We are so thankful for all of the prayers and happy thoughts that have been coming our way even when we gave most of you no explanation. The love we have felt the last two weeks have made this all so much easier.
Matt and I now have a sweet angel baby in Heaven and it has been by far the hardest thing I've ever been through. I don't want this baby to be a secret, but instead to be celebrated and loved. I was a day away from 9 weeks when our doctor found that our sweet beautiful baby (who we got to see perfectly on the screen with little arms, legs and squishy little tummy) had just days or maybe even hours before (according to measurements) lost his or her heartbeat.
We have full faith that our sweet baby is now our angel and is forever at home with God. This faith is what is bringing us through this incredibly difficult time.
Lilly Belle knows her "Baby Sisser" is with Jesus and is an angel who will forever watch over her. She asks about "her" often and randomly throughout the day will say, "my baby sisser is an angel, mommy, right?". We told her what was going on a couple weeks ago after our first appointment.
We went into our appointment with high hopes and feeling so excited - as most do for their first ultrasound. When our doctor couldn't find our baby on the screen even though it was our 7 1/2 week appointment, it was terrifying and confusing, as she thought our baby was just 4 weeks as she could barely see it. She told us there was a "questionable" heartbeat. We left that appointment with so much confusion. I had bloodwork done to make sure my HCG and progesterone levels were okay and they were extremely high and were going up. Which made her thinking I was only 4 weeks even more confusing. My levels were appropriate for an 8 week baby as our dates would have thought.
We had another week and a half of thinking our baby was gone and grieving our loss. We told Lilly Belle that 'mommy has a baby in her tummy who is sick and that is why mommy cries all the time' - she was acting out often as she was so confused and totally feeling all of my stress. I felt so terrible and didn't want her to be confused or so worried about me. She is extremely empathetic and so good at reading people's feelings. Once we told her what was going on, she was incredibly sweet. There was one day when I was crying and just sitting on the couch just making it through the day with movie after movie on for her (totally not normal for us). She came up to me with her children's medicine she found in her drawer, looked at my tummy and said, "Baby Sisser, stop being sick, my mommy is too sad." She then handed me the medicine and asked if we could give it to "Baby Sisser." I only cried more for how sweet she was.
We had another appointment scheduled for when I would be 8 weeks and 6 days. I went into that appointment having basically already grieved the loss of our (4 week) pin drop size baby. And then, only seconds after she started our ultrasound...I saw my beautiful (big) 8 week 5 day baby on the screen. It was head down, with it's spine up against the left side. It had a perfect little tummy, legs, and its arms all curled into a ball in the fetal position. Our baby was perfect. I got ridiculously excited as I was not expecting to see a big baby as she claimed to not even be able to see one at our last appointment (we will NOT be going to this doctor for our next pregnancy...).
After probably about 30 seconds to a minute of seeing our beautiful baby, she told us that there was no heartbeat. She looked more and more... but nothing. I lost it. I could not believe this was happening.
We tried for this baby. We prayed and hoped for this baby. I loved this baby so much already. I cannot say I loved it as much as Lilly Belle because I loved this baby so differently. I loved it for all of the dreams I had for him or her. I loved it for the names we had picked out. I loved it for thinking maybe we could have a boy this time and thinking how different our life was about to be. I held my arms around my tummy every second I could and on the weekends when we were at Disney and I knew I wouldn't see any friends, I would wear as tight of shirts as I could so the whole world could see my sweet little baby bump that grew so quickly this time around. We celebrated every single second of this baby's life. And we always will.
My doctor sent us out of the room with 2 different pain medicines and told us to prepare for a lot of pain as the baby has now grown bigger and I want to lose the baby naturally. I need the closure.
We were then sent over to radiology where I was to have a second opinion ultrasound. As Matt went to finish our appointment details and check me in, I felt numb. I don't remember much. I remember not being able to feel anything. I didn't want to talk. I didn't want to even look up. I can vividly remember what the carpet looked like. When we got to the radiology waiting room, the obnoxious lady at the check-in made sure to tell every single person (who were mostly really old women in the there for mammograms or other ultrasounds) "Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays!!" I wanted to jump out of my chair and scream at her. "Please... please stop saying, 'Merry Christmas,' don't you know my baby is dead!" House Hunters was playing on HGTV and I really just wanted someone to turn it off. I wanted everyone to just be quiet.
After an hour of waiting, my name was called. As I was almost ready to go back, they informed us that Matt could not go back with me. I started bawling. I did not want to go through another ultrasound alone. As this would be the 3rd time getting an ultrasound during this pregnancy and none of them had been pleasant or with good news. Matt told me to be strong and that it would all be okay.
I walked back and remember wishing she would stop asking me random questions. It was a dark room. There was a really ugly picture of some yellow flowers on the wall. It was the most painful thing ever - both physically and mentally as she did two separate types of ultrasounds. Matt was supposed to be allowed back into the room before they would tell me the results. The ultrasounds took an hour. I lay there for a whole hour in silence and not being able to cry because it was just me and the woman doing the ultrasound in the room - it was so uncomfortable. An awful woman came into the room, she glanced at the screen and then said to me, "There is no cardiac activity. We see no heartbeat. But, at least you're early!" I began to cry and then harshly said back to her, "You don't say that to someone who just lost their child! I love this baby just as much as I love my 2 year old! I have spent the last two months loving this child. I loved this child before it was ever in my womb. You don't say that!" and then I continued to cry, she said "I'm sorry, ma'am," and walked out. I asked the tech, "can this please just be over, I want to go home to my daughter." I had another 15 minutes of ultrasounds...
I again was numb.
Once we picked up Lilly Belle, I began to feel better. She lights up my whole world. I cannot imagine my life without her and I feel so blessed that she is ours.
I could never have gone through any of this without my amazing village of moms here. I told all 40 of them what was going on from Day 1 when we had our first awful appointment and they've been so incredibly supportive. I don't know how I could have gone through this all alone.
We are doing better. I am doing better. I am taking it one day at a time. My baby is in heaven and that makes me happy - to know I have an angel and that my baby is forever safe. My baby will never feel pain, or anger, or have hurt feelings. All my baby ever knew was the extreme amount of love I had for it. Our baby heard it's daddy's voice tell it that he loves "her" (because he always said 'she') every night and got kisses from him every morning as he left for work. Our baby has an amazing big sister who gave him or her tons and tons of kisses and hugs and talks about him or her all the time. The memory of this baby will never be forgotten.
One day when I get to Heaven, I will be able to hold my baby. I'll never let go. We will never have to be apart.
Like my sister-in-law, Megan, said to me: I forever will now have two babies. No one can take that away from me. I am a mommy of two. Megan told me that she believes 100% that this baby was supposed to me mine. Not in a mean or sad way, but in the best way possible. God gave me this baby because he knew I would love it and celebrate every single second of it's life. Our baby got a "First Visit" button at Magic Kingdom, had it's picture taken with Disney characters every single Saturday as my bump grew and grew, and had a mommy who couldn't keep in her excitement and pretty much told everyone she could about he or she.
Our baby is in heaven, but it's body is still with me. I walk around everyday just waiting for it to be over. We don't know when that will be but I am praying hard it happens before Christmas. It won't be quite as hard because to me, my baby is already gone. What's left is only like a shell. My baby is in Heaven.
Matt and I very much want another baby and hope Lilly Belle will get a sibling to play with very soon. Our hearts are open and ready to love on a sweet baby. We feel blessed to have an angel as a baby. It is comforting. Now when I cry, I know my baby is listening and is there and it is so much more comfortable. I've never felt closer to God in my entire life. God is taking care of my baby. I know he is taking care of BOTH of my babies. And I know he is taking care of me.
I really don't want this baby to be forgotten. To me, that is the scariest and saddest part. I cannot imagine not writing this post. I've been waiting for the right time and prayed for lots of strength to feel this all again before I wrote it. My sleeve is a little wet right now, but I'm okay. I hope that one day there is another mom who can read this and feel comfort in knowing she is not alone. Miscarriage is something that is sadly so common. It is something my mom went through too many times, and although I always felt sad for her - I now understand. It is something I have feared my entire life because I know how hard I love.
I am not really sure how to end this post. There really isn't an end. I know for the rest of my life my baby will be with me.
I suppose I'll end it on this: the other night, the night of finding out our baby was gone, I had a moms night out at our house. A cookie exchange. I had 10 friends coming over. Which ended up being the biggest blessing and totally planned by God because I would have never made it through that night without them (and the wine they brought over) ;) As Matt and Lilly Belle were leaving for their own date night, I held Lilly Belle and said to Matt, "Don't you dare let anything happen to her! Drive safe! She's all I have!" He smiled and looked down and said, "She's not all you have. You have both of your babies. Right now. They're both with you. They'll always both be with you. Our baby will never leave you." I cried happy tears and they left. I had a few minutes to cry before the door knocked and my friends started to arrive.
We will get through this. We are getting through this. One day at a time. And our sweet angel baby will always be right here with me...
As our Christmas card photos this year were our baby announcement, I'd hate to lose those photos. My dear friend, Holly, did a beautiful job on them and they will forever be so special to me. One day we will have some beautiful pictures taken again for another sweet baby that will end up being our 2nd baby here on earth. I just don't know though that I'd be able to take pictures with a "Baby #2" banner like this again. These are so so special to me. One day, Lilly Belle is absolutely going to be the best big sister in this whole world....