Mom to Carson Paul
Born Silently at 33 weeks 3 days on June 8th, 2007
My story begins just after my husband, Jeff, and I got married in June 2006. We knew that we wanted to start a family right away. I was an elementary school teacher, so we wanted to wait to start trying until the baby would be born after I finished teaching for the year. We started trying in October and were surprised and excited to get pregnant right away. We saw our OB, who referred us to an MFM for extra monitoring due to my chronic high blood pressure.
During my pregnancy, we saw both the OB and MFM regularly. Everything was going great. At 28 weeks, a fill-in for our MFM told us that she saw something on the ultrasound called a "double bubble". This meant that our baby had something wrong with his/her duodenum - either in the formation or function of it. She told us that there was a high likelihood that this "double bubble" was caused by Down Syndrome. We had opted out of screenings due to the fact that nothing we found out woul2007d change the course of our pregnancy. We were also told that this "double bubble" (technically called Duodenal Atresia) would require surgery within 1-2 days of birth and a brief NICU stay. We prepared ourselves for the possiblility of our child having Down Syndrome and the certainty of surgery and a NICU stay. Nothing could diminsh the love we felt for our little baby (whose gender was kept a secret at our request).
The next four weeks continued to go well. At 32 weeks, we saw another fill-in for our MFM. This time we were told that our baby was in the 3rd percentile for growth. The MFM didn't seem too alarmed, just said that we needed to keep an eye on things. We weren't too concerned as the baby had measured about a week to two weeks behind in growth during the whole pregnancy.
On Monday, June 4, I went into Labor and Delivery for an NST. Baby was moving all around and had a great heartbeat. They talked to my OB about the results and sent me home, saying that everything looked great. By this time, I was done teaching for the year. I had my classroom all packed up as I would not be returning to teaching once my baby was born. I went home and spent the next couple of days working on scrapbooking my wedding pictures.
On Wednesday, June 6, I noticed that I had not felt the baby move for a while. I laid on the couch and rested, telling myself that he/she was just getting too big for his/her cramped quarters. That night, I mentioned to Jeff that I hadn't felt any kicking for a while. He brought me cold juice and then had me lay down for a while. I thought that I felt the baby move. We told each other that the baby was just getting too big to move a lot.
Thursday morning, June 7, I got up and got ready for the day. We had a tour of the NICU scheduled for that afternoon and then an appointment with the MFM. I didn't feel the baby move and was getting really nervous about it. I remember laying on the couch thinking that the worst thing that would happen would be them telling me that they had to do an emergency c-section to deliver the baby early because he/she was out of room.
I met Jeff at the hospital and we did our tour of the NICU. We walked over to our MFM's office for our appointment. I laid down on the bed and our ultrasound tech took a quick peek at the baby. Both Jeff and I knew something was definitely wrong with how quickly she turned off the monitor and brightly said, "Let me go get Dr. B." We just sat there, not breathing. Dr. B came in and comfirmed our worst nightmare..."I'm sorry, your baby has no heartbeat." I remember burying my head in my hands and sobbing, "WHY?".
Our MFM and the staff in her office were wonderful to us. They all hugged us. Their eyes were filled with tears as we left to head over to Labor and Delivery to be induced. Our OB met us at Labor and Delivery and walked us to our room. The nursing staff and grief counselors were fantastic. They were all so kind and caring.
I was given cytotek throughout the night and pitocin was started Friday morning. My labor progressed rapidly and our beautiful baby boy was born at 12:05 Friday afternoon. Jeff and I both held our breath when Carson was born...hoping and praying that somehow the doctors were all wrong and that our precious baby would scream and cry. The silence as he was born was devastating.
Carson weighed 3 pounds, 6 ounces, and was 17 inches long. He was such a beautiful baby boy. Jeff and I held him and tried to memorize all of his tiny features. Our parents were able to come to the hospital and hold their tiny grandson. Our parish priest came and said a blessing for us and Carson. Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep came and took over 40 pictures of us with Carson...those are our most treasured possessions.
In the weeks after Carson's birth, we found out that he had passed due to blood clots and lesions forming in and on the placenta...possibly caused by an undiagnosed blood clotting disorder (MTHFR) that I was only tested for after we lost Carson. Not a day goes by that I don't think about my beautiful baby boy, my first child. He will be loved and missed forever.
You can contact Jana at email@example.com