I’m strong because….

I am strong because…

I went to work everyday with what I thought was an empty sac.

I chose to do genetic testing knowing I would likely continue the pregnancy regardless of the results.

I let the doctors push a needle into my uterus, near my developing baby, to get a CVS sample to see what exactly was going on with my baby.

I told people my baby had Down Syndrome in the same breath I told them I was pregnant.

Everyday I worried about miscarriage and stillbirth but still got out of bed.

I went to conferences, talked to experienced mothers and sought resources for the baby who would likely struggle inside me.

I knew enough to take someone with me to each ultrasound, just in case we got bad news.

I accepted the news that my baby had clubbed feet as good news.

I made a baby registry with all sorts of Down Syndrome specific things so I would be prepared.

When I was diagnosed with low fluid and my baby’s kidneys weren’t working and her lungs probably wouldn’t either, I still got out of bed.

I helped people end unwanted pregnancies of possibly healthy babies while I so badly wanted to continue my wanted pregnancy of an unhealthy baby.

I never once considered learning the gender of our baby before birth despite the numerous ultrasounds, because I wanted a good surprise for once.

I smiled at the woman who could not stop wishing me a healthy baby when she saw my large belly in the third trimester.

I decided a classical c-section would not be good for my health and future family.

I decided to prevent a very preterm birth because I didn’t think our baby could survive her medical complications and prematurity.

I cancelled my baby shower.

I went to work with pregnant woman, myself pregnant with a that baby might die any moment.

I listened to their complaints without judgement, even though they were having a healthy baby.

I still talked to my sister who was pregnant with a healthy baby.

I didn’t complain about legs in my ribs or difficulty sleeping.

I exercised all through pregnancy, even when hospitalized.

I was admitted to the hospital and lived for two weeks attached to a monitor, carefully watching every beat of my baby’s heart.

I was ok with two more weeks of hospital time when suggested we wait even longer for delivery to increase my baby’s chance of survival.

I asked my family to try to be there for her birth because we were unsure how much time we’d have with her.

I ordered a baby outfit and blanket so my baby would have something to wear in case she died.

I labored.

I got an epidural, knowing I’d be sad about it later, but also knowing it would help me survive emotionally.

I pushed my baby out in three contractions.

I fell in love with my baby even though I thought I would lose her.

I listened to the doctor who told us her lungs were not responding.

I called all my family to tell them our baby was going to die.

When the doctor said it was time to take her off the vent, I said ok.

I held my baby as she took her last breaths.

I bathed a dead baby instead of a live one.

I held her lifeless body as lovingly as I would if she lived.

I show her pictures even if it will make others uncomfortable.

I visit her grave .

I still get out of bed every day.

 

I’m strong and I know some of you are too.  Tell me, why are you strong?

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4 thoughts on “I’m strong because….

  1. You are strong and inspiring. I am so sorry for all the pain you have suffered, but so happy you got to hold your beautiful daughter in your arms.

  2. I am strong because I had a miscarriage, because I put my beloved dog of nearly 12 years to sleep 5 days before my due date, because my neighbor and I had the same due date – she had a healthy baby, because I’m stilling struggling to get pregnant nineteen months later when it feels as though everyone else is pregnant, because I wake up each day and put my feet on the floor.

  3. I am strong because after 2 years of trying, I still don’t have my take home baby. I also am a midwife and I too listen to women complain about their pregnancy when I would give anything to be in their position with feet in my ribs and a head on my bladder.

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