy, living baby.