Random Thoughts

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

I've seen alot of people blog with this title, and never thought I would, because, well, so many other people do it. I don't like doing what other people commonly do. That's why I named my kids as I did.

But here they are.

I love my midwife. What a beautiful woman. She's been so amazing the past few weeks. I never thought I would feel a closer bond with her, then after birthing my first three. This fourth has ironically done that.

I'm 99.9% done my Christmas shopping and have not gone into debt. How amazing is that?

We held a memorial service for Hayden Jack. It was really nice, but hard. Our families came--which meant so much to us. My grandparents, Jamie's parents, his sister, brother and their families. My brother Corey and his girlfriend came, which surprised me. Even after reconciling with him, he's still....distant from the family. The only one not there was Paul, who was still in QC at basic training.
Over my years of singing, the Lord often leads me to songs. So many times I'll show up for a service and sing a song that later proves to be totally complimentary to the sermon, even though the pastor and I wouldn't have communicated. When I was carrying my children, I spent much of the 9 months thinking of what song I would sing for them at their dedications. For Jairus, I chose 'Over and Under' from the McCaughey septuplet CD. Cindy Morgan, one of my favourite christian artists composed and performed the song. For Honour, I chose 'I Am' by Nicole Nordemann. Not really a baby song, but....a lifetime song. I love it. And for Verity, I found an older Twila Paris song, off her lullaby CD, called "Your Whole Life Long". It is a faith statement for how I envision my children raised: "I pray that you will follow Him, your whole life long....".
So what song to sing for a baby that won't have his whole life long?

Well, first of all, I couldn't sing it. I knew it was going to be difficult enough to get through the service. I would just play the CD.

It's been nearly 6 months since we moved, and I'm still not completely unpacked. There was no place to set up the CD shelf and the player we've had for longer than we've been married. (Ok, it was Jamies). So the box sat down in the room that will be Jamie's office/studio. With Christmas approaching, I had decided that 6 months without music was TOO LONG. And I HAD to listen to my Christmas music. So I pulled the shelf up and set it in the living room--not and ideal spot, but it would do. And I started unpacking all the CD's. Honour was with me, and she puttered through the discs. Suddenly she spots a lullaby CD that Marlene Penman gave me at one of the kids' births. It has Precious Moments pictures all over it. Honour, of course, insisted on listening to it. I stuck it on. The first song was a remake of Mercy Me's, "I can only Imagine". I sat and listened, and thought.

I can only imagine
What it will be like,
when I walk
By Your side
I can only imagine
What my eyes will see
When your face is before me
I can only imagine
I can only imagine

Surrounded by Your Glory
What will my heart feel?
Will I dance for you, Jesus?
Or in awe of You, be still?
Will I stand in Your presence,
Or to my knees will I fall?
Will I sing Hallelujah?
Will I be able to speak at all?
I can only imagine
I can only imagine

I can only imagine
When that day comes
When I find myself,
Standing in the Son
I can only imagine,
When all I will do,
is forever--
Forever worship You
I can only imagine
I can only imagine
And then, my paraphrase of the chorus,

Surrounded by your glory, what will his heart feel?
Will he dance for you, Jesus?
Or in awe of You, be still?
Will he stand in Your presence,
Or to his knees will he fall?
Will he sing Hallelujah?
Will he be able to speak at all?
I can only imagine
I can only imagine

So I played it. I think it was real nice.
My daughter talks to herself alot. I wonder if it's because her siblings can't talk yet. Do you think I should be worried?
So we got a call from the hospital last week. It was a yucky call. The bottom line is that the pathologist claims there was nothing wrong with Hayden. Even though the nurse, and my midwife, and my mom, all saw him and felt there was something not right, the powers that be disagree.
We fought this a little. Asked for a second opinion (apparently not an option). Asked for clarification. It seems that their idea of clarification is repeating what you've already been told.
On one hand, this has an element of relief. Our boy didn't have problems like Jairus. We perhaps don't have some genetic curse coursing through our veins.
On the other hand, I don't believe it. My last ultrasound with Jairus (of seven) showed that his birth defects had 'suddenly' corrected themselves. Everyone was thrilled---except me. I didn't believe it, and good thing I didn't. Sure enough, when he was born, all was as the previous six ultrasounds had claimed. These doctors might be brilliant, educated, well studied, top of their class, holding the highest pathology position in Canada.....but they can still make a mistake. And I think one was made here.
But I don't think there's anything more we can do. And when it comes down to it, it's in the Lord's hands whether or not our next child is healthy, whether he dies too, or if he's born with problems lesser, worse then, or just like Jairus. It's out of our hands. And it's a good thing too, because it's a responsibility I wouldn't want for all the world.
I have, a perfectly wicked case of pinkeye.
I'm 32 years old, and I have PINKEYE!
It's realy brutal---my left eye was nearly swelled shut until after lunch. Forget pink, my eye is a brilliant shade of crimson. It's watering, itching, burning, hurting....
Are you feeling it yet?
(Wicked chuckle)

Hayden Jack Kent

Saturday, December 2, 2006

Thank you everyone who's been praying. I never thought I could handle going through anything remotely like this....but greater is He who is in me. Your prayers are working.

On Tuesday the 21st, I had an ultrasound at 8am. First a tech who was 'in training' took a few pictures, then excused herself to get a more experienced tech to finish, as she had told me up front she would be doing. I had a bad feeling because she had asked me what I felt were some suspicious questions. I had strained to see the screen and prayed to see movement, but all I saw was the outline of the baby's head as she measured it.

When the second tech arrived, she sat down and pulled the machine closer towards her and turned the screen away. Bad feelings increased. Within a couple minutes, a doctor appeared at the curtain. Bad feelings turned into panic.

He looked with the tech at the screen and made some unintelligable comments. Then the tech asked me if I had come with anyone and that's when I started to cry. As I sat up, the doctor told me that there was no heartbeat.

We went up to the genetics appointment anyway, hoping that they could give us more information. They told us that although I was 19 weeks pregnant, the baby was only measuring 14 weeks gestation. I knew they had to be off somewhat, because I heard the heartbeat at 15 weeks, and I'm very confident in my dates.

An obstetrician was called and she came to meet with us and tell us what would happen next. We had a few options: surgery, taking a drug to induce labour, or waiting until I miscarried naturally. We chose the drug, which would involve me being admitted to hospital to have it administered. Unfortunately, there were no beds available to do this until the following Tuesday, a whole week later. We were horrified.

I felt that I would probably go into labour on my own, so we decided to go home and wait until that happened, or the week went by. I spent everyday at my moms in case it started, and mom and my sister even came home with us one night, when I was feeling awful and sure it was starting.

As the week went by, I became more tense and scared. They had warned me that being as far along as I was, I could bleed badly when it happened and have to rush to the hospital. My midwife, who supported us wonderfully during the whole thing, gave me instructions to call 911 if certain things happened. I didn't want my husband or mom have to deal with me miscarrying at home. I didn't want to see this baby. I was scared.

By the weekend, I couldn't take it anymore. I called the OB and told her I wanted surgery instead. I wanted this over with. To my dismay, she explained that I had misunderstood and surgery was not an option. She would do it if I insisted, but it would be risky and a horrible procedure. I decided to keep waiting.

I made it to Tuesday morning and got to the hospital earlier than the 7:30am they had told us. James and my mom came with me while my dad watched Jairus, Honour and Verity. They started the inducing drug around 9am. I didn't feel much until around noon, which surprised me: I was induced for Jairus and reacted strongly to the drugs then. But this was a different drug. And a different baby.

They gave me tylenol 3 at first, and then upped it to morphine to deal with the pain. It took 3 doses of the drug until finally our baby was born.

At 6:10pm, Hayden Jack Kent arrived easily and quietly. My midwife was there and took care of him just as she had my other children. She and the nurse actually couldn't tell for certain that he was a boy, but we all feel strongly that he is. He appeared to have a cleft lip and palate and from observation, a club foot and other issues with his legs. I chose not to look at him, but my mom and midwife did. My midwife has a tradition of making footprints of the babies she helps deliver, and I asked her if she could do the same for Hayden. She said she would try, but ended up doing handprints instead. They are so tiny...

Hayden was 14.5 cm long and weighed 45 grams. McMaster has worked out some admirable ways to help families deal with their grief. They assembled a memory box for us which had in it a blanket that they had laid Hayden on after he was born, the heart shaped card with his handprints, a measuring tape with his length marked on it, and a card that listed his time of birth, length, etc. I will put the tape with his heartbeat from my first midwife appointment in it too. I hope to still get one of the few ultrasound photos they took.

We got home around 11pm and the kids stayed at my parents. When I walked into mom and dad's house the next morning and saw them, it was with new eyes. Especially Jairus. Over the years, many people have called him a miracle and I would agree....but never the same way I do now. My mom remarked later that as tiny as he was, she could see that Hayden looked like his big brother.

There's a song I used to sing a number of years ago:

I will trust you Lord, when I don't know why
I will trust you Lord, 'til the day I die
I will trust you Lord, when I'm blind with pain
You were God before and you'll never change
I will trust you...
~Twila Paris
My little Hayden boy, I will see you again.