Thursday, January 6, 2011

Mom to Niah Hope
September 20th, 2009-February 3rd, 2010
Pueblo, CO

My husband & I had been together for almost 3 years, when we decided to try to get pregnant. After a couple months of trying, with no success, we gave up & figured it would happen when it happens. Almost exactly a year later, my husband began to suspect I was pregnant (funny, huh?). I was expecting my normal menstrual cycle, which had just recently became normal. I had begun tracking it, & a week later, still no period, then two weeks, still no period. So, I gave in to my husband's wishes & figured he must be right, I probably am pregnant, but had a doubt in my mind still.

So, my husband, his mother & I made a trip to Wal-Mart. The next morning, my husband had me do the first pregnancy test, then told me to leave the room, for the second one. He came in the bedroom & asked me, "Are you ready to be with me forever?", I said, "Of course, but why?", deep down knowing what he was about to say. He just held up the two pregnancy tests, each one saying, "Yes."

We were shocked (although my husband wasn't very shocked- he claims he knew!), we were worried (would we do okay?, do we have enough money for this?), we were scared, nervous, but most of all we were very excited & happy.

We almost instantly took pictures of the pregnancy tests & sent them to family members with a note: "Were pregnant!".

By that point, we were grinning from ear to ear.

Two days later, I went to the Pregnancy Center in our town, for my confirmation of pregnancy. They did an ultrasound, & we found out I was 6 weeks & 6 days pregnant, almost 7 weeks. We had our first ultrasound then, & the baby's heartbeat was 133 bpm. The lady showed me a little life-size replica of how big our baby was, what to expect, handed me a pamplet & we went along on our way.

My pregnancy was very uneventful (which I was so thankful for!). I had no morning sickness (only 1 bout of the stomach flu early on!), only heartburn every now & then, & eventually my feet got swollen. I had no major complaints.

At every ultrasound, the baby would not show us her gender. We were still debating if we wanted to be surprised at the birth. Well, at the 24 week doctors appointment, the doctor asked my husband, "What do you think you are having?", he replied, "Well, boys run in my family, but I want a girl, she thinks a boy.", the doctor replied, "Well, it's not a boy this time!"

My doctor had a strict she wouldnt tell us until she was sure policy, because she said she would hate to tell us one thing, then were shocked with another. So, I knew that she was correct, this time. As I had asked her if she knew before & she had informed us of her policy, she was pregnant as well & stated she wouldn't want to be surprised.

She did a 3D ultrasound for us, which by that point, our baby girl was so big, we only got a couple of real good shots. But, I had waited so long for that ultrasound, I was just happy to get a few pictures.

In mid-september, I was supposed to be due, but as my due date came & went, we waited & waited. My doctor tried to strip my membranes, that didn't work. We tried walking (on what my husband called my potatoe spuds - my swollen feet), we tried everything! So, my doctor decided on Monday, the 21st of September 2009, to enduce me, because I was already a week past my due date (I had no real complaints- I just wanted to see our baby girl!). She wanted to be the doctor on call for the day, so she had picked the 21st, so I could be delivered by her.

Niah had other plans..

I had gone for a walk with my husband to the local 711 down the street, where we had a friend working, for my normal Ben & Jerrys (it had become routine- Ben & Jerrys, Pickles, a sandwich & a cheese slice- oh & sometimes a gatorade or Dr. Pepper!). We ate, then played a couple of board games to pass the time, we ordered Blackjack Pizza, & my husband fell asleep shortly after dinner. I told him my stomach hurt real bad, finally, the contractions got closer together. Finally, around 4 am, I told my husband, it's time to go. Surprisingly, I was only 4 centimeters.

Her delivery was fairly easy, although I had back labor & had opted for a natural childbirth, I was in so much pain, I opted instead, for an epidural, or should I say,  a failed attempt at an epidural. I developed an adverse reaction, where my whole body had become numb, not just the lower part of my body. They immediately stopped the epidural. During her delivery, I spiked a fever of 100.7, & my blood pressure began to drop & I soon required oxygen, but it was easy for me, because I just wanted to see her.

Later that night, the night before I was set to be enduced, Niah Hope was born, at 7 lbs, 11 oz. (must have been all the 711 I was eating!) on September 20th, 2009. She was beautiful, I soon realized why I had so much heartburn, she had a FULL head of hair. She had the most gorgeous blue eyes!

She had to stay in the hospital for a couple of days longer than I did, due to jaundice. About a week later, she came home.

She had learned to sit up, roll over, hold her toys, grab things & even hold her own bottle, by the age of 4 months. She passed all of her milestones ahead of time, everyone kept telling us what a smart baby she was. She had so many different looks, even when she was grouchy. She was such a smart baby & beautiful little girl.

She spent the majority of her days playing Xbox with her Daddy,  helping me play Farmtown on Facebook (she loved the bright colors), dancing with me, or going for walks.

I'll never forget the first time we gave her peas, after she had been on solids for a few weeks. My husbands Mom & I had gone to the grocery store, & we had bought a small can, because we had figured that Niah wouldn't like peas (as most babies dont & her Daddy didn't!). She gobbled them up with her "mmmm" that she had learned to say.

We had gone to her 4 month check up, she was 13 lbs & the doctor had discussed with my husband how she was going to be taller than him. He was shocked to find she had reached all of her milestones ahead of time, on his checklist.

Since she was a September baby, we got Niah for her first Halloween, which we dressed her up as a skeleton, in a little pink glow in the dark onesie- where we developed a Family tradition to watch kids halloween movies & order pizza (which I ate on the night before Niah was born). We got her for Thanksgiving, where Little Miss Niah insisted on sitting at the table with us- which we gladly offered her Daddy to take turns so he could eat- he declined us & insisted that he didn't mind. We got her for Christmas, where somehow that little girl knew EVERYTHING under that tree was for her. We got her for New Years, which we sat & watched the ball drop together, my husband, me & Niah.

We were coming up on her first Valentines day. I had just gotten a new job, & was very excited to be starting, as it was more money, & all I could think about was spoiling her.

Febuary 3rd, 2010, started out like any normal day, we got up, & got Niah dressed, fed her & put her in her swing, & I sat there & pushed her swing for awhile, & talked to her until she fell asleep. She woke up, we fed her & debated about going for a walk, we decided not too, as it was too cold out, so my husband picked up Niah & said, "When you get up from your nap, we'll all go for a walk to 711." She grinned at him & he said, "Okay, & we'll play some Xbox." Niah had her own blue light up controller.

She was so tired, she would fall asleep, & then wake herself up again & start crying. I picked her up & held her for a few, then set her in her swing, talked to her & she fell asleep. It wasn't like her to keep waking herself up. So, she fell asleep for about 10 minutes, & then woke up crying again. My husband picked her up & held her for a few minutes & put her in her crib, she fell asleep. I checked on her & she was staring at me & she grinned. I said, "Your a silly butt." I came back a few minutes later & she was sleeping. I went & did some dishes, it was no longer than 5 minutes.

I came back to check on her because I figured she would be awake, since she had been waking herself up. I looked in her crib & was terrified at what I saw. She was luke warm & I felt her heart pounding, I yelled to my husband, "Shes not breathing." I called 911, as my husband performed CPR, she looked at her Daddy & smiled, & that was the last Niah was there.

He ran her out to the ambulance, & had me climb inside, I was in such a shock I had carried the house phone with me, still on with the 911 operator. I told God, please don't let her go.. take me. My husband kept telling me have faith. While we were told to stand outside, our sunny day, as we stopped to look around, had turned cloudy, & it began to rain. One of the neighbors children (that I had never seen), came up to us on the sidewalk & said, "Is that your baby?" I said, "Yes." & the little girl, who couldn't have been any older than 6, looked at me & said, "She will be okay." She tapped my arm & said, "She will be okay, I know it."

Sometimes I wonder if that was Niah, in that little girl.

After having the police come, & handing over our house keys for them to conduct their investigation & giving them Niah's full name, D.O.B, hair & eye color, & doctors names, a police officer drove us to the hospital.. My husbands hand on the plastic seperator with mine the whole way there. I saw thru a tiny glass window, our little girl, laying on a hospital bed, with more than 10 different people around her. She had gotten her color back, but I was still so afraid she wasn't going to make it. I don't know how long exactly they had been working, but an emergency room doctor came to us & said, "We've done everything we can." My husband said, "Please.. don't tell me she's gone." He said, "I am sorry, but there was nothing more we could do."

We went in soon after to visit with our little girl one more time. They had lit candles around her, she looked so peaceful. I held her for awhile, I tried to hold my tears in to be strong for everyone in the Family, but I couldn't. I broke down, I didn't know why I was being punished, why God took her away from us. I was so angry, I was angry at God, I was angry at the hospital, I was angry at the doctors, I was angry at every Parent who got to hold their child alive that night, I was angry at the world.

Such a lovable, sweet, innocent, blue eyed baby girl, & God wanted to take her away. I hated the whole world, for almost 2 months. Why would God give me a baby just to take her away?

I eventually became closer to God & realized that he must have needed her up there with him. I sometimes believe Niah was an Angel, from the very beginning. I realized that while she may not be here in body, she is with me in spirit.

The night of her death, we stayed at my husband's Mom's house, because we were in no way prepared to go back. My husband needed to go get a few of our clean clothes, for the next day, so him, his Mom & his Dad went back to our house, but knew I couldn't handle it. It had begun to snow. I was inside, my husbands niece had put on a funny movie, Bless her Heart, in an attempt to help. The movies I had found funny, just weren't funny anymore.

When they came back in, they called me outside. Right outside, were little tiny human footprints in the snow, leading right up to the front door. His mom said, "Niah came to check on you."

Later that night, the Emergency Broadcast high pitch noise came on, Niah hated that noise, we used to turn it off all the time, because it would come on her cartoon channel (she loved the bright sights & sounds of Spongebob!).. So my husband changed the channel, it switched, by itself back to it. I think she was telling us, she was there.

A couple of nights later, we went back to our house, where I fell asleep with Niah's blankets.

The Coroner ruled Niah's death as Sudden Infant Death Syndrome or SIDS. Our daughter was completely healthy. As for the risk factors for SIDS, we had done none of them: We weren't smokers, we kept her cool, never hot or sweaty, we kept a fan on in her room, we didn't use any blankets near her in her crib, & I asked him, "What did I do wrong?" He said, "Nothing, unfortunately, this happens all to often & it is just a tragic unexplained accident. Your daughter was a beautiful healthy baby, that shows no signs of being ill, or having any injuries, I wanted to give you & your husband answers, but I have none."
Niah was laid to rest, a few days after her death. We went back one more time, after her funeral, to view her in an outfit. She looked so beautiful, & the funeral director had put her in a little bassinett, she looked so beautiful.

We had her cremated, because we couldn't part with her, & I wanted to take her with us, so we picked out a beautiful urn & she is sitting with us in our living room, with her teddy & her picture from her funeral, as I write this.

My heart feels heavy & I sometimes still feel, even almost a year later now, that when I hold on to her blanket, I want to just keep holding it.

I begged her to come back, even after her funeral. I began to just believe she was at my Mother-In-Laws house & she would come home. I found out later, her Grandma was thinking the same thing, except that she was with us. It was just hope, wishful thinking I guess.

It is almost Niah's Angelversary, & I miss her more than ever.

If I would have known our beautiful baby girl wasn't going to wake up from her nap that day, I would have hugged her a little tighter, had a longer conversation with her, gave her one more kiss, kept her awake a little longer, just to laugh with her & see her smile light up the room, just one more time.

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Anonymous said...

I am so sorry you lost your Niah. I will be praying for peace & comfort for you. There really are no words but just know that there are people out there thinking about you.

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