The week of June 26th, 2006 was absolutely wonderful. Linds and I spent every day that week together. Tuesday we went to CEC, Wednesday we went to the pool, Thursday we went to McD’s, Friday to another pool, Saturday was Vance’s 2nd birthday and we celebrated at Peter Piper, and Sunday we where supposed to get together but I was quite ill and Linds’ kids where a bit burnt on the pool. That Wednesday, the 28th, I was laying in bed resting when the baby started to kick like crazy…I had been feeling sporadic kicking since 12 weeks and called Levi in because I thought he might be able to feel these feisty kicks from deep within. He laid down next to me and I placed my hand on my belly, the baby let off one HUGE kick and then was silent. I thought it was a bit odd, usually our babies start kicking, it gets a little stronger and then they kick down to when they are sleeping. The kicks ended so abruptly. As you can see we where super busy. We where rejoicing that Vance was 2, we where out there playing and having fun.
Wednesday, July 5th
Thursday, July 6
process being there and knowing we would leave without our baby. We had been there so many times to see so many babies…and now we where on “the other side”. A place neither of us ever wanted to be and it hurt so much, I can’t even tell you. I finally found the strength to get into the gown. The doctor came in and took out the laminaria and hooked up the pitocin and we waited. It was around 8am and I had not eaten in almost 24 hours, and I still couldn’t. I just didn’t want to. I asked for something to help me sleep and they gave me ambian. I spent much of the day in a fog, hallucinating and grieving all at the same time. The ambian bought me an hour or two of sleep and then I was wide awake. Levi and I did do a lot of talking that day. He didn’t leave my side. We talked about every detail. We knew we wanted to have the baby blessed and cremated. We wanted samples of the cord and placenta to be taken so that they could try to grow chromosomes, we knew we would want to see our baby. The pit did nothing (didn’t help that for 3 hours it was running onto the floor instead of the i.v). My OB came and saw me in the morning and called my nurse throughout the day for information. She never left us hanging. That night Linds came with baby blankets..one blue and one pink, shampoo and conditioner (I had forgotten ours), gum, chap stick, magazines, and a heart full of love. Our talks together have been the most healing part of this process. She has been there from the moment we decided to have a 4th baby, to this very moment. She loved our baby as much as we did. We talked about their day and how Vance did. She took him to McD’s and bought him a train at Target, and introduced him to chocate mookshakes (chocolate milk shakes), and loved the heck out of him for us, and G was right there helping. We had decided to have my dad take him that night..but it probably wasn’t the best idea. He did go to bed for him, but he wasn’t happy there, he needed the stability of the *S* family and not being shuffled around. Linds asked us what we would name the baby…we hadn’t even thought about it. We almost immediately settled on Reese. Reese Noel for a girl, Reese Noah for a boy. When Linds left I finally ate 1/2 a turkey sandwich and some fruit, then Levi gave me a bath. I couldn’t get my IV wet so he washed my hair, and slathered my body, and rinsed me off, he took such tender loving care of me. After the bath the doc came in and inserted 2 laminaria, it HURT. They had already ordered phenegren to get me to sleep and she offered demorol as well. I gladly accepted..and got my first real sleep in 40 hours. I slept 12 hours solid.
Friday, July 7
We came home and surrounded ourselves with our children and family.
Linds has been an absolute angel through all of this. Her grief is as deep as mine, we shared every day together, we planned on what we would do with EIGHT children next summer. We are so entwined. Reese was her baby too. We have been through life together, Jillian’s birth is one of my most treasured memories…and now we have been through death together…we have come full circle. She showed our family so much love and compassion…her kindness rocked our world. She had Maria come clean the house, she filled our fridge with yummy food, and she took absolutely awesome care of our little boy. He missed his mommy, but never once did he feel abandoned. She has been there every second that I’ve needed her to be. She brought Vance home yesterday and I begged her to bring sweet Jilly with her. I needed to hold a healthy, happy, beautiful baby and love on her. I know God brought us together because we are sisters in our souls. We never got blood sisters…we got each other. Our bond is so incredibly deep. She is hurting..her soul aches for Reese as much as mine does. We have grieved this together…and to have another woman to grieve with is invaluable. Levi has been fantastic, his support has been mind-blowing, and our bond has also deepened greatly…but being able to grieve the way woman grieve with another woman….there aren’t enough words. She owns a piece of my heart…and she also has Reese watching over her family. Reese already has, but we’ll tell that story another time. Linds and I will be back out there…playing with our kids and soaking up life…it is what we DO but don’t think for a moment that Reese will be forgotten. Reese is an angel baby for a reason, and we may never know why..but I got an amazing 16 weeks with that baby. I got to nurture and love and protect our baby. I am convinced that the kicks Levi and I felt Wed, June 28th, where Reese’s final kicks…and our baby passed away with both of us holding them. No one will ever replace Reese, not in my heart and not in our family.
If you can believe it, I wrote this without crying, I have gone over every detail so many times, and I think it will help to have everything written out. We consider Reese a stillborn baby…I just can’t summarize going through 10 hours of labor as a miscarriage. We labored and birthed Reese with dignity, and will lay our baby to rest with love. I cannot express how much Reese was loved and wanted. I cannot express the pain I feel. I can choose to belive that Reese’s short life had a reason. I want to learn from this, grow, and be a better person for it. I will always cherish Reese.
I have my 2 week and 6 week checks to get through and we will go from there. We pick up the urn on Wednesday. Time will help.
Again thank-you all for your kindness. Please know that my choice to share this is because someone out there may have to face this and I want them to look to the woman who’s stories are told for strength and courage.
I did not leave the hospital without a scrip for Zoloft..I will be on it for a loooooooooong time. I started it yesterday. Every single doctor and nurse we had was phenomenal. Our baby was handled with such love, we where handled with such compassion. We where touched by so many wonderful people. Every single one was kind. We feel very blessed. Our hospital delivers 3000 babies a year..out of that less then 50 are born like Reese…please, if you are pregnant ENJOY IT! Do not fret. The chances of this happening are so very small. Life is so very precious.
My doctor called last week to tell us that Reese was, indeed, a little girl and she was 100% perfect. There was nothing wrong with her at all. We think she passed away from a cord accident and her frantic movement on June 28th was her fighting to stay with us. Rest peacefully Reese Noel. We love and miss you sweet one. Play with Gramps in the gardens of heaven and know that we will be together again someday my sweet daughter.