Never in a million years did I ever think that I would be sitting here in the middle of this terrible grief. A pain so strong that it sucks the breath out of my lungs. Don’t get me wrong, I have felt sadness and despair; the loss of my grandparents and some close friends over the years, but nothing as raw and and dark as this. This pain is indescribable.
So it begins like this:
A positive pregnancy test in August 2009. Joy, excitement, morning sickness, and a new beginning. I was thrilled. Kevin and I have three boys that are beyond a doubt the biggest blessings of our lives. They are fantastic little creatures of mischief, mud and gooey kisses. But this was something new, the pregnancy was different, sicker, more tired, grossed out by the dumbest things….a girl? Maybe…….
So things went on pretty much uneventfully, had an ultrasound at 17 weeks and they “thought” that the baby was a girl….but I wasn’t so sure. One more ultrasound at 22 weeks and the tech confirmed it. A girl! Our little Ireland Elizabeth. Wow!!
I have to admit, I was totally overwhelmed by the idea of a girl, pink for the first time EVER. And what about the hormones, moods, and fashionista tendencies that come with a female? I am so not a girly girl, and the thought of all these unknowns was slightly terrifying. But the thought of a daughter was just too fantastic to imagine. A wonderful friend of mine, gave me boxes and boxes of her daughter’s clothes. I spent the better part of two days going through all of these clothes and just imagining Ireland in these outfits. Ruffles, bows, funny tights that sag around the ankles… and that sweet smell of that baby skin. It took me to a wonderful reverie. I couldn’t wait to see her sweet face.
On January 25th, I went through my day like clockwork: work, lunch, more work, and then home. I remember telling Kevin that I hadn’t felt Ireland move much during that day, and I thought I would go to the clinic and have them monitor me, I knew I was being paranoid but hey I paid my insurance for the month why not have my paranioa confirmed?
I got into the small triage room, and the nurse helped me get into the bed and tried to find the baby on the moniter…with no luck. She grabbed another nurse, and they both tried for an eternity to get a fetal heart-beat. Still no luck, so the Doctor on call, just happened to be outside the room, she grabbed the bedside ultrasound machine, and began the exam.
I will never forget the look on her face; concentration, furrowed brow, and then a slight shake of her head. “I am sorry Mrs. Hanson, I don’t detect any fetal heart-rate or movement, I am afraid she’s gone. Is there someone you can call?” Time and space stood still………..there is no other way to describe it, I just laid there with the blue ultrasound gel on my belly. Alone. Totally Alone.
I called my husband and my mom, “She’s gone,” was all I could get out. Then I called my best friend. Within minutes they were all up at the hospital, the doctor came back in and told me that we could go home and decide how we wanted to continue, or they could start an induction, and induction that would introduce me to my daughter……..weeks and weeks too soon. A brief hello and a good-bye all in one short time period.