My heart less your beat

Dedication: You

When I was 17 I had a stillbirth. I was 8 1/2 months pregnant, and the night of December 24th 2007 I arrived into the hospital. In the emergency the nurse pulled a wheel chair and rushed my upstairs to labor, “you’re giving birth today”she says. But I’m in denial, I tell her my water had not broken – at least to my knowledge it hadn’t. — I feel it’s all moving so fast I still had 1/2 a month left. I’m not ready, my moms not around, father and sisters are out on vacation I’m just here with my boyfriend.

Upon arriving in the labor room the nurses are running around setting up the area, they are scrambling they know nothing about me – I had no time to drive to my town, I’m at a hospital that is miles away from where my obgyn-primary care doctor operates.

One of the nurses keeps moving the heart monitor device all over my stomach, she looks concerned. I ask “is everything is okay?” She says “yes no worries, just can’t find the heart beat… but it’s okay you’re just minutes from giving birth it makes it harder to hear” … her face doesn’t give me a sense of certainty. I’m sweating and the pain is making me throw-up… the doctor arrives she’s checking the heart monitor with the nurse. Their faces tell a thousand words but they try to make me feel that everything is okay, “ready to push” says the doctor… there are now at least 5 nurses and 3 other doctors in my room as I’m pushing, — I had asked for the epidural to numb the pain but the nurse had stated it was too late to administer it … I know there is something wrong, I ask the doctor what is the concern. She calms me down and says it’s just procedure, keep pushing. I look over at my boyfriend he is nodding his head as he balls his eyes out. He says “she’s dead, there was no heart beat” the doctor draws my attention back to her, I ask if it’s true, she says no you have to keep pushing. She’s not being very convincing, I tell myself that everything is okay, my boyfriend is over reacting. I give that final push. And as she comes out I hear no sound, no cry, the doctors are performing CPR as I lay there watching. I’m praying to God to let her live. A nurse runs out crying. The doctors hide their tears as they nod their heads. The doctor asks if I want to hold her, she brings her to me as they all have exit the room, they ask my boyfriend to give me a minute with her. I was in disbelief, until I held her and my world came crashing down. There was life still in her face, she looked like she was asleep I touched her chest, I’ll find your heart beat. No you’re gone, you died inside me. I carried you for 8 1/2 months and you were full of life. I remembered clearly the day that I wished I wasn’t pregnant, and cried to my twin sister. I told her I had fucked up my life, “I’m 17, I’m 4 months pregnant, I just got married, I’m broke, I can barely fend for myself, I wish I never got pregnant” – I had so many fears of bringing in a baby into the world given my situation, what did I have to offer her? How my life would be better if I had just not gotten pregnant. I only loved her after I felt her kick, but I didn’t know how much I’d love her until I held her in my arms. I killed you with my thoughts, I regret every word that I said, every thought that I thought that casted you into the ether.

Very dark years I lived after her passing. But time is truly a healer, and I’ve made my peace in a newer version of me. The heart that never beat tore my soul, chattered pieces of my heart floating in the heavens with her. It’s been 13 years, I’ve never written these words nor spoken them, my family and I never speak of this. I left my ex husband 7 years ago, the lost of a child somehow made living with a borderline man possible for me. I felt I needed to be punished and his mental abuse gave that to me. I do not speak my daughters name – If you were in my life back then you’d know it, if you weren’t then it is not for you to know. This experience has made me deal with life head on, never having high expectations, but always moving forward. Always being conscious of what thoughts I’m releasing into the universe, I have turned a 360 from who I was then to who and where I am now. I’m confident, intuitive, intelligent and happy most days, while there still lingers anger within me that remains unreleased. I’ve been blessed with her power to find the good in the bad, to love myself and to be who I want to be not what my family and society wants. I don’t have kids, I’m not sure if I ever will. – I never talk about this, I shut down emotionally for years after it happened everyone around me, my family ex boyfriend/husbands family, even the nurses and doctors while I recovered at the hospital chose the same words to cheer me up -doctors; “oh honey you’ll be okay you’re just a baby, you can try again later when you are older” – my father “I’m so sorry she died but I’m happy that it wasn’t you, you were too young to be pregnant” … I never chose to settle down and get pregnant at 17, I just got pregnant and found out 3 months in that I was. As a finish this story I contemplate sending it. …