Sunday, July 10, 2005

Brutal Honesty

All of these honest posts have gotten me thinking. Am I really being honest with myself when it comes to my roll in Caleb's death? I know that there are plenty of people out there that will tell me over and over that it's not my fault he died, and that no matter what I had done, I couldn't have prevented it from happening. The thing is, I never tried. Now I know the reason I didn't try is because I didn't know anything was THAT wrong. I had a feeling. I was a little over 37 weeks pregnant, and I remember being at work, and mentioning to a friend that the baby wasn't moving much. Of course what was her answer? You probably already know. "That just means you are going to go into labor soon. it's totally normal. My son didn't move as much right before I had him." And I trusted her. I trusted her so much that when I went to my Dr. appointment on Thursday, January 2nd I didn't mention it. The nurse asked if I was still feeling the baby move, and I was. Just not AS MUCH. I didn't know there was a difference. But apparently there IS a difference. I just can't help but think, if I had mentioned it THAT DAY, then MAYBE........ I know this is all pointless, I know I can't go back in time, but I just hate myself for not even mentioning it. I had NO idea that stillbirth happened anymore. I was truely clueless, so why WOULD I think that something was horribly wrong?? And why would I even think that even if I HAD told the nurse he wasn't moving much, and they did a non stress test that something would have shown up and they would have been able to save him anyway. The thing is, I never really asked for details about Caleb's death. It was obviously a cord accident. He had a shorter then average cord, and it was around his neck 3 times. The cord had to be cut for him to be delivered. (it was too tight to be pulled over his head) Since the cause was so obvious, I didn't ask questions. I was afraid of what I might hear for one thing, but I was also afraid of being told that it didn't happen the way I THINK it happened. I KNOW that he was alive on the 4th. I KNOW he was alive when I went into labor. But not for long. I am pretty sure I felt his last kick. But that was after about 3 hours of contractions. Very regular contractions. But I was so scared of going to the hospital, I wouldn't go. I stayed at home and didn't call the dr for 6 hours. If I could have gotten past MY fears, Caleb might have lived. By the time the pain got so bad I wanted to go to the hospital, it was too late. My sweet baby boy was gone. He died inside of me while I did nothing. And he did nothing to deserve it.


At 12:10 AM, Blogger Julie said...

I still have thoughts like that too. No matter how much I try to convince myself otherwise, I still think "what if". I'm sorry any of us have to go through this. I hope you can find some peace of mind eventually. {{{hugs}}}

At 5:31 AM, Blogger Jill said...

Oh God, Julie....I wish you didn't have to second guess yourself like this. Of course it is natural but still, I can barely grasp the suffocating guilt and uncertainty you have written about. You could never have known and if you had mentioned it the nurses and doctors most probably would have said the same thing your coworker did. I know they said it to me at 36 weeks when I found myself in L&D panicking. (((((HUGS))))

At 8:31 AM, Blogger Catherine said...

Your fault? You're kidding me right?!?! Why didn't your doctor tell you that you have a 1/115 chance of having a stillborn baby? Why weren't you instructed to do a kick count chart rather than a generic "are you feeling baby move?" Why didn't any ultrasound reveal that Caleb's cord was too short? Why were you able to labor that long without some doctor noticing that something wasn't right?

Come on Julie. What are you supposed to do? Become all-knowing just because you're pregnant? I read a dozen books on pregnancy...NONE of them told me I had to watch for signs of stillbirth. It was mentioned in it never happens. My doctor NEVER mentioned it. So how are we supposed to know?

I think you expect an awful lot of yourself if you expect you could have saved Caleb. I thought I could have saved Alex...then the doctor told me what killed him was a hemmorrhage in his brain. Even IF I had delivered him early, he could have very likely died in his crib at home. To think I could have saved him if I'd done something different was wishful thinking. And I think you know that it's wishful thinking for you too. It gives you someone to blame...which is so much easier than the alternative...bad things just happen sometimes without rhyme or reason.

And ask yourself this...even if you did know something was wrong, could you have guaranteed a happily ever after ending? As much as you'd like to believe you could have, you know it's not true.

Yes, he died inside of you while you did nothing. And he didn't deserve to die. But don't take your inaction as some deliberate attempt to harm him. You loved him, you wanted him...but you were not responsible for his death. And had you had the proper information, you still may not have been able to save him.

I know it's horrible and it hurts like hell. And I'm so sorry you have to feel any of this. Most of all, I'm sorry your angel isn't with you on earth. Be kind to yourself.

At 10:50 AM, Blogger Anna said...

Oh, Julie...This is NOT your fault. This was not a possibility in your mind and you did nothing to force his little cord around his neck. You had no control over that. I think sometimes that is the hardest thought to deal with...the fact that WE ARE NOT IN CONTROL. I am SO sorry this happened. Please don't continue to put any blame on yourself. (((hugs)))

At 3:58 PM, Blogger vixanne wigg said...

I understand the "what ifs" but you know that you did not cause Caleb's death. You did your best, knowing what you knew. There are always things that could have happened differently, but you are NOT to blame. :(


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