Losing a Baby at 16

I found out I was pregnant two weeks before my 16th birthday. My best friend had killed herself a month before and there was one night I was so depressed I turned to alcohol to try and rid my problems. Let me first off say, I am NOT a drinker. This was my first time getting drunk and I do not drink on a regular basis. I was at such a low point at the time I didn’t know what else to do. I drank with my best guy friend at his house lying to my mom that I was spending the night at my friends, but instead I was at his. We were so intoxicated I remember barely anything.

A few weeks later I begin wondering what had happened. I knew we had ‘hooked up’ but I didn’t know how far we had gone. I remember waking up feeling a tiny bit sore, so I was a little concerned.. About two-three weeks after I began worrying, I was constantly peeing, and always getting sick in the mornings which turned Into throwing up regularly. Smells would make me feel sick and I soon figured I was late for my period. I contacted the guy and he said he didn’t remember either. I was screwed. I was so nervous pacing around the bathroom at school… My friends kept telling me not to worry and that I probably shouldn’t think anything of it. But, something felt wrong so I went to buy a pregnancy test. I went into Walgreens and got 4. I paid, went home.

Two said positive the other two said negative. I was so confused. Was I pregnant or not? I let it go for a few weeks to see if the symptoms would continue. I went to visit my grandma and family in a different state and felt nauseous the whole plane ride. The whole time I was scared about the possibility of being pregnant. My cousin and I went horseback riding and I was so nervous it could harm the baby if i was pregnant. A few days later, and too much stress, I asked my cousin to take me to the nearby clinic. They confirmed I was pregnant. I was so shaken up by it. I didn’t know what to think. I said nothing to either of my parents and only told a few close friends.

When I returned home, I proceeded with life. I knew I had to get to a doctor as soon as possible but also knew I wasn’t ready to tell my parents. I remembered my good friend’s mom was an obstetrician and asked her if she would mind seeing me and I would pay whatever needed, and tell my mom soon. She hesitated at first but finally agreed. After informing the babies father who gave me the “I’ll always be here for you” crap, he came to several appointments and then disappeared. If I remember correctly at my 6th or 8th week ultrasound I was told I had blood clots (a condition known as Subchorionic Hematoma) on my uterus and that they were small enough to do no harm to the baby, but If they grew and moved and got big enough and in between the uterine wall and membrane, I think it was that, it could cut off the nutrition and oxygen supply to the baby.

I was so worried. The next few doctors appointments I was told the clots were growing at a very fast rate and that the chance of losing the baby was now high. Yes I realized i was 16. But all my friends told me. .. “if anyone can raise a child at this age, it’s you“. I knew this was true. I was a babysitter of 13 families and over 25 kids. I had tons of infant and child experience, I made several hundred a week and had thousands in my bank account, that would get me by the first few years of the babys’ life. I am not one of those teen parents that fantasized and thought it would have been easy, and not stressful. I know it would have been. But I was so determined to do it. I wanted that baby so bad. I didn’t want to loose something so precious especially so young.

When I was 6 weeks along I decided to take a ‘gender predication test’. They were 99% accurate and I’d heard of several family members taking them and they had been right. It came out I was carrying a girl. I remember sobbing for hours after taking that test. The thought of losing my first baby, my daughter was too painful to process. The thoughts and nightmares I had about it were terrible.

I began showing at around 12 weeks. That meant buying loose shirts and wearing them to school and baggy sweatshirts at home, as my mom didn’t know yet. Word quickly spread at school(I go to a school of 4,000 students) and I got looks all the time. Some people were supportive, others were just rude and judgmental but I learned to brush the comments off. I didn’t care what they thought, I just wanted my daughter to be okay.

I had frequent doctors appointments to check on the clots and baby. She wasn’t growing properly because the clots had begun cutting off the nutrients to her. I think I was 14 weeks along when my mom found out. Someone had left a note in our mailbox saying they had overheard their daughter talking about it. She was furious and I was so upset she had to find out the way she did. I told her I was probably going to lose the baby which made it almost seem better to her which was upsetting.

The weeks following finding out about the clots, it was constant worry 24/7. I felt the baby get the hiccups early and she began moving and kicking earlier than I thought was possible, but doctors told me what I was feeling was her movement. I cherished every second. I wrote throughout my pregnancy so that if and when I lost her, I would have at least some memories. I had terrible morning sickness throughout my entire pregnancy, but I didn’t care. I was actually happy when I got sick because it reminded me she was still with me. I began getting attached to her a lot and the few supportive friends I had that would rub my belly — it meant the world when they did. I did lose some friends, some people just seemed embarrassed to be around me and my bump, I really wasn’t concerned about it though. I had so much love for that child that it didn’t matter to me what others did and said.

On Tuesday February 14, 2012 at 18 weeks I started having severe cramping and sharp pains. It started at lunch time at school and continued to my afternoon classes. I had felt no movement from the baby all day, and began getting concerned, but tried hard to not over think it. The pains got too bad that I was sent home by the nurse. I went to the bathroom when I got home and looked in my pants. There was blood everywhere an I knew right away what was happening. I started having what I assumed and later found out were contractions. I called my mom and she rushed home. After several hours of excruciating pain she asked if I wanted to go to the hospital. The original plan was I would lose the baby at home. I couldn’t believe what was happening. My heart literally felt like it was ripped from my chest.

The bleeding continued  and after a few pushes and hours of the worst pain I have ever felt, my beautiful baby girl was born weighing 7oz and 6 inches long. Through out my pregnancy her nickname was Lexi, but I changed her name when she was born. I held her and sobbed for hours. I couldn’t believe my beautiful baby was dead and I had just given birth to her. It was all so wrong.

Today, I am left with her clothes, blanket, sonogram and baby bump pictures, and a few precious photos of her. I miss her every single day and the post traumatic stress I have been suffering from is still a struggle. It’s been a year and one month and I am a firm believer time does not heal a broken heart. The what ifs and should haves eat my brain, and I feel suffocated in guilt. To make matters worse, right after she was born her dad told me I had killed her. He regrets it and treats me much better today and has many regrets that he wasn’t there and never got to hold his daughter. When people who have not experienced the loss of a baby when they think of a miscarriage/stillbirth they do not think of what I went through. Most think of a small amount of blood and tissues and that is it, but in my case, and many other woman’s, that is not it at all. Before I lost my daughter, grief was already too familiar to me. I had previously lost 2 best friends, my baby sister, 2 grandpas, one grandma, an uncle and I had even laid with my aunt as she took her last breathes. A month later after losing the baby I lost another best friend to brain cancer.

Everyday is still a struggle. Some days are better than others, but not a day goes by that I don’t wish my daughter was here. Many people are afraid to mention and speak of her, which makes it even harder. I don’t want her to be forgotten. I continue to do all I can in her memory and DON’T  agree with those who say “she is in a better place” “you were too young it was gods way of telling you that” or “she is better off the way she is“.

I never thought I would lose a child, especially so young. My love and thoughts go out to all mothers and fathers who have lost a baby.  I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.

To my beautiful baby girl: I miss you so much and am so sorry I couldn’t save you! If loved could have saved you, you would have lived forever!!! I love you my princess!! Forever and always. Sleep tight baby, I love you to the moon and back,

– mommy

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