Angel Baby #4
This 4th pregnancy was out of the blue.
On a random day, my hubby, Rafael, questioned me on when I had my last period. Not realizing, I was already a week late. I decided to take a pregnancy test, hoping I was pregnant but trying not to get my hopes up (yes, some of you know what this feels like). When I took the test and saw a faint second pink line I knew I was pregnant. I ran to my bedroom to show him, we just smiled and hugged each other. An unspoken “hooray”.
The feelings were the same. Even after experiencing the recent loss of Sofia, I couldn’t help but feel all those happy feelings of knowing we were parents again. Of knowing we created life again.
However, once these moments of elation wore off, I was sitting face to face with my fears.
Fear of having another baby loss, fears of not enjoying the baby enough, fears of being too happy, fears of being too sad.
I told my big sister Karen first. She helped calm these fears by reminding me to take it “one day at a time”. Her words seem to soothe these fears even if just for the moment. My rational mind somehow knew she was right and that’s what I did, took every emotion as it came, day by day.
Rafa and I decided not to tell anyone else until we went to the OBGYN and had a sonogram. That’s exactly what we did. It was so difficult not telling everyone, especially my sisters, mom and dad but I managed.
The day finally came, which made me super happy and anxious. Like when you're at an interview, waiting in the lobby, part of you says “heck yes, I'm gonna kick ass” but the other part wanting to yell at the top of my lungs, “Ahhhhhh!!!! What is taking soooo long? Oh yea, you got there early.” (lol).
All I kept thinking was, this is our first sonogram, our first picture, our first hope of a rainbow baby. Then, I saw and heard a small heart beat for the first time. Ba-dum, ba-dum, ba-dum. It was amazing. I was so grateful. We were so grateful to God for this blessing.
I knew baby #4 was a blessing because I had prayed for this to the Virgin Mary at the Basilica of Guadalupe in Mexico City, just a month earlier. My prayers had been answered. I had faith, I would be holding this baby in nine months.
As soon as I could, I told ONLY my immediate family about this pregnancy, because as a #angelparents, this is something you just decide to do at some point. I guess it’s easier to face your family after a loss than the entire world.
I took it day by day but like overcast on a rainy day, some days my thoughts were clouded with a heavy downpour of fear and wanting to remember Sofia. Sofia could never be replaced, I told myself. I found myself healing from her loss and filled with joy for her sister or brother who was on the way.
On good days, all I could think about was which gender clothes I would buy or how I would fix the new nursery in my bedroom. The frivolous things that seem so important to a mom to be.
Then, there were challenging days, like visiting my new OBGYN specialist, which caused me such anxiety. I felt as if I was holding my breath every time I saw the doctor. Every time, I saw a new sonogram. It was so bad, the first consultation I was diagnosed with high blood pressure but thankfully it was a false one-time reading. It got easier for me, the more I went to visit, and everything seemed okay.
We decided to see a new specialist because we were not 100% happy with our last doctor. Following my gut, this time. When I spoke to our new specialist, he was optimistic and looked me in the eye and said he would do his best to help me. I loved that. He came highly recommended by my friend. We trusted he would do everything in his power to help us have a baby. This doctor tested me for everything under the sun, all my lab results came back negative, which is good, right? Yes.
At the time, I explained to the doctor that Sofia, was pre-term partly because my cervix started to shorten too early, causing me to have contractions and give birth. So he advised I have a cerclage. If you don’t know what a cerclage is, it might sound like a procedure from the middle ages, haha, it did to me. A cerclage, is a cervical stitch performed during pregnancy to hopefully prevent an early delivery.
Then it became a waiting game, for another doctor’s visit, another sonogram. I made it to 10 weeks.
On June 5, 2019, I went to my regular OBGYN for a normal check up and the sonogram technician said those words no expecting parents should ever hear.
I was lying on the patient table, the technician would not turn the sonogram screen, which I found odd. She never did that, trying to stay optimistic I asked “can I see the baby?” and her face said it all before she could utter the words “something is wrong, I don’t see a heartbeat”.
Like a vase, smashed into a million pieces, my heart came crashing down. The tears started rushing down my face, I knew these tears, I knew these emotions, my fears coming true all over again. My hubby trying frantically to console me, to console each other. I defiantly asked the technician, to ask the doctor to review the sonogram, because she could be wrong, right? Step one in my grief, denial.
The doctor rushed in, with disbelief, and confirmed my pregnancy loss. The weird part is that a week before I woke up from my sleep, feeling something was different, was that the moment my baby stop living? I won’t ever know but my baby was gone.
Just like she (yes, it was a girl) came into this world, out of the blue, our baby was gone.
The same day, I also saw the specialist, who reaffirmed the loss and suggested I have a D&C, which is a procedure to remove the baby tissue in order to prevent any infection. With tears in my eyes and a broken heart I scheduled a D&C, as soon as possible. Why? Because I wanted to rid myself of the agonizing pain of my loss. I know to some of you, saying this may sound harsh...
But wouldn’t you try to stop the pain as soon as possible, if the hurt was unbearable?
As we left the hospital, in the middle of the parking lot, my husband and I just held each other and wept in disbelief. In that moment, I remember thinking, the world around me looked the same but we were so different now.
With each baby loss, my heart shatters into a million pieces, becoming harder to put together again. It's like, there are more pieces and I forget how they fit. I pray to God for help because some pieces still don’t fit anymore. It makes sense though, my heart is not the same anymore. I am not the same anymore.
I decided for myself, after this 4th pregnancy loss I cannot define myself by my losses. As a childless mother, it makes me feel like a failure. As a woman, this is a harsh standard to judge myself by. Maybe it’s just an experience?
An experience that teaches me something and someday soon I will have my rainbow baby. Yes, I choose to believe this experience is a part of me, like when learning walk or riding a bike and falling. I must get up, dust myself off, and try again, no matter how hard the fall. I must learn not to define myself by failed attempts but by the fact that I get up again. I preserve, this is my true judgement.
I must define myself by…
What I can be…
A loving wife, proud angel mom, crazy sister, good daughter, caring puppy mother, supportive friend, or friendly neighbor...
What I can do…
Share my gift of writing that expresses my truth of sorrow and joy, my passion for bringing more love and sunshine to this world…
to help others bloom.
It took me weeks to write and finish this post, the loss definitely hit hard but I knew I had to share. By sharing, I heal, you heal, we all heal. Share any comments or experience below, I would love to read.
Thanks for listening.
RIP baby girl, Camila Aguilar, 6.5.2019
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