Saturday, February 24, 2007

Another sign of survival

February 12, 2004 should have been a fun day. Instead, it was one of the worst days of my life. I had tickets to see a live show of A Prairie Home Companion, which I love and listen to often on the radio. Instead of seeing the show, however, I was admitted to the hospital. I was 24 weeks pregnant, diagnosed with severe preeclampsia and told that my baby would be delivered within days and probably wouldn't survive.

Fast forward to February 12, 2007. It was a Monday, and I went about my business as I do each Monday......taking my sons to school, teaching my band class, picking the kids up, taking one of them to speech therapy, etc. Typical Monday, I suppose. The date didn't ring a bell in my head, I didn't think anything about it all, believe it or not.

It was February 22 before I realized it. Like a lightning flash, I thought "Oh my goodness, I didn't even think about the significance of Feb. 12 on that day"! This is the first year since it all happened that I haven't thought about it, remembered it, written about it, etc. Obviously, we've come a long way since then, and my son is about to celebrate his 3rd birthday in March. We've got the typical day-to-day stuff that most families deal practice, laundry, work, school, etc. And, we've got 2 former preemies, one who's on the autism spectrum and has a lot of therapy and doctor appointments to keep us busy. So I guess it's no wonder that I "missed" the anniversary of my hospitalization 3 years ago. But, I can't help but think it's another sign of progress----beginning, EVER so slowly, to move past the experience. Maybe just a little.

Thursday, February 22, 2007


Do you share some of these fears too? Amy, mom of Gracie, shares this very eloquent post:

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Ever Feel Like a Poster Child for Preeclampsia?

Tonight, my husband and I had dinner with an old friend, Dolly. She is currently 14 weeks pregnant. We're thrilled for her. She seems thrilled, too.

In the course of normal conversation, Dolly began a side conversation with me to ask me what my preeclampsia symptoms were. So there I sat...relaying my story yet another time. On one hand, I felt that it was worthy information for her to have. On the other hand, I didn't want to scare the heck out of her. In reality, I just wanted to crawl in a hole somewhere. I didn't want to be the poster child for preeclampsia tonight. I still struggle with the feelings of failure. I still feel like denying what happened to me and my babies. Why couldn't my body do something that was so natural? Why did my children have to be born premature? Why?

As I was listing my symptoms, I noticed that the other two women at the table were listening intently to me. Naturally, my story drifted to the NICU and how my husband and I were able to bring both of our children home. There I was telling the story of my very personal journey with preeclampsia, and I had a captive audience who was just waiting for that "miracle" ending. After all, who doesn't love a story with a great "miracle" ending? Right?

While I do very much value the miracles I have in Grace and Meghan, I also know the devastating effects that preeclampsia has had on me, my daughters, and more importantly other preeclampsia survivors. The key word in this message is survivors because it also implys those who didn't survive.

I dedicate tonight's entry to a tiny, yet beautiful soul who had to leave her mommy, Denise, too soon. Madison, honey, your mom will love you forever.

Saturday, February 10, 2007


My best friend in the world is 12 weeks pregnant. I'm thrilled for her as they tried to get pregnant for 27 months before it finally happened for them. Aside from being thrilled I almost feel sick about it. I *know* that she will be fine, but then again, why wasn't I? I have no underlying conditions...What about my body caused me to develop preeclampsia in not one, but two pregnancies?? I don't think I will EVER feel complete happiness hearing that someone is pregnant. I know all too well what can happen. Although I don't know anyone in real life that has had preeclampsia I know so many women in our online forum that have suffered from it and I know just how bad it can be. I worry about my sister. She has chronic high blood pressure. They are going to start trying to conceive later this year or early next year. I know that I will feel nothing but worry for her until that baby is safely here. Growing up I knew that if I had children that I wanted three of them. I have my two boys and I am so thankful for being blessed with them, but I feel like a part of me is missing...I feel like there should be one more child running around here with my boys. I've talked to my husband about adoption and he's not keen on the idea. I would adopt in a heartbeat. I know that I could love an adopted child just as much as my boys. I don't think he's going to budge on the idea either. He is fine with us having one more baby, but I am so afraid. What if I lose a baby this time or what if my boys lose ME? There are just too many "what ifs" that outweigh the end result for me right now. Then I think how Dalton will turn three this year and Hunter will be six and we have those hard "baby" years over. I'll have a little more time to myself without having to chase after a baby or a toddler all day. Maybe it's best this way. I wonder if all women still feel a desire for a baby even after they know they are done having children. Darn preeclampsia!!! It shouldn't be this hard...It's so unfair. A woman should be able to have a baby without having to worry about something like this. If nothing else, I'm at least armed with a wealth of information about preeclampsia and I can be there to help watch for problems in my friend and my sister. I just pray that they never have to deal with this.