Mom to Jeremiah D’Andre
Born May 12, 2012 and died May 15, 2012
I don’t even know how to start my story…it just brings tears to my eyes, but in a good way. I think it is good to tell my story.
My name is Andrea. This was my second pregnancy. My first pregnancy was great with no complications at all, with a healthy little boy who is turning 7 years old. When I found out I was pregnant with my second, it was around November 2012. I was excited and surprised that I was pregnant. It wasn’t planned, but I had already fallen in love with the little person growing inside of me. Something told me that it was going to be a boy, and before I even knew that I was pregnant I already had his name planned out (since2010). I chose from the Bible Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations,” and I chose Jeremiah.
Everything started normally as any other pregnancy, getting an OBGYN all over again, taking my prenatal…I remember that I went to a regular ultrasound visit for his first measurements when I was only 11 or 12 weeks. That’s when I started realizing that the lady was taking too long to do my ultrasound. I noticed that she was to quiet; she wasn’t talking a lot until she told me that she had to leave the room. When she came back, she told me that the doctor was going to talk to me. My heart just dropped because I knew deep inside something wasn’t right at all. The doctor told me that they noticed that the baby had too much fluid in back of the neck. Since that day, December 22nd at 2 pm – I remember my tears started to pour – I became a high risk pregnancy. They did all types of tests, including a CVS and amniocentesis. All the tests came out good. He didn’t have syndromes of the types they check. His chromosomes were good. He was a healthy baby, but they saw his heart defect. At, first I didn’t want to believe them. But in the months that my tummy started to grow I realized that it was okay, that no matter what, I was going to be strong and God was sending me a precious gift. I had the best doctors and cardiologist for my baby, the best hospitals in Miami for children and the best heart surgeon in Florida getting ready for my baby’s arrival.
On May 11,2012, it was a Friday, I woke up to take my 7-year old son to school, but that morning it was different. I felt like I was getting bad cramps, but I was just 31 weeks and 4 days. I was thinking that it was just fake contractions, but when I started to drive, they were getting stronger. I came home and laid down and said to myself, “Let me just lie on the bed and take a rest,” but when I woke up to pick up my son from school, I couldn’t even walk. That’s when I called my mother and told her that I thought I was in labor. A few hours later, I left to the hospital. Around 5pm I arrived at the South Miami Hospital. The nurses thought that I was already 40 weeks because I was carrying a big stomach (because of the extra amniotic fluid I had), but I was just 31 weeks and 4 days. They told me that I was having contractions, and that they were going to give me medicine to control them and make them stop. They admitted me that day. They told my family that they could leave because it was already 12 am and I wasn’t going to have the baby. But my contractions didn’t stop; they were getting stronger and stronger by the minute. They gave me more medicine, but it didn’t do any good. I started dilating…the nurse started to prepare me for an emergency c-section, and they called all my doctors. I was just saying to God, “Please do not, the baby is too small,” but at the same time I was so excited to finally meet my little one. I remember that I held the nurse’s hand and asked her, “What chance does my baby have?” She couldn’t say, she just told me to stay calm.
Jeremiah D’Andre was born at 3:20 am, 3lb 10 ounces and 15.35 inches long. I remember that I was asking why was he not crying and the answer was he wouldn’t because they were working with him, just stay calm . I already knew that he wasn’t going to cry once he was born because babies with heart defects have problems breathing at birth, but I was hoping he would. When they brought him to me I just started to cry because he was so small I couldn’t believe it. The only thing that I remember was telling God, “Please, God, be with him, don’t leave him, take care of him,” because I knew that they were going to transfer my baby to the NICU of cardiology at Miami Children’s Hospital. They did…at 6am my baby was arriving at another location with paramedics. That’s where they found out that he had a problem with his esophagus; it wasn’t developed and wasn’t connected to the stomach.
On Mother’s Day, May 13th, I received a call from the doctor telling me that they needed to take him to the OR for emergency operations, that they would be calling me when they finished. Like 45 minutes later, when I saw that cell ring, I knew something was wrong .They told me that they had to resuscitate him 2 times to bring him back. No parent wants to hear, “Your baby won’t make it to the morning.” I rushed out of the hospital so fast and when I was getting ready I was telling God not to take him yet because I needed for my baby to hear me say to him, “I LOVE YOU.”
I went to his side…after only less than 72 hrs of having Jeremiah, I held my baby, told him how much I love him, and how much I wanted him in my life. Everything felt so unreal; this couldn’t be happening to my baby, this is not the way I pictured it. That’s when the doctor sat me down and told me that I had to make a choice: to let my son live in a ventilator for the rest of his life with no movement because he was born with a lot of things wrong that affected his little brain as well, or to take my little angel out of the ventilator and let him pass in my arms, or to take all the hard medicine that was keeping him a live and just wait for a natural death. It was the hardest decision that I ever had to make or will ever make. I can’t even explain the pain that I was having inside, it was like somebody was ripping my heart out. I chose to let Jeremiah have a natural death, to not resuscitate him again and to stop giving him the hard medicine.
Jeremiah passed away on May 15, 2012 at 1:15am. That’s when I became the mother of a precious Angel in Heaven. It’s the hardest thing in life to lose your baby. There are no words to describe this pain. It’s like half of me is not living any more. Sometimes I just feel there’s no more light coming in to my life again.
I’ve been going to a group support for parents who have lost a baby in the NICU or to stillbirth. I want to tell my story because I feel that by me telling my story there’s a meaning and a purpose for why Jeremiah D’Andre came in to my life and this world and left so soon, and I’m trying to understand that by telling his story.
Every day that goes by I miss him more and more, but I’m willing to honor his little life by pushing myself to live again and smile again, because , my little angel is shining on me and his big brother. I’m still grieving, but I know that God has a reason why and I know God is protecting him and giving His love to my Angel.
It’s still not easy, but I’m living day by day.
“If I Die Young” by The Band Perry
Lord make me a rainbow, I’ll shine down on my mother She’ll know I’m safe with you when she stands under my colors, oh well Life ain’t always what you think it ought to be, no Ain’t even grey, but she buries her baby
The sharp knife of a short life, well I’ve had just enough time…”
You can follow Andrea on Twitter at https://twitter.com/amfaithhope.
You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.