Heaven got a special gift
About a year ago,
Not what we would have chosen,
Never a breath below.
A precious little baby girl,
Hannah – we miss you so!
We were so excited, in January 2012, when we found out we were expecting a precious little one! We had two early miscarriages the previous summer and were nervous but hopeful.
Our 20-week ultrasound showed us that we were having a little girl. With one daughter who was 14 before her sister was born, we were excited that our younger daughter would have a sister closer in age (they would have been just under 4 years apart). Things were going well. I was generally healthy.
Skip the details
At the beginning of August – the beginning of the 8th month of pregnancy – I began having headaches. They were debilitating. Headaches are not something common for me. I mentioned them at my next OB appointment. They said that it appeared I had a UTI (even though I had no symptoms), so they prescribed antibiotics. About that time, I also began having problems with my vision. I thought that the headaches were related to a bad tooth, so I made an appointment and had it extracted. It didn’t help. I also had what I thought was gallbladder issues. The next OB appointment still showed protein in my urine (the reason they thought UTI previously). I had been on antibiotics for long enough that a UTI should have been knocked out, but they wrote a prescription for a different antibiotic and ignored the fact that all of the symptoms I just mentioned were classic HELLP symptoms (also known as pre-eclampsia).
This picture was taken on the evening of August 25th, about bedtime. Shortly after this, I started having contractions. I remembered that I had contractions 2-3 minutes apart all night one night with Sarah, with no apparent results, so I pretty much ignored them. I gave up sleeping about 4am on the 26th and decided to take a shower, since that often was relaxing enough to slow or stop Braxton-Hicks contractions (which I assumed I was having). I was 36 weeks.
I went into the bathroom and prepared for a shower. I woke on the floor. I knew I must have fallen there, so I knew something was wrong, but I didn’t know what. Looking back on it, I believe I had the first seizure then.
I woke up Robby and told him something was wrong. He came in and, while trying to get up from the floor, I passed out again (possibly another seizure). They got me dressed and to the car, and Robby, Rachel, and I headed for the hospital. I was having serious contractions by then, and less than a minute (I’m told) after entering the Emergency Room, Hannah’s body entered the world. Unfortunately, her spirit had already gone on before.
Hannah Grace was born August 26, 2012, at 7:00am. She was 5 pounds, 5 ounces, and 18 inches long. She was perfectly formed and beautiful.
I was blessed to be able to hold her, once they got me stable. I held her all night. When we left in the morning, they allowed us to take her to the funeral home, since it was in another county and it was silly to have to pay the funeral home to drive all the way out there and back when we were going to town anyway.
We stopped at the funeral home, where my mom met us, and discussed the situation with the gentleman there. Since they do not embalm babies, there was no reason to leave her body there. My mom purchased a tiny casket and we were, amazingly, able to have Hannah at home with us overnight. I was able to get a few pictures, showing her at home with the rest of us.