Posted On Friday, November 16, 2012 by Sofia
Growing up in a community where teen pregnancy was very common, my high school did a lot to keep us from wanting kids at a young age. They would assign babies with computer chips that needed to be fed n changed at all hours day or night, they would show us videos of live births and tell us how hard life would be with a child at such a young age. The live birth videos alone were enough to scare me through my teenage years, my 20's and even a bit of my 30's but at 32 I was expecting. My parents had not had a grandchild in 13 years, and it would be a first for my in-laws! It was surreal, I was excited, nervous and any other emotion you can imagine. April 22, I arranged for my family (party of 20+) to join my husband Victor and I in a 3D ultrasound party to determine whether our little peanut was going to be a girl or boy. The technician had everyone in the next room at the edge of their seats as she typed on the monitor "it's a GIRL!!!"
A few days later as my cousin's wife was recovering from having their first baby (Oliver Michael born 4/25/12), I went to the doctor's for a regular check- up. I felt fine and I had asked my husband not to miss work since it was just a quick check-up, nothing major. Or at least that's what I though. It's the first appt I had been to alone and it was the worst one to be alone at. Right off the bat my vitals show cause for concern, blood pressure of 142/96 and protein in the urine. I was sent over to labor and delivery to be monitored, nothing's changing. I was told I had preeclampsia and admitted into the hospital. My bp continued to rise, I was told I wasn't going to be leaving the hospital until Lila was born. I was just a few days shy of being 24 weeks so I was told that my hospital didn't have the experts or the equipment to care for a baby that young; so in the middle of the night, in the pouring rain, I was transferred to a hospital in the heart of Los Angeles that would be monitoring me. My bp was especially high during this transfer but everything else checked out ok. An ultrasound showed that Lila was about the size of a 20 week old baby, she had already been affected by the preeclampsia, it was slowing her growth. I was situated in my hospital room with a monitor on my belly, her heart beat all night long, I heard her every movement, I prayed a lot that night as my hubby slept by my side. I don't think I slept more than 2-3 hours, around 10am I was surrounded by a team of about 7 or 8 young female nurses and doctor's. They sat down and explained to Victor and I that the preeclampsia was getting worse my kidneys were already failing and other organs could be next, to continue the pregnancy, I would be at risk of seizures, stroke, heart attack and long term effects could come of those as well. I was advised that the only way to stop preeclampsia was to take the baby out, we needed to terminate the pregnancy. Lila was still too little to live outside the womb, especially with the growth delay, she had a zero percent chance of survival. We were going to lose our baby girl.
The d&e procedure took place just minutes after midnight, my family said their goodbyes and kissed my belly as I was rolled away to the operating room. it was difficult for every single one of us.
This is where Lila's story ends, but her legend continues. She has a great family who is doing everything possible to keep her memory alive. I never got to meet her in this world but I definitely knew her soul and her wonderful feisty stubborn lil personality, our 5 months together were some of the most beautiful months of my life. Thanks to my mortician cousin I have her ashes and beautiful little sets of prints which are now tattoo'd on my left shoulder along with white calla lilies for my little angel.
After surviving a very traumatic first pregnancy with a nightmare delivery (30 hours of magnesium-induced hell, ending in an emergency c-section) and even more debilitating recovery, one would think I was DONE having children. Let's be ...