I haven't posted for a long time on here. To be honest, the biggest reason is that we have been so busy and also, happy. In April we were able to do our first (and planned to be our only) round of IVF. We were able to afford one round.
But, we were thrilled that it worked on the first try. We transferred just one embryo and it stuck. We were pretty over the moon excited. I was pretty cautiously optimistic the whole time, but Dave, and everyone we told after each positive test and ultrasound were so, so excited for us. We told the kids and the buddy was unbelievably excited and told everyone we saw. We started making plans and talking about maternity leave, etc. I didn't share on the blog because I knew it was mostly a place where I have connected with women with infertility and I know seeing pregnancy news in the infertility world is hard.
But, the unthinkable happened, and at 19w5d, my water broke. I feared the worst but calmly insisted that the midwife on call see me. The testing she did wasn't conclusive and I was sent to the hospital to confirm. Thank goodness I had the forethought to call Dave to be sure he was there with me as that's when we got the news that there was no fluid around the baby. We sobbed. Doctors gave us statistics, and most optimistically our daughter (thank goodness we had an ultrasound at 18 weeks that let us know she was a girl) had a 50% chance of living, and only if she stayed inside until at least 24 weeks. And even after that she would come early and most likely have serious health issues after an extended NICU stay.
I was determined to keep her in as long as possible. So, the plan was for me to be on home bedrest until 24 weeks, and then do hospital bedrest once we got to 24 weeks (at that point she would be considered 'viable' as 50% of babies born at 24 weeks survive). We named her Miriam Anne. Miriam means strong willed, so we prayed she would be strong through all this. Miriam was also the first psalmist in Israel, praising God after being delivered from death at the Red Sea. And Anne is a family name on both sides of our families, meaning "God has favored me." Both names seemed to suit her.
Unfortunately, despite our very best efforts, I went into labor 10 days later, on August 26th, and Miriam arrived and left the world at 7:11pm that night. We were able to hold her and although she was tiny, she was precious and perfectly formed. All her little parts were there and beautiful, from her head to her toes. Giving birth to her was the hardest thing I have ever done, physically, emotionally, and even spiritually. I'm sure most women can say that about labor, but to do it with a baby that will not live... no woman should have to go through that.
We are in the process of grieving and trying to find a new "normal" in our home. We thank God for the gifts of the two children we have who are more precious than words can describe. But, that doesn't take away the pain of losing Miriam and all our hopes and dreams for her. Our hearts are broken, but we are comforted knowing that she is with Jesus, who loves and cares for her better than we ever could.
Now that we are in the process of grieving and processing, I think my heart will be back to blog more regularly. My deepest thoughts go in my personal journal that sits beside my bed, but I think there will be many thoughts that will need to be shared. I'm sure I will be writing some tough things to read, and hopefully in time, there will be more hope shared here.
I absolutely hate public sharing of ultraound photos. They were so hard to see for almost 6 years as we longed to have one to share, so I was determined not to share ours online either. However, these are the only pictures we have of her that are publicly sharable (we do have photos of her from after birth, but aren't comfortable sharing those publicly). So, I share with you our precious Miriam Anne with her hands right by her face.