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  #1  
April 8th, 2009, 02:29 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 10
Morgan and I went to vacation to Rapid City, South Dakota, it is a beautiful country, I hope to visit again. We went there with our buddies Jason Pullen, Jessica Castro & John Ippilito to help Jay with his Top 50 Motorcycle Rally shows and of course to have a good time. Even before we left for our trip friends and families teased me that I was going to come back pregnant and boy were they right.

We went on our trip the first week of August 4, 2008 and we found out we were pregnant September 11, 2008. We were all so excited, everyone we told was so looking forward to having another baby to hold and play, especially our son Michael who was turning 5 in October of 2008. He was going to read to our baby every night to sleep and help me change diapers, he was so ready to be a big brother. I read somewhere to include the sibling as much as possible in the pregnancy so, every OB visit Michael came along with me and listened to his babies heartbeat. It felt so right to be pregnant to watch our beautiful family grow.

Everything in the pregnancy was going fine. We had two ultrasounds (US), one for sizing because my doctor thought I was small for being 6 weeks, that US was normal and my timing was correct making my due date April 30, 2009. I had a second US done on Dec. 17, 2008. That was such an exciting appointment because I had my family come meet the baby. My big sister Nancy, Morgan (dad) and big brother Michael all came to see the baby for the first time. Again, everything looked normal the technician checked the baby to see if everything was where it need to be and the size it needed to be compared to the gestational age. The best part of that appt., of course, that the baby was healthy but to see if we could find out the sex. Because we had Michael, Morgan and I decided to find out so we can all be prepared. The results were in: 90% chance it was a BOY!! I'll admit I wanted a little girl but I was happy to know that he was healthy and at the end of it all that's what matters. So I began to mentally and emotionally prepare myself for testosterone x3 in my house, it wasn't going to be easy but I was ready for the challenge. My biggest mission before having him was finding a name. After many thoughts, suggestions and resistance from our moms, we decided to name him Santiago Morgan Malfatti. Michael's nickname for him was going to be Balthazar (long story).

Throughout the pregnancy all the lab work done always came back normal, we had one blood pressure scare in mid Feb.'09. . Due to having preeclampsia with Michael, he was born at 37 weeks, we were all concern that the symptoms were beginning to show for this pregnancy too. Next visit, BP was back to normal, lab test normal.

I kept worrying that I was too little for my 31 weeks, but the doctor always reassured me that all pregnancies were different and that I was measure right for the weeks I needed to be. Again, we Michael and I listened to Santiago's heartbeat and it sound like horses galloping wildly, this was on February 24, 2009 when all the appts. are 2 weeks apart. My next appt. was setup for March 10, 2009.

March 09, 2009 was a typical Monday at the clinic for me, I'm a Medical Assistant for a Family Health Clinic in SF. (I hadn't gone to work on Friday because I wasn't feeling so good, I remember going to sleep early thursday night because I didn't feel good then either. I attributed it to my sinuses acting up again). While try to do my job I began to feel my belly get stiff a lot, I felt nausea and going to the bathroom a lot. But I'm pregnant, I blamed the Braxton Hicks for the tightness of the belly. But the nausea was worrying me because its a symptom of preclampsia when it's this late in the pregnancy, I was 32 weeks by this time.

When my morning shift ended I told my boss I wasn't feeling very well, she suggested I go home. I called my sister to see if I could get a ride because the last thing I wanted to do was get on the bus. While waiting for my sister, I went to my desk to put my head down for a little while due to the headache I was getting because my stomach was empty from throwing up the little food I had eaten that morning. As I was sitting there, I began to feel a lot of tightness of the abdomen, first at the bottom from the sides and then at the top of the abdomen. Not a good sign. When I got to my moms house my sister insisted I call my doctor. When the advice nurse called me back we agreed that I should go to the ER due to my history of preeclampsia. The good side of going to the ER while pregnant is that the wait is short.

It was around 4p.m., when I was taken to the L&D triage room to be monitored. As I laid down on the bed she asked me my reason for visiting and I explained to her what I was feeling. She then began to look for the babies heartbeat with the doppler. She couldn't find it, she reassured me that usually it's hard to find if the baby has his back to her. Okay I thought. She steps out another nurse comes in to try the doppler, she tells me to stand and tries to find the heartbeat that way, no luck. Their going to bring in the ultrasound machine for a better look. At this point I'm trying my hardest not to let my mind go to the possible reality of the situation but to stay calm and positive, that was hard the mind can be an ugly thing. Dr. Washington comes in, looks my age beautiful young woman, she starts to look around with the US machine. She states that there isn't a lot of fluid in the placenta, red light goes off in my head, stay calm I say to myself. She too couldn't find a heartbeat, she's going to bring in a more experienced doctor to try the US again. This is a US machine I could tell where the heartbeat is and she can't, not a good sign, mind you the machine is turn away from me so I can't see the screen. The second doctor comes in, Dr Koi. He looks at the baby through the US and he says: "I agree with you Dr. Washington." She then comes around my bed and I knew before the words came out of her mouth, "I'm so sorry to be the barer of bad news, but your baby has died. There is no heartbeat present." Oh my god, I knew it was coming the minute the first nurse couldn't find the heartbeat but to put it in words, it hurt so bad, so so bad. I remember crying, more like sobbing while she hugged me. I could tell they were all affected by this too but minutes later choices need to be made. I had the option of going home and thinking about what I wanted to do or get started with the procedure of getting induced that same day. I was ready, what was there to think I didn't have any other option, going home wasn't going to make it better nothing was but I couldn't be pregnant anymore.

We started the procedure, when my lovely nurse Claire got my IV in the first thing she gave me was something for the nausea because that had not gone away at all. I remember talking with a lovely social worker, my doctors and nurses. Everyone was so supportive and loving. i called Morgan at work, I only told him I was at the hospital and would like him to come be with me, no details. He walked through the door around 5:30ish. He had been prepping himself for the worse on the ride there, he had the worried pale expression he gets when something is wrong. I was on the bed with my IV placed, he hugged me and I said: "Santiago is dead." I remember us crying, him asking me what happened. I didn't know what happened no one did. While I write this blog we still don't know what went wrong. It was so hard to watch his heart break, but he was so wonderful to me. He did all the right things without knowing, he was there for me and himself. He held me we held each other, I talked we talked, he listened I listened, I cried he cried.

We called our families, he called his mom and I called mine. Those were horrible conversations to have over the phone but we had to tell them they were worried about me being in the hospital without knowing what was happening since I first got to the ER.

The nausea want away, the heartache didn't. I remember I didn't hold my belly like I did when I was at home in bed trying to feel Santiago kick. I felt so separated from my body. I felt betrayed, and I still feel that way sometimes, by my body. But it turns out, thanks to my body, I started going into labor that morning when the stiffness of the belly first began. I was suppose to be induced with pitocin but that seem to be unnecessary what my doctor did to help me out was to rupture my placenta, that was painful. I remember her telling me to relax my bottom, I was clenching them for dear life, and I remember thinking I would like to see you relax with someone trying to break your bag. Finally it was done, not long after the contractions began to kick in every 5 mins. last thing forever. I asked for fentanyl, it helps to slightly take the edge of but you are very much aware of the pain.

While all of this is going on Morgan and I have decided that we will see Santiago, have a picture taken and possibly having him baptist that night. Again, the nurses and doctors were wonderful at explaining all our options to us and always being supportive of our choices.

By this time my family had came to see me my mom, my aunt, my brother and my sister-in-law. My sister couldn't come because she was watching Michael for us. We asked them not to tell him about Santiago, his dad and I wanted to tell him when we saw him next. But Michael knew in his heart that something was up, my sister picked him up from school that Monday and took him to my moms, that only happens on Fridays so he knew something had to be going on and he was not happy about it he let everyone know. Morgan decided to go get us some clothes since I hadn't plan to stay over night I didn't have anything with me. I stayed with my family in the room. They were great, my mom held my hand and rubbed my head every time a contraction kicked in. They were getting intense my the minute. I figured since the out come wasn't going to be as fruitful as we had hoped I asked for the nurse to call the anesthesiologist for a epidural. I had to wait for my blood lab results to be in to make sure I didn't have any bleeding disorders before I got the epidural placed. I was so happy to see the anesthesiologist step in with her huge mental cart of drugs. My family stepped out except for my sister-in-law, Geno, whom I asked if it would be okay for her to stay she reassured that she would be happy to be there for me. Thank goodness. I was told to sit at the edge of the bed with me feet on the chair, my arms over the food table that they raised to my chest height and to curve my back without moving. Geno held my hands and arms. While the anesthesiologist did what she needed to do, the contractions got super intense, I was in full mode labor and the baby was coming. I asked ever so politely to hurry up because the baby was coming, I could feel the same pressure that I felt right before Michael was born so I knew it was time. She finished, gave me a dose, I turned to lay on the bed and out came Santiago at 9:10p.m., born asleep on March 9, 2009. I remember not looking down at him but asking Geno and the doctor that had rushed in if he was all out and if he was complete. They answer yes. The nurse, Ruby for the night shift, cleaned Santiago up and wrapped him in the blanket and handed him to me. I did not cry, I smiled at him and admired his beautiful little face. The feeling I had was peaceful. I felt at peace with him in my arms. He was only 2lbs, 6oz and 14 1/4 inches long. We're not sure how long exactly he had died so his face was a bit bruised from where he had been laying and his skin was very delicate. But he was all there ten toes, ten fingers, he had his brothers button nose also his little ears, black wavy hair, his fathers thin lips and chin. He was so cute, so little. When his dad came back, from bringing our things, I was holding Santiago. He just put the things down and came over to my bed side and we cried together. Everyone that wanted to see him saw him and held him. The nurse took his picture with a little white onesie. Later that night he was baptist, we all cried. We had more time to spend with him just the three of us in silence before the nurse took him away. I regret not taking pictures with him but at the time it didn't feel right. Guess you never know what is right in a situation like this.

Things have not been easy for any of us, the next hardest thing for us to do was to tell Michael his baby had died. He is grieving right along with us, sometimes we can be playing or crossing the street from school and he ask me about baby. He has asked me why baby died, when we will we have another baby, he has voiced his angry greatly for whoever took his baby away from him and he worries that this might happen to our next baby. I always try to make sure to really listen and answer him as best as I can. People think because he may be only 5 years old he won't be affected, but that is wrong this as painful and confusing to him as it is to us if not more. Michael is a great big brother, I've told him that and I hope to be here for him when he needs me the most and to keep his brotherly love for Santiago very much alive. We had a memorial service for Santiago on March 28, 2009. His cremated remains are in a beautiful angel mother and baby urn. Although it's not the same as having our baby with us it has helped to close a small chapter in our lives without him.

Everyone says time will heal the pain and I know it will but I also know that it won't be easy or fast. Morgan and I have talked greatly about our loss, we do almost every night. But we both agree that although we may look happy or may be enjoying life we are constantly thinking about Santiago and we need to get use to the fact that life will always be that way as long as we don't have him here with us.

To my angel: Even if we look like we have gone on with our lives without you, please know that you are always in our hearts, thoughts and prayers. WE LOVE YOU SANTIAGO.
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  #2  
April 8th, 2009, 02:52 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,095
I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my daughter at 24 weeks. She was born still last June. This group of ladies are the best and they have been a God-send for me during this process. May you find peace and comfort here.
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  #3  
April 8th, 2009, 03:04 PM
grlpisces's Avatar Dynamite w/ a laser beam
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Every time I read another story of a baby taken from someone too soon due to stillbirth, my heart drops to my stomach all over again. My condolences on the loss of your precious Santiago. Your story brought tears to my eyes. I lost my own son (twin to my precious champ Julia) at 32 weeks gestation when the doctor couldn't find his heartbeat.

Please know this support board is full of the strongest women I have ever come across in my life. May you find comfort and a shoulder or two to lean on in here.
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  #4  
April 8th, 2009, 03:08 PM
Brittanie's Avatar just me
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Oh honey, I'm so sorry that you have to join us here, but I hope you can feel welcome. My sweet Cora was born sleeping May 2, 2006, nearly 3 years ago. Yes, time heals the pain, but it doesn't take it completely away.

Anyway, I'm glad you found us. Please feel free to vent/cry to us any time you need.

I'll be praying for peace for you and your sweet Michael.

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  #5  
April 8th, 2009, 03:21 PM
BakingMommy's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Your story certainly brought flashbacks when you talk about the ultrasound and labor, etc. I'm so sorry you've lost your boy. I joined this board in December after having my son born still at 25 weeks on November 15 and everyone here is so great.

I also know if you can get a cause of death it brings a little more closure (or at least it did for us). It won't really make it hurt less, but it helps you deal with fear.

Again, I'm so sorry for you and your family.
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  #6  
April 8th, 2009, 07:43 PM
Ben,Logan&Kaitlin'sMommy's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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It is with great sadness that we welcome you to the stillbirth forum - my name is Jenn - I am one of the co-hosts here (along with the beautiful and loving claire) - I lost my daughter Rebecca in October of 2003 at 27 weeks gestation.

I am sorry for the loss of your son and I hope that you find comfort here
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  #7  
April 8th, 2009, 09:30 PM
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I'm so sorry you have to join us here

I'm Stephanie and lost my sweet baby Katrina on August 9, 2008 at 23w2d.

I hope you are doing alright. You've found a great place by coming to this site. The ladies here are so awesome and such great support when you're at your lowest.
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  #8  
April 8th, 2009, 11:40 PM
claire1979's Avatar mummy to a special angel
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a very sad but warm welcome to our board hun your story bought a tear to my eye, im so sorry for the loss of ur precious son
im co host here too me and jenn will be here to support u (as all the beautiful ladies) the best we can its unbelievably loving here we have a really special bond and hope u can be a part of it.
i lost my baby daughter jessica on june 17th 2005 its been 4 years this coming june and yes time does heal you learn to live with your loss but u never forgot!
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  #9  
April 9th, 2009, 05:02 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2008
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I am so sorry for the loss of your son Santiago. I lost my son at 40 weeks in Aug 99. I am glad you found this forum and I hope it brings you comfort and helps with the heartache.
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  #10  
April 9th, 2009, 10:09 AM
Fluffy Baby's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Location: SW FL
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I am so sorry for your loss. My name is LeAnn and my son, Dominic was born still October 19, 2007 at 42w2d. My heart broke and I bawled while I read your story. I have since had another baby and I haven't cried like I cried when I read your story in a long time. My best advice is: You never will get over your son, but time helps you get thru it. Welcome to the board, I am sorry you have to be here. <3
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  #11  
April 9th, 2009, 10:37 AM
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I want to thank you all for the warm welcome. My heart goes out to all you lovely ladies. This is definetly one group I wish didn't exist. I was telling Morgan that I'm glad there are people out here that I can speak too and know that they understand me and aren't looking for the quickest way out of the room.
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  #12  
April 9th, 2009, 10:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1angel1earthangel View Post
I want to thank you all for the warm welcome. My heart goes out to all you lovely ladies. This is definetly one group I wish didn't exist. I was telling Morgan that I'm glad there are people out here that I can speak too and know that they understand me and aren't looking for the quickest way out of the room.
And that's exactly the reason I keep coming back here. It's been 8 months (to the day actually) that I lost my sweet baby, but it's funny how people never bring her up anymore - as if she never existed. Even after a month of losing her, people started acting weird and awkward when I brought her name up. So I am able to openly, and as much as I want to, talk about Katrina here and I know the girls here are going to be there for me.
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  #13  
April 9th, 2009, 03:31 PM
SimplyJenalee's Avatar Super Mommy
Join Date: Jan 2009
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I am sooo sorry that you have to join us here...but I am glad you found us. I lost my Alyssa at 39W6D on December 1st...right before her due date. My heart aches not only for myself but for anyone that has to join this board. The ladies here are wonderful and have really helped me a lot.
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