Wednesday, September 09, 2009

One week ago

One week ago my world was ripped from underneath me
One week ago i learnt to fear and despise the foetal heartrate monitor and it’s lack of result
One week ago my heart was ripped from my chest – part of it will forever be absent now
One week ago i became a woman of sorrow
One week ago was the worst day of my life

So I was induced last Wednesday morning. Within hours my parents had arrived in Plett from East London and our pastor had arrived from Somerset West. Together we formed this odd little team. My dad would walk me up and down the hospital passage manning the drip stand, my mom would read out the countless SMSs of support and encouragement which streamed in from around the world. During many of my contractions I'd have everyone bouncing or swaying their hips (doing the hula!) with me.

Wednesday passed in a blur.

By Thursday morning the contractions were still very irregular. I was worried - if labour didn't get going they'd want to do a caesar. Emotionally I could not have coped with that but it was becoming less and less safe for me. This spurred me on. I walked more. Bounced on the labour ball more. Had them pump in more induction stuff in my drips.

Soon the contractions were a bit fiercer and I revelled in them. There is something sweet about pain. Pain is better than feeling numb.

The day went on and by 5 that evening there was nothing sweet about the pain. I asked for an epidural but the anaethetist was in surgery. Finally he came and then battled to get it in. 2 days of labour. Emotional and physical exhaustion. Sweet relief. God bless the inventor of the epidural. So underrated!!

Time to push. No. I wasn't ready. After all that I didn't want it to be over yet. I didn't want her taken from my body. I couldn't imagine her no longer being a part of me. Out she came. The Band held her and spoke to her while I tried to calm down. I was in shock. Shaking, battling to breathe. Unready for the moment.

Finally I calmed myself. I held my little girl. Best and hardest moment of my life. She was battered and bruised like me. But she was beautiful. She was as I had seen her in every dream. A delicate little dark haired thing. A button nose. Pouty lips. Perfect little fingers and toes and a squishy baby bum.

Sophia Grace, born sleeping 3 September, 20:30, 3.1kg

And God? Where was He?
Right beside me throughout. It would be too easy to blame this on God as is He is some cruel sadistic killjoy. He is the opposite. God is a Father and I think He is crying more than us as He watches us in so much pain. God didn’t kill our child. He took her. That is not a terrible thing for her. She will never know pain, hurt, cruelty. She is in a place of peace and joy. It is the Band and I who are suffering. Not her. And we know He has purpose in this. The weekend before we left for Plett we had our 3rd baby shower. There is a man we know who has an incredible gift of prophecy. That may sound weird to you but I have seen him talk to people of situations he knows nothing about with incredible insight and clarity and there is no denying his gift. At the baby shower he had the following to say... it sounded so odd at the time, but in retrospect it was spot on and shows that God knew this would happen and it is part of His plan:
“I believe that this baby will not cry, mess, play around, nappies won’t be changed. I believe that this refers to the baby’s spiritual life. This baby won’t be distracted by the world. This baby will hunger after God. This baby will be a man or woman after God’s heart.”
This prophecy tells me that God foreknew that this would happen. The beauty in that is that it takes away any possible self blame that might creep in. No point in “what ifs” if God knew weeks before.

If this had to happen, for whatever His reason, then it could not have happened in a kinder way. There is so much to thank Him for: I am grateful that there is nothing we could have done or did wrong and that we won’t sit with a lifetime of regret and selfblame. I am grateful that of all the places we were in Plett at an incredible hospital surrounded by incredible staff who honestly treated me as a daughter. They cried with me, carried me, bathed me, held me. Everyone from the cleaning staff to the kitchen were so kind. On some days i was the only patient in the hospital, so to say that I got excellent care would be an understatement. We were like Brangelina - an entire private hospital all to ourselves. I am grateful to the staff for calling in Claudine – a girl who lost her first baby at 32 weeks and also had to deliver her child. It was so helpful learning from her regrets and experience. I am grateful that despite a massive blood clot – or in fact, because of it, I was healthy and strong. My life should have been in grave danger and yet I felt fine. That doesn’t make sense really, but for God. When placenta abrupture happens, the mom generally ends up in ICU at best due to the massive internal bleeding. I am grateful for the people who surrounded and supported me. My parents, our pastor. I am so so grateful for my husband. He is incredible. He is so strong and so gentle and seeing him holding and talking to our little girl when i just couldn’t was one of the most precious moments of my life.

When we first heard she had died on that awful morning I wondered: If i could take back the whole pregnancy, would I?

Today I can tell you that I would not. It is infinitely better to have loved and lost than never to have loved. The Band and I have 9 months of precious memories. We spoke to her, she kicked me and responded when I tapped my stomach. We communicated. She knew my voice. We knew each other. We held her. She is our first born. Our little girl. We are parents.

14 comments:

Tamara said...

My heart goes out to you, Caz. I thank the Lord that you are clinging to Him in this time and that He has blessed you with wisdom, an amazing family and almost nine months of getting to know Sophia Grace.

Although this is one of the hardest blows life can deal, I believe you will be able to minister to others and help heal their brokeness because of how your heart has been broken.

I admire you so much for the way you are handling your loss and believe that it will bring you and the Band even closer to each other and deepen your faith.

I wish I could reach out over the miles and give you a tight hug, shed tears with you and pray with you.

Much love to you.

Being Brazen said...

:( That was very sad to read. I was spilling a few tears at my desk.

I cant even imagine what any of it must feel like. I am so amazed at how brave and straong you are being about all this.

You and your hubby are in my prayers. Stay strong. At least you know God always has a greater plan.

quartercenturycrisis said...

Now it is my turn to say what an amazing woman you are. I admire your grace and perspective on God and His part (if that is the correct way to put that) in this. It's something I'm still struggling with.

Thanks for sharing this with us Caz, I can't imagine how difficult it must be, after just a week. I agree with Tamara, I believe you will be a great help to someone one day who finds themself in a similar situation.

Still thinking of you...

Sunshinemeg said...

You are parents and your little baby girl will forever know you. The honesty in the post is beautiful. I am deeply saddened for your loss. I hope you and your family hearts are less heavy every day. Sending all my prayers and good thoughts your way Caz.

Kristen said...

my thoughts and prayers are with you to get through this time. I admire your strength and belief in God and His plan. Prayers to you and your family.

S. said...

Your honesty is incredible. Reading it was hard, but your peace had me at peace. You seem to have an understanding that not every parent who loses a child has and that is amazing. It is also great to know that you are healthy. God Bless you.

Joanne said...

I am thinking and praying for you and the band. Thanks for sharing and I am sure this will help others that have been or will be in this place with you. x

Gill said...

Caz you and your husband have been in my thoughts and prayers constantly. It is so clear that God's hand has been over you through this entire experience.

Simply-Mel said...

An awe-inspiring post. I am sure God delights in your understanding of His greater plan and weeps with you for your loss.

All too often this loss can result in bitterness and blame and I am so encouraged by you; what an amazing mom you are.

You have learnt and lived more in this last week that most of us endure in a lifetime. Thanks Caz for your vulnerability.

Mrs. Holly Hall said...

hugs to you, hugs hugs hugs.

Slyde said...

my god, i am so sorry for your loss.

When my son was born 6 years ago, my sons heartbeat stopped and we had to rush to do an emergency c-section. My son was saved, but it was so close. i cant imaging if things had gone otherwise.

please know that i am thinking of you. stay strong.

acidicice said...

Oh.My.God.

I'm so terribly sorry for your loss, Caz. My heart bleeds for you and your family.

After we lost our Jamie, I really appreciated all the support I received and the outpouring of love from people I didn't even know, but nothing they said made it better.

I wish you a path of healing laid out especially for you by God.

I wish I could hold you, because that does help.

Stay close to your man.

All the best. Keep blogging. Let it all out. My blog saved my life.

xxx

HUGEST HUGS

Ruby said...

*hugs and hugs and hugs and hugs* I'm grateful for your unwavering trust in God. He is our Father and He loves you more than anything...I'm sure His heart is aching for the hurt you are experiencing. You guys are still in my prayers and will be for a long time. Also, some of my other friends from church are also praying for you and praising God that you are well.xxxx

livingintherainbow said...

Caz

Thank you for pointing me to this post. Words are not enough again! So sorry says a lot but not enough.

So much of your story resonates with me. I get that you wouldn't take the pregnancy back if you could - that would save all the pain but erase a life from the existance of eternity - nor would my wife and I. It is fantastic that you recognise that God did not cause this - death is the enemy of God. Oh and the staff were wonderful at Abigail's birth too for which we are so grateful.

There will be hard times ahead perhaps even when you doubt some of these simple truths. It helps to stay open with a few people you trust and hopefully blogging will help too - it does for me.

God Bless