Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Mama to Julia Rose
Miscarried at 17 weeks, November 24th, 2008
Logan, Queensland, Australia

Everything was going right. We just celebrated our 1st wedding anniversary (a huge milestone for any couple) and found out we were pregnant after my first month of being off the pill. (I stopped it on our anniversary in June, had my period in July and didn't have one in August.) 

 We excitedly called my parents in the states telling them "How would you like to fly down here in May to meet your first grandchild?" Happiness and excitement and morning sickness followed. My doc guestimated my due date for May 2nd, 2009, the week before Mother's Day. I was so excited, I'd be bringing my baby to church on Mother's Day! (Or shortly thereafter.) We told my husbands parents by baking pink and blue swirled cupcakes and having them over for dessert and a movie one night. They were so excited and happy and couldn't wait to meet this little one. I took my folic acid, tried to eat well (but ended up eating whatever my stomach would allow) and we told our coworkers the happy news. Everything was going right. My doc said baby was doing fine, I was gaining weight like I should, my breasts got bigger (Woohoo!), etc. At my 14 week check up, she couldn't locate baby's heart beat but she said not to worry as at 14 weeks she had difficulty finding heartbeats for most babies (as they are still tiny and can move around away from the doppler quite well) but that they were fine. I went home thinking all was well. 2 weeks later I started spotting without any pain. I knew it wasn't normal but it wasn't abnormal either. I figured it would clear up on its own and baby was doing just fine. That was monday.

By Thursday I was really starting to get worried and made an appointment with my doctor for the next morning. I was told to take it easy and to keep my feet up and lie down. I tried. I called my mom and mother in law and told them what was up. That night wasn't an easy sleep. My mother in law picked my husband and I up Friday morning and drove us to the doctors office as I didn't feel up to bussing across town. My regular doc wasn't in so I saw the guy doc. He was very concerned and as I lay on the exam table, he said he couldn't feel the top of my uterus. He sent me to have an ultrasound done to make sure that it wasn't miscarriage or anything else. The clinic I was sent to had horrible front desk people and I left. I didn't want them touching me!

I asked to be sent to the hospital and I was given a referral packet and sent out. After being sent to the right building and being seen by the hospital doc, I had my first ultrasound. Knowing that twins ran in my husbands side of the family, I thought maybe we had had twins and one hadn't made it, and that was the source of the spotting. The doc asked a number of questions and then showed us the ultrasound screen. Her words sent us into an immediate tailspin and confirmed our worst fear: "I'm seeing a lot of debris here, and I'm sorry. I just can't find a heartbeat. It looks like baby has been gone for some time and your body is now catching up to the fact that you're not pregnant... I'm going to send you up to another ultrasound to confirm what I'm seeing here and then I'll discuss your options with you...."  We walked out, numb and I think my face said everything to my mother in law. We had lost our baby. Our baby that we so wanted and loved more than anyone or anything. The second ultrasound confirmed that our baby was gone. I went back to the first doc and she said I could either come in Monday morning for a d&c (out of the question!) or I could wait and see how my body progressed over the weekend (what we chose to do), then off to do a blood test. Either way, if anything didn't feel right to come to the ER -IMMEDIATELY-.

I called my parents and told them the news. My mom told my brothers. All 3 of them broke down in a group hug and cried buckets of tears. They were so looking forward to being uncles for the first time. The word was spread that we were grieving our baby and the support just rolled in. My mom made flight plans to come down on Tuesday. Our pastor came and prayed with us. On Monday morning I woke up with a start. I thought I had to pee but it wasn't pee. I had been heavily bleeding while I slept and I needed to get to the bathroom pronto! I barely made it to the bathroom, shut the door and switched on the lights when my insides erupted outside. Its graphic but the blood just splattered on my bathroom tiles, sounding not unlike a water balloon bursting. I knew that I was in the process of birthing our dead baby and called 000 (Australia's 911). I told the operator that I was 17 weeks pregnant and miscarrying, that I needed an ambulance and a ride to the hospital ASAP. I didn't want to be in my inlaws car and start to bleed out. I needed medical attention and I needed it NOW. I hung up with the operator after giving my details and cleaned up myself and the bathroom floor. I woke my husband up telling him the ambulance would be here soon. I called my inlaws saying "000 is on their way, meet us at Logan Hospital." They woke and threw on clothes, flying to the hospital in their little car. The medics got to our front gate and we met them there.  I was asked over and over what happened, did I hit my head (no), how much blood had I lost, etc. At the hospital I asked for a wheelchair as I felt a second gush coming on. This one soaked my pad and part of my jeans. I was wheeled to triage and checked out by a nurse who was the worst person ever. She asked "so why did you have the ambulance bring you in!?" after I told her I was miscarrying. "Hello! I'm losing my child here. I need medical attention!" She inserted an IV (evil woman!) which hurt like hell as I was dehydrated. I was panicking and had a huge heat rush wash over me which did not feel good or help my case any.

She sent me to the bathroom to change pads so she could gauge my blood loss and whether or not to admit me overnight for observation. I went to the bathroom and sat down as gush # 3 happened. I felt something hanging out and reached down with a blob of toilet paper. I looked and it was our baby. Perfectly formed, sickly gray with black eyes. So tiny yet so beautiful. Seeing our baby validated my pregnancy. I wasn't imagining it, I was actually pregnant. I'm a mama, of a dead baby. I was pregnant with a live baby, then pregnant with a dead baby, then not pregnant but still with a dead baby. I could not bear the thought of the ER doctors examining or doing tests on our baby so I wrapped her up in toilet paper and giggled as I flushed her down the toilet "like a gold fish". I changed pads and brought the used one out to the nurse. I told her what I'd done with baby and sat down. She gauged my bloodloss and found a doctor to discuss my case and admit me. I was sent to the ER waiting room (of all places) with my husband and my inlaws for a few minutes before being called back in. I was shown to a bed and admitted overnight just incase I developed any complications. My mother in law took my wedding rings and kept them safe for me. The IV tape was sticking to them and it bugged me greatly. We were seen by a nurse a multitude of times to check my vitals and tried to sleep without any luck. We were too stunned and shocked at the entire week's events.

At 7am or so (I'd been in since just around 2am) I was seen by the doctor on call. As I had miscarried fully (confirmed by an ultrasound) I wasn't a "high priority" patient and could afford to wait a bit longer. The doc did an internal ultrasound to confirm that I had passed baby out and all that was left was lining. I was told I'd have a heavy period for 2+ weeks and to do nothing with work or housework but to take it easy. That was Monday.

My mother in law dropped us off at home and gave me my rings back. We slept for a couple hours then went out to a movie to distract ourselves. My mom arrived the next day and stayed with us for a week as we grieved.

We don't know for sure whether we had a boy or a girl. My moms thought we were having a boy, but my gut said "girl". So I decided that our baby was a girl and we named her Julia Rose Davies. She was born at 17 weeks gestation on November 24, 2008. We had a small memorial service in our living room towards the end of the week for her and later planted a tree in her memory.

We miss her dearly. She's now raising her little brother Evan Riley (June 18-22, 2010) in Heaven. (Evan's story is at

You can contact her at


Carrie Lacey said...

I can't believe you got to see Julia - I don't think i would've been able to let her go. I had no idea what was involved with miscarriage being fortunate enough not to have had to experience it. I'm so sorry Kara that you and Glenn have had to go through so many things, it doesn't seem fair. What i do know is that you are one of the strongest women i've ever had the pleasure of being in contact with!

Ausmerican Housewife - Creating with Kara Davies said...

Thanks Carrie. I remember seeing Julia with absolute clarity and at the same time everything is fuzzy. I am the only person that has ever seen her in the flesh. Perfectly formed. Just seeing her tiny body validated my entire pregnancy.

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