Mom to Caleb James Hiltz
July 29, 2011 – September 21, 2011
Buffalo, New York
My husband and I have been together since our early 20’s and we got married just one year ago on 11/12/2010. We were so excited to start our family, which was the natural progression after getting married. So you can imagine my surprise on 3/4/2011 when I got a positive pregnancy test, or two.. Since I did not believe it either.
The pregnancy was going well and was uneventful until about the fourth month when my OBGYN noticed that my Protein
in my urine was very high. (I normally have a plus 1 protein anyway, and no one ever questioned it.) He sent me to a High Risk Clinic for the remainder of my pregnancy. Blissfully unaware of what lie ahead for me, I kept chugging along and ate well, went to all my appointments, did MANY labs and urine tests. My protein continued to climb to outrageous numbers and my BP started to go up.
At week 23 I was referred to a Kidney Specialist who advised me that I would not make it to term, let alone to 30 weeks. I was scared, but hopeful. He put me on bed rest and there I stayed until 7/26/2011, which was 25 weeks and 3 days, when I was admitted to the local Children’s Hospital with a BP of 220/110. Although I could not feel it, I was given surfactant to help the babies lungs, and immediately placed on magnesium so I would not seize. (Horrible 2 days of my life.) Finally on 7/29/2011, the hospital decided for me that my sweet little boy would need to be born, and at 10:46am Caleb James arrived. He was 1 pound, 4 ounces and did not cry. He opened his eyes for his father and I, was unconscious, and was whisked away to the NICU where he lived for 58 days.
Caleb was a fighter, but he had too much against him. His little lungs never developed past 25 weeks, he never came off the vents, he had multiple staph infections, and his kidneys were not functioning without a diuretic. But he waved his arms, opened his eyes, smiled, and ate everyday. Finally, we were forced to make the decision to remove Caleb from life support on 9/21/2011. We got to hold him for the first and last time that day. My beautiful baby boy held on for 97 minutes and looked at my husband and I as he took his last breath. We bathed him, took his hand and footprints, and clipped some of his hair. We buried him 2 days later with my Grandmother and there is not a day that goes by that we don’t miss him, every second.
Jamie can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org