A letter to my baby - I wish you were still here

Posted by ~Summer~ on 13.10.11
in

Dedicated to the baby whom I once had but lost, I just want you to know how much you had been loved...

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Dearest Baby,

Mummy was sooooooo happy when I knew you were in my tummy on 4th September 2011. It was past midnight and when I saw the positive sign on the pregnancy test kit, I was beaming from ear to ear, I couldn't stop giggling, I simply wanted to skip around the house and shout "Yippee" over and over again. It was a sleepless night for me, but one that was of indescribable joy and euphoria.

I surprised Daddy the next morning with the wonderful news. He too, was so thrilled to know that you were going to join our happy family and said "I'm going to be a dad again!" Yes, we had been waiting and anticipating for your arrival for quite some time already, do you know that, baby? I checked my calendar and you were going to be due on 13th May 2012, so I told daddy that next time you and him could celebrate your birthdays together since they fell in the same month. Well, I probably would have given you a much bigger and nicer present.


You would have an adorable 姐姐 (elder sister) named Angel. She is coming to 2 years old now and she too, was excited when we told her that you were going to join our family. I bought a baby doll for her to play with, she learnt to hold it, carry it, bathe it and even feed it with the milk bottle. She was so cautious when she was carrying the baby, because we told her a baby would be a gem and we had to treasure it with all we had. You, would have been our gem, my dear.

Angel 姐姐 started to sing nursery rhymes to you during bed time, she would also stroke my tummy gently and say "Baby inside". When I told her to kiss you, she always did. Though sometimes she ended up kissing my chest or my waist instead. She used to love to sit on me while we read books or play, and once I told her she shouldn't now as she would be pressing down on you. She was so sweet to remember and sometimes when she accidentally sat on me, she quickly moved to a spot beside me and said, "不可以压 Baby" (cannot press down on baby).

Daddy and I would also sing to you at night, talk to you softly and stroke you gently. We told you to be a good boy/girl, to grow up safe and healthy, and we told you how much we were looking forward to seeing you. Didn't you hear any of that? We also started to make plans for you, like thinking of where to put your cot and how to rearrange our bedroom, guessing if you were a boy/girl though we would have loved you all the same, coming up with names for you and even imagining how it would be like to travel as a family of 4 on our next summer holidays. I so much wanted to show you the world when you came out.

On 20th September, you gave me the first sign that something was not right when I saw a few drops of blood. I tried to not think about it and attributed it to a sign of over-exertion and that it probably wasn't going to matter. Somehow, anxiety got the better of me and the next morning, I went over to the clinic to ask for advice from the midwife. As typical as how Karlskrona worked, I didn't even get to meet a midwife though there was a message conveyed to me that it wouldn't matter and as long as the bleeding stopped in two days, there was no need to worry. Well, there was nothing more after the first few drops of blood and a little cramping. So I somehow felt a bit relieved. 

However, we decided that we should go for an u/s (ultrasound) at the hospital just to be sure. We didn't want anything to happen to you and all mummy wanted was to keep you safe and sound. The gynae did the u/s and he didn't say anything too worrying because he said I was only in my 6w2d so it was common not to see your heartbeat yet. In fact, he said "I think it looks fine", told me to go home but made two appointments for me in the following week to take blood samples to monitor my hcg (pregnancy hormone level).

Well, mummy felt so sure that everything was going to be all right because somehow, I felt you inside me. Yes, you were making my tummy bigger! Daddy said that my 2-month old tummy now looked like my 4-month old tummy during my first pregnancy with Angel 姐姐. I thought you were going to be a safe, chubby and most adorable baby ever.

On 25th September, we brought you and Angel to the Apple Market in Kivik. Did you remember we went apple picking? Mummy said she had to take a picture with you in my tummy so that I could tell you next time all about our apple picking session when you grew up. Once again, I felt so assured that you were still inside me.

The first bad news came on 29th September. The doctor called and said that while it was good that my hormones were rising, they seemed to be rising too slowly and I should go in for another u/s the next morning. It did make me a little nervous after picking up that call, but for all I knew, I felt like a healthy pregnant mum and I was thinking that things would probably be fine.

Another gynae, a lady, attended to me this time after near 3 hours of waiting. Daddy had to go to work in between but he rushed back in time to accompany me to the u/s because he said "I wanna see my baby too". When the gynae inserted the probe into me, she gave a frowny face and after a while, she said "I can't see your embryo inside". She pointed to the gestational sac, supposedly to be your home for the 40 weeks, which was looking somewhat black and empty. Mummy didn't know how to react, for a moment, I simply turned to stone.

As if she thought I didn't hear it clearly, she said again "There doesn't seem to be any embryo, any foetus." I swallowed a big gulp of air, and all I could manage to reply was "Ok". She said that you were there, but you stopped developing very early. What do you mean? Wasn't my hcg level still rising? Every inch of me still felt like a preggie woman, how could you just say that all this was happening without a baby?

Everything happened in a frenzy after that. She left us and said that she needed to talk to her consultant, leaving a dumbfounded and confused set of parents, plus one crying toddler, in the room. When she came back, she told me I should go for a surgery because "they were interested to find out if it was the sac causing my hcg to still increase". What??? I felt like a guinea pig for an instant, though it was probably our language barrier. Nonetheless, despite the devastating news she had delivered, I was still hopeful that you remained there inside me. Even when she time and again told us, "There is no baby. Absolutely no chance of a baby there." Hello, there is no absolute in the world. I just didn't want to listen to her anymore.

So I said no to the surgery. How could she expect me to perform a surgery right after she told me she couldn't find you? Which mum would, in the right state of mind, do that? Come on, it was my baby, my flesh and blood, that you were referring to.

We thought of flying back to Singapore to get Dr Tan from Thomson Medical to take a look and see if she could help. Then, both the gynae and Dr Tan told me that I should not fly because there was a chance of this being an ectopic pregnancy, meaning that you developed outside of my uterus. Say if you were on my fallopian tube, it could cause my tubes to rupture resulting in a instantaneous massive loss of blood, to quote the gynae "It could be lethal and could kill you", as she stared at me with her big, intimidating eyes. 

Still, I couldn't bear to proceed with any kind of surgery.

We slowly left the hospital and walked back to our car. That was when my tears gushed down like a flood. Uncontrollably. Terribly. Heartbrokenly. All the way till we got home. All the way when I was cooking porridge for Angel. One hour. Two hours. The tears finally stopped. But whenever I had the slightest thought of you, they just came pouring down again.

What could I have done to protect you, how could I possibly save you? 

I tried telling myself. Maybe I just had a cheeky little baby who was playing peek-a-boo with me. Maybe the gynae was blinded for a split second and somehow missed seeing you. Maybe everything was just a hoo-ha and everything was still as normal as it should be. Thinking about it, we wouldn't have done the u/s or been told the bad news if we had listened to the midwife at the clinic and just came back to rest at home. I would have simply carried on my life as usual, thinking how wonderful it was to be pregnant with you.

The next day, we were told to go back to the hospital again and obliging to our request, we had a second pair of eyes to take a look at you. This time round, it was the same lady gynae accompanied by her "consultant", a very senior-looking female doctor. She had a brief look at my blood test results, did an u/s again and told me it was an "abnormal pregnancy". Daddy said he saw a tiny dot in my uterus and that made my heart pound with hope, thinking that maybe you were going to quit playing hide and seek. Alas, the doctor said it was nothing, just the probe moving around maybe. She told the gynae to re-iterate the options in front of us: 1) Do nothing and wait to miscarry, 2) Take drugs for medical abortion, 3) Do a surgery.

I just couldn't do 2) or 3). I just couldn't. I didn't even know what she was blabbering about actually, all the pros and cons of each. All I had on my mind - was you.

So, I chose to wait, again.

After much reading up, I realised that they called this situation a "blighted ovum". A case when the fertilized egg implants in the uterus but the resulting embryo stops developing very early. I searched high and low online for any ray of hope from preggies who had been through the same plight.  To my joy, YES THERE WAS! I prayed with all my might that I could be like Kay who was misdiagnosed and eventually gave birth, or be part of the mothers who got misdiagnosed with miscarriages and had miracle stories to share.

I so badly, so badly wanted you to be my little miracle. I even thought of the title for my blog entry to write all about you when you finally showed up. You would be - My Little Fighter. We were going to prove to the world that they were wrong about you. 

So I waited. One week. Two weeks. Baby, you had no idea how I survived those days. Because I had no idea too. Everyday was a blur to me, I had such a myriad of emotions floating through my mind that I didn't even know what to think about. Hope, fear, anxiety, worry, remorse, dismay, regret. All I told myself was to cling on tightly to hope and discard all the rest. But it was hard. Very hard. For Daddy and for Angel, I tried to act strong, doing the household chores, cooking, washing, taking care of Angel as per normal. The fact was, I wasn't as strong as I wanted to be. Come night time, when the house was silent and everyone was asleep, that was when I would always think of you. And unknowingly, my face would all be wet. So would my pillow. Again, I had so many sleepless nights, but not for a good reason this time round.



We waited till I was 8w4d pregnant before we went for another appointment at the hospital. Yes, I was still pregnant because my hcg were still rising and even the doctors told me my placenta and pregnancy tissues were continuing to grow. Baby, everything was ready for you, but where were you? Another doctor took a look at you today, according to their count, it was the 5th doctor already. I think they were starting to get tired of me and all my unyielding hope - or harassment to them. I just didn't want to give up. Physically, mentally, emotionally. Even if the hope was one in a million, I still had to hold on to it.

Again, she said there was no way you had survived and was still in my womb. No way. Worse, she told me they could not confirm if it was an extrauterine pregnancy (meaning outside of the uterus), I asked them if they could just help to confirm that because if it wasn't, I was prepared to just let nature take its course and let my body miscarry by itself. I was still somewhat in a denial mode and in my mind, as long I didn't do anything to hurt you, maybe you would show up. Well, she said "No, unless we take a look at your stomach". I asked daddy what that meant, he said meaning to "cut me up". She also said the longer I waited to do any action, the higher was my risk of infection and in a case of extrauterine pregnancy, I was just putting my life in danger. At this point, to be honest, I wasn't intimidated or scared by them anymore, I was just starting to feel numb.

Her recommendation was for me to go and take the drugs on the same day to induce an abortion which would help to purge out whatever wasn't supposed to stay inside me. I was torn. Again, I couldn't do it.

So we waited for a few days again and when I was fully 9w pregnant, your grandpa had arrived in Karlskrona so that he could help to look after Angel if anything happened. We decided to go to the hospital, again. The usual long wait was - even longer this time round. We waited for 6 hours before we got to see the gynae. But there was no way I could have agreed to do anything without doing one last u/s and giving myself one last chance to see you. I prayed and prayed. I hoped and hoped. I wished and wished.

But no, my baby, you were really gone. Even my gestational sac was not growing approximately these few weeks. It was only 1.8cm as of that day but the gynae said you yourself should have been 2.7cm at 9w, not to mention the sac should be even much bigger. He was the nicest and most patient doctor out of them all, he spent time to explain the whole situation to me, thankfully in perfect english. He told me that my case was indeed a blighted ovum, he was the first doctor to take the initiative to show me the screen and point out all the parts of my womb to me, he said that 1 in 6 women experienced miscarriages. It still broke my heart whenever I saw the empty sac, but I just had to see it for myself. It was my last memory of you, so I pleaded with the doctor to give me a printout of it which he immediately did so. He also showed me all the placenta and pregnancy tissues which had to be removed from my uterus. So, he suggested for me to do the operation.

I finally gave in. I'm sorry, baby. Sorry that we didn't get to meet, sorry that I lost you, sorry that I couldn't have done anything more for you.

All my memories of you are here, in these 3 little pictures above, but I just want you to know that you will be in my heart always. Yes, everyone tells me that time will heal all wounds, I will have another healthy baby next time, or that you and I were not meant to be. I don't really believe it because if it wasn't meant to be, why was I pregnant with you in the first place, and having another baby doesn't mean that you had never lost one. I will remember you, I promise.

For all the little time we had spent together, even if it was only for a few weeks or even a few days, I want you to know that mummy really felt you and mummy had loved you with all her heart.

And I always will.

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Written by a devastated mum but who will nonetheless stay strong and positive about life

22 comments:

  1. Hi Shuang,

    I'm sorry to learn about this sad news. Do take care of yourself and rest well.

    -Binny

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  2. Thanks much babe,. I'm fine, dun worry. Hope things are going well for you over there!

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  3. Hey girl, glad to see you picking yourself up so quickly. Stay strong. And if u need support, I'm (really) just a phone call away.

    Ft

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  4. @gingerbreadhouseonsesamestreet
    Thanks gal! You are just a few steps away too, hehe. I'm really okie. Catch ya around soon!

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  5. Thanks for being a strong gal thruout. i know it had been hard on u. it aches me to see u teared but i cant do anything. i tried my best dear. and i will missed u too baby. Sorry i didnt spend as much attention to u as ur elder sister. and we didnt even gave u a name. lets think of one yah? Fate?

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  6. Life moves on and dear, you were wonderful throughout this tough period already. Yeap. Guess fate doesn't work to plan sometimes. We'll always keep this memory of bb in our minds, ok?

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  7. Summer, I cried when I read this. You are so strong. Your motherly love is unwavering. *big hugs*

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  8. @DancingMommy
    Thanks much, I guess I still need to be stronger. Appreciate your sweet concern lots. Thank you!!

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  9. Dearest Summer, I felt I had to respond in the hope that you will not feel too alone. While your doctor was correct in that many pregnancies end in miscarriages, it does not make having one yourself any easier. I have 5 wonderful, amazing, healthy children. All of whom I adore and am totally wrapped up in and still in awe of having brought into this world. My oldest now has a child of her own, so that makes me a grandmother as well! But, there was a time when I thought I might only be able to have my oldest child. I had always wanted a bunch of kids, and my husband and I looked forward to lots of kids in the house. When my oldest, Morgan,was one, I found myself pregnant again. When I was 3 months along, on a routine trip to the doctor, he was unable to find a heartbeat. I was sent for an ultrasound where it was confirmed that my baby had died. I was devastated. My body would not release the child, so I had to undergo a D&C to remove it. 6 months later, I once again found myself pregnant, and again, at 3 months the baby died and again a D&C was preformed. Then again. 3 times I became pregnant and 3 times lost the babe at 3 months. The 2nd one had been twins. At this point I was completely at a loss. I felt my body had somehow betrayed me. The doctors put me through many uncomfortable tests to see if they could find out why this was happening. I had a perfectly healthy daughter, the result of a perfectly normal, healthy pregnancy. They could find no physical reason for this to be happening. Finally, a doctor suggested that it could be a virus. So, not knowing where this virus might be, both my husband and I were put on antibiotics. After we had finished the medication, we were told to try again. We have never had a problem becoming pregnant, and soon found out we were. 9 months later, our beautiful daughter, Jordan was born. Then 2 years later, Matthew joined us. 7 years passed before our lives settled down a bit and we were blessed with the arrival of Alley, and then the surprise of Zac when I was 40! We have been blessed very thoroughly. At one time, when my husband was going through some difficult things, he was prayed for by a group of people in what we call 'laying on of hands'. One of the participants had a vision during this. They saw my husband in what they were lead to believe was heaven. He was being given a bundle, and that bundle was a baby. This to me was a wonderful affirmation that we will see our lost children again one day. We will be an even bigger family when we are all reunited in our eternal home.
    I hope my story has in some way helped you while you are going through your loss. It is hard, but we go on and we grow through these things. Many blessing.

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    1. Hi Sue, thanks for the very sweet message and inspirational story. I'm so happy for you that you have five wonderful kids (and grand kid) now! I can't imagine how hard it was for you, but you are right, we go on and we grow. Thanks much for your touch of love, it's people like you who make life easier to bear and so much more beautiful. Cheers!

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  10. Im going to give my two little girls a big hug and kiss when they wake up, just like I k ow you do to your two precious darlings too

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    1. Oh yeah, you bet I hug these two so tight till they can't breathe each day! =) For all the times I scream and shout at them like a mad woman, deep down, I appreciate and treasure them more than I can say too.

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  11. My heart clenched and I teared after reading this! Stay strong! 加油!

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    1. Thanks Karen! =) I will always remember this even though life goes on. =)

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  12. I'm sure she was proud to be your daughter.

    Btw, my wife loves your blog, keep writing and inspiring.

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    1. Hihi! Teck Chuan, right? Thanks for dropping by and great to know your wifey enjoys reading what I write. Motivates me to go on! =) Hope life is good for you and your family!

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  13. Hi Summer, just chanced upon your blog. I teared while reading your post. I cannot imagine the pain you have gone through. Thanks for sharing and for being a strong mummy!

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    1. Thanks Sarah's mummy! I think many people have had it worse, so I still count my blessings now and then thanks so much for your kind comment!

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  14. Hi Summer, thanks for sharing your heartfelt journey with us. It takes lots of courage to share and go through it all. Being mothers, I feel your roller-coaster emotional journey. Big hugs!

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    1. Thanks much, Dawn! I agree, it's such an emotional journey and you can never expect the twists and turns. Thanks for the kindness, appreciate your comment!

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  15. What a touching read! I wasn't expecting such a post when I chanced upon this blog, 'cos it's titled 'A Happy Mum'. Thank you for teaching us how to stay positive despite unfortunate circumstances. :)

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    1. Thanks much, Grace. Haha, soon you might find a handful of not so happy, but always heartfelt posts. Thanks so much for reading and leaving this kind comment.

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Yoohoo, thanks so much for reading my blog and leaving your comment! I am feeling the love! (^.^)

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