04-17-2014 07:28 AM - edited 04-17-2014 07:36 AM
When I was 25 1/2 weeks pregnant, I suddenly went into labour which couldn't be stopped. This was 42 years ago and in those days, doctors made no attempt to try to save premature babies. He was whisked away and only lived 4 short hours. I wanted desperately to see him but was not allowed to. I contacted a friend who was also a minister and asked him to baptise my son before he died, which he did. He told me my baby was perfectly formed. He weighted 1lb 10oz and was 16" long. Today, he would most likely have survived. The same friend officiated at his tragically sad funeral. I didn't see him, I didn't hold him and I'm so glad that today things are very different. I was told that I had an "incompetent cervix" and due to the weight of the baby, my cervix opened prematurely. I have never forgotted him and he still lives in my heart today. Several years after his birth, I developed cysts on both ovaries and had an emergency right side ovrectomy. At the age of 25 years old, I was told my left ovary and tube was badly scarred and deformed and I would never fall pregnant again, so I stopped taking the pill. In 1984, it occurred to me that I had not had a period for over 2 months, so I went to the doctor for a pregnancy test, knowing that if I was pregnant, it would probably be lodged in the tube. It was confirmed that I was pregnant and I was sent to a specialist that same day, and then to a hospital for a scan. I remember the girl doing the scan, pointing to the screen and saying - there it is. Where is it, I asked. There - she said pointing again. Is it in the tube or the uterus, I almost screamed. Oh it's nicely lodged in the wall of the uterus, she replied. I died a million deaths at that moment. Back to the specialist's office with the results (he was still waiting for my return at 7pm that same day). Due to my age, previous incompetent cervix problems, etc, he offered me a legal abortion. I declined. So then the planning started. I had to give up work at 12 week and at 14 weeks was admitted to hospital to have a tight band sewn through and around my cervix. There was a 40% chance the suturing could cause a spontaneous abortion. Luckily, despite severe cramping following this procedure, things settled down and I went home for 4 weeks. I then spent 18 weeks in a private hospital flat on my back. At 39 weeks, the sutures were removed and my cervix started to dilate. But several hours later, my cervix closed again, and despite lots of walking around, it refused to dilate again. (So much for the incompetent cervix theory of my first baby). I was induced but nothing progressed so in the early hours of the morning I had an emergency caesarian. My beautiful, healthy, 8lb 10oz daughter was born. She is now 28 and the joy of my life, but my tiny son still lives on in my heart, and always will.
04-17-2014 08:24 AM
I feel very fortunate that I gave birth in the time that I did and the place that I did. Viability is still such a gamble depending on the facility you go to. The hospital where I delivered makes attempt at 22 weeks and a hospital an hour away only attempts at 24 weeks gestation.
I'm sorry for your loss - I'm sure there isn't a day that goes by that doesn't remind you of your little one especially with your rainbow baby. It is great that your little girl thrived and could bring happiness back into your heart.
04-17-2014 10:50 AM
You went through a lot and I can only imagine how heartbreaking it was. I'm so happy there is a happy ending and you have a beautiful daughter now
04-24-2014 08:16 AM