Wednesday, October 12, 2011
My name is Sara Storms. My husband, Sean and I were married on June 8, 2001. We were both in school, but after just a couple months, we knew we wanted to have a baby. It didn't take long to get pregnant, and we were so excited! I was due June 23, 2002. Everything checked out well when we had the 20 week ultrasound and we were ecstatic to learn we were having a BOY! (I grew up in a family of 8 girls and 1 boy, and all grand babies at that point had been girls: 4 and 1 on the way!) Everything seemed to progressing well, although I tended to measure a little big, but the doctor was never concerned. We chose to name him Nicholas, after my husband's middle name.
When I was 32 weeks, I started to have contractions. I tried to take it easy, but they weren't slowing down, so we went to the hospital. They gave me fluids and a shot to slow down the contractions. They hooked my belly up to the heart monitor and Nicholas was doing fine. At that point, I wasn't dilating or thinning, so things were looking good. They kept me for a while, and once my contractions seemed to be gone, they released me from the hospital. The next day or so, I continued to have contractions, but I took it easy, and they went away.
About a week later, on the evening of May 3, I started to have contractions again. Again, I took it easy, and slept through the night, but when I went to the bathroom the next morning, there was blood. So, Sean and I headed to the hospital. My doctor came to check me and I was dilated to a 3 and about 70-75% effaced. They kept me in the hospital for about 24 hours. I was on an IV for fluids, antibiotic for Group B Strep, and I was attached to the fetal monitoring machine. They were also giving me terbutaline to stop the contractions. Everything seemed to be going okay, and there were no concerns with the health of Nicholas. I was released for the hospital on Sunday morning and put on strict bed rest. And the doctor wanted to see me on Wednesday morning to see how everything was going.
I remembered commenting to my husband Sunday evening that Nicholas wasn't very active, but I didn't put much more thought into it. I took my strict bed rest seriously and took it easy. Wednesday came around and I hadn't been having contractions. I was also taking terbutaline every 4 hours to keep the contractions away. Sean and I went to the doctors office. I am so thankful that Sean was able to be there with me! The doctor was listening for the heart beat, but heard nothing. I started to feel nervous, but it still hadn't hit me that it was a possibility that my baby could have died. We even had a tape to record the ultrasound; if they happened to do one. Since he couldn't find the heart beat, he did take me in for an ultrasound. I handed him the tape, but he didn't put it in. We could see on the screen that there was no movement in my belly, and there was no heartbeat. The doctor told us that our baby had passed away. I was shocked; in disbelief. How could this happen?
The doctor sent us to the hospital to deliver Nicholas. I was dilated to about a 5 or 6 and 100% effaced. But, they still started me on pitocin. I got an epidural, but I was still in a lot of pain. It was so hard to think that I had to go through all this pain and I wouldn't get to have a healthy baby boy, alive, in the end. I got to the hospital about 10am. I was fully dilated and ready to push about 12:30pm. And after 3 hours of pushing, my sweet baby boy was born still. Words cannot express how thankful I was for the hospital staff. They took care of the necessities, and then they left Sean and me alone with Nicholas. They were kind enough to take some Polariod pictures; which I treasure. My parents arrived about 10 or 15 minutes after Nicholas was born. It was a very sweet time, and the Spirit was so strong.
The doctor did comment that he believed Nicholas had died at least 24 hours prior because his skin tore a little bit while they were cleaning him off. It is hard to think of the what ifs, but I have taken great comfort in my testimony. I know that we have a loving Heavenly Father, and I am humbled to be chosen to be the mother of such a perfect spirit that only needed to come to Earth to get a body. I know I will see my baby boy Nicholas, again.
We buried Nicholas in Utah. There was room for his small casket to be buried near where my Grandpa was already buried and where my Grandma would be buried several years later. My husband also comes from a family of 9 children, and we were blessed to have everyone in our families, plus more relatives and friends come to a memorial and a graveside service.
A few weeks after Nicholas was stillborn, we got some results back. We were told that Nicholas had Down Syndrome. The doctors believe that is why he passed away; some complication due to Down Syndrome. Somehow, having a reason did seem to help. We are coming up on 10 years since Nicholas was born. It is so hard to believe that it has been so long, but the memories, some days, feel so fresh.
We have since been blessed with 4 healthy children; 3 boys and 1 girl. Each year we celebrate Nicholas' birthday by sending balloons with messages to heaven. It is a tradition that my children love.
Story provided by: Sara Storms