My husband and I had been married 1 year when we decided to
start trying for a baby. Everyone said to wait another year, that we were rushing
ourselves. But, we wanted a baby more than anything in the world. Not even
a month after our 1st year anniversary on January 2, 1999 I took a home
pregnancy test and it was positive! We were so happy, and, couldn't believe that I was pregnant!
We immediately called everyone with our news!
The pregnancy kind of came at a bad time because my husband is in the Navy and his ship was leaving in
March for a 6-month deployment. We went to the military doctors for the
first 3-month appointments. I had 2 ultra sounds and everything looked
perfect! My husband and I chose not to do the AFP test because if there
was going to be anything wrong with the baby we would deal with it then and
love and care for him or her no matter what was wrong. One thing we
weren't told was that it could detect fatal birth defects. We thought that the AFP
was for Downs Syndrome and other things like that.
At the beginning of April I left for Indiana to be with my family for the remainder of the pregnancy while my
husband was at sea. I felt Cameron move for the fist time not even a
week after my husband left. I made my appointment with my new civilian
doctor and got an ultra sound there. They weren't going to give me one
since I had already had 2 but I wanted to know the sex and wanted to get a
video to send to my husband. I got like 2 minutes of video and found out
it was a BOY! When I got the ultra sound done they measured and
everything was right on schedule, but, the head measured 3 to 4 weeks behind.
I was a bit concerned but not too worried because I was told that the
measurements could be off by just a centimeter. She referred me to a specialist
so that I could get another ultrasound.
I had a whole week to wait to see if everything was all right. I asked everyone whom I knew in the medical field
what it (the problem) could be. Everyone not to be concerned, there is a very rare
birth defect but, it was rare and they told me not to worry. So I went into the doctors
office thinking that I would walk out of there and everything would
be just fine! Cameron would never cooperate (Cameron is what we named him)
so they were pushing really hard on my stomach and pushing him up inside of
me in order to get a better reading. They finally got a good look at his head and they started talking and
were really concerned. They told me Cameron had Anencephaly and the
condition was fatal! I lost it I cried uncontrollably. I had no clue what
it (Anencephaly) was and why it was happening to us! Were young and healthy were
supposed to have healthy children.
I didn't know what to do. My husband was on the other side of the world. I went to the American Red Cross and had them send a message to him. I didn't want him to find out that way but I had
no other choice. That was a Monday and by early Tuesday morning he called
me. Then by Thursday he was home!
Once we got together we started talking about what we were going to do. We got on the Internet and read stories
and researched what Anencephaly really was. My mother chose to look at
pictures, which were devastating. I chose not to look at most of them, only at the ones
of babies that had caps on their heads. Whatever there was to see I didn't want it to
scare me. I didn't even know if I would look at my own son's deformity.
After what we learned on the Internet and what the doctors said we chose to
have Cameron early. I went back for 1 more ultrasound and we got a really
good look at Cameron's head. The doctor drew us a picture of what he
thought Cameron would look like. Basically he showed his head ending at
the eyebrows. He thought that there was skin covering his brain and then
a small hole in the back. At least there was covering because at first we
were thinking it was just all going to be exposed.
We chose to have Cameron early but I had a really hard time setting a date to go to the
hospital to be induced. I chose to relax for a couple of weeks and enjoy
him inside of me. He moved so much! It looked like a rolling pin inside
of me. On May 23, 1999 at 6 PM I went into Methodist Hospital at 9 PM
they put 3 seaweed sticks into my uterus and then a pill that caused
cramping. They took the sea weed sticks out at about 4 in the morning and
put in more pills. At about 10:30 I began to have hard labor pains. It
may not have been 10:30 I didn't really look at the clock but anyway I was
told not to push! They didn't want my water to break they wanted Cameron
to come out still in the sack.
Cameron was born at 11:17 AM. They cut him out of the sack and laid him on my chest. He had hair and he had skull! The hole was only the size of a dime! He looked perfect. He had everything
down to fingernail creases in his hands and eyelashes. I was so proud of
him. All I could do was just stare at him which was when I saw his chest move! The
nurse grabbed her stethoscope and heard his heart beat! We all got to hear
it but sadly, it only lasted for 1 1/2 hours. Slowly he started to get cold and
like a mother I just wrapped him up really tight in his blanket. We had him
baptized, took tons of pictures and video taped. We got his feet and handprints on a basket lid, on paper for his baby book, molds of his feet and hands. He weighed 1 lb. 4 oz. and was 12 1/2 inches long. His feet and
hands were so big! He was long and dangly.
The hospital had tiny outfits so Cameron did have something to wear and they even had tiny diapers! The
bonnet on his head was so tiny, but, so cute! We held him till it was time to
go home and my parents drove him to the funeral home, which was about 1 hour
away. We went there to kiss him good bye. It was so hard to leave him
there! On My 26th we buried him. I got to hold him till it was time to
lay him down to rest in his little casket. We also drove him to his grave
He wore an outfit that my cousin made for him. He was wrapped in a
blanket that my grandma made for him. We put a picture of my husband and I
in with him, and my husband even gave him his dog tag. We placed a couple toys
in the casket for him. Cameron was buried next to his great grandpa who I know is
taking care of him right now! We plan on trying to have another baby again, but I will be on
Folic Acid for 3 months to help prevent this from happening again!
Here are pictures of Cameron. They show how beautiful he was and that
not all babies with Anencephaly have an exposed brain or an empty cavity. I'm
so proud of him and we love him so much! Our little Angel.
Written by Cameron's Mommy!
Please Visit Cameron's Web Page