Sunday, June 28, 2015
Saturday, June 27, 2015
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Why are they so fabulous, you ask?? Well, check this out:
They made this beautiful flyer and then organized an event where people could perform random acts of kindness in Rosa's honor. :') Just beautiful!!
Here's how John & I participated.
- Shopper at the Farmer's Market. She saw me while I was buying the flowers and commented that they were really pretty. She asked who they were for, and I told her they were for my daughter. She said, that's nice, for a graduation? How old is your daughter? I told her that my daughter was in heaven. She gave me a hug, and I gave her a rose. She asked if I was sure, and I said, yes, Rosa would have wanted her to have it.
- The receptionist at the vet's office. We had to make a visit because Mocha got injured from falling out of our bed last night :( She's ok, but we had to get her checked out. I didn't explain why I was giving the receptionist a rose. But it was nice to see her smile :)
- My MIL
- John's Grandmother
- The worker at the gate. My MIL's community is gated, so I handed a rose to the worker at the gate. She asked if there was a special reason why I was giving her a rose. I knew I wouldn't be able to explain it without crying, so I just smiled and said, "It's just a random act of kindness." She smiled back and said thank you.
- My neighbor. She and I were bump buddies... she is due three weeks after Rosa was due. She is expecting a baby girl. Sigh. It is and will be difficult to see her growing belly, and eventually growing baby girl... a constant marker of where Rosa should have been. So why did I give her the last rose? Because I feel like that would have made Rosa happy. I want to buy all the roses in the world... and I want to give them out to the whole world to leave Rosa's mark all over the place. It's like she is here whenever there is a rose.
You can probably imagine that June 24th - a day that was supposed to be happy, our daughter's birthday - has now become a day that will forever be remembered along with a string of "what ifs" and "could have beens" and "should have beens." We knew going into it that Rosa was going to have to fight and probably fight hard in order to survive... but in my heart, I really thought that she had a chance. We were completely blindsided by her fetal demise... even though we really had no right to be blindsided... the doctors told us all along that it was unfortunately a possibility.
So today is here. It's the day that should have been everything that it is not. We should have been in Philadelphia right now by Rosa's bedside as she fought and kicked ass and survived. We should have been starting a new chapter in our happily ever after. We should have been... but we are not...
Instead, the day started out with a restless night's sleep. I tossed and turned through most of the night. My legs felt so antsy that I remember actually kicking and almost running in my bed. I felt like I was going to jump out of my skin! I needed to MOVE!!! Mocha was also restless...
It really is remarkable to me the bond that Mocha and Rosa shared... and still share. Call me crazy, but I truly believe that they are connected on a spiritual level. Mocha just knew when things weren't right with Rosa. She sensed that Rosa was there. She snuggled my bump on several occasions, and it seemed that whenever Rosa took a turn for the worse, Mocha would have sympathy pains (causing us to run to the vet).
The night before we went to the hospital the last time, Mocha was restless. John distinctly recalls Mocha laying on my bump in the middle of the night and swears that was the moment that Rosa probably passed... I wouldn't put it past her to have known. When we returned home from the hospital, Mocha jumped up on the couch, sniffed my belly, then jumped down and turned her back to me. Is it possible that she knew Rosa was gone?? I really think she did.
So going back to today. It was three in the morning when I heard a THUMP. Mocha fell out of our bed :( Poor pup! I picked her up, and we cuddled and fell back to sleep. When we woke up this morning, she was limping. We took her to the vet and thankfully she's going to be alright, but she sprained her leg. My poor baby!
I got to thinking... and it just seems like more than a coincidence that Mocha got injured on THIS day. On Rosa's day. Perhaps a sign?
|Taken just 10 minutes away from Kristen's house on June 23, 2015|
Between the storm, the literal road block on our route to the hospital, and Mocha's injury, I'm calling it a sign. Rosa is telling me that today was not our day. I will never know for certain if she would have survived had she had a chance to have her surgeries. But I know for sure that if she was born today like she should have been then she would have felt so much pain.
I so wish that things could have been different for our dear, sweet Rosa Kimberly. But I am thankful that she never felt pain. That I was able to endure all of the physical pain for her. That John & I, along with all our friends and family, will shoulder the emotional toll of losing her, and that she'll never have to know what pain feels like.
I am thankful that Rosa Kimberly only ever knew the loving embrace of my womb.
She only ever knew the sound of my heart. She never knew pain.
Sunday, June 21, 2015
Friday, June 19, 2015
We were taken from the triage room to a delivery room at the end of the hallway. Dr. Ntoso told me to eat a good meal. I would need my strength. But food turned my stomach, I was too upset to eat. I managed to eat chicken noodle soup and part of a soft pretzel.
John called his parents to tell them the awful news... I called mine. I could hardly say a sentence without sobbing into the phone. My mother cried back on the other end of the line as she made sense of what I was saying. She said they'd be there soon.
We spoke to Dr. Cole and went over the plan we made just two days before. The "palliative care plan" just incase the unthinkable happened. Did we want to take pictures? Did we want to make momentos? Hand prints, cut lochs of her hair... When we made the plan, I had hoped to never see it again. Then Dr. Moldenhauer called to tell me that we would plan to meet Rosa on June 24th. But now that wouldn't be happening...
My parents & sister arrived while we were talking to Dr. Cole. They said hello, and then we told them we'd get them when we were done. Honestly, I can't remember much of what was said. I felt like I was in a fog.
My brother came up and brought me a picture that my nephew made. Dr. Ntoso came in at 8:00pm to give me the first dose of misoprostol. I felt mild contractions within ten minutes. My family left around 9:00 or 9:30. I was sleeping by 10:00pm. The nurse and doctor came back in at midnight to put in the next dose. I couldn't fall back to sleep, so around 2:00am I asked for an Ambien. The plan was to get two more doses of the misoprostol at 4:00am and 8:00am, but I woke up at 6:00am and the nurse told me that they decided to wait because my contractions were too close together.
At 9:15am on Saturday, the doctor put in the next dose. Again, I felt mild contractions within 10 minutes. At this point, my cervix was 70% effaced and 2 cm dilated. My parents, sisters and brother all came back to be with us. I called Father Bruce to tell him what was happening, and he said he'd come around 1:30pm. My best friend, Kim, drove up from Virginia. My best friend, Kristen, came too.
The next dose of misoprostol was put in at 1:15pm. The contractions started to become much more painful, but I was able to manage them by breathing through them. I sat on the birthing ball, and held onto the side of the bed. I started feeling nauseous and as I mentioned this to the nurse I said that I should probably have a puke bucket nearby. Actually, I need one RIGHT NOW. The second it was handed to me, I got sick. I told the nurse that I wanted some anti-nausea medication. I could deal with most physical pain, but nausea and vomiting bring out the wimp in me. I got some zofran and as it was dissolving under my tongue, I felt the nausea creep back.
Kim took a deep breath and said, "So what mile are we on?" She was referencing a marathon because she knows how meaningful that is to me. I mumbled, "I don't know," while reaching for the puke bucket and vomited again. So much for the zofran! Kristen went to tell the nurse, and they gave me an intravenous version of the medication. The nausea went away almost instantly.
Father Bruce arrived around 2:00pm, and everyone cleared out of the room so John & I could talk to him privately. I told him that I might not be able to participate in the conversation too well because the contractions were getting intense. It wasn't long before I think I scared him! He said that he was present for his wife's three C-sections, but this was the first time that he was ever in the room with a laboring woman. I'm sure it wasn't pretty to witness! He & John eventually left the room, and the nurse stayed with me.
I went back and forth between the birthing ball and the rocking chair. At some point, I think my water broke. That was a surprise to me because there was no amniotic fluid detectable over the past six weeks. The contractions were so intensely painful. I started to wonder if I could do this without medications. I had no idea that I was in active labor at this point. I just knew that it was extremely painful.
The midwife checked on me at some point within all this. I was 80% effaced and 4 cm dilated. She apologized saying, "I know you probably hoped to be farther along." I hadn't really hoped for anything... I had no expectations for this experience. The only thing I had invested my hope in for the past three years was already gone.
Father Bruce came back in the room and said a blessing over me and the baby. The contractions made it very hard to focus, but I'm glad he was there to do that for us.
John & I stayed in the room alone from this point with the nurse & midwife coming in every now and then to check. John tried to comfort me, but nothing made me feel better. He asked me questions. I couldn't answer except in one word responses. "Water." He came running to my side with the water mug. I got up from the birthing ball and walked towards the bathroom. He came running over to move my IV pole. He was trying so hard to take care of me, and find out what I needed and wanted. I couldn't respond to him. I was so focused and concentrated on each contraction.
I felt like I had to push, but I wasn't able to verbalize it. I thought it might help to use the bathroom, and that's when John realized that he had to get the nurse. The midwife came in and said that she would check me. She said very calmly, "You are about ready to go." There was a lot of commotion around me as the nurse assembled the instrument table and the doctor came into the room. Jessi, the midwife, told me to try to breathe through the next two contractions to allow my cervix to get completely ready. I wanted to push very much, but tried to breathe it out.
Finally, Jessi said to push. She was so calm and serene. Pushing felt like a relief. The contractions almost seemed to disappear. Now the pain was entirely focused on the baby trying to come out. The time in between contractions and pushing seemed to stretch on for a long time. I winced from the pain, and Jessi assured me that it was ok, that it was just stretching. I sat with the pain and accepted it for what it was. It was uncomfortable and peaceful at the same time.
The room was so quiet. The nurse held one leg back and taught John how to hold the other. I looked to Jessi for direction. She quietly told me what to do. The look in her eyes was serene and sympathetic.
Rosa was breech, so her butt came out first. John decided not to look, but was asking what it looked like. Jessi explained that it looked like the baby was crowning, but instead of her head, her butt was poking out. I said, "She's butting." John misheard me and thought I said, "She's budding." That way was much better <3
After about four pushes, her butt, legs, and body were out. Just a few more pushes to get her head out. On the next push, I felt a woosh as she slipped out. It was the most incredible, indescribable feeling. John cut the cord, and the doctor and midwife explained to him that the placenta still had to come out. They said it could take 30-45 minutes more. But with the next contraction and push, it came out. All of the pain stopped. The nurse handed Rosa to me, and I just marveled at her beauty. She was beautiful.
It was such a peaceful moment. I couldn't believe how sweet her face was. Her skin was so soft. I wrapped her little hand around my thumb and stroked her cheeks with my finger. She was so perfect.
The world kept whizzing on, I'm sure, but for me, it's like the world stopped in that moment. I am still stuck there. I think I will be for the rest of my life. I gave birth to an angel. I can't wait until the day comes when I can join her in heaven. I love her so much.
Wednesday, June 17, 2015
Sunday, June 14, 2015
But the righteous, though they die early, will be at rest.
For old age is not honored for length of time, or measured by number of years;
but understanding is gray hair for anyone, and a blameless life is ripe old age. There were some who pleased God and were loved by him, and while living among sinners were taken up. They were caught up so that evil might not change their understanding or guile deceive their souls. For the fascination of wickedness obscures what is good, and roving desire perverts the innocent mind. Being perfected in a short time, they fulfilled long years; for their souls were pleasing to the Lord, therefore he took them quickly from the midst of wickedness.
Is it possible that Rosa's soul felt so much love that she was deemed ready by God for the next life? I think so. She was surrounded by so much love... I am so grateful that she felt that. I know she's up in heaven now, and I know one day we will be together again. And in the meantime, the love we feel here from our incredible support system lifts us up.
Thank you. Thank you thank you thank you ❤️
Thursday, June 11, 2015
|Rosa Kimberly was born sleeping on May 30, 2015. |
She weighed 3 lbs 6 oz, measured 15 inches long, and was a perfect little angel.