"If you know someone who has lost a child or anybody who's important to them, and you're afraid to mention them because you think you might make them sad by reminding them that they died, they didn't forget they died. You're not reminding them. What you're reminding them of is that you remembered that they lived, and that's a great, great gift" - Elizabeth Edwards

"The deep hurt is the mirror image of the deep joy that still awaits you." - Bruce C. Hafen

Archive for April, 2011

Our Precious Baby #4

Eric and I found out we were expecting our fourth baby in the beginning of December 2010. We were so excited! I couldn’t wait to tell the kids.

When I was 5 weeks pregnant I was out walking with the kids when I felt a weird feeling in my lower stomach. A few hours later I started bleeding and I thought I was having a miscarriage. After a few hours the bleeding stopped but I had mild cramping for a few days. I went in to have an ultrasound and they told me the baby was fine but that I had a subchorionic hemorrhage. The nurse didn’t give me much hope. She told me to rest and take it as easy as I could. This happened on December 21st.

Luckily Eric was home for 10 days after Christmas so I could rest as much as possible. I had really bad morning sickness this time, a lot worse than with my boys. I was really sick with Nicci and this was close to it. I remember laying on the couch a lot, watching movies and reading books. I tried so hard to rest even though it was hard.

The weeks went by and around 12 weeks I saw my OB who told me that I could start living life like normal and exercise if I wanted to. At this time I had only told the immediate family that I was pregnant. I was planning on telling the rest of everyone I knew after the 20 week ultrasound. My morning sickness started to get better around 15 weeks. We were counting down the days before we would have our 20 week ultrasound. In the beginning of the pregnancy…I always kind of had some sort of doom and gloom feeling because of our scare at 5 weeks. I also felt like, “This is my fourth child and I have three healthy ones…maybe something will go wrong this time.” I was worried about everything…something just didn’t feel right. I remember the morning before the ultrasound I was talking to one of my friends and I was telling her how nervous I was for the ultrasound….I just wanted to see that the baby was healthy. Another thing that made me nervous with this baby was how much later I started to feel the baby move compared to my other ones. Things just felt wrong.

I was so nervous on our way to the ultrasound. Eric and Jordan came with me. The technician started the ultrasound and I was so happy I was going to see the baby. In the beginning, she told us what she saw, but after a while she got very quiet. She kept looking at the heart at different angles over and over again. After a while I couldn’t stand it anymore, so I asked her, “Does that heart look normal?” She told me that she was not allowed to say anything but she was going to ask the radiologist to come in. At this point I knew something was very wrong. My heart just sunk. I looked over at Eric and said something like, “What’s going on?” I felt like I had been punched in the stomach. I felt like my heart was going to stop. I felt so empty. This was supposed to be a fun thing, and now it felt like a nightmare. After a while they came back, with serious faces. They told me that there was very little amniotic fluid, and that they couldn’t see the kidneys or the bladder. They told me that they wanted me to get a level II ultrasound at the University of WA as soon as possible. I felt totally numb. Something was wrong with our precious baby. This was on Thursday March 31st. We didn’t get an appointment until the following Monday.

That weekend passed in a blur…I felt sick, weak and I cried a lot. I just wanted to go into my bedroom, close the door and never come out again. I cried on people’s shoulders and felt embarrassed by it…My heart just ached so badly.

The following Monday we went to our appointment, had another ultrasound and then met with a doctor. She told us that the baby had a heart defect, no kidneys and there was no amniotic fluid, so the lungs could not develop or mature. This condition is called Potter’s Syndrome.  All these conditions are lethal… She also said that they had seen fluid in the baby’s lungs and that was a sign of heart failure. She told us this was a fluke and most likely this will never happen again and that I had done nothing to cause this. Sometimes things like this just happen. We still don’t know if the baby is a girl or a boy. The baby was measuring right on track so she/he is still growing.

The doctor was so sweet and talked to us for a long time. She told us what our options were. We could terminate the pregnancy or go on with the pregnancy, until the baby passes away. It could happen in a day, a week or months. Nothing is certain… We decided to keep going and let this baby stay with us as long as we get to have him/her with us. There must be a reason why I didn’t lose this baby at 5 weeks when I had problems. This baby will live his/her life now, inside of me.  The doctor made sure we knew that the baby is not suffering.

I go in for heartbeat checks every two weeks now and I’m going to have an ultrasound again soon. We are hoping that the baby will stay with us long enough that we will be able to induce at some point and hopefully the baby will come out alive and we can spend some time with him/her. Most babies with Potter’s Syndrome pass away after a few minutes. Some live for an hour or 2.  It’s been a hard road so far but I have learned so much too. It’s hard every passing week to realize that we are only getting closer and closer to when we have to say good bye to our little baby.

I am currently 25 weeks along. I try to treasure the little time I have with this baby. In the beginning after we first found out it was heartbreaking to feel the baby move. Now I feel grateful for every movement. It means our baby is still with us.

Eric has been so amazing through all this.  He is always there for me when I need to vent. I know my Heavenly Father is with me also. He is not letting me go through this alone. I have been so grateful for people’s thoughts, prayers and acts of service. The whole first week after we found out, I didn’t have to cook dinner at all. Some amazing people from our ward brought us dinner. Others stopped by to talk. Others sent flowers. We have felt so blessed by peoples’ kindness.

I look at my children and feel such gratitude for them. I don’t know what I would do without them. I am so grateful for the plan of happiness and eternal families. I know that this baby is not going to be lost. We will just be separated during this earthly life and will one day reunite again in heaven. We love our baby so much.

“There is no greater honor than being a part of God’s art studio as he crafts his masterpiece. Whether it is a piece of art to be displayed here on earth or in heaven….it is still sacred.” Laura Huene

 

Lawn Mower

We got a used ride on lawn mower earlier this week. All we needed to get was a new battery. Eric is very happy that it takes him a lot shorter time to mow our big yard. The kids thought it was fun to watch him ride on it.

Easter

We had a very nice Easter. We went to church and then to my in laws house. I love getting together with family.

The kids before church

Kevin, Tracey and grandkids

Cute kids

Tracey made a really nice cake

Kevin built the kids a fort

Eating dinner. Everything was so delicious!

Kevin and Tracey

Tracey playing with the kids

Easter egg hunt

Jordan was watching

Lionel

Everyone watching

Nicci

Opening the eggs

Nicci eating yummy cake

It was a great day!!

A Sunny Day!

We had a good day today. In the morning we did some errands and played outside in the backyard. It was so sunny and warm outside. The kids love to play on the swing set and in the sand box. In the afternoon we went to our friends Melanie and Troy’s house and had an Easter egg hunt and dinner. Jordan was in a very cranky mood but the rest of the kids had fun. The kids were so excited over all the candy and loved looking for all the eggs.

Potty training with Lionel is going great so far. The other night after dinner we couldn’t find Lionel anywhere so we started to look for him. Eric finally looked in the bathroom and found him in there on the toilet. He had gone all by himself. He has started to tell us a lot more when he needs to go too. He looks so proud of himself when we praise him and give him his little treat.

Pictures from today.

Enjoying the sun

Easter egg hunt

Nicci, Kadie and Ella looking for eggs

Nicci, Lionel, Kadie and Ella

My Sick Little Kids

I feel so bad for them…they have been so tired and sleepy for a couple of days now. I miss my happy, energetic kids. I can’t wait to take them outside to play or go to different activities that they love. Its so sad to wake up in the middle of the night and hear them cough. My poor little babies.

 

Marshmallow in the Nose

Not much has been going on here. Nicci has been sick the last few days and we have been staying at home. I have started to potty train Lionel and its not very fun but I am determined to get him potty trained now.

Lionel gets a little marshmallow as a treat if he goes potty. The other day he went potty right before I put him down for a nap, so I gave him the marshmallow when he was laying in bed. A few minutes later I heard some noise from his room so I went in there. He was really sad and had a scared look on his face. I asked him what was wrong and he said, “My marshmallow is in my nose..” I looked up in his nose and I saw this white marshmallow stuffed far up in his nose. Poor little boy. I got him up and told him to try to blow it out, he tried a few times and finally it came out. I just had to smile, what a crazy kid!

 

Weekend in Oregon!

We had a nice weekend in Oregon. The kids did well travelling. Only Jordan got a little frustrated now and then.

Nicci and Lionel playing in the ball pit.

At the park

Isabelle and Gabriel

Nicci and Lionel

Cute Jordan

Vincent and the kids before church

Me, Vincent and Isabelle

My parents sent us this picture earlier today. Today was their 30th wedding anniversary! Yay!

 

Visit

I feel like I haven’t updated in a long time. My brother Vincent came here to visit us on March 29th and he has been staying with us since. Tomorrow we are driving to Oregon for the weekend and then he will stay with my sister for a while too.

We have been doing different things. We have been going shopping, gone out to eat, Eric and Vincent went to the movie theater one night to watch a movie, we took the kids to a play place called “Imagination Station” we spent Conference weekend at my in laws house. A few nights ago we went swimming at the Bainbridge Island Aquatic center and the kids loved it. I planted some flowers outside one day, and Vincent has been nice to help us with some yard work. The kids warmed up to him really fast.

Here are some pictures.

Lionel at the imagination station. They had this big room full of toys and different activities for the kids to do. They also had tables and chairs set up in the same room where parents could sit and eat or read or just relax. We spent a few hours there and they had so much fun!

The kids played, and played until they got really tired.

Nicci resting

Vincent playing the game, “Memory” with the kids.

Vincent playing outside with the kids

Nicci swinging.

The kids and Vincent downtown Poulsbo today.


Poor little Jordan was in the way.

Our Family

Beatrice and Eric

Nicolina

Lionel

Jordan

Oliver


Read posts about Oliver here
Read Oliver's story here

Savannah


Tyler

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