Mom to Gabriella Cadena
July 1, 2016
Las Cruces, New Mexico
You never truly know how precious life is until a horrible tragedy happen before your eyes.
June 30, 2016. Thursday afternoon was a normal day. I ran errands with my son and did everything I normally do. Thursday morning while still in bed, I felt my baby girl move around and kick me. That afternoon was a normal routine prenatal checkup. I was 22 weeks along. I was so excited but also fearful to go in and hear the heartbeat because no parent wants anything to go wrong. I went in for my appointment with the intentions of leaving with a healthy baby girl, and a strong heartbeat. This moment changed my life completely. I was so heartbroken. I was in shock. I was numb.
My OB and I started off with the simple routine questions. The measurements of Gabriella and the part I dread but yet can’t wait for…hearing her heartbeat. My OB couldn’t find her heartbeat. At any other appointment it was so easy and quick to find her heart. But this time was different. It took longer than expected and I knew something was wrong. As I looked at her face I could tell something was wrong and she looked worried. She then rolled in the ultrasound monitor to see if she could get the heartbeat on the machine. She couldn’t. She told me she was going to get the head OB to help her. At that point I was so confused and freaked out. I was shaking and so scared. I didn’t know what to think. I began crying and praying. Praying it was just a glitch and she was just being stubborn. The doctor came in and began another ultrasound. It took him 10 minutes (which felt like a lifetime) because he wanted to make sure what they were saying and seeing was accurate. He started explaining to me what he found on the screen. He stated she had a lot of fluid and swelling around her head. He confirmed she had passed. By far the WORST feeling I have ever felt.
My husband had stayed home with our son while I went to my appointment because again, who would think anything like this would happen? I immediately called my husband hysterically crying telling him everything that happened. My doctor went over some options with me. He told me to go home and discuss with my husband what we wanted to do. We could either wait and let my body go into labor itself or be admitted that day and induced. I couldn’t hold off any longer, I had to be admitted and induced. I went straight home after my appointment and as soon as I walked through the door, my husband was there, I broke down. We were so devastated. We were told to go back to the hospital in 1 hour. We went in and as I was pushed in a wheelchair up to labor and delivery, I was so frustrated and angry that this was actually happening. All I could think about was why was this happening to us? What did we do to deserve this? Where did I go wrong with taking care of myself? Everything was running through my head. As they wheeled me upstairs, they pushed me to my room, passing all the beautiful newborn baby pictures on the walls, made me feel even worse thinking I’ll never be able to hold our baby girl that way.
As the hours passed I was given medicine to start the process of my induction. It was a very long process, sitting there and thinking about everything possible. Just realizing once I have her, that’ll be it. I kept asking myself, can I do this? Am I strong enough for this? I knew at that point I really had no choice, I had to do it. I could start to feel my stomach deflating like a ball losing its air. I knew time was getting closer to delivering. Hours went by and by 7pm I started pushing. The worst pain ever aside from losing my baby. She was born still July 1st at 7:13pm. We had the chance to hold her and spend time with her for a day before she was sent to the funeral home. I was a complete wreck. I woke up crying out of my sleep often because I was so upset. Still in shock.
The doctor told us Gabriella was diagnosed with Turners Syndrome. In the ultrasound he had mentioned the baby had Fetal Hydrops and Cystic Hygroma which is associated with Turners Syndrome and occurs in female fetuses. She only had a 1% chance of survival. They took a biopsy of her skin and a piece of the umbilical cord to send off to the lab to confirm Turners. It took them about 6 weeks to get the results back. When we got them back, they weren’t the results we were hoping for. We were told the results were inconclusive. It wasn’t protocol for the doctor’s office to make sure the cells were fresh. The lab was supposed to pick up within 48 hours and they didn’t so when they ran the tests. Everything was deteriorated by then. So now we will never know for sure if the cause was Turners and it just kills me. I will ALWAYS wonder, even though the doctors are pretty sure it was Turners.
It’s only been a month since we lost our precious baby girl. We are not completely healed but a lot better after her funeral, knowing she’s at peace. We still go on about our usual activities and routines but every day for me is still a struggle. There are days I’m upset and I have my days when I’m laughing and feeling ok. Every day I think about her and picture her precious face here with us. Every day I think about having another child but so fearful it could happen again. As much as I want to forget what happened, I can’t. Gabriella will always be in our hearts. She’s in a better place watching over her big brother, daddy and I. She will forever be in our hearts. Our family loves her and will always cherish her.
To our baby girl: “An angel wrote in the book of life my baby’s date of birth, then whispered as she closed the book, Too Beautiful for Earth.”
You can email Shanecia at Cadenashanecia@gmail.com.