On Monday, April 20, 1998, Paul and I went for my weekly checkup around 3pm and everything was fine. The baby was healthy and her heartbeat was strong. Paul came down with the flu that evening and I too noticed that I had gotten a slight chill about me. I thought this was unusual because throughout my whole pregnancy, I had always been warm. I didn't really worry too much about it, as I simply thought I was coming down with the flu that Paul had.
The next day, I went to work and did my job as normal. I really didn't pay too much attention to the baby that morning because I was busy and didn't really have time to think about her. Things slowed down around 2pm and I sat down and thought...I couldn't remember feeling the baby move lately...the more I thought about it, the more I couldn't remember when the last time I felt the baby move actually was. I waited until my normal quitting time to leave work, which was 2:30 pm and the whole time, I kept pushing on my stomach and trying to get the baby to wake up and move. When I left work, I called Paul on the cell phone and I said that I was starting to get a little concerned because I hadn't felt the baby move in a while. He assured me that everything was fine and not to worry. So, I continued on home.
Once I got home, we ran a couple errands and then came back to our house to prepare dinner. Still, I felt no movement of the baby. I laid down on the sofa (because she used to always move when I was still) and still nothing. Paul convinced me to call the doctor and I did. My doctor advised me to go to the hospital for a non-stress test.
When we got to the hospital, the nurses hooked up the belts on my stomach, one to measure the movement and the other to measure the baby's heartbeat. I have never heard such LOUD silence in all my life as the moment they strapped that heartbeat belt on my stomach and we heard nothing. I knew right then and there what happened. My baby was gone. Several nurses tried to calm me down and comfort me while they kept searching for a heartbeat, but it was no use, they couldn't find one. The nurses called in my OB who also could not find the heartbeat and she, in turn, called in the ultrasound specialists. My OB told me that 'it doesn't look good' and I knew she was right. My baby had already died.
The ultrasound technician came in and performed a lengthly scan before bringing in another doctor to read the ultrasound. The doctor turned to us and said he was sorry, but there was no heartbeat.
The nightmare had only just begun...I was given the choice of being induced into labor or to let my body go into labor naturally. I chose the induction option. (I couldn't imagine walking around for 3, or maybe up to 5 more weeks being pregnant knowing that my baby had already died.) For two days, I was in the birthing suite being prepared to be induced into labor. The whole time I was there, I could hear all the other women in the other birthing suites giving birth to their healthy, crying babies, which was like putting salt into an open wound.
On Thursday, April 23, 1998 at 1:31pm EST, our baby girl, Jordan Bailey, was born into this world as perfect as any baby, except she wasn't breathing and her heart wasn't beating. Paul and I held her from the time she was born until around 7pm when we were exhausted and asked the nurses to take her. She was beautiful. She looked so much like her big sister and I know they would have been best friends. I have many many pictures of her and I am very greatful of the time I had to spend with her. I have a little lock of her hair and her hand and foot prints. Later, it was determined that Jordan had died due to a pinch in the umbilical cord. Yes, these are her footprints that are the background of this page! Brooke came to the hospital with her Grandfather and saw Jordan, but she was really too little to realize who Jordan was and what happened which I am also greatful. I don't want her to have to suffer the pain we are going thru.
And, four months later, on September 1, 1998, I found out I was pregnant again, then, two days later, I found out I was miscarrying our newest baby. After several ultrasounds, it was determined that I was having a tubal pregnancy and I had to have laparascopy surgery to have it removed. By the time the doctor went in to remove the pregnancy from my tube, it had already worked it's way out of my tube and miscarried on it's own.
April 20, 1999, I found out I was again pregnant and due on December 19, 1999. After 6 long months of trying again, we were overjoyed to finally be expecting another baby. We went for an ultrasound at about 5 weeks to make sure the baby was not in my tube and then for another one about at about 7 weeks, when we saw the baby's heart beating at 132 bpm. My doctor said everything looked perfect and didn't need to see me back for a month.
My next appointment was on Thursday evening, June 3rd. On the way to my appointment, we stopped at the mall and I bought some new maternity clothes. I was just short of the 12 week mark in my pregnancy and all was going well. We went in for my appointment and I got to meet a new doctor in the practice I normally go to. She used the baby doppler to try to listen to the baby's heartbeat. For about 10 minutes, she searched for a heartbeat with no luck. She could tell I was concerned about her not finding a heartbeat so she offered to take me into the other room and do an unofficial sonogram just so that I wouldn't worry.
We went into the other room and she told us that she wasn't real sure how to work the ultrasound machine and to bear with her while she figured out how to turn it on. After she figured out how to turn it on, she looked at the u/s screen for a few minutes and still couldn't see anything resembling a heartbeat. The baby was not moving at all. She told us that she was not an expert in doing ultrasounds and that we should come back in the morning when the regular ultrasound technician was there and could do an official ultrasound. I did not have a good feeling at all, but Paul was still optimistic at this point.
The next morning we went back for an official ultrasound and the technician looked at our baby for about 10 minutes before telling us, I'm sorry, but I don't see a heartbeat. On June 4th, I was given the option of waiting for the baby to miscarry naturally or to have a d&c to get it over with. I chose the latter. We still do not know what caused this baby's heart to stop beating. We have now lost three children in a little over a year.
May 25, 2000, we were blessed with another baby girl, who we named Sydney Nicole. You can read about Sydney and the extremely rough start she has had by clicking HERE
In April 2001, we were surprised by the news of expecting yet another baby. My due date was December 23, 2001. The first few weeks of the pregnancy were going extremely well. I had a sonogram at 9 weeks and the baby was in there jumping around and the heart was beating strong. I had no morning sickness and felt great. At 13 weeks, we went on a mini vacation to my sister's house in Philadelphia and I started spotting a bit. I was not having any cramping and I know I spotted before with Sydney's pregnancy, but I was still worried. I called my OB back home and they instructed me to go to a nearby ER and get checked out. The ER doctor examed me and saw no evidence of bleeding at the moment which he said was a good sign. They sent me for an ultrasound to make sure everything was okay. I had to go ALONE into the U/S room and lay there on a table while the tech did the U/S. She wouldn't say a word to me and she knew how nervous I was. While I watched, I saw NO heartbeat and NO movement of the baby and the flatline of the heartrate across the screen. After losing 5 babies and seeing 3 of them already gone in an ultrasound, I know enough to know when an ultrasound doesn't look right...it's not that hard to figure out. I asked the tech if it looked bad....she told me that she really didn't know and had to have a 'doctor' read the films because she couldn't tell if it was good or bad (I was furious...you mean to tell me that she does this every day of her life and doesn't know a living baby or not...I doubt it....but I realize she probably didn't want to break the bad news to me or that she wasn't allowed to say anything to me, but still, it made me mad). I went back to the room where Paul and Sydney were waiting for me and told Paul the bad news. He knew I was right too, but we had to sit there and wait for a doctor to come in and give us the results of the U/S. Finally, the doctor came in and said that unfortunately, it looked like I was in the beginning stages of a miscarriage and that it looked like the baby was only measuring about 10 weeks. My OB & that ER coordinated my coming home early and having a D&C. I am very thankful for the 2 beautiful girls I have now, but so sad to have had to go thru all this so many times.
We love you Jordan and our three other angels and we miss you tremendously. Take care and we will be with you again some day. Love, Mommy, Daddy, Brooke & Sydney