I have this post as a page on my blog but wanted to have an entry on here for R, he is seldom spoken about on my blog – or maybe he is and I haven’t realised just how much I do write about him. R is such a huge part of our family even my two year old talks about him and knows where he is and where his garden is. R was very much wanted and even more greatly missed. Every minute of every day R walks beside me I just wish I could hold him for a minute more but then a minute would never be enough.
After TTC for a couple of years and having one early miscarriage I got pregnant in 2004 just after we bought a wreck of a house and were living in my husbands work while our bungalow was being torn apart and built back up again.
My pregnancy seemed to be going ok I had hyperemisis and was hospitalised for a week due to this and put on medication but continued to go into work every day.
At my 20 weeks scan all was normal they had no concerns and sent me on my way. When I was 25 weeks pregnant I started to get a horrible pain in my side and went to see the nurse who did a urine sample but said it was ok- they didn’t realise I was pregnant until I said. I still went into work but came home at lunch time every day where MrR had a bath waiting for me to ease the pain so I could go back to work again for the afternoon. As everyone said I was ok I didn’t panic I though this was just pregnancy.
Saturday night came and I was awake most of the night crying as I couldn’t feel my baby moving. Sometime in the early hours he moved and I was reassured enough to get a little sleep. On Sunday I still didn’t feel great but thought I was over reacting.
Monday 22nd November I went to the antenatal appointments in my doctors and was seen second on the list. The lady in front was in early labour at term so was rushed to hospital. I then went in to say I had these pains and my feet etc were swollen. My blood pressure was also raised and my urine sample came back with lots of markers for pre-eclampsia.
I was sent straight to the hospital and got to the delivery suite where I was turned away as the lady who had gone up from my GP’s was in the admission room. I was brought to a ward where I lay for a while with people checking my blood pressure. They changed me to another ward but still only continued to check my blood pressure, I didn’t get a scan.
On Tuesday 23rd November the doctors decided that I should start a 24 hour urine collection and at lunchtime they came and gave me a steroid injection in case I had to deliver early. After lunch we went for a scan.
Mr R and I walked down and had the scan where the radiologist said she couldn’t see properly on the scanner and made us move to one next door. She then called for a second opinion before giving us our file and letting us walk back to the ward.
On the way back I opened the file and saw reduced movement and panicked- MrR told me to stop until we spoke to the doctor in case I was reading it wrong.
I wanted to go out for a walk but was stopped by the nurses and told the consultant was on his way to see me- the first we had seen him so far.
The consultant came and told me my baby wasn’t moving and needed to be delivered- I was only 26 weeks pregnant at this point. I cried MrR cried and we started calling family. The nurses came to prep me for theatre when everything changed again. The consultant came back to say I was to be taken by hospital to the main hospital where the regional NICU was situated. We packed up and waited for the ambulance to come. My mum came with me in the ambulance while MrR drove behind.
Once we arrived at the main hospital I was taken by wheelchair to a room where they had a more sensitive scanner- I had no idea where I was and only found out the location of this room when I was pregnant with K and getting doppler scans. A female doctor came through a second door in the room and scanned me again and said my baby had to be delivered immediately.
I was wheeled to the delivery suite and prepped again for theatre. i had a nurse with me and she kept saying the babies heart rate was flat and I needed to go in for surgery immediately but the surgeons where at their break and wanted to wait until after they had their toast! All this time I was in denial, my mum and MrR were with me and my dad was on his way as his work had not passed on my message.
Once I was taken down to theatre my legs started to shake and I had to be held down to get my spinal sited. I then was lowered down and the section started. I felt horrible pain as my baby was lifted out and started to be sick, I had to take off my glasses and when they brought my baby boy over to the side I couldn’t see him. I thought he was already dead as there was no noise.
They brought my baby over and I said I can’t see him I have no glasses all I can see is a blur, my glasses were quickly found and all I saw was a tiny bundle with black hair. The neonatal doctors worked on our precious tiny little boy and then said he had to be taken immediately to NICU as he was extremely ill, they kept calling him baby and I shouted he has a name his name is R.
After they finished with my operation they advised I had been given a J cut on my womb and would never be able to labour and would always have to have sections, I didn’t care all I wanted was to know how my baby was.
The doctors from NICU came down and gave me a photo and told us just how sick our son was, he weighed 780 grams and was like a little baby bird. At that gestation the skin is transparent and he looked nothing like I would have expected as we had not had time to be briefed on what to expect. He had lovely dark hair and I just wanted to meet him.
After 23:00 they wheeled me up to NICU in my bed and MrR and I got to meet R at last he was so tiny and so red. He was struggling but they had him stabilised and we left to get some rest.
The next day they came to see us and said they thought R had something genetically wrong as his hands were clasped and he had a high forehead amongst other things, all tests etc proved negative and we still don’t know if there was anything.
The next week passed in a blur until they changed R’s tube and his lung collapsed this was the first of many issues R had. I left hospital after about 3 weeks and for the first 10 days had no idea of how to even get out of the hospital as I had never been in it before.
In nine weeks he had bleeds in his brain, collapsed lungs, lung infections, fits, numerous blood transfusions and many times when his feeds by syringe would be stopped.
R had a lovely personality he was an imp and liked to play up for the nurses, he often caused mayhem at shift changeover. He loved music and settled when it was played and he liked having his hand held.
He always played up when I came into the room and it was normal for me to walk in to him fighting his ventilator.
R was in over Christmas and santa came, he also had a white Christmas and new Year. He found it hard coming off the ventilator and was on steroids to help.
We got to hold him and give him a kiss for the first time when he was 6 weeks old, I will never forget how amazing it felt to hold him in my arms and MrR and I walked round with huge smiles.
Unfortunately when he was 8 weeks old his MrR noticed his tummy getting swollen. Over the next few days it got worse until it was decided he needed surgery to create a stoma to give his bowel some time to recover.
An ambulance was called to take him to the children’s hospital about 2 minutes drive away but about 10 minutes in an ambulance as it had to go slowly in case the speed bumps etc caused him strain. We walked beside the ambulance and met him when he was taken out in the travel incubator. He had surgery and thankfully made it through. In intensive care he found it hard to recover and the next evening he was brought back to NICU in the ambulance again.
That evening he had a rough night and the next morning we met with the doctors and nurses and decided to let him go. After fighting so hard R finally could not fight against NEC.
At exactly 9 weeks old on the 25th January 2005 R lost his fight and we held him as he had his last breathe.
R I miss you more than I could ever put into words.