Baby Loss Awareness Week 2017

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Today marks the start of Baby Loss Awareness Week for 2017. I’d always feel sad seeing posts from friends who had lost their babies taking part in the WAVE OF LIGHT on social media. How must they be feeling? This year, I know.

To be honest, I don’t really feel anything at this moment in time but my emotions are up and down each day.

Who said time heals? It gets easier with time? I’m not experiencing this at all. Is this how i’m supposed to feel? That’s just it, for each parent that has lost a child, our feelings are unique. I’m beginning to realise this more and more each day. The worst thing you can do in this situation is compare your grief.

So this month has been difficult. It’s only the 9th October and so far, two people think i’m pregnant because I still have my enlarged stomach. I was heavily pregnant at the start of this year. If you know me, by 3 months pregnant, I always look like 6 months pregnant. I have big babies and I ALWAYS show very early due to this.
Destiny is no longer with us, but if she was, would my enlarged stomach be a topic? I don’t think it would be because people would be thinking, ‘she’s just had a baby’

That’s just it! I did just HAVE A BABY! I’ve been pregnant 3 times and I carried our third baby for 5 months. I gave birth to her on January 2nd 2017. Just because she’s dead, it doesn’t mean that my body shouldn’t look like a woman that has birthed a child this year.

My body went through the worst pain! I wanted to feel it ALL because I knew that she was gone and we couldn’t bring her home.

I am a mother of 3. Do you agree? If a woman has 3 living children and one sadly dies, does she forget all knowledge of that child and just tell people that she only has two children? Would other people tell others that she is a mother of 3 but one sadly died or would they say that she is a mother of 2?

I guess it doesn’t matter who agrees because again, it’s down to the grieving individuals. Some parents don’t wish to see their babies once they have died. Are they wrong? People do what they have to in order to get through a difficult situation.

I brought this topic up in a counselling session last month. My counsellor did happen to agree with me. It doesn’t matter how many memories I was able to make with Destiny. She was here. She was conceived, she died peacefully in my womb, I brought her body into the world and I buried her body. Destiny Jayde Clarke EXISTED and she IS my third child.

I am a proud mother of 3 and this year, we have a REAL angel for our Christmas tree.

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Who am I?

After losing Destiny, I didn’t even know who I was anymore.

My body looked like that of any other woman who had just given birth but the difference was, I was home without my baby.

I’d sit there day after day just holding onto Glen, not knowing what to do with myself.

Time dragged on and it seem like my world had just stopped. Everything was in slow motion and I hated it!

I wanted to feel normal again and I’d lost count by now of all the times, including hubby, that people had said to me, “Give yourself time Michelle. You have still just had a baby even though she’s not with you. It will take time to recover from the birth and also the miscarriage.”

I was so annoyed with the term LATE MISCARRIAGE. My baby died inside of me and I gave birth to her delicate body and held her. We buried her. HER! A PERSON!!!!

Babies born sleeping before 24 weeks are not entitled to a death certificate.

We have a little card from her blessing in the hospital. That day, the hospital also gave us the chance to have professional photos taken and made into a photo book.

I couldn’t see the sense of me posing with my dead baby at the time which actually made me feel worse but in time, I can finally smile when I look through the book.

It’s beautiful and we will always have our beautiful photo book plus the images on a USB that the hospital also gave to us.

I didn’t realise how serious preeclampsia was. I could have died too!

I feel so blessed to be here as my organs were starting to shut down but I just wish that Destiny was here with us all also. Not just in spirit but to hold and kiss good morning and good night just like I do with Malaika & Jackson.

My arms and legs felt numb, my head was always heavy, my sight wasn’t and still isn’t what it was. I read up on how to grieve as I just didn’t know how.

I couldn’t cry. I was too numb for that. Tears only fell when I thought about her funeral and just the fact that I was pregnant three times but only have two children at home.

I’ve felt anger and every other emotion imaginable.

Throughout all of my anger, I have never asked “Why me?” Why not me? Good things can not happen to us all of the time and I sure have had my fair share of good. This time, I was to receive a devastating blow but through it all, I have found God and I know that my daughter was not meant to be with me here on earth.

I have accepted that.

My heart aches for her and my arms ache for her too but I know she’s in a better place.

Sleep well Princess Destiny xx

10:45pm

On Monday 2nd January, I gave birth to our dead baby girl.

This was the most traumatic experience for any me and I had a pain and sadness that I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy.

After realising that our baby had died, I wasn’t even thinking of how we would remove her from my body. I was just in total shock.

Options were given to us and we decided to have her naturally which was also the safest option.

Glenroy slept beside me in a chair and did not leave my side. His strength and support was amazing!

We cried together every time it hit us, what we were actually going through.

The night before, I had the first tablet (can’t remember the name) inserted into me to force on my labour.

On the actual day, I had 2 more which were to be taken orally over a period of hours until I was in established labour.

It felt so surreal to be going through the pain of labour and KNOWING that I had to do this just to bury my baby.

I welcomed the pain as I wanted to feel it. At the time, my pain was medication for the beginnings of my grief and I refused pain medication.

I was only taking gas and air for my whole time in labour until a midwife suggested tramadol at the very end before it was time to push. I took it and hoped for the best..

In the background,  a calming CD played that was brought in by one of my elder sisters.

I was labouring right in front of my husband, my elder sister and my niece and I could see the horror on their faces, the sadness in their eyes.

My screams sounded haunted and I didn’t even recognise myself anymore. I was wailing and gripping onto my husbands hands. I just wanted this nightmare to end.

Shortly after my sister and niece left, our beautiful baby girl, Destiny Jayde Clarke was born in her sack at 10:45pm. I’ll never forget the feeling of her leaving my body. Out of this awful experience, it was the most beautiful feeling.

We had agreed with the midwives beforehand that we did not feel strong enough to see our dead baby and that she must be taken away and then brought back once we had composed ourselves.

Our plans immediately went out of the window once Destiny was born and Glenroy through back my covers and looked down to see his baby girl.

His actions gave me the courage that I needed and I looked down to see her.

She was tiny! 320g to be exact. She was curled into a perfect ball whilst in her sack of liquid and just looked asleep.

Destiny was then taken away to be taken out of her sack and myself and Glenroy sat and picked out a beautiful white silk dress and matching hat for her to be dressed in.

Once Destiny was dressed, she was brought back into us in the tiniest basket I have ever seen. She looked just like Glenroy and we both wept over her.

The shock took hold of me and I couldn’t find the strength to hold my dead baby. Just looking at her was too upsetting. She had died with her eyes open and it was just like she was looking at us.

Glenroy found his strength and held his daughter whilst in the basket. He looked at every inch of her and I just watched in complete shock. My tears kept flowing and I just felt helpless. Our daughter was dead and there was nothing we could do about it.

With those thoughts, I found the strength to hold my baby girl in her basket as I knew that now, I had to hold her as much as I could as she wouldn’t be coming home with us to laugh, sleep, eat and grow before our eyes just like Malaika and Jackson did.

I held her close and I spoke to her and told her that I loved her and that she was safe.

Hours passed and we grew tired. The grief made us tired in a way that we’d never experienced and we called for the midwife to take Destiny for the night. She was just in the room next to us.

After many tears, we decided to get some sleep.

 

No Heartbeat

On December 31st, I was finally allowed home from hospital but I had to stick to my care plan.

Part of my care plan was not just to keep taking various medications but to return regularly to the hospital for checks.

My baby girl had a strong heartbeat and I was now 22 weeks and 1 day pregnant.

Our daughter was so excited to be having a little sister as she’d hoped that her little brother had been a girl.

I felt ill and cold with no appetite so I didn’t see in the new year. I fell asleep in 2016 and woke up in 2017 ready for my hospital appointment.

I’d never had a Sunday appointment before but the hospital were taking no chances with me having preeclampsia and high blood pressure as a cause of the preeclampsia.

I had my blood pressure checked and it was fine. The medication was obviously working.

A member of staff commented on how cute my bump was. It did look cute and not as big as it previously had been. I thought that maybe I was just losing weight due to feeling sick all the time.

I had the all clear to return home but a midwife thought it best to check and see how baby was doing.

I lay back ready to hear Destiny’s heart beat but they couldn’t find one.

Another member of staff was called in but they too couldn’t hear anything so a scan was arranged there and then.

I lay back eagerly awaiting the image of our active and healthy princess but she was still…

Destiny had no heartbeat and had passed away in my womb.

I was in shock and just said “ok” to the staff. “These things happen”

It wasn’t until I saw my husband sliding down the wall in slow motion like something out of a movie that it hit me. Our baby girl had died inside me and I was not going to have her to look forward to in April as we’d all hoped for.

The staff left us alone and took our children to give us time to process our daughters death. The screams from myself and my husband could be heard throughout the ward and we didn’t care.

Life would never be the same again…

HAPPY NEW YEAR 😦

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