In Loving Memory of Kesi Chaikin Weiss
On the drive home I started cramping. Micah and I prayed in the car. I was really frightened and glad when we pulled in the driveway at home. My husband, Jonathan, was talking on the phone to our good friend Trish when I came in. She suggested I take some herbs known to help prevent miscarriage. I did, and the cramps and bleeding slowed down a bit.
We called and asked my Dad if he’d come over and watch the kids for us so we could go to the hospital. He said no, but he would let us borrow his car (ours was in need of repair), then we were going to take the kids to another friend – Laura’s house and go. But when Jonathan got back with Dad’s car, it died in our driveway and wouldn’t start.
So we called Dad back again and he came over in his van and we took the van to the hospital. The doctor looked at my cervix and it was still closed, but I was bleeding. They did an ultrasound, Jonathan was there, the technician wouldn’t let me see the screen but Jonathan saw it. She measured what looked like a small sac, but there was nothing inside it. The doctor said it looked like I was only 3 weeks pregnant, but I knew I was 13 weeks. I don’t know what they thought they saw on the ultrasound but it wasn’t my sac, which was much larger. I have lost all faith in ultrasounds; I will never have another one. Jonathan said there was just masses of stuff and small sacs of fluid.
The doctor sent me home and told me I would have a heavy period and then it would be over. He encouraged me to go see my OB. He said that it was “part of life, and nature did things sometimes”. He told me there was no reason to believe I was the problem. They still sent me home with information on pregnancy, in case I was only three weeks. He said it might still be ectopic, but I knew better.
The nurse who discharged me didn’t understand why I said I was losing the baby.
When we got to the car Jonathan was holding his chest, his Reflux was bothering him. He said it was proof that it was emotionally induced. We went by my mothers house on the way home and asked her for medicine for Jonathan’s GERD. Visit Gerd.com for more info on this subject. When I told her we were losing the baby she asked me if I wanted to stay there that night, but I wanted to get back to my three babies who were waiting for me at home. Micah age nine, Judith age three and a half, and Itzhak, who is nearly two.
The next day we told the children there wasn’t going to be a new baby, that our baby went home to live with Jesus. They seemed a little sad but I don’t think it was real to them yet. They are all so young.
On Dec 29th I stared having contractions, they were little hard to relax through but I did OK. We put up the air mattress and slept in the living room, the contractions kept us up till about 3 a.m. Then I slept until about 2 p.m. the next day.
On the 30th, the contractions started again as I woke up. They woke me up actually. Around 5 p.m. the contractions started getting harder and I thought they were probably going to get worse so Jonathan took the kids to Lori’s house. She was crying when he got there. She had a miscarriage a few years ago, she was so sad for us. When he was gone I talked to Trish and she helped me relax through my contractions over the phone, she was very loving and kind to me. She told me she loved me and would pray for me, I know she did.
By the time Jonathan got back it was harder to relax so we went down onto the mattress on the floor and watched the third Indiana Jones movie. We had to pause and stop it so much it wasn’t really worth trying to watch. After awhile I was crying “No” every-time I had a contraction. I know I was swearing too. I just didn’t want to let go of my baby. I know I was fighting the contractions and that’s why they hurt so badly. Jonathan was so wonderful, he kept getting me water and rubbing my back and pushing on my lower back. I kept thinking it would all stop and that the baby would be OK, even though I knew it was impossible, I kept picturing a tiny live baby coming from my womb and then dying in my hands, I couldn’t bear the thought. What if the baby is deformed? I had the worst thoughts. The enemy was having a field day in my head, and I couldn’t voice any of it. I just didn’t want it all to be happening.
Then he began to kiss me. He kissed me deep enough to arouse me; it made the pain so much less. It was wonderful. It helped center me. Now I know why some couples choose to make love during labor. If I hadn’t been bleeding I would’ve liked to. We lied on the floor and kissed for a while. He was caressing me and loving me, I’ll never forget that. I thought maybe he wouldn’t want to touch me any more because I was losing his baby, but he did, does.
I called Alice my midwife; she was so encouraging and loving to me. She encouraged me by telling me that my body could do this and I didn’t need any doctor to clean me out. She said she had seen my body working and she knew it knew what to do. She told me she would be praying for me and sending her prayers and thoughts and told me to stay in the light.
We went into the bathroom and I sat on the toilet for a while contracting and crying, it was getting extremely difficult by this point. I was so terribly sad I couldn’t bear the thought of not having a live baby. I told Jonathan I didn’t want to look at anything because I could feel huge clots and things coming out of my body. Every contraction I screamed “No” and said “I can’t do it.” Jonathan kissed me and told me he loved me and I could do it. He said he was there for me and offered to put me in the bathtub. I didn’t want to lose the baby in the tub so I took a shower instead.
The hot water felt so good on me but I couldn’t stand during the contractions anymore, so I lay down in the tub and let the water beat on my belly. Jonathan came and put a hot towel behind my back for me. He kept grabbing at his chest when I cried. He was so in tune to my pain that his reflux was hurting him, but he never complained one time. He cried with me. I was just lying there crying about my baby. I just couldn’t imagine not holding her ever in my hands.
Jonathan asked me if I wanted him to sing to me. I said yes, but I couldn’t decide what to have him sing. He started singing “Lu Lu Lu” a Danny Kaye song from “The court Jester”. He sings this to the kids when he tucks them in. I felt like he was singing to the baby, and I was able to quietly say goodbye to the baby, and then I was ready to let her go.
I stayed in the shower like that until the water went cold and then I got out. Jonathan helped me squat down in the hallway outside the bathroom. I started pushing and I could feel pieces of my placenta coming out. I was crying and so sad and felt so alone and like this was the most tragic thing that ever happened to us. Then I felt this wave of calm come over me and I knew in my heart that my friend Denise and her baby were OK. I knew that she had been in labor a few days earlier but I hadn’t heard anything yet. I said to Jonathan “I hope Denise is having an easier time than I am”, and we began to pray. We thanked Jesus for our baby who brought us so much joy in the short time we had her. We thanked Jesus that a new life was coming into the world, and for Denise and David’s miracle baby. We asked Jesus to allow us to use this experience to minister to someone else. We want Him to use us that way. I spoke to her husband the day after all this and found out that the doctors were taking her baby via c-section at this exact time. I have a peace about the loss of Kesi, by knowing Dominic came at the same time I was losing her.
We ended up back on the toilet, pieces would come out and plop in the water and then Jonathan would flush. I was terrified we were flushing the baby, but I know it was for the best, it hurt so bad to sit there, so much pressure on my perineum, that we went back into the living room on the air mattress. The TV was still on and I got really mad at Jonathan for not turning it off and snapped at him. The sound wasn’t even on and I was so mad. I wasn’t really mad at him, but I didn’t know that at the time. He didn’t mind me yelling at him, he just turned it off and told me I was important to him.
All of a sudden it was so much easier to deal with. The pain had lessoned. I got in the shower and pushed more pieces of the placenta out, then the pain came back. I kept trying to clean myself, but there was blood all over me, I could see it running down my legs into the water and down the drain. I was afraid I would hemorrhage, but then it slowed down to a manageable level. I kept telling myself I would not hemorrhage, I would not have to go to the hospital. I cried and cried.
I went back into the living room and was surprised there was more to push out. The pieces of my placenta were all so big; each one was 3 or 4 inches. The 27 mm estimate from the hospital was way off! I passed a large piece of placenta and Jonathan and I looked at it really close. We could see all the veins that pick up the blood and give it to the baby. We saw where the cord connected. That made me feel better, but I had never seen a “baby” and was afraid there never was one, but I know there was after seeing that. I feel so strongly it was a girl.
We called Alice later and told her it was all over, she said “Don’t you feel so strong, what a strong woman you are to do this on your own” I didn’t feel that at the time but I do now. It was the hardest thing I have ever done. I never once considered going to the hospital. I knew they would turn my baby’s death into a “medical” event. It didn’t have to be that. I didn’t want anyone to take my baby. Even though it was so much more painful than any of my live births, I am glad I did it at home with only my husband. It was peaceful and I was allowed to go through everything myself. I was able to come to acceptance on my own and let my baby go when I was ready. The Lord worked in us both that day, I feel closer to my husband because of this experience. I think the Lord was able to work in me more because I was home and open to Him. We prayed through a lot of the labor and delivery.
A few days later Jonathan took me out to Chinese food, and while we were in the car he suddenly said, “The next one we are going to do alone.” He told me he could already feel the baby in his hands. That meant so much to me to hear because the one thing I can’t shake since my loss is the feeling that my hands feel empty.
The after birth pains are severe, it’s hard to function. I wish I could just curl up in bed, but when I am there I cannot sleep. I had dreams about the baby the night after the miscarriage. Her eyes were bleeding tears. I woke up and prayed to the Lord to comfort me and He did. I was glad for my husband’s warm body to curl up with. He lay with me and kissed me and caressed me the night after our loss and it was the most comforting thing of all. I love him so dearly. I keep apologizing to him about the baby. I feel like I promised him and the family something I couldn’t give.
I won’t take for granted that there will be another pregnancy, but I pray there will be. I pray we have an unassisted home-birth and my husband can feel the baby in his hands for real. I wish I were still pregnant now. I can’t believe I am not pregnant any more. I can’t believe the baby will never come. I will never hold her, or nurse her, she will never tell me she loves me, she will never be hungry or full, or have a birthday, or know her siblings’ love. When people ask me how many children I have what will I say? I have four children, four, but one is missing. I want to hold my baby, but my hands are empty.
A little after 9 p.m. Jonathan had to go get the kids. I tried to clean off in the shower, but when I got out there was more blood before I could clean off. I gave up after awhile.
I think the Lord whispered in Izzy’s ear the next day, because he nursed all day long and he never does that. I was glad for it. It helped me to heal, physically and emotionally. I am surprised that I have all the physical symptoms of just having a baby, but there is no baby.
A few days later Micah made me a baby out of Kleenex. I put it into a box with Kesi’s things. Judith told me she would put on wings and go through the roof into heaven and bring the baby back. It made us all cry. I love my children so much! What a blessing to me. I could not get through this without them.
My Mom is going to buy a miniature orange tree that we will plant in a large pot over a piece of the placenta I kept. Then when we move I can take it with me. I would hate to leave it behind. I am also going to make a necklace with the baby’s name and her birthstones in it. I want a funeral for my daughter. I want everyone to know she was alive and loved. I want to say I have four children. I know she is in heaven with my Lord Jesus, and He loves her. I look forward to meeting her in the Kingdom one day.
It’s been several months now, and I am 20 weeks pregnant again and planning an unassisted homebirth with just my husband and my children. The tree is beginning to have oranges and Judith my four year old says they are from the baby. I can’t wait till they are ripe.