Thursday, March 31, 2016

Innocent: The Baby at the Beginning



Five years ago today I sat in the cold, scuffed exam room with my purse clutched in front of me and heard the words, "I'm sorry, there was no movement [on the ultrasound]." When we got to the car I cried so hard I thought I would tear the lining of my throat out, as if by wailing, I could will my baby back to life. The unthinkable had happened: My baby died.

In the days following I was thrust into the world of loss, the harsh clinical world of "pregnancy loss", "tissue", "products of conception", "spontaneous abortion", etc. I fought for the only thing I had left that I could do for my baby: honor his or her body. I had joyfully carried him while he was alive, nourished his growing body, prayed for his health. Now his soul had departed, but the body remained. And the last thing I was going to do is let some unfeeling and efficient doctor tear him out of me.

I needed information. I needed support to labor and deliver my baby on my own since the medical field had abandoned me. Kind friends and even some strangers reached out and told me the details of their own losses. For some I know the memories were probably almost unbearably painful to dredge up, but they did it anyway. With their love, support, prayers, and the information I had gleaned from them and from painful internet searches, I prepared to honor my baby's body. Late one night, after I had almost lost hope, my body finally relinquished its grip and I held my son in my hands. My beautiful baby.

This is a journey I have made four times now. Thankfully after the first time I did have support and care from medical staff. Their love and respect has gone a long way toward healing the festering wound left by the first doctor. And, I dare say, by traveling this road with me they too have learned something about human dignity.

Lost Innocents was born of this pain. It was born of the need to honor the women who had gone before me and then supported me in my agony. It was born out of a wish to provide others with the same information and support. It was born to honor the love for my son Innocent, and then in turn, Andrew, Gabriel, and Demetrius.

Innocent did not live long by human standards. He was less than 13 weeks in this life and never took a breath. He did not hear me sing to him, never felt me kiss his head. But this tiny baby, this miracle created in the image of God, has birthed an entire ministry to bereaved parents and their precious children.

Today is the feast of St. Innocent in the Orthodox Church. I gave my son the name Innocent in his honor and today I remember him. May his memory be eternal!

6 comments:

  1. That's really beautiful. Thanks for sharing this. Your blog has helped me a lot.

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  2. I lost my baby last Tuesday, August 23, 2016. I was almost 10 weeks, but the ultrasound showed the baby was only 6 weeks in size and without a heartbeat. I was told to go home and I would have a heavy period. I had no idea what to expect, or that my desire to see & hold my baby wasn't morbid & scary. Unfortunately, I didn't find your website until the Friday after I miscarried, but it has helped me immensely. I am going to try to organize a group or make a pamphlet for the hospital to give to people in my situation, so they won't be so clueless. God bless you and your babies' memory.

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    1. I lost my baby the day before you did. We went to the Dr on September 19th to find that our baby had stopped developing and had no heart beat we were told that a d&c was best. I have never lost a baby. On September 22nd I had a d&c. The horrid dr messed up and didn't get everything but instead just broke it up. My heart aches to know my baby was treated with such disregard. Because he left part of the tissue and such in me, I had a 2nd miscarriage on the same baby. I'm a 1st grade teacher and in the middle of class flooded the floor. it was terrifying for me and the children. I ended up in the er and given a pill that would make me pass everything. At 6 weeks and 2 days past, I finally finished passing stuff on Thursday of this week. I wish I had understood my options better I asked to bury my baby and was told that it wasn't an option due to size. I wanted to hold him so badly. I wanted to lay his body at my grandparents grave. Have a small ceremony for healing. I wish I had known. My prayers are with you aso we walk this terrible journey along the same path

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    2. Unknown, I'm so sorry for your loss. I'm glad you found Lost Innocents helpful even after the fact. I appreciate anything anyone does to help provide information and care to those who are miscarrying so your efforts would be wonderful.

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    3. Tammie, I'm sorry for both your loss and for the poor treatment you received. That must have been very traumatic for everyone there. No matter what happens to our earthly bodies God holds us in his arms, perfect and healed. Your baby is with Him; be at peace. (((Hugs)))

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