SHARE Atlanta Pregnancy and Newborn Loss Grief Support My*Our Experiences

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"Sharing" Our Stories/Thoughts - Along this Path

Remembering our babies...Entries 1997-2002
Losses due to cord accidents...

For Jacob

Sweet Jacob I really miss you
Mommy never had a clue
That the cord meant to keep you alive
Had stolen your life from you.

Jacob Roy Kerns
Manassas, VA

Poems and Letters

"For Daniel" by Joy (1/98)

"Zachary was my 3rd child." by Vickie (7/98)

"Bailey" by Danielle (8/29/99)

"I am writing this in memory of my son Jacob Roy Kerns" by Michele (2/11/00)

Joy's loving description of the "growing bonding" that her family experienced as they supported her through her pregnancy and of the pain that they shared when, Baby Daniel, died is very moving. The importance of the hospital caretaker's support is clearly evident and the need for holding our babies and making memories is stressed. This baby influences both those who are near as well as the parents. We, then, become responsible for where this child takes us. (Marcia)

For Daniel.

We found out that I was pregnant while I was in hospital recovering from a knee operation. On admission I told the nurse the date of my last period, I was a few days late but the nurse said that was probably due to my age and the operation went ahead. The nausea I experienced post operatively was very severe and when the doctor discovered that my period was late she asked for a pregnany test. It was positive and at the age of 42 I was to be a mother again. My partner and I were pleased but with misgivings, he is 16 years younger than me and unemployed.

There was no question that we would have the baby, we felt that the age difference would be a positive thing for the baby, at least he or she would have one younger parent.Then Jon found a job and things began to look truly wonderful for us. We decided to marry.

At the same time as this was happening I was studying for a Masters degree, and even the timing for that was good. The baby was due in July, and I would have three months until my studies resumed. Only one day a week at University and the baby could come with me.

This baby was my fourth and Jon's first.(We had lost a baby two years earlier due to miscarriage at eight weeks.I have a history of early miscarriage, but once I reached twelve weeks things went fine).

My teenage daughters had different views. The youngest, Hester was thrilled and excited, the elder Katie found the situation difficult. She was embarrassed and worried that the baby would push her out. Eventually she began to get excited too.

The nausea and vomiting were very severe during the pregnancy only beginning to let up around the fifth month. The baby was very active from about thirteen weeks and could be felt by others from about four months.

One day, about five and a half months, the baby gave me a terriffic kick. I asked Jon and Hester to feel too, and the baby gave about seven or eight hefty thumps. We were amazed. Both Jon and Hester expressed joy that they too could feel the baby so strongly. We told Katie about our little scoccer player, and she sat by me waiting for more movements. Baby's probably sleeping now I told her. We never felt any more strong movements after that day.

I began to have misgivings when the movements became less frequent, and I contacted my doctor. At the surgery she found a muffled heartbeat. When I queried the muffled sound she said it was because the baby was lying away from the handpiece.

Soon all I felt were tiny flutters. I phoned my midwife who said it was normal not to feel much at this stage! She was busy at the time. I racked my brains trying to remember the movement patterns of my other babies. I couldn't recall anything.

At Easter last year I went to visit my family in Birmingham taking the girls with me. Jon had to work. On Good Friday I felt no movements at all. My sister suggested asking the Women's Hospital for advice. They suggested I call in, and they would check things out.

Hester sat with me while the midwife moved the first monitor over my tummy. She couldn't find anything. I started to feel fear, nausea and disbelief. The midwife left to get a more powerful monitor, and I suggested that Hester go and find her Aunt and cousin to keep them copmpany.

Left on my own I cried and prayed(for the first time in years)that our baby would be alright. The midwife couldn't find a heartbeat with the second monitor and called a doctor in who suggested an ultrasound.

I lay on the couch as the scan passed over my tummy. The baby came into view, I gasped at the size he'd grown so much since the earlier scan. Then the radiographer turned to me, she looked so sad as she shook her head "I'm so sorry. There's no heartbeat." The pregnancy had lasted six months.

I burst into tears. Both the midwife and radiographer held me and soothed me.The midwife was crying too. I was taken to a private room so I could phone Jon. It was the hardest phone call I've ever made.

Hester was brought to me, and I gently told her our baby had died. Her sobs were so painful to hear. We cried together and she was crying out "why, why our baby?" As I held her it felt as if she was feeling my pain. She told me later that she had felt as if my pain were hers. My sister and neice came in and we had a cry together.

Katie was heartbroken, she was looking forward to the baby as much as everyone else.

Then the doctor took me aside. He felt that it was important that the baby should be born as soon as possible.

I was allowed to travel back to Portsmouth(140 miles)so long as I went straight to the hospital. The journey back to Portsmouth that afternoon was a nightmare. As darkness fell the comet came into view, it truly felt like a bad omen. On the way, we stopped for a drink once and it felt horrid being looked at,looking pregnant, but knowing my baby was dead.

We called into my house to get Jon and went straight to the hospital. To my horror we were shown to the labour wards. Outside our room were a row of newborn cots with welcome packs in them.

It was decided to start the labour with pessaries and I was given morphine for pain relief. It must have worked because the pain was bearable. I think it had a stronger affect on my emotions because I felt as if I was watching a good friend go through the experience. Daniel was born at 13:45. Tiny but he looked perfect.

It was only when the midwife moved him to cut the cord that Jon noticed it was knotted. The midwives and I were remarking on the length of the cord. The knot was a true knot and tests were to show that this was the most likely cause of Daniel's death.

The midwives were wonderful. They treated us with such compassion, and Daniel with such love and dignity that I still draw great comfort from my my recollection of the day.

Daniel was washed and wrapped in a blanket. Both Jon and I held him. The tears were streaming down my face as I cradled his tiny form. Jon held Daniel next and the look on his face, so tender and full of love, is another of my special memories.

The real pain started when I awoke at four am. next morning. All the morphine had worn of, and it was then I realised just how much of an emotional painkiller it was. I have never felt so empty.

Daniel is buried in Milton cemetery across the road from the hospital he and my girls were born in. The service was quiet and simple. He shares the plot with five other babies. So I know he's not lonely.

We were given pictures of Daniel, his hospital bands and a cot tag. All these things together with his scan pictures, rememberance and condolence cards are kept in a special box.

It's been nine months now since Daniel died. There hasn't been a day yet when I've not cried for him or the loss of his future and his life with us. Life goes on, but it was changed for ever by our loss of Daniel.

I came across SHARE Atlanta when I was trying to find information about chord accidents. It's wonderful that people around the world can help and support each other through such difficult times. My heart goes out to all those who have lost children whenever it happens...

When adults die the grief is for
lost times and experiences together,
With babies and children the grief is for
not having those times and experiences.

Joy, Jon, Katie and Hester

Daniel Chapman
Stillborn/6 months
Cord Accident
Portsmouth, England

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Zachary was my 3rd child.

I have 11 year old son (Garrett) and a 9 year old daughter (Amy). We were not going to have anymore children but Christmas 97, Garrett asked for a baby brother. So, the more he talked about it, the better it sounded. We decided to try but not for too long since I was to turn 35 in 8/98. I got pregnant right away.

Through all the fatigue and morning sickness, I was very excited. I always felt as something was wrong and saw the doctor quiet often. I felt Zachary move early on in my pregnancy as well as hearing his heartbeat at 6 weeks.

Everything seemed fine until I went in for my first sonogram. We wanted to know what we were having. After a long while, the tech told us the baby had died. Not what we were expecting. It all seemed like a bad dream.

My doctor then informs me that they have to induce labor. Friday was the sonogram day, and Monday they induced. Upon delivery, they discover the cord was badly twisted.

We got to hold Zachary for as long as desired and he weighed 5 oz and about 6 inches long. He looked just like the big brother who wanted him so badly. My heart & arms ache for Zachary. I love & miss him terribly.

Zachary Shane Bragg
Second trimester loss
Midland, Texas

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Entry #1...

My son, Bailey

Hi, This is my first visit to this site. I wish I wasn't here though. As I am sure alot of you also have felt and still do feel. I lost my Son Bailey when I was 18 weeks pregnant on May 11th, 1999.

I was enduced and labored and delivered this perfectly formed little baby that I was never going to be able to take home with me.

I think of him constantly and wish that I was going to have him October 11th. The day that I was due... I miss him so much. It is strange how you can miss and love someone so much and you never had the chance to know them.

I would like to know how I can light a candle in Bailey's Memory. I want people to know that he means the world to me even though he isn't apart of this universe.

Marcia's note...I lit a candle for Bailey...

Entry #2...Bailey,

I found out that I was going to have you at the beginning of the new year. I was so excited! We had been trying for you for months. You were to be the last.

On my third appointment on May 10, 1999 (day after Mother's day) They couldn't find your heart beat. They thought perhaps you were moving too much to get a good grasp on it. So I went in for a Ultra Sound.

There you were just laying there. No heartbeat, no movement. My heart began to break and the Doctor couldn't say much of anything other than how sorry he was. It was the first appointment that your daddy was able to come to. We were so anxious to see what you were going to be.

On May 11, 1999 I was induced and gave birth to you. You were so perfectly formed. But there was a kink in the umbibical cord and cut off your maternal blood supply/oxygen.

I miss you terribly. I should be giving birth to you in 6 weeks and it is not going to happen. I never got to hold you. My heart still breaks with every thought of you.

I love you so much Bailey. You were wanted so much by mommy, daddy and your 2 sisters. I wish you were still inside of me... You will be forever in my heart.

For a poem by Danielle..."Bailey" by Danielle (8/29/99)

Bailey William Heider
Second trimester loss
Lost him in Jacksonville, FL
I am now residing in Syracuse , NY

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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I am writing this in memory of my son Jacob Roy Kerns

On Oct.30, 99 I found out I was pregnant. This was my fourth pregnancy and I was very happy.

Early pregnancy went pretty well with just some nausea. I heard Jacob's heart beat at about 11 weeks. When I was 12 weeks I had a sonagram. The baby was very busy that day. Although I could not feel him yet, the pictures told the whole story. He was movin all over and stretching his legs. He was beautiful.

My next visit was on Jan 10/00. Due to my age(36) I was offer an amnio test. I had schedualed this test for that same day. As Jan 10 approached I kept weighing the odds over whether to have the amnio test or not. I choose not to have the test. I could not have ended the pregnancy if anything had been wrong.

You see he was my child and I was not going to risk losing him to have this test done. The risk of this happening is small, but I was not going to take any chances.

So when the tenth came I went to my regular doctors visit. Everything was fine. I heard his heart beat, he was growing and I felt great. At this point I was about 16 1/2 weeks. My next appointment was schedualed for Feb 14.

Over the next few weeks things didn't seem right. I can't explain it but I didn't feel pregnant anymore. I thought it was because I was through the first trimester and that was all. But soon I realized that the flutter feeling in my tummy had stopped.

I tried to go on thinking it was my imagination. I already had three healthy children and everthing would be ok. But when Sunday Jan 30 came, I had alot of sore stiffness in my lower back. I started thinking about all of this, and I got scared.

I called the doctor first thing Monday morning. The nurse told my to come in and have a listen to the baby's heart, and they would take a look at my back.

As the doctor was checking for the heart beat, I noticed a strange look on her face. She could not find one.

I was sent for a sonogram right away. Although I could not see the whole screen I could see part of it, and I saw a very sad sight: my baby was not moving. A few minutes later the tech confirmed this when she said she could see no heart beat and that my baby had past away about 2 weeks earlier.

My heart was shattered, my dreams where destroyed.

I was given my options, and I decided to be induced on the next day. On Feb 1 I was induced. The medicine made me very ill and knowing that my child was not alive had left me in shock.

Jacob was born at 3:35 am on Feb 2/00, in a quiet and dimly lit room. He was so small, only 8 inches long and weighing 5.3 ounces. His umbilical cord had strangled him. It had wrapped around his neck several times. How could the life line between my son and I have killed him? Why did this happen?

The hopital staff was very supportive and gave my several things to remember my little Jacob and our short time together. I am very glad that I was given the chance to hold him amd feel him next to me. This is something that I think about the most.

I know one day I will hold him again. For now I can only comfort myself by knowing that he is with God and with my grandparents - who I know will watch over him.

Ii had him cremated so i could keep him near me.

To my little boy Jacob, I miss you so bad. I feel like this pain in my heart is endless, but so is the love in my heart. I know you will be with me always because I feel you in my heart. I will see you again one day.

I love you sweet boy......Mommy

Entry #2: Thank you so much for lighting a candle for Jacob and for giving me a place to go where everyone understands this emptiness and pain and is helping me try to heal.

Second trimester loss

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Tuesday June 13, 2000

Our precious little Justin Kamakai will be remembered always

I found out that I was pregnant in Mid-March 2000. Though there was so much happening in my life at the time when I found out, we could not have been happier. My daughter Marissa (first grade) and I were going to school and living in Cheney, Washington away from the home that we knew, Maui. I was pursuing a degree in Biology to prepare for the Master program in Naturopathic Medicine at Bastyr University.

We had plans to move to Seattle with my fiance, Rich as soon as I finished my Biology degree, now it would be sooner, in June, at the end of the school year. We were all so happy and looking foreward to starting our new life and family together.

My last doctor visit was May 24th for my 16 week check up, everything was fine, it would be the last time I would hear the beating of my little baby's heart.

The wedding date is July 8, 2000. We will be getting married on Maui where I grew up and where my daughter was born. My daughter and I were to leave to Maui on June 11th and Rich was to arrive on July 5th.

Friday June 9th was the last day I would be in Cheney: I had an appointment for my first sonsgram at 9:00 AM that day; I was to pick up my wedding dress at 10:00 AM; Rich would pick us up that evening to go to Seattle and then leave for Maui Sunday morning. We were so excited, we couldnt't wait to find out what we were having (I knew Justin was a boy).

I was now eighteen weeks pregnant, almost half was through. I took two close friends with me to the appointment. I lay there on the table as the technician began to look for my baby, the picture was so clear, it was a perfect profile view of my precious little baby. As he lay there so perfect and so still I started to feel worried and I knew that somthing was very wrong. My baby was not moving, I stared at the screen waiting for something to happen, there was no movement and I saw no heart beat.

The technician silently went to get the doctor telling me nothing, my friends did not even realize what was going on, that there was something wrong. I was in shock and did not want to accept what I had seen on the screen. When the doctor came in they put my baby back on the screen and I numbly asked if somthing was wrong hoping to hear something other that what I already knew, that my baby was not living inside of me anymore.

I can not put into words how all the feelings that brewed inside of me felt. It was not real I thought. I just wanted to wake up from this terrible nightmare, but as those seconds that seemed like eternity passed I realized that this was a brutal reality and it was mine. I did not want to accept it.

We went straight to my doctors office where he said how sorry he was and how it was not anything that I did wrong. It was a bazar thing at at this stage they do not know why hesse things happen. He told me that they would have to induce labor. I went home and waited for the pain to stop.

I searched for the strength and the wisdom for how to tell Rich that he would not be a father yet. How could I be the one to pull the rug out from under our dreams, and all that we had planned for.

That evening Rich arrived with flowers ("just because he loved me so much") to take us with him to Seattle. Telling him was so hard, we just cried in each others arms until we fell asleep.

The next morning I was admitted into the hospital to have labor induced. Rich was there for me, by my side the entire time through everything. The hormone took over 24 hours to produce strong enough contractions to cause the delivery of this tiny person that we will never see alive.

Justin Kamakai was delivered still born at 9:50 AM on Sunday June 11th 2000. The cord that was to nourish him until birth was thightly wrapped arround his tiny little neck. How could this have happened? This perfect little growing being was taken away before he had a chance see the world. It was just not fair, and the pain we felt was so different that anything we had ever imagined.

It is now June 13th, I have not stopped thinking about my litle son that I will never hold alive, I will not see him grow or help him to take his first steps. We will hold his memory alive in our hearts for always. As we say our vows on july 8th to love and cherish forever we will also vow to keep Justin's memeory alive, and know that we have our own special angel watching down upon us always.

Justin Kamakai's ashes will be set free on Maui into the ocean with a special prayer from his parents, his sister and all those that will always love him. Kamakai means child of the sea in Hawaiian and the sea will be one place where Justin's memory will live, in the life giving waters of the ocean.

As is the Earth, Life is made up of 75% saline water. The ocean is what I believe we all were born of, this is why we choose to do this and this will help us to grieve our great loss.

In the past few days I have felt things that I never imagined were allowed in this life, much thought I would ever have to feel. Feelings that I never knew were possible to feel and live through.

We set up a shrine table yesterdayin the memory of our son, on the table there is a beautiful arrangement of daisys, the memory book that the hospital gave us, a Ti leaf bracelet I made that would have fit perfectly on Justin's little head. The leaf came from a tiny Ti plant that I started around the time Justin was concieved. On the bracelet there is a tiny little silver heart. There is also a little heart pillow with tiny foot prints on it that would have been the perfect size for him. There is a white candle that has been burning ever scince we lit it yesterday and I will not blow it out.

I sat there yesterday and lit inscence in another tiny Ti plant that I started the same time as the other and when we have our own home I will plant it and this will be a growing memory for our son Justin Kamakai. When I sat at the shrine and stared into the candle the emptiness was so real inside of me I felt like I was caving in, but I will get through this, many people have and they are still alive and accepting thier own tradgedy. I want to sit at his shrine again but I don't know if I am just torturing myself. I need to pray but I don't know how when I feel this way. The pain is just there and it won't go away and it just hurts so bad, I don't know what to do. How do I do this?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated

Justin Kamakai
June, 11 2000
Second trimester loss

Marcia's thoughts: Please read more about grief after losing a baby from our drop down box, "Allowing Grief to Happen to Heal", "The First 24 Hours and Later" and Coping ideas". All of these address some of the issues that you asked about and are so common and painful to us after we have lost a baby.

Religion, prayer, faith and our beliefs are a very major factor in our healing and grieving. Our loss challenges us and forces us to make choices. Re - evaluation of all of these issues is normal. I think these questions and needs eventually force us to grieve and heal.

You have lost your child, your dream of a living child and when we lose someone we love we grieve. In today's society pain is not well excepted, but it is part of our existence. A shrine is a beautiful way to remember Justin Kamakai as is returning his ashes to the sea. Prayer will come...thinking is often prayer in my book.

You write well-you might consider journalling. It provides an outlet while providing a way to release our feelings. You have started the process of grief and that is the first step of healing.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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