Mother to Johnny Pickup Jr.

Sadly lost November 29, 2012

Parksville, British Columbia, Canada

Everything is still very new to me [at time of writing]. I even find myself thinking I’m still pregnant at times. This is the hardest thing I have ever gone through. I lost my baby boy 4 days ago, and it’s been a roller coaster since.

I found out he had anencephaly, a neural tube defect, causing him not to form a skull. I found this out when I was 5 months pregnant, shortly after my second ultrasound. I then had to come to accept the fact that I needed to end my pregnancy. There is a 0% chance of survival for babies with anencephaly.

My heart just sunk and I felt like I had no emotions whatsoever. Like every ounce of happiness inside of me had left. I first assumed it was my fault or something that I had done. It turns out it happened within the first 3 weeks of my pregnancy. A big thing that could have prevented this was taking higher doses of folic acid because my body lacked it. Not many women really think of that, especially when it was not a planned pregnancy. The following day, I had to travel to Victoria to get grief counseling, which didn’t really help, but everyone was very nice. They did another ultrasound just to be certain. I was crying the whole time. This is also when we found out that it would have been a little boy. The moment my fiance, mom and I found out the gender, we broke down. I would never want to remember my baby as an “it” so I just had to know. That was the last time I saw my baby’s heartbeat.

They told me I had 2 options: I could either induce labour and wait 2 days then give birth consciously or I could travel to Vancouver for surgery, or what they call a D&E. I chose to have surgery because the thought of holding my baby boy was way too excruciating to even think about. Although, part of me really regrets it. I then had to wait a week before the surgery could be done. This was a very hard week for me, this was also the first day that I felt him move. I was still excited to feel him move, but that was shortly followed by sadness.

I was very nervous to go to Vancouver for my surgery. We left on a Sunday to return home the coming Friday. On Sunday, we actually went to the Paul McCartney concert. I was going to sell my tickets and not go, but I almost thought of it as a celebration. Considering I was still pregnant, I thought of it as my last moments with my baby boy, and a day that I would always remember.

The remainder of the week wasn’t very pleasant. It was 3 days of pain, emotional and physical. They finally did the surgery on November 29th. I was very confused when I woke up and I thought it hadn’t even been done yet. Earlier on, they asked me if I wanted the baby’s footprints and I said “yes” of course. Moments after I had woken up, they gave me the card containing his little footprints and a poem:

Little Footsteps,
Blow very softly
you tiptoed into my world.
Almost silently.
Only for a moment you stayed.
But what an imprint
your footsteps have left
upon my heart.

This is something I now cherish very much. I will also be getting his ashes soon. I didn’t even know you could, but I’m very glad I do.

It is now very unbelievable that I am no longer pregnant. I find myself now scared to be alone, only because I know that when I’m alone, I can’t think of anything but the loss of my child. I cry a lot. I find myself listening to depressing songs, but I guess this is what they call grief. 

I have been with my fiance for almost six years. We were not trying to have a baby, but we were both so excited. I hadn’t been on birth control at all during our entire relationship. Deep down I wanted a baby, very much. I prayed I would become pregnant a month before it happened. When I first found out, I was overjoyed, then moments later I cried. LOL. I fell in love with the idea and the experience of being pregnant. My life then revolved around my baby and my pregnancy. I did everything I could to ensure a healthy baby. Basically everything I did was for him. I now miss him more than anything. I wish I could hold him and talk to him. I would tell him how much I loved him and how I would have been there for him every moment of his life. 

All I can do now is take it day by day. Some days are harder than others. It’s very hard to keep everything together in public places. Seeing other babies makes my heart sink. It seems now that this has happened, babies are everywhere. I know it’s always going to be hard, but I need to try to move on as best as I can. We are going to try again when I’m ready. It’s the one thing that helps me move on, the thought of being more prepared for my next pregnancy and taking more precautions. 

I will never forget my baby boy. He was always be in my heart. My heart goes out to any other mother experiencing the pain that I am feeling. Just keep your head up, and look toward the future.  Our children love us, and we will see them again one day. 

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