My Scar

August 1, 2008

Well, I actually have lots of scars, both physical (I’m really clumsy) and emotional (I was a mess BEFORE I lost the boys).  The one that is particularly upsetting to me is the one on my belly, just below and to the left of my belly button.  Unless you were looking for it, you probably wouldn’t know it was there.  But I do.  I had big plans for this scar.  I was going to show this scar to Baby B and explain to him why his brother wasn’t here with us and why Mommy had to have a surgery to save him but lost his brother and how much I loved both of them.  But I don’t get to do that. 

See, at 17 weeks my husband I went to our ultrasound giddy with the thought of finding out if they were boys or girls.  I believed at least one of them was a girl but had recently had a dream about two boys.  My hubby was adamant they were both boys.  So there we were sitting through a marathon ultrasound session when the technician said “looks like they are two boys!”  Two little boys who would DESTROY my house, bring home frogs and snakes, dig worms and leave muddy foot prints on my kitchen floors.  We were thrilled.  Then the technician said that she would be right back.  A few moments later, the doctor came in and told us that he was concerned about something called “twin to twin transfusion syndrome.”  (Here is some information on this http://www.chop.edu/consumer/jsp/division/generic.jsp?id=81149).  The short version is that Baby A was significant smaller than Baby B and was in trouble.  I had known he was a boy for 5 minutes and already he was in trouble.  I thought, “typical little boy, he is going to make this tough on Mommy already.”  I had no idea.

Fast forward to Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia where hubby and I had raced because the folks at UNC told us it was urgent that we get to someone who specialized in this.  You know, that quiet, compellingly urgent voice that doctors use to convey the gravity of the situation to you without completely freaking you out?  Yeah, we got that voice.

So in Philly, Doctor Bebbington is THE guy when it comes to this stuff so when he sat down with a grim look on his face, I knew I would not be leaving Philly with two babies.  I knew right then before he said anything that something was very wrong.  Baby A had something called Intra-Uterine Growth Deficiency.  He was not connected to the placenta properly which was actually the source of his stunted growth.  He should have been the size of his brother, a 17 week old fetus, but instead, he was only the size of a 15 week old fetus.  As a result, he had severe neurological and cardiac damage.  He would not live past 26 weeks.  If he lived that long and both babies were born prematurely, it was unlikely he would live more than a few hours and Baby B would be at a severe disadvantage in terms of lung and brain development.  To make matters worse, (yeah, uh-huh, right because you thought it couldn’t get worse), because of the type of twins they were, if Baby A died before being born, Baby B would bleed to death.

We had no choice but to have a surgery to save the life of Baby B.  A surgery which would, in turn, end the life of Baby A.

Well, as you know, I had the surgery.  I lost Baby A.  My sweet little boy that I had such dreams for.  My gentle Baby Boy.  I try and remember that it was the best chance we had to save Baby B but instead I think about my one scar and my Baby Boys who were supposed to be due in 1 week.  I hope one day that this scar will turn into a badge of how much I love my boys and how hard my husband and I fought for them.  I hope someday I will be able to look at it and know that it has made me a stronger person. 

For now, today, I’m just not feeling all that strong.

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2 Responses to “My Scar”

  1. Frankie Says:

    Perhaps too someday you will be able to look at the scar and know you’ve been through hell and back. That you are strong enough to overcome anything.

  2. KB Says:

    This whole weekend I’ve been telling my husand, “I think we can probably handle anything now after going through this.”

    Like you, today I am not feeling strong at all. I am feeling a bit fragile again. Like Frankie said before me – one day you will feel Strong Enough to Overcome Anything and you will own it! You must believe that because you are and it is true.

    I am proud of you for telling your story and appreciate your honesty in sharing.


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