Mom to Ryan

Born into Heaven July 3, 2008

Roswell, Georgia

Everything was going well with my pregnancy, even though I was of advanced maternal age (i.e. old).  Four months into my pregnancy I was diagnosed with polyhydramnios (excess amniotic fluid).  I was sent to have a level 2 ultrasound, which I received weekly throughout my pregnancy.  I was lucky to spend up to an hour each week watching my baby grow inside me.  They looked him over head to toe and could only find that he was perfect in every way.  Usually with polyhydramnios the excess fluid can mean that the baby isn’t swallowing or peeing the amniotic fluid, which can be caused by a hole in the esophagus, kidney issues, etc.  They found none of that, so I never worried.  I thought everything was going to be fine and I was meant to have this little boy. What I didn’t know was that because of the excess fluid, cord accidents can happen.  Because of my size, I didn’t feel him move as often as a pregnancy without polyhydramnios.  I had my last level 2 ultrasound on Thursday, June 26th 2008 and as soon as I saw Ryan he had his palm up in the air facing me like he was saying “Hi”.  Again, everything was perfect.  I was 30 1/2 weeks and the only worry I had was making it full term.

My regular OB appointment was the following Tuesday.  The doctor put the Doppler on me to listen to the heart beat and she was having trouble finding it. She was calm and didn’t act overly concerned, but took me to the ultrasound room. I didn’t know it at the time, but they were only confirming what they already knew.  Somewhere between Sunday around 5 o’clock (the last movement I can recall) and Tuesday morning, I had lost my little Ryan.

I was scheduled for induction that very day.  I was numb.  I still couldn’t believe he was gone and I insisted on another ultrasound to confirm that this was true. I also needed my husband, David, to see it, too. I trusted that he would tell me the truth.  When it was confirmed that there was no heartbeat, David just looked at me and nodded.  I had to accept what was happening. They started inducing me on July 1st and my whole family came up to Chicago to support us. I was on the maternity floor where other women were giving birth.  Mine felt just like any other birth happening on the maternity floor, only Ryan was born into Heaven and I wouldn’t get to take him home. It was still a joyful, miraculous experience despite the outcome.

I gave birth to Ryan on July 3rd.  I got to hold him and spend time with him.  An organization called Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep (NILMDTS) came and took professional photos.  He had beautiful lips, just like I saw in the ultrasounds.  We had a priest to christen and bless him.  Everyone got to hold him and say their goodbyes. After moving to my new room, I gave Ryan back to the nurse who took him away from me forever.  I felt he had been handled enough and it was time to let him go.  Ryan will forever be in my heart and my thoughts.  I don’t want a day to go by that I don’t think about him.  To forget about him would hurt too much.

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  1. Oh Tracey, I’m so sorry little Ryan is not in your arms. The pain and grief may change over time, but you’ll never forget him. He’ll live in your heart forever. Wishing you peace and healing.

  2. Kirsten Barlow says:

    Your story about little Ryan was very touching and emotional for me. It reminded me so much of our loss of our daughter. We found out that she didn’t have a heartbeat any longer when I was 20 weeks preg. they think that she passed about sometime in the week before. I was also induced into labor on the labor and delivery floor of the hospital. I also got to give birth and hold my daughter and take pictures of her. It was a sad, but special time I will never forget. Just as you will never forget Ryan, I will never forget my daughter Lily.

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