On March 21, 2005, I was admitted to the hospital for an emergency condition preeclampsia.

Post On Wednesday, March 30, 2005 By

On March 21, 2005, I was admitted to the hospital for an emergency condition preeclampsia.
On March 21, 2005, I was admitted to the hospital for an emergency condition preeclampsia. I was 25 weeks pregnant with no sign of any danger until my hands and feel began to swell up rapidly within the matter of days. After I checked into the hospital, my OB started monitoring my blood pressure and said it was too high to be considered safe for me and the baby. I had to have an emergency cesarean section to deliver the baby, even though he chance of survival at this age was marginal. We had to take a chance or both of us could die. Everything happened so quickly that it was almost a blur. I was crying all the way from the hospital bed to the operating room, half-numbed by medication but was fully aware that delivery was taking place. I kept praying that my baby would survive this ordeal and didnt care if I died. It was not fair for my baby not be able to live. At 7:34 pm, Baby Frank was born and transported to the Natal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) immediately. I was still in the operating room while my OB could finish the surgical procedure. Jeff was with me the entire time of the delivery. I wanted my delivery to be a joyful and memorable one, and never thought it would turn out this way. After the surgery, I was put in a Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for monitoring my heart closely. I had all kinds of medication through IV, but my blood pressure remained dangerously high for the next three days. Jeff was at the NICU with baby Frank most of the time, talking, reading and singing to him. Jeff said he could see Frank moving his feet and hands occasionally. He showed a strong will power to live. He was, however, very premature and his lungs had not been developed to survive outside the womb. Jeff saw him struggle to breathe, but the doctors said he had no signs of improving and his condition would deteriorate very quickly once his lungs started to fail. I wanted to meet Frank very badly, but I couldnt even leave my bed in ICU and was advised against having further emotional shocks that would send my blood pressure skyrocketing. It was a very tough decision to not meet my son right away, knowing he was suffering as much as I did. My sister Wendy and my husband Jeffs parents flew in on the next day to offer help and support. Wendy, always an optimistic person, brought in a glimpse of hope as she said on her way to L.A., all she saw was positive signs (she was no. 3 in line, and was assigned seat no. 3C on the plane. In Chinese, the number 3 rhymes with to live). Jeff and Wendy went back and forth between the NICU (where Frank was staying) an ICU (where I was staying), keeping me updated on Franks status. My in-laws stayed with me most of the time, making sure I was staying calm enough. Tuesday (March 22) came. There was still no news of improvement (or deterioration) for Frank. I was still having the same high blood pressure. The waiting for Franks news was really tough. Everyone kept praying both Frank and I would be OK. At that point I have decided no matter what the outcome was (for Frank), I would live through this because I had to live for my loved ones  my husband, my family and friends. I would not let Jeff down and left him in this world alone. On March 23rd (Wednesday) at 6:40 am, Frank took his last breath and left us. I was asked if I wanted to see my son. I said yes because if I didnt, I would regret it for the rest of my life. It was one of the toughest moments I faced. Ten minutes later, Frank was transported from the NICU in a little cart to meet me, his mother. He was neatly wrapped in a baby blanket, his face calm and his little hands crossed on his tummy. I was instantly in love with him. He was someone I knew so well, someone who was a part of me for quite some time. He was the most beautiful baby with such delicate skin and features, long and elegant fingers and he even had a little hair on his head! I held him and talked to him, telling him how sorry that I didnt get to meet him earlier, and he would be in a better place now without this worlds worries. That would be the last time I saw his face again. We are planning to have a small service just for us and our families, and eventually we will find a place for him in the San Francisco cemetery where Franks ancestors are also buried. Franks existence, however brief and fragile, leaves a permanent mark in our lives. Now we are asked if we have kids, we can proudly say that we are parents to a little boy who is no longer with us. Jeff and I are going through a tough road together of grieving, reflection and recovery. We deeply thank you for all the support we are getting. We will be back to energetic and creative selves again hopefully sometime soon. Leti and Jeff
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