Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Reliving Our Loss

When I first read this article, I nearly bawled my eyes out. Never mind that it was lunch time at work and there were people all around me. Not only was I feeling the pain of the mothers and fathers of these beloved children, I was also reliving my own experiences.

Snippets from the article:

“It’s the worst news that anyone could get — that your child is going to die. These horrible feelings aren’t going to go away with a termination."
The loss of a child is something you never get over with, regardless of whether the child ever got born or not. For me, losing two in one year was ultimately devastating; there are times where I watch the girls playing together and the sight makes me silently grief for my unborn children.

Many have family and friends who are mystified as to why a couple would continue a pregnancy knowing their child will die. Loved ones often fear that by continuing on, the parents are simply delaying their grief or torturing themselves. What will they say to strangers who casually ask if the nursery is ready? And what if bringing the baby into this world causes the child suffering?
After hubby and I found out the condition of our third child, we initially wanted to continue the pregnancy. Correction, I wanted to continue the pregnancy, despite my HG. But then I got to thinking, what would I do if I went back to work and people started asking me when the baby was due? What would I say to those who asked whether or not I knew the baby's sex? How would I react if people asked me if I was excited to have another baby? I started thinking about all those situations and it made me so sad. Plus, our doctor also said, that if our baby would live to full term, as soon our baby was born, he/she would have to be placed in an incubator and be hooked up to all these machines to keep it alive. What quality of life would my baby have? Could I be that selfish to put our baby through that, just so I can hold our baby, look at our baby and breathe in our baby's intoxicating baby smell. Part of me was but a larger part of me accepted fate and decided to let go early. But still, part of me wonders...

Other families may have religious reasons that guide their choice. Sometimes parents may hold out a hope that somehow the terminal diagnosis was wrong. And others just don’t want to be the one who decides when their baby dies.
Hubby and I consulted the Mufti to confirm what we were doing was the best thing for us. We consulted the best doctors to ensure us that the diagnosis was correct, and that there wasn't even 1% chance of our baby surviving. Even after all that, the decision to let go was not easy. After having felt the baby kick inside of me for a few weeks, the decision just tore me inside.

Some have wondered why she’d put herself through a pregnancy and birth when she knew she’d go home with empty arms. “It isn’t all for nothing,” she says. “You can still love that baby, protect that baby and give that baby a peaceful goodbye. That’s not nothing.”
If I wasn't suffering from severe HG at the time, there would be a greater chance I would have just continued with my pregnancy. Call it blind faith, call it Mother's Intuition, I just feel that those few hours, days, weeks, with our baby would have been the most precious our family would ever have together.


I just realised something; Thursday is hubby's birthday. It's also the anniversary of the loss of our baby.

Hi there Baby. Ibu still misses you and thinks of you always. We all love you and hope to be with you in Heaven when our time comes.


moby said...

What an amazingly touching post. I remember reading about your grief and I'm still astounded by the strength and resilience you've shown.

Along said...

Moby: Sometimes it feels surreal, like it happened to someone else. I still keep the ultrasound pictures and look at them from time to time. I don't feel sad all the time, just more grateful that I still have my 2 girls.

ila de cute said...

Along, i truly understand it as i experienced it... my first pregnancy was exactly the same u mentioned in your writings... al fatihah to my dear aruah rizq ifwat...

take care and hugs...