Ashley
“Angel” lost April 18th, 2006
and “Sweet Pea” lost June 6th, 2008
Mesa, Arizona
After dating for 3 years, my husband popped the question to me. I was ecstatic.  The date was set about 16 months later, on Sept. 29th, 2006.  I immediately started planning everything, like you’re supposed to do. Father dearest was a bit tight with his checkbook though, and we didn’t start looking at anything wedding-related (at least with him and mother involved) until March 2006. I started to stress out around mid March, because all of the big-ticket venues and locations I had thought about, were booked solid. Of course… who tries to reserve a wedding venue a mere 6 months before the wedding?? I missed my period at the end of March, and just chalked it up to the stress all the wedding planning was putting me through.  I was VERY hormonal, and one friend told me I was acting like a pregnant b!tch.  Wow .. such a nice friend .. NOT!!  I mentioned it to my fiance, and he said I wasn’t, I didn’t look pregnant at all, and I was just a tad touchy because the wedding planning wasn’t going my way.  
 

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/10/509.html

Kendra
Mom to Michael Andrew
Born and Passed November 13th, 2008
Tucson, Arizona
Ours is a story about both devastating infertility and heartbreaking infant loss.  After a painful ovarian cyst ruptured in December of 2006, I was diagnosed with stage 4 endometriosis.  I was 28 years old and just couldn’t believe why this was happening to us.  Over the next year-and-a-half, I went through a laparotomy surgery, several rounds of fertility meds (Clomid), and an intra-uterine insemination (IUI).  Unfortunately, nothing worked to help increase our chances of getting pregnant.  And so in June of 2008 we turned to in vitro fertilization (IVF).  Luckily, our first round resulted in a positive pregnancy test!  We were so excited, it seemed like our dreams were coming true and we were going to finally become a family after 9 years of marriage. 

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/10/485.html

Amanda
Mom to Ailynn Chevy
Born Sleeping September 12th, 2009
Mesa, Arizona
Last months of my junior year in high school I found out I was pregnant, yes I am a teen mom. Life for me truly changed when I say on the pee stick “Pregnant”, at that moment my heart broke and I just cried. This was the one thing that I never wanted to happen to me and it happened. There was no way I was going to tell my parents, they would kill me.  So as time went by I did not tell my parents anything. I was also a single teen mom to make things worse on me, the ex wanted an abortion and I was not going to do that so he left, and I told him to stay away from me and my baby. 

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/10/419.html

Ashlee
Mommy to Aiden Kristopher
Born November 1st, 2008
Got his wings December 15th, 2008
Mesa, Arizona
My boyfriend and I were only 9 months into our relationship when I found out I was pregnant. I remember feeling happy and scared all at the same time, afraid of how he would take the news. Once I told him all scared feelings went out the window when a smile lit up his face. From that point on everything was going great, we found that we were going to have a little boy and we couldn’t have been any happier. 

At 38 weeks I went in for an ultrasound and they said that he was really small and I needed to go to a high risk Dr and have another ultrasound and have an NST. I went and had the ultrasound and they said everything was good and that he was just on the small side the first NST went good as well. Later that week I went in for the second NST and was sent over to the hospital to have a 4 hour NST, I was contracting and his heart rate was dropping each time. I called my boyfriend he was out of town for work, I told him what was going on and that he may need to come home. I got to the hospital and did the 4 hour test and was then told that I was going to be induced that I was far enough along that he felt comfortable with delivering him. Daddy made it home and to the hospital in time, labor took some time but we were blessed with a beautiful baby boy weighing 5lbs 6ozs, he was little but so perfect. That morning I was taught the true meaning of love at first sight, I was a mommy truly blessed, life couldn’t have been better!

The morning of December 15th my whole world came crashing down on me! I woke up and picked Aiden up, he was lifeless he was not breathing and I couldn’t feel a pulse. I got my phone and called 911, they arrived very fast and began to work on him. They transported him to the hospital, I was taken there by the police officers that were there, when we arrived they sat me down that when the Dr. told me that he was gone it was the hardest thing I would ever have to hear that my son at only 6 weeks old was gone. I would no long be able to hold him in my arms, kiss him goodnight, feed or change him, I couldn’t imagine my life without him in it. I don’t remember much after that it is all just a blur I was then taken to my neighbors house until my boyfriend who was out of state got home. They did tests and an autopsy on him, they found nothing wrong and ruled it as SIDS.

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/10/362.html

Carla
Mom to Jody Michael April 10, 2009 8:57 p.m. – 9:57 p.m.
Gilbert, Arizona
On February 4, 2009 our lives took a tragic turn after hearing the word “I wish I did not have to give you this news.” That day we learned our son would not survive, he was classified as “not viable” a condition which is 100% incompatible with life. We learned our sons condition was caused by a rare genetic disorder called Autosomal Recessive Polycystic Kidney Disease (ARPKD).
Eight weeks earlier we told that very same doctor given the opportunity we would not terminate no matter the situation. Never did we expect to hear our little guy had 0% chance of survival, 0% chance of making it to term or a 0% chance of surviving delivery. On February 4th we shut the world out, closed the curtains and our hearts to others as we tried to come to terms with the diagnosis. After a few weeks we were ready, we shared with others, went to all the specialists we could and after hearing more bad news we prepared to love our little guy in the time we had him.

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/09/339.html

Colleen
Four First Trimester Miscarriages
Scottsdale, AZ
I got my first positive pregnancy test in January of 2009, two days after my birthday. My husband and I were not trying to get pregnant, but not being overly diligent about preventing it either. I was 26 and he was 29, and we were planning to wait another year or two to start trying, but when the test came back positive, we were happy and relieved to not be going through the fertility problems a couple people we know were going through. I lost that pregnancy at 7 weeks, in February. I was willing to chalk it up to paying my statistical dues.
 
I got pregnant again in July, and that pregnancy was almost over before it began. I lost it at 5 weeks. I had the recurrent pregnancy loss testing done. The bloodwork came back normal. With, that, I was willing to chalk it up to bad luck twice in a row.

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/09/308.html

Andrea
Mom to Grace Olivia 
Born still on March 19, 2005
Gilbert, Arizona

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https://facesofloss.com/2010/09/275.html

Mary
Mom to Micah Quinn 
Left too soon on August 18th, 2010
Mesa, Arizona
We were blessed with five children and thought we were “done”. So my husband had “the surgery”. At first we thought we made the right choice, but that quickly changed. After much prayer God showed us that we had not followed His plan. But what could we do about it? It was already done and we didn’t have the money to undo it. Even if we did it might not work. I searched the internet and found that it would be six to ten thousand dollars to reverse our mistake. There was no way. We would just have to live with our mistake and without another child. But we couldn’t! I found a wonderful place to do the surgery that was only two hours from home. They had a 96% success rate. Perfect! It would cost $8,200. Not so perfect! I started to save like no other and God made everything fall right into place. It was amazing to watch Him work on our behalf. In only five short months we already had $5,000!


We got a call saying that it would only cost six thousand if we could come the following week. What great news, but we only had five thousand saved. They agreed to let us pay the other thousand the following month and it was all set. The surgery went great and we paid ahead of time. God is amazing!

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/09/260.html

Angela
Mom to Dash Alexander Grieger
April 22nd, 2010
Queen Creek, AZ
It’s hard to know where to start this story, knowing how painfully it ends. I want to preface with the disclaimer that I have no filter on my heart. When I write of my son, I do not sensor details for the sake of others. He was and forever is my baby, his life was as important as any other and the story of his life and birth should be told in honor of him.  I dont want there to be any obligation on my part to shield others from awkwardness, talking about Dash is the best therapy I have and I tell his story freely and without guilt. I am not afraid that I will forget, I am afraid that others will forget. Therefor I speak of him often, openly and lovingly.

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https://facesofloss.com/2010/09/212.html


Tracey
Mom to Rose Lynn
Stillborn on January 18th, 2009
Arizona
Rose was born on January 18th, 2009 at 2:30am. She was a perfect little baby, 6lbs 12 oz and 20 inches, with a stunningly beautiful face, a head full of dark hair, long fingers and toes and my husbands dimpled chin…She lived within my womb for 38 1/2 weeks, and then my baby, my sweet Rose, died.


We were so excited to find out that we were expecting Rose. We’d begun trying when our oldest daughter turned one, and just a few short months later, got the happy news of a positive pregnancy test. When we learned another girl was going to be joining the family, we were over the moon excited. Two precious girls almost exactly two years apart – everything we could have dreamed for was going to come true.

The pregnancy went smoothly, all our tests came back normal, baby was growing on target, Mama was healthy, baby was healthy and all seemed well. Later in the pregnancy, I had a few high BPs at the OB appointments, but it was always resolved within the visit after a few minutes of rest. Then at my 38 week appointment, my BP was high, urine proteins and worsening edema, so I was sent to L&D to check for hypertension. Because both of my pregnancies had been so uneventful, and ‘normal’ I was nervous about being sent to L&D, and started to cry, but the nurse practitioner assured me that everything was fine, it was just precautionary. So off I went to L&D for a NST, blood work and monitoring. For nearly two hours on the NST, our baby girl was healthy and strong, kicking and moving up a storm – the hospital sent me home with a clean bill of health & to check in with the OB in four days. 

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/08/187.html

Lynda
Mom to Johnny Giovanni 
Stillborn on March 14, 2009
Phoenix, AZ

I found out I was pregnant on September 8, 2008. I was so delighted. In the past I had three early losses so when my pregnancy hit the 13 week mark I naively let out a sigh of relief, thinking I was past the part of pregnancy where I could lose my child. My pregnancy was rather normal for me, I had really bad morning sickness all the way through but baby was growing normally. At 25 weeks, on January 28th, we found out we were having a little boy! I began hunting and searching for the perfect name for my son. I found the name Giovanni and instantly fell in love with it. I decided then and there I would name my son Giovanni, but I didn’t have any other name picked out.



My entire pregnancy I kept feeling like something was off. I just couldn’t quite explain it and since everything kept checking out fine, I tried to brush it off but just couldn’t.

Baby Johnny was born on a Saturday, but the Wednesday before I started to feel off, like maybe I was getting the flu. Then the contractions started, which I had throughout the entire pregnancy. So I just kinda blew it off thinking nothing was wrong. However over the Thursday and Friday it got worse, until Saturday I just couldn’t take it anymore and I HAD to go to the ER. I went thinking they were going to tell me I was fine and that there was nothing wrong and send me on my way. What a shock it was when they told me that my son was no more! I felt panicked as if I was stuck in a nightmare and couldnt wake up! Even thinking of that day now makes me sick to my stomach and my eyes well up with tears.

Children should NEVER die. But they do, and mine did. And everyday I kick myself for not going to the ER sooner, maybe they could have saved my son.

I opted out of getting an autopsy for my son, and just recently found out that my son had slight hydrops due to low fluid and that the majority of my placenta had failed. The doctors still have no answers as to why this happened.

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/08/152.html

Melissa
Mom to Rachel and Rebecca, 18-22 weeks, TTTS, September 1st, 1999
Brock Edward, 21 weeks, May 22nd, 2006
Erik Justin, 18 weeks, October 25, 2006
Baby Joe, 15 weeks, February 11, 2008
Noah Micheal, 15 weeks, June 25, 2010
Glendale, AZ

Rachel and Rebecca

While on birth control, a year after we married, I discovered I was pregnant. We were both very shocked, but also very excited. Things were great with us, and we were ready to expand our family. Sadly, the joy was short lived, when at just 5 weeks, I started bleeding heavily, and my HCG numbers were dropping.

I was devastated. Then a miracle happened. My numbers started to go back up, and very fast. I was told I was likely pregnant with twins, and one died, and the other should be just fine. I was filled with mixed emotions. Grieving for my baby that died, yet having hope for my baby still alive. At about 7 weeks, it was confirmed. I still had a live baby in my womb. We started making plans to buy a house, and move into a safer place.

When I was about 16 weeks, my doctor called to tell me the results of my AFP test showed the baby had a very high chance of having spina bifida. She set up an ultrasound for the next day with a high risk clinic. I was very nervous as I didn’t know what to expect, but I knew we could handle any special needs baby. We were very shocked to find out that we were having twins! Identical girls. The doctor and ultrasound tech kept whispering about placenta and membranes, but I didn’t understand any of it. They told me I should hear from my doctor the next day or so. I never did. The only thing they told me is they couldn’t tell how far along I was, because the babies were measuring very different sizes. And they mentioned fluid issues, but I was still processing twins.

A couple weeks had passed and I never heard from my doc. I kept on working in the vet office and just tried to lighten my work a little. Then on Aug 31, 1999, I went to work feeling off. I didn’t know what it was so I just kept on working. I started having bad cramps, and I called my doc and she said it was normal with twins. So I ignored it and went to lunch. While walking through the grocery store, buying my lunch, my water broke. I started crying immediately. I drove across the street to my work where I was driven to the hospital by a co-worker. Someone else called my husband.

When I got there, we discovered that one of the babies cords had slipped through my cervix and was pinched. That baby had died. I was so scared. I wanted to save the other baby, but they kept telling me that there was no chance of the baby surviving, and they wouldn’t even try. Because these babies were monoamniotic and monochorionic, there was no chance of me delivering one baby and then trying to stop labor. I was devastated. I didn’t want to be induced. But labor was not happening. I felt scared, and like no one was talking to me, telling me what to expect. After several hours, I started to run a fever and they were worried I would have an infection in my uterus. They convinced me to let them begin induction. Several painful hours later, my girls entered this world. Both silently. Rachel was born at 1252am and Rebecca was born at 1254 am. Both beautiful. Rachel was much smaller that Rebecca. It was obvious there was a problem in the placenta they shared. It wasn’t until 8 months later I heard the term twin to twin transfusion syndrome. It was confirmed that TTTS took the lives of my girls, and a big part of my heart.

Brock Edward

[Read more…]

https://facesofloss.com/2010/08/115.html

Brandy
Miscarriage October 8th, 2009
Cole Joseph June 11th, 2010-June 20th, 2010
Phoenix, AZ

I was never the type of woman that yearned to have children. I always thought that if I went through life not having a child that would be fine. I completely changed my mind when I met Chris. I don’t want to speak for him, but for me it was love at first sight. I knew after just a few dates that he was the man I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. After dating for about a year and half, Chris proposed. About a year after that, we got married and bought a house together. I knew that I wanted to experience everything that life had to offer with this amazing man… especially having a child with him.

My husband and I are both very much planners. We decided that I would stop taking birth control in November of 2008 (I had been on the pill for 17 years), we would work really hard to pay off a few bills, and by June of 2009 we would start trying to get pregnant. Some of my friends told me that if I wanted to get pregnant quickly to try fertility monitoring sticks. I used them in June and July with no success. I was very disappointed because that method seemed to work so well for my friends. I think the whole process stressed me out by trying to decipher if the pink lines were the same to determine if I was ovulating or not. I decided to stop using the fertility monitoring sticks and to just stop thinking about getting pregnant. On October 3, 2009 (2 days after my 33rd birthday) I took a pregnancy test and it came up positive. I was crying tears of joy to the point that I couldn’t even speak. Chris had to go into work that day. As soon as he got to work, he called me and said that his head just wasn’t into work that day and he was leaving to come home to spend the day with me to celebrate our wonderful news. Unfortunately, our happiness didn’t last long. The very next day I started to bleed… a lot. I had a very bad feeling about it. I went to my OB the next day and she told me that I had miscarried. I was devastated, but at the same time I was so happy and felt so grateful to know that at least I could get pregnant.

My OB told me I had to wait to have one normal period before trying to get pregnant again. It didn’t take Chris and I very long this time either. We think that I got pregnant again on New Year’s Eve. Chris made chicken parmesan for me that night and we joke that eating his chicken parm will get you pregnant! We both were very apprehensive this time after finding out we were pregnant because of the previous miscarriage. I had my first ultrasound and was able to see my baby and hear the heartbeat at 3 weeks. During my last pregnancy, I didn’t experience any of that so already I was feeling more confident.

Aside from having minor nausea and feeling tired, I can honestly say that my pregnancy was flawless. All of my lab work came back normal, my ultrasounds and genetic testing results came back looking great. At our 18 week ultrasound, we found out we were having a boy. While pregnant, I really felt like it would be a girl but my husband was the one who knew all along. We already had a name picked out… Cole Joseph. We picked Cole just because we both really love that name and Joseph is my grandfather’s first name. My grandpa was so honored by this that he wrote us a poem. I had planned to have it framed so I could hang it in Cole’s nursery. That very next weekend, Chris and I did our baby registry. It took us about 2 ½ hours to complete and afterwards, we were both starved and decided to get some lunch. We pulled out of the parking lot and stopped behind a car at the next stoplight. About 5 seconds later we were rear ended by an SUV going about 35 mph which pushed us into the car in front of us. I didn’t have any cramping or bleeding at the time, but I was so scared that something happened to the baby. Since it was a Sunday, I went to a quick care to get checked, but they told me they couldn’t help me because they didn’t have a fetal monitor. I called my OB after that and talked to the doctor on call. I was told that if I wasn’t bleeding or cramping that they would see me the following day in the office. I went into their office on Monday to have lab work and to be placed on the fetal monitor. There were no signs that I was having a contraction and all of my labs came back normal. I was so relieved to hear that my baby was ok.

I had felt so unprepared to bring a baby home so on Memorial Day weekend, Chris and I painted Cole’s nursery and put all of his furniture together. I thought it was the most beautiful room ever. I would often go into the room and just sit in the rocking chair dreaming of the day that I would be nursing baby Cole in the very seat I was in.

June 11, 2010
I woke up that morning feeling like it was going to be just an ordinary Friday. I would work all day and then we would go to dinner with friends we had made plans with. I started to get ready for work. When I went to the restroom, I noticed a mucous discharge. I had always heard about a “mucous plug”, but I thought that was something that happened right before women had their babies. I didn’t understand why I had something like this, but I was only 24 weeks and 2 days pregnant. I called my doctor’s office and the doctor on call told me to go to the hospital to get looked at. My husband and I got in the car and went to the hospital thinking that we would be there for a few hours and then we would be on our way home. I so wish that is how our story went.

It was so early in my pregnancy that we hadn’t taken the tour of the hospital like most couples get to. We finally found L&D and I was immediately put into a triage room. One of the nurses examined me and said that she wasn’t quite sure what she was feeling, so she was going to send in another nurse. This went on and on and on. Over the next hour, I had about 8 people examine me to give their opinions. Apparently I was dilated to 5 cm and didn’t even know it. I really didn’t even start feeling contractions until I was at the hospital. I was then moved to a regular room and as soon as the door shut, the nurse proceeded to tell me that this room was going to be my home until I had my baby. I immediately burst into tears. As I said earlier, I am a planner. I had planned to use every minute of my maternity leave to care for baby Cole- not to be on bed rest in a hospital room. I was also sad thinking about going weeks without seeing my dogs, but my nurse said that my dogs could actually come and sleep with me which made me feel a little better. An IV was then started, a Foley catheter inserted, and Magnesium Sulfate was given to attempt to stop my contractions. My doctor gave me a dose of steroids to help the babies lungs develop. My bed was also positioned with my feet higher than my head in an attempt to push baby Cole back up. A Neonatologist came in to talk to me and my husband about the risks of delivering a 24 week old baby. I pretty much tuned out a lot of this conversation to be honest. I really felt like all of the risks he told us about would never happen to our baby. I really thought he would be fine. In fact, just 2 days earlier I had read in my Pregnancy Journal that my baby was finally viable. The doctor explained that at 25 weeks they are required to resuscitate a baby, but any earlier than that is when it becomes the parent’s decision. Without any hesitation, Chris and I both chose to resuscitate Cole. My OB had talked about keeping me pregnant as long as possible and she was hoping for a few weeks. The Neonatologist said that from what he has seen in the past, he thought I would deliver in the next 24 hours. My husband went down to the hospital cafeteria to grab something to eat while his mom sat with me. About 5 minutes after he left, I had a contraction and felt fluid come out of me. I asked my mother in law to call a nurse. The nurse and my OB came in and I heard the nurse say, “there’s a lot of blood”. They did another ultrasound, but this time it showed Cole was breech. They immediately started prepping me for surgery. Apparently my placenta had ruptured. My nurses, doctor, and Chris were running with me in my stretcher towards the OR- it was just like in the movies. Chris had to change into scrubs in the stairwell. When I was first wheeled into the OR, I saw about 30 people in the room frantically getting ready for the surgery. I work in surgery, so this typically wouldn’t phase me at all, but it is a lot different being on the other side. It took the anesthesiologist less than one minute to do my spinal and minutes later I was having surgery. Cole Joseph came into the world at 12:04pm on June 11, 2010 weighing 1 pound 9 oz. and he was 12 ½ inches long. My husband was able to see our baby when my OB pulled him out, but all I ever saw was the top of his tiny head as the doctors worked to keep him alive.

I was then taken to my room where I would stay until I was discharged from the hospital 4 days later. That was such a depressing room. Normal pregnant women give birth to their full term babies in these rooms and when the babies are delivered they are put into the hospital bassinets that are in the rooms. I remember before I went into surgery that the bassinet was in my room and when I came back from the OR, the bassinet was gone. I guess they figured I wouldn’t need it.

We had many visitors that day- my mother and father in law, my manager and another co-worker, and many of our friends stopped by. Chris took some of the visitors to see Cole in the NICU. I just remember their expressions when coming back to my room. They all asked if I had seen Cole yet, and when I said no I could see the worry on their faces. I couldn’t go to the NICU to see Cole that first day because my legs were still numb from the spinal and when the numbness wore off, I was vomiting from the Morphine they gave me.

June 12, 2010
I woke up early with so much excitement about seeing my son for the first time. When Chris wheeled me over to the side of Cole’s isolette, I just sobbed. He was truly the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. He had my nose and eyes, and he had his Daddy’s mouth and feet. I was able to touch his hand and my Cole just wrapped his hand around my finger. It was the best feeling in the world.

June 13, 2010
Today was Cole’s second day on Earth and the Neonatologist gave us some very devastating news. We were told that Cole had a grade 3 brain bleed, but that it was just on one side.

June 16, 2010
Cole would be having his first surgery today to fix a duct on the outside of his heart that didn’t close called a PDA (Patent Ductus Arteriosus). He did very well during the surgery and the doctors assured us that this is very routine. They felt this surgery would help immensely with Cole’s blood pressure issues.

June 17, 2010
We learned that his brain bleed had progressed to a grade 4, but that it was still unilateral. They also told us that he was developing Hydrocephalus. Because of the bleed in the right ventricle in his brain, the cerebral spinal fluid was not draining like it should and this caused “water on the brain”. The doctor said that they could implant a reservoir in his scalp that would help drain the CSF.

June 18, 2010
Cole had his second surgery on his 7th day of life. He did really well during this surgery too- his dad and I were both so proud of our little guy.

June 19, 2010
Day 8 went very well. They were able to wean him from 1 of the 2 blood pressure medications he was on. A head ultrasound was also done and showed that some of the clot in the right ventricle had cleared and the left ventricle was smaller due to the reservoir.

June 20, 2010
Today was my husband’s first official Father’s Day. The NICU staff had taken prints of Cole’s feet for me. I got a card for Chris from his sweet son and put the prints in the card.

When I arrived at the NICU, I saw that he was back on both blood pressure medications again. The nurse also said that he wasn’t peeing as much as he should be. I was able to read Cole his first book today called “The Very Quiet Cricket”. I cried the whole time because I just knew that this would be the first and last book that I ever read to him.

The Neonatologist scheduled a meeting with my husband and I that day at 2pm. He told us that Cole’s kidneys were not working and his blood pressure was still too low. They said with his grade 4 brain bleed, hydrocephalus which required a reservoir, blood pressure issues, and kidney failure that his prognosis looked very grim. They had told us before, but emphasized this time that with just a level 4 brain bleed he had a 95% chance of having some form of CP. That percentage increases and the severity of CP increases with hydrocephaly. Then the percentage increases again when you have to place a reservoir. Then it increases again with his blood pressure problems, and again with his kidney failure. This was the most devastating news for Chris and me.

During Cole’s life, my husband and I both prayed like we have never prayed before. We both fell in love with little Cole the second we laid eyes on him and just couldn’t imagine our lives without him. We also couldn’t imagine having our son possibly in a wheelchair for the rest of his life, possibly not being able to feed himself, go to the restroom, or live independently knowing that we made that choice for him. We were facing the most difficult decision of our lives. We met with the Chaplain in the hospital because we both had so many questions. Our biggest question was if God would be mad at us if we chose to discontinue support. The Chaplain explained it to us this way: If it was completely up to God to save Cole and we took him off the ventilator, or even if we had never put him on the ventilator, would Cole live? The answer is no. With medicine today, doctors can keep babies alive through pretty much anything if you want them to. It is up to the parents to make that decision to decide what they can handle. Cole taught Chris and I so much in his 9 days of life. He taught us that we both need to have a closer relationship to God, we need to appreciate every day that we have on this Earth, to never take people for granted… and so much more. I could go on and on. Another thing that I either learned from him, or maybe I just changed my mind on the subject going through what I had with Cole is that I am no longer afraid to die. I had always been so terrified at the thought of dying, but as soon as I saw my beautiful baby on June 11, 2010 I would have given my life in a second to save him. The thought of being with him in Heaven also calms my fears. Don’t get me wrong- I don’t want to die right now, but I will be ready to see my baby when the time comes. Cole is truly in a more peaceful place than any of us are today.

The staff in the NICU were all so amazing. They wrapped Cole in a beautiful blue and white blanket and let us hold him until we were ready to end his suffering. As my wonderful husband wrote on our blog:

Cole was born on June 11, 2010 at 12:04pm. We are very sorry to say that our baby Cole returned to Heaven on June 20, 2010 at 10:30pm. He was not alone. Cole was warm and comfortable in his mother’s arms when he passed, with his dad at their side. He was here physically for only 9 days, but he will live in our hearts forever. Although, these last 9 days have been tough we are forever blessed to have known Cole. Our beautiful, brave, miracle of a son will always be our hero. Heaven is truly a better place now with him there.

Today
We are still battling many emotions. One of the things that I am angry about is that most women have live babies in their cribs, while my son’s urn is sitting in my crib. While sitting here writing Cole’s story, I don’t have a crying baby to tend to… part of my baby’s remains are in a charm hanging from the necklace that I am wearing. If I want to kiss my baby goodnight, I have to go and kiss a metal urn.

It also hurts immensely to see pregnant women knowing that I am supposed to be pregnant right now. It also hurts to see a child being mistreated or ignored- I know I would have never treated my Cole that way. Two weeks after we lost Cole, a couple that we are friends with invited us to a pool party. Not really feeling up to going to a pool party just yet, my husband had to work that day so I used that as an excuse not to go. They called us the next day and asked that Chris put me on speakerphone because they had news for us. We looked at each other in complete horror because we both knew what they were about to say… they were pregnant. We are very happy that our friends are expecting- they are going to be wonderful parents. I just think it was a little too soon to announce this to us. I am so thankful that we didn’t go to their pool party where they announced their news to everyone because I can just imagine falling apart in front of everyone. I really think that an email would have been the way to go in this situation to tell us their news. These are just some of the feelings that we have had lately. We are not completely negative people, but we are human and we are angry sometimes about what happened.

I am not mad at God for what has happened. I do not feel like he did this to me. Some people would say that it was in His plan, but I just think it was something that happened. My doctor said that maybe it was that car accident I had 5 weeks prior, maybe I was dehydrated, maybe I have an Incompetent Cervix, or maybe even a blood clotting disorder. So I don’t think that God planned this, but I think that once baby Cole was born into this world, he knew that Cole was too young and too sick to survive so God took Cole back as an angel in Heaven. God did make sure that while Cole was on Earth, he did have a purpose and that was to teach us all what we have learned. I am forever grateful that I was chosen to be Cole’s mom and am so proud to call him my son.
You can contact Brandy at brandyleethorp@hotmail.com

https://facesofloss.com/2010/07/43.html

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