Mom to Baby and Sprout

March 9, 2017 and August 31, 2017


I am 1 in 4 women…I am her….twice

This is my story, in an effort to begin the healing process.

When I was 17 years old, I fell in love and have never stopped. We bought our first home and were married by the time I turned 24 years old. Not even two years later in 2009, we had our first beautiful daughter, and our lives were changed forever for the better.  We were blessed again in 2012 with our second daughter and life honestly felt like a dream.  Like any family, we’ve had our share of ups and downs, personal angst and heartache, but we’ve always shared it together and risen above.

This past year has been one of the hardest years of my life. I’ve always wanted a large family, being from a family of four, and finally Matt and I said you know what? We can do this, let’s try for #3. I found out I was pregnant the day after his birthday, on Saturday, March 4th.  From the very beginning I felt like it wasn’t real and I felt apprehensive. As the next few days inched forward, I felt more confident and allowed myself to be excited. Then I woke up Thursday, March 9th and my entire life changed.  

Something was wrong, my entire body went into shock and even though it was cold outside the only thing to make my body stop losing control was sitting outside half wet from the shower and breathe. When we went to the doctor later that morning, I already knew what she was going to say, but nothing could prepare me for when the words were actually said.  The amount of grief and pain I felt is nothing I can put into words.  For someone who has always been so sure of the life she was leading, I suddenly felt like I was falling from the sky grasping for a lifeline that I could never quite get a hold of. The next few months were definitely a downward spiral.  

We hadn’t told many people, and so I did my best to keep it altogether and hold it in. I gained 10 pounds; I loved my family more fiercely and ignored my inner demon, keep smiling right? I was miserable, and then I decided enough was enough. What the hell was I doing? I could only last this way so long. I made an appointment with my obgyn because not only had they been trying to get me back in there for the last few months but I knew I had postpartum depression and I needed help.

The weekend before I had scheduled my appointment, I felt a lump on my left breast that I had never felt before. Chalking it up to nothing, I let myself relax because I was going to the doctor in a few days anyways. At my appointment, it was discovered that my lump was really not a reasonable size and I needed to find out what it was. To figure out what tests I needed, since it was around my time of the month, I had to take a pregnancy test just to make sure. It is now the end of July and I closed my eyes, took the test and took a deep breath. I can’t have breast cancer and be pregnant, I couldn’t be pregnant, I couldn’t have breast cancer….I was pregnant.

I don’t really remember the end of July. I lived every day so scared, I’m pregnant but I can’t be excited/scared. I went for an ultrasound, they had no idea what the lump was. I left for vacation 2 days later after being told by multiple health care professionals to go. When I came back I had another ultrasound done to see if I needed to also have a biopsy.  I had a breast surgeon who was going to review my case depending on what the results were. I’m 34 years old, what the hell is happening? I had the biopsy the same day as my 2nd ultrasound due to it still looking like nothing they’ve seen before. It wasn’t the most fun of my life, but God bless those women in the room with me during the biopsy. They helped me through the fear.

A few days later, I received the best phonecall of my life. The lump was benign! I needed to come back in 6 months to make sure it hadn’t grown. I always had the option to remove the lump after the baby was born if it had not gone away.

August was a great month. We celebrated, I didn’t have cancer, and we were having a baby!!! We had let the girls know; they were so excited. Everything was finally going to be ok. This was certainly the rainbow after the storm for us.  I let myself download a baby app, every Sunday the girls would ask what size fruit their new sibling was and our hearts grew and grew. We nicknamed the baby Sprout. At 7 weeks, right on the dot, my nausea started. Even though it was miserable, and I could barely eat, I thought to myself what a great sign this was. I had been sick with both girls and it just further confirmed that this was happening. Matt and I took baby bump pictures and would try to figure out how the heck we were going to fit all 3 kiddos in the house, and all the new baby things we were going to need. I went shopping for some new clothes, my stomach was already growing like a watermelon and a lot of my shirts didn’t quite fit right the same way anymore. We started telling more and more people. 

August 31st changed all of that for my family and I.  Again, a Thursday, I woke up and noticed the slightest change.  Honestly, most people would not have even noticed the difference, I’ve always been a little nutty when it comes to this stuff and ever since March, I was hyper-sensitive. I told myself to chill out and went to work. Everything was totally fine at work. When I was there, I let Matt know I was going to call the doctor anyways even though I felt like everything was fine. I mean I had barely held down my mint Lifesaver that morning; life was normal. I made an appointment for right when I got out of work and went straight there after. I texted my parents and sisters for good juju because I wanted them to know I was going but honestly still felt like everything was fine.

Sitting with the nurse, everything checked out fine. Blood pressure, check, urine, check. I lost 4 lbs…no shock there; I’d barely been able to eat. I was doing great and telling myself how silly I was for worrying. Once my doctor came into the room we thought maybe we could do the ultra sound over my belly this time since I was almost 10 weeks.  It worked for a quick second, but it wasn’t clear enough so once everything was situated, Sprout came onto the screen. I sighed a breath of relief and I don’t know if I said to myself or out loud, “Thank you God, you’re still there.”  But then I noticed, Sprout just lying there, and my heart constricted. Come on Sprout, just move, the doctor kept moving the wand around. Nothing….I started screaming in my head, twisting my grandmother’s ring on my right hand over and over, praying….please God, please God. The last time, only a week ago, I had an ultrasound and the doctor could barely measure Sprout [because] it was acrobats that day.  The doctor kept measuring this way, and that way….nothing…The heartbeat was next…….nothing….Have you ever felt the world disappear? Literally you’re sitting there and everything disappears. The doctor looked at me and said something, wait what? Oh my God, this can’t be real. Five days later, and I still don’t believe it’s real.  I don’t remember him leaving the room, but then again I do, I had to have a D and C the next day, my baby died….my baby died….

I called Matt. I could hardly understand myself; he was outside with our girls. He couldn’t believe it either. Our baby was dead, how, why, what?

I haven’t stopped crying, I can’t stop crying, and I don’t want to stop. The D and C was the worst day of my life. Our deacon came over that morning to bless us and to bless our baby.  I believe Sprout is with God, and faith is the only thing getting me through life right now. The priest at the hospital held my hand, told me Sprout is at peace. I do believe all that but it hurts like a pain I can’t describe, but I do believe that. Rolling into the OR, I broke down, every single nurse, and doctor, my doctor, hugged me, told me I was going to be ok, and held my hand. They prayed for Sprout the moment they took Sprout from me like they told me they would. They hugged me when I woke up, crying again. I have never felt so much love and so much angst all in the same day.

I’m broken, and I’m trying.  I don’t know where to go from here, or how to be normal again. I have the best support system anyone could ask for between family and friends, but the ever increasing urge to scream comes in uncontrollable waves. It’s been 5 days since the worst day of my life, and while I want to leave you with something profound, all I can ask is for you to pray for me, pray for our 2 babies: Baby and Sprout, and pray for our family.  I hope I can heal one day, and I hope that if nothing else, sharing this part of myself, can help you, or help you help a loved one simply by talking. I refuse to suffer in silence, our babies, all angel babies, should be remembered.
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  1. I am very sorry for your looses. Xoxo Ameli

  2. Dear Katie,

    I just read your story. I am so very sorry for the loss of your two babies. I have gone through a similar experience with losing two babies, back to back, and have two children here (prior to our baby losses). I was also 34 years old with our last loss. It still does not seem real to me. It does, but it doesn’t. Our last loss, baby Michael, was in 2014. I am now four years out. That year was a very difficult one for me. So I relate with your last paragraph above. I started a non-profit, and have a blog on there as well if you are interested in reading about our journey, My thoughts and prayers are with you. And I am here if you need someone to talk with.

    God bless you,
    Anne M.

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