Monday, June 7, 2010

That Place

Dear Stevie,
Today was my 4-week postpartum appointment at the Doctor's office. Yes, we had to go back to that place.

That place,
Where we heard the amazing "whoosh whoosing" of your heartbeat for the first time.
Where we heard just static, and those awful four words no one should ever have to hear: "there is no heartbeat."

That place,
Where we stared in awe at the ultrasound screen, watching you kick your legs like a crazy little frog.
Where we stared in shock at the ultrasound screen, trying to will your lifeless body to wake up.

That place,
Where all our hopes and dreams began.
Where all our hopes and dreams were shattered in a moment.

In all honesty, going back to that place wasn't as hard as I'd built it up in my mind to be. Yeah, it sucked seeing a bunch of adorable pregnant women, so blissfully happy and full of hope like I myself was a month ago, and to hear "I'm so sorry" over and over again from staff, while everyone else around me was getting told "congratulations!" But I made it through it without having any sort of humiliating public melt-down or anything, so I guess I can be proud of myself for that, right?

As usual, our doctor was wonderfully kind and compassionate, which I am so, so grateful for. We went over all the testing results again, they took like 18 viles of blood from me (I'm not kidding, like so many that eventually blood just stopped coming out of my vain and they had to call it a day), and I had an exam (and pap smear, fun!) to make sure I had physically recovered from your delivery (which I have, they determined).

We talked a lot about what steps would be taken during my next pregnancy to make sure what happened to you doesn't happen to any of your future siblings. I asked what the odds were of this happening again and was told having one stillbirth, much less two, is next to unheard of (apparently in her 10+ years of being in practice, our doctor has only diagnosed two still births, counting me). But statistics are no longer of any comfort to me; I had a .5% chance of this happening to you, and it did. I just read that clots in the umbilical cord are the cause of death for 1 in every 1,000 stillbirths; I guess once you yourself become the tragically unlucky "1 in 1,000," you'll never be reassured by favorable odds again.

All in all, the whole experience went okay, and that's about as good as I can hope for right now. Dad even bought me this gigantic lollipop at the gas station as a reward for "being so brave." God, I love him. :)

Going back to the place where the worst day of my life happened was hard. But that place was also home to many of the happiest moments in my life--moments I shared with you. And because of that, it will always have a special place in my heart.

I love you so much Baby girl. I can't believe it's already been over 4 weeks since you were born; it seems like it was both just yesterday and an entire lifetime ago. Holding you in my heart, today and always.



Amanda said...

I think you deserve a bigger lollipop. That's just my opinion though.

Erin said...

I smiled so big when you said that Andy bought you that lollipop for being so brave - what a guy!

kerrij said...

Way to go Andy, I love the lollipop.

Kristin, you are such a brave Mom.

Mrs. Mother said...

Making those steps into the doctor's office after losing Jenna were some of the hardest I ever had to make. Luckily, our nurse got us right back.

I also don't believe in statistics anymore. Our baby had Trisomy 18, which only strikes one in 3,000 pregnancies. Our odds after the AFP test were one in 10. A 90 percent chance she didn't have it, but she did. I will never trust statistics the same way again.

Danae said...

The Dr. that delivered Bailey made this statement one of the times she checked me after everything happened "Statistics don't matter until you become one of them.". And that felt so true for us. She has been in practice for 13 years, and has only seen an Incompetent Cervix 3 times. I wasn't a fan of statistics in college, and I especially hate them now. I'm proud of you for being so strong today though! And I love the lollipop!

Lori said...

Bless your heart...I totally get that statistics don't mean squat. Vasa previa has less than .03% chance happening...the kind of thing my doctor said, "You read about it in medical school and are so thankful that it's that rare you'll probably never see it."

Yeah...broke that stride for her.

One million and 8 babies can be born and one dies and when YOURS is the one---the one million and 8 living are of no comfort to you...

Hope the lollipop was yummy!

Curls O Fred said...

Saw your link on another page, and stopped by. Your grief is so fresh, and so raw. I'm so sorry for the pain you are experiencing in the loss of your daughter. I echo what others have said here, and hope that the lollipop was delicious.

Anonymous said...

I read somewhere recently that when you come up on the losing side of a statistic, statistics no longer become a comfort. I know how this feels. Every day when I am weak, I look at the lovely picture you made for us and you make me stronger. <3 Always with you..

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