June 25, 2008
Six months to Christmas and I’m already trying to think of how I can include you in our Christmas celebrations. I have been doing better these last couple of days. Only shedding a few tears rather then buckets. It may be that TEK is keeping me busy, plus the dog, the basement, the husband etc. Steve’s birthday is in two days and we are going to be spending it in Cherry Hill. I finally got the picture of all of us at Dana Point together with Keith in the sky. It took me forever. For a while today I just stared at the picture I got of you. Your face, your ears, your ten little fingers and toes. You were perfect. I’m allowing myself to change but ironically it isn’t how I thought it would be. I thought I’d be involved in the SHARE group, but twice I’ve tried to attend their meeting, the first I goofed, the second time they did. I really like to surround myself with others who know how to loose a child. I’m busy reading articles on the internet. Searching for books. I look back at my life prior to loosing you and wonder how stupid I must have been to not of understood how painful grieving over a baby would or could be. Sometimes I just wish other people could experience this hole in my heart for a day, then maybe maybe they would be a little more understanding. My life is forever changed and I can take on anything or at least it seems now, I have lost a child.
June 26, 2008
I went to the temple last Saturday and while I was performing sealings and leaning against the altar, I felt an adult gentleman standing behind me and he placed his hand on my shoulder. I’m not certain who it was, I thought I should be feeling a baby, but instead I felt the presence of a grown man. In heaven you take on an adult size spirit and body, so maybe that was him. I still think he is my baby. I yearn to hold him, but maybe he is holding me? Something must be keeping me going on this earth. Keith is far more perfect then I am. I am being tested here on earth. He has ‘The crown without the conflict’. For the marriage sealings I was performing I was praying that they could be comforting my baby. I still refer to him as my baby, but need to realize that he has his perfect adult form and spirit. One day I know I will get to raise him, but in the meantime I am learning patience until then.
Jun 29, 2008
Linda Gubler sent me a copy of her journals from when she had a stillborn. She had copied some quotes from Brigham Young, Bruce R. Meconkie regarding stillbirths and these children we can raise in the resurrection. I have no doubt that I will see Keith and be able to raise him again. It’s just the wait inbetween and the grief that I am dealing with now to get over. Anyways, Linda gave a list of the events of his son’s short life, and I thought I would do that here.
On Dec 13, 2007 I went to my Ob for my annual check up, we had been trying to conceive, but I had taken a pregnancy test on Dec 9 and it was negative so I didn’t think I was pregnant. Just in case, the nurse gave me another pregnancy test and I still remember her opening the door to my room and peaking her head around the door and saying ‘Do you know that test was positive’? I was so excited. I waited until that evening after the kids were in bed to tell Steve. Since we had lost baby Angel, I didn’t want it to happen again by telling them too early. I told Steve that we needed to have the basement done by mid August and he was asking me why then. I told him that was when the baby was due. He was surprised, shocked, and overwhelmed all at once.
On Jan 10, 2008, I went to my Ob appt and saw this beautiful heartbeat just a pounding away. I was given the due date of August 20 for you. We told the kids who couldn’t keep their mouths shut. They told friends, teachers, primary, grandparents etc. They were all excited about your arrival! Eric would come and kiss my tummy. Kayla told everyone she was going to be a big sister. I was given the option (mainly due to my age) to have a geneticist to some additional checking on the baby. Needless to say, I accepted. I am all for health and safety in protecting my babies.
January 30, 2008 I got to have an ultrasound performed in the maternal fetal medicine department at McKay Dee Hospital. Steve came too. The tech (Angie Jones) was a lady in our ward so it was kind of fun to share our exciting news with her. She took a picture of you that she thought you maybe a boy, but I was holding out (wanting a girl). You were sooo cute wiggling around. Plus Steve and I saw several friends, including Julie Madsen (who was later the tech on the labor and delivery day when I delivered you), Suzie Graves and Sandra Dahl from the Wilson 2nd ward, and a previous coworker. I loved that ultrasound day. I even volunteered to participate in a study down at the U of U for pregnant women
On February 7, 2008, I went to my 12 week appt to hear your heartbeat with the Doppler. The sounds of reassurance as I had called it. Dr. Lesser said my blood work and my ultrasound looked like a perfect pregnancy. To say the least, I was walking on water. The first AFP test was ordered for end of February.
On March 6, 2008 I went for my 16 week appt. I heard your precious little heartbeat. And then Dr. Lesser said that your AFP test was high. She thought I had taken it too early and requested that I take it again. I did only to find out it was high again. A high AFP test meant a possibility for neural tube defects, prematurity, and the one word I never remember reading until after May 4, a stillbirth.
On March 27, I had my big ultrasound appt at the maternal fetal medicine. I recorded this ultrasound and have watched you moving many many times all through it. They checked you for neural tube defects (spina bifida, opening in the stomach). All was good. I saw the four chambers of your heart just pounding a way. Early on the tech paused to check your kidneys and there it was on the big screen for all to see. Your penis. You were a boy! I even made her check again, you were a beautiful healthy baby boy. The perinatalogist came in who said all looks good on the ultrasound. He said my AFP test score really wasn’t that high, less than a tenth high, so not to worry. The AFP test is a commonly false positive. Again we saw friends, Julie Madsen, Becky Roundy from West Haven who said we were doing it Roundy style (3 boys and 1 girl), Andrea Dahl and Suzie Graves from Wilson 2nd ward. I was walking on water. I bought 3 bubble gum cigarettes for your siblings and gave them a treasure hunt to find them and to find out you were a boy. Then I showed them the ultrasound and pointed out your penis. Kayla’s reaction was “Penis, I wanted a girl.” She was ticked. I had asked her several times if she wanted a brother or a sister and she always said how she had brothers. Little did she realize that girls are sisters and boys are brothers. Another happy day along the pregnancy with you.
On April 6, 2008 I went to my 20 week appt. I told Dr. Lesser that I wasn’t feeling you kicking much. She told me in the next month as you gain additional cartilage I would feel you more. She checked your heartbeat on the Doppler which was a perfect 150 beats per minute. She reviewed the big ultrasound results and said that all was looking good and not to worry. I was a one happy Momma walking on water.
Over the next couple of weeks I was kind of emotional. I seemed to be more hormonal then normal pregnant mom even. I had set out all your baby clothes. I had purchased a high chair and a bunch of baby clothes for you. I still haven’t been able to look at those boxes and seeing the high chair brings me to tears. I knew that you would be our last child, so I gave all of my girl clothes to Curt & Steph who were having a little girl.
I recall lying on our microfiber green couch in the bonus room and feeling you kick. It was very light and very sporadic. I loved my little secret. You were so cute. I made a path for the bathrooms visits at night so I wouldn’t have to touch the cold tile. On April 27 I noticed I wasn’t getting up to use the bathroom. During those last few days of April, I wasn’t feeling you kick and I wasn’t getting up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night. Honestly I just thought you had switched positions and were not lying on my bladder. I would go to bed lie on my side and push a little and I thought, I truly thought I felt you move….If only I knew what lied ahead.
On May 1 2008, I went to your appt. I noticed from the scales that I had only gained two pounds in the last month. I didn’t worry too much. I was called back to my room and told the nurse I just need to hear your heartbeat. She told me that at anytime I needed to feel reassurance to come in. Then Dr. Lesser came in and I told her how wasn’t feeling you move. She then looked at my chart and told me how I had a anterior placenta and you didn’t have much cartilage and was still quite small and not to worry. I relaxed for a moment and she said now let’s listen to that sweet heartbeat. As she was searching she said to be patient due to the anterior placenta it is difficult to find. I knew that she didn’t have a problem even when I was only twelve weeks along finding the heart beat. Afterwards, she said never mind, let’s go take a look on the ultrasound. Before I even had my pants pulled up I was heading to the ultrasound room. I lied there and she began looking at you. It didn’t take even five seconds to realize that you were not breathing. I started to say “No” and started to hyperventilate. Dr. Lesser said real quietly, that I was of the minority and that you had passed away. She asked me when I last felt for surely your movement. I knew it was one week or longer ago. She then said I probably lost you around 23 weeks or so. She apologized to me. I was crying my heart out. I said “That you were the child we prayed for”. And Dr. Lesser said that the hardest part of life is “Thy will be done”. She hugged me as I tried to figure what had happened these last few minutes.
From that moment on the grieving for you began and is still going on. I wrote you a birth letter that goes through the moments from May 1 –May 8 that I have in the family album. I continue to type the grieving moments, so I can continue to see who and how I have changed. Yes, I am still crying as I type this.
July 1, 2008
Well I am actually feeling somewhat normal. Maybe that is because I had a nervous breakdown yesterday. I feel I can deal with my loss better today. We have been trying to get the basement done and between that and Keith’s death, I am stressed beyond measures. I am realizing that their will be tough times ahead and I need to make a reserve bank for myself to handle everything. Steve and I had a good conversation yesterday. We talked about how we want to feel Keith and teach TEK about bringing Keith’s spirit to our home. I have heard people that have lost children how they have dreams, so I am hoping to be able to dream (and remember) about Keith. I can tell that I still have much anger about some of the comments people have said to me and I must continue through this miserable grieving before I can have peace. I am loving the woman who I have become through each of my children and particularly you.
July 8, 2008
I think everyone else has been able to move on except me. Steve told people yesterday that we were great. Obviously I wasn’t included in that ‘How are you guys doing?’ I haven’t been great since April. Nobody else knew that it was your 2 month anniversary of your Angel day on Independence Day. I’m sure no one except for me came a visited your grave. Nobody even asks me how I am doing. I think people try to avoid me. On Sunday, there was a baby blessing and the couple (our crummy neighbors) kept saying how blessed they were and how they don’t worry if something happens to them, because families are forever. Well let them try to have their family separate from earth and heaven and see how happy they are. I sat in my primary class room for an hour just trying to gain composure. Della Coombs tried to comfort me, I appreciated that. I still won’t look at my niece, Morgan. It isn’t right for me to have to hear or see a baby when I can never see mine until I die. It just isn’t fair. My brain knows you are in a better place, but just don’t try and tell my heart. It still aches for you. TEK all beared their testimony and talked about how they believe in angels. I doubt half of the ward even knew about your existence and that TEK really did get the opportunity to hold an angel on May 4, 2008. I keep praying that I will have a vision or feel of your presence, but the only time I truly felt you near me was in the temple, and I am not sure if it was you. I had a dream (nightmare) that I had another stillbirth. I hadn’t even gotten over you and now I was grieving again for another loss. It just isn’t fair. I know life wasn’t suppose to be fair, but damnit it sure would be nice if it was.
July 16, 2008
Hey it is been a while since I wrote. Ihave been busy lately with the kids, plus I am working today trying to get a neighbor who lost her son and her mom in a tragic accident. Service to others is really helping with the grief. I think I may be down, and I realize that others have it even harder. I am writing a letter who lost her 5 mos old son by accidentally leaving him in the car. The grief alone must be unbearable, I cannot imagine the media, and the guilt that she must be facing. My heart goes out to her. Other then I can’t decide if I want to be involved in my husbands family anymore, life is going good. I met someone the other day who knew I was pregnant, but didn’t know of Keith’s death. I was able to talk to her without crying. I told her I enjoyed talking about him, I didn’t want him to be forgotten. I feel blessed that TEK have more of an understanding of eternal families and how fragile life is because of their precious baby brother, Keith. I read a short quote that went on with the book, ‘I love you forever’. It is “I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as I’m living my baby you’ll be”. It is a good way to end todays journal writing.