Friday, May 28, 2010

Matthew's Birth Story....Mommy

Thanksgiving Day, 2009, was November 26. As Matthew’s due date was the 24th, and no one could believe that I’d go that far considering how big he was getting and how little I’d started, I felt fairly safe in buying the sweetest little “My First Thanksgiving” outfit.

As I sat at Thanksgiving dinner with John, Mom and Andi...swollen, back aching and ribs hurting, I gratefully thought in my head, “That little turkey…already outgrowing clothes and he hasn’t even been born yet!”

Dr. Shonekan had taken mercy on me earlier in that week, and we’d scheduled Matthew’s induction for the Monday after Thanksgiving. Imagine my surprise when one of Matthew’s L & D Guardian Angels (unbeknownst to me at the time, of course!) called and told me that they had been looking through the files and mine was one that Dr. Shonekan had said would be a good one to schedule earlier if I wanted. She said that they’d love to have me come in on Friday night. While she didn’t say it, I got the impression that Monday may have been busier than Friday was shaping up to be, and Dr. Shonekan expected me to be one of those deliveries that may have needed a little more hand-holding and I would probably have that coming in Friday.

I remember what I was wearing as I hung the phone up. I started to shake, and teared up a bit. I was at the top of the stairs and called John to the bottom. I told him the hospital wondered if we wanted to come in early, and without skipping a beat, he told me, “Let’s do it!!!!”

Of course he was excited! I was scared to death.

I called back and told them we’d see them the next day. I don’t know how I slept that night, or remember much of the next day other than I wrote out the last of the thank-you notes I needed to write. THANK GOD I kept up with those…I’d never have been able to write them after.

Before we left, I hung Matthew’s stocking on the mantle. I wanted to have it there when we got home.





Mom took one last family photo of us before we left and we were off.


Still terrified.

The hospital is about 20 minutes away. I shook the entire time. John was near giddy and I was just shaking with anxiety. I had all the music I’d been listening to throughout my pregnancy playing, and I was trying to sing with each song. The only song I remember, though, is the Brad Paisley version of “When We All Get To Heaven.” I sang that song, in tears of fear and nerves, over and over as I looked out the window. I couldn’t believe we were finally about to meet my sweet boy.

When we got to the hospital, and walked through the L & D doors, my knees nearly buckled. They took us into our room, and it was the same room we’d been in about two weeks before when my blood pressure was so high. At that time, there had been some crazy CD left in the player—Heavy Metal songs done in classical lullaby type renditions. It had cracked John and me up then and as I was again in that room, it gave me a smile.

We started to get settled and my sweet, sweet night nurse Jade said, “Are you okay? You look like you’re very nervous.” I was still shaking and very jittery and I told her I was scared to death. She told me everything would be fine. There was such a sweet and familiar way in which she spoke with us, I totally believed her.

I had brought a ton of chocolate and every time anyone came in, I made sure to offer some. I knew I was going to be high maintenance and wanted to apologize in advance for being so!

It’s here where things start getting blurry for me. The plan was to give me the Cervidil in hopes of helping me dilate some. I was pretty much Fort Knox as Dr. Shonekan had said, and we hoped that would make a difference. I think I started having some contractions, but honestly, I don’t remember being in any pain. In fact, I remember having some cramping and John telling me that I was having contractions and I thought, “Hmmm….that’s not that bad! I felt worse when Matthew kicked me!” Someone had advised me to ask about Ambien for the night so I could get some sleep, and I asked Jade whether she thought that was a good idea. She said she’d ask the doctor, and Dr. Shonekan was fine with it. I honestly don’t remember whether or not I took it because I’d done all the reading about medications and not wanting the baby to be sleepy when born. I don’t think I did take it, but we did talk about Stadol since sometimes the Cervidil could make one uncomfortable and I’m pretty sure I forsook the Ambien in favor of the Stadol. What I remember most about that night is that neither of us slept much—the monitor kept going off for no reason and I just couldn’t sleep. I wasn’t in pain, even though John said the contractions were fairly strong and close, I just couldn’t sleep. As the morning came, I remember wondering where the night had gone because time seemed to just disappear. Jade told me she’d see me and our sweet baby that night because she’d be coming back and though I’d be on the post-partum side, she’d make sure she saw me. Before she left, she introduced me to Ruth, and I remember thinking, “Oh good…another sweet smile.”

The day wore on. Everyone said my contractions were closer and fairly intense, but I didn’t really feel much pain. I kept waiting for the pain! I knew it was coming…and had thus far been surprised by labor! I was exhausted and wanted desperately to sleep, I just couldn’t. I think I dozed in and out because time passed, but I don’t remember really sleeping. My friend Deb came that morning and brought a sweet little sock monkey for Matthew. Dr. Shonekan came and reminded me of how stubborn my boy was because I still wasn’t progressing much at all. We talked about my epidural even though I was struggling to get to 4 cm. She said to go for it, so the anesthesiologist was called. Everyone told me that he was wonderful and I was lucky he was on call. When he came in, he sat me the way I needed to sit and as I looked down, I saw his UVA crocs! I had forgotten that it was the big Tech/UVA game and he was all dressed for it! We made the appropriate Wahoo/Hokie jokes and I thanked God for such a good-natured anesthesiologist. I had been worried about the epidural and felt completely ok with him. He complimented me on how still I was able to sit and how easy it was to get where he needed to go because my back was so lean! Ahhh….music to a very large pregnant lady’s ears! He gave us his best wishes, in spite of our Hokie loyalties, and I finally felt like we might be close.

I do not really have any idea of the time factor. I had no cognizance of what time it was but I knew it was getting on in the afternoon. Mom and John had just been biding their time and I think it was a little after 4 when Dr. Shonekan came in and said that she thought we were going to have to go in and get him! There had been some weird readings on the monitor, which didn’t really faze me because that monitor had been acting sort of weird anyway and earlier in the day they’d had me lay on my left side and things were fine. She told me she wanted to put the little monitor that screws into his head on so she could see what was going on and I started to cry a bit. Not because I was worried but because I had seen that little hook in our birth class and I didn’t want my sweet boy to have to have that in his head! She also told me she’d go ahead and break my water while she was in there. I asked if she had to, because I really didn’t want it broken, especially if we were going to go the c-section route anyway. She said it didn’t make a difference either way, and I told her I’d rather not—I didn’t want to make a mess for my sweet nurses. She started to do whatever it was that she was doing with that hook thing and said, “Well, he didn’t like that! He has really good scalp stimulation! In fact, put that on the board,” and Ruth started to write it on the white board. She said she was breaking my water while she was there and I said, “Oh, ok…” and in what seemed like seconds, she said, “Well….Mr. Matthew is calling my bluff.”

In an instant, everything…EVERYTHING changed. She started moving like I’d never seen (and she was nearly 9 months pregnant herself!) and started prepping me for a c-section. She was giving orders, people were moving and Dr. Finkleston, the anesthesiologist came back in. I didn’t know what was going on, but it was very apparent that Dr. Shonekan wanted people to MOVE. Dr. Finkleston told me he was going to get me ready for surgery, and I reminded him he’d already given me my epidural. He said, “Oh honey, you’re going to get a few more things for this.”

The next thing I knew, Dr. Shonekan was pulling my bed out of my room and to the OR HERSELF!! We banged against the door, and I realized this was not right. I started praying to God to bless each and every hand that touched me and that touched Matthew…to give them wisdom and courage.

I have to say that I did NOT DOUBT for ONE SECOND that this would not be anything but a dramatic entrance…and all would be fine. I was still joking around, and started to get a bit nervous that no one was joking back with me. When Dr. Finkleston and the other nurses were trying to get me onto the table from my bed, he said, “How much do you weigh? About 160?”

I died laughing. As a woman who barely broke 100 pounds for most of my adult life, I couldn’t BELIEVE he was guess-timating me that heavy. (In reality, he was only about 13 pounds off!) He then apologized for ‘insulting’ me and told me he was just asking to know how much medicine he needed to give.

I was still jovial.

I was still unaware of the severity of the situation.

But everyone else knew.

One of the surgical technicians, Margaret Ann, came to me and held my left hand. She asked me if I believed in God. I told her, “Yes.” She asked me if I believed in Jesus Christ. I told her, “Yes.” She asked if she could pray for me. I begged her to do so. I don’t remember what she said, but I do remember thinking, “Wow, they all think this is really serious.”

But I didn’t.

Because God was faithful.

He’d promised me Matthew; He'd shown him to me in dreams and given me his name. He’d blessed us with this miracle after 10 years of heartache.

I was not worried.

Someone asked the time and I heard, “4:50.”

John came into the OR and sat up by my head. Before he came in, Margaret Ann had been holding my left hand and Dr. Finkelston my right. John took my right hand and I kept asking what was happening. I saw Dr. Shonekan lift Matthew out, though I didn’t see him, and hand him to the nurses. I still couldn’t see what was going on but it was very, very quiet. I kept asking what was happening and finally, John said, “They’re doing CPR.”

I did not like the sound of that, yet told John, “He’ll be fine. He’s going to be fine. I know he is going to be fine.” I kept telling John and anyone else who would listen that Matthew would be fine.

I asked what his birth time was. “4:56,” is what I was told. That amazing pregnant woman had the nerves and strength to that baby out of me in 6 minutes. I was awestruck.

It seemed like it was about two or three minutes and then I saw the backs of two nurses whisking Matthew away. That was my first glimpse of him—the back of his sweet little head with dark hair and a wavy pattern. I told John to follow him and NOT leave him, that I’d be fine.

No one was really saying much…I guess there wasn’t much to say. The surgery had been so fast they had not been able to do the instrument count, and had to wait for an x-ray of my insides to be sure nothing had been left. I was pretty impressed with their thoroughness.

From what I remember, Margaret Ann continued to hold my hand and Dr. Finkelston sort of went back and forth from the nursery to me to give me an idea of what was going on, but in truth, I think everyone was so shocked and surprised that they were all on autopilot. I saw Dr. Shonekan and another woman in the corner of the room looking over something, which I later figured out was my placenta. I guess they also were just trying to figure out what the heck had happened.

After the X-Ray, someone I didn’t know or recognize came and wheeled me into a different room. I wasn’t really sure of where I was in relationship to the room they’d just wheeled me out of not a half hour before. I think the poor person wheeling me in there was sort of shell-shocked and didn’t really know what to say, and I feel bad for her because I just kept telling anyone and everyone who kept popping in and out of the room that Matthew was going to be fine. She must have thought I was nuts.

Time again gets very, very blurry here. I remember John coming in and out with some details…Matthew peed all over the nurses and they were glad! Matthew was holding his hand. Deb came in with pictures for me and said he’d given her the look we call “The Stink-Eye” in our family. They said he was fighting and that they were going to have to med evac him to Children’s.







In hindsight, I do not know what on earth kept me in that room. I needed to be in that nursery. I know John was torn about leaving me, but we’d already discussed that he needed to be with the baby at all times. I just wish I had gone to the nursery myself.

Other news came in…they had a hard time getting a line in to Matthew…something about not being able to give a transfusion…Children’s wasn’t available so it was going to be Georgetown. I remember telling John he couldn’t go by himself and he’d called our family friend Jeff to take him up there because there wouldn’t be room in the helicopter. How ironic…my husband could fly that aircraft but there wouldn’t be room for him to be with his son.

I told anyone who would listen that before Matthew left, I wanted them to come into my room. I guess one of the reasons no one had helped me to the nursery was because I’d just had an emergency surgery and the Duramorph left me pretty much unable to move. Jade was back with me, as Deb had switched her so she could be with me that night also. The little things that those women and men did that night are priceless to me.

When the Georgetown people finally came in with Matthew’s huge isolette, I couldn’t believe how big it was. It was hard to move close to my bed and the Georgetown doctor seemed pretty much in a hurry to get out of there. She told me over and over that he was a very sick little boy and they would do all they could to help him. In my head, I barely heard her words because I was screaming, “You’re WRONG! He’s going to be fine! He’s perfectly healthy!!!! God promised him to me! He is going to be the miracle you all talk about! YOU WILL ALL BE TALKING ABOUT MY SON FOR YEARS TO COME.”

I don’t think I was entirely wrong, sadly.

I told them I wanted to touch him…there was no way that baby was getting out of the hospital without his mama feeling him and letting him know I was there. The Georgetown doctor looked skeptical, as I couldn’t move and they couldn’t get him close to me.

I didn’t care and neither did Jade, since I saw her look at the doctor in a way that said, “Seriously? We’re going to get this lady to touch her baby!” I asked Jade to help me, and I got out of that bed. As I did, a gush of blood went everywhere and I felt awful. I just remember saying, “I’m sorry…I’m sorry” and again, those sweet people told me it was ok. I used a chair or maybe Jade’s arm to sort of hold on to, but I walked the couple of steps over to his isolette and reached in the little circle that was where his head was. I touched his shoulder and caressed his sweet little face. It was so amazingly soft…I couldn’t believe it. I had expected that since he was overdue, he’d be a dry and leathery little baby boy…and he had the softest, creamiest skin I’d ever touched.

Still…I still felt that it was only a matter of time until we’d be home and that he’d be fine.

I honestly don’t know how I had gotten out of that bed, because as soon as he left, I got back in the bed and literally couldn’t move my legs. Someone had to move them for me back into the bed.

As they took him out, I blew him a kiss. I remember thinking, “Wow. A little melodramatic, Lori. He’s going to be fine and you know it.”

I of course wanted to leave and go to Georgetown. Dr. Shonekan told me she couldn’t discharge me with the procedures and medicines I’d just had. I asked about just leaving and she said I could, but then insurance would have a field day in not paying considering I’d be leaving against medical advice.
So that amazing woman said, “I’m going to get you into post-partum at Georgetown but we have to get you up there with an ambulance. I’m going to go work on that right now.”

And she did. As she did, various people kept coming in and out. The pediatrician and I had a long, long talk. I asked her the same question I had earlier asked Dr. Shonekan about survivability. Both had told me that there would probably be issues, as Matthew had lost a tremendous amount of blood and some oxygen, but they were fairly confident he’d survive. As the pediatrician and I were talking, she got called out for a phone call. I now know that phone call was Georgetown telling them that things were not good.

Time is blurry here too…It seemed to me that she left my room and a few minutes later, mom and my neighbor Connie came in my room. Seeing as mom had been gone for a while, her coming back was not encouraging to me. She told me I needed to call John.

I called John and he told me that there was basically nothing they could do…that they were telling him we’d probably have to make a decision about Matthew. He’d apparently crashed 5 times on the helicopter ride out to Georgetown and whatever procedure they’d wanted to try with him was simply not going to be successful.

I was in shock. I did not believe him and told him there would be no making of any decision. There was no decision to be made. Matthew was living. Period.

I don’t remember much more of that conversation, only that mom said she’d gotten in touch with Bert, a family friend and pastor. It was a little after one in the morning and John called back. He told me that there was nothing else to do and no decision to be made…Matthew was making the decision.

He was dying.

John was alone, holding Matthew, as he was dying.



I had Bert on mom’s cell phone speaker and John on my cell phone speaker, and together, with mom and Connie (and I think Jade, but I’m fuzzy), Bert read verses and ushered Matthew into Heaven.

Matthew died at 1:26 am on November 29.

My precious miracle left this earth, without even knowing me…and I was shattered.

I don’t remember much more other than John crying, “Lori, I’m sorry….I’m so, so, sorry. Please don’t leave me. Please don’t leave me.”

That broke my heart, and still does. I didn’t understand what he meant at the time, and later realized he was worried that in losing Matthew, he’d lose me.

At the time, the initial guess was that it was a placental abruption that caused Matthew to lose so much blood. We of course found out a couple of days later that it was vasa previa, and more, a sort of rare presentation of vasa previa.

In all my planning and all my research and all my worrying…never had I even heard of that.

Why would I? It’s that thing that doctors read about in medical school and think, “Hmm…doubt I’ll ever see that, thank goodness,” because it’s just rare.

Really, it didn’t matter why.

Matthew was gone. Is gone.

And my world is forever changed.

63 comments:

  1. Oh, Lori. I read your post in tears. I cannot imagine. I just cannot imagine. And I think you are so courageous and strong to be able to tell Matthew's story. Praying for your sweet, tender heart today.

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  2. Thank you for sharing Matthew's birth story. I think that's an important step.
    Praying continually for you, for peace , for Miney.

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  3. thank you for telling this part of the story, for sharing it ........

    (((hugs)))

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  4. Oh my goodness, I am in tears now! Thank you so much for sharing that with us. We'll never forget that sweet, precious boy! Praying for you on this hard day and everyday. Hugs and Kisses from the Hetrich's.

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  5. Oh Lori, thanks so much for sharing this story with us. The picture of John brought tears to my eyes.

    (((hugs)))

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  6. I think of you, John, and Matthew every day. Today is one of those days with tears of sorrow for the loss of his sweet life and the grief you bear, though you bear it with such dignity and grace. With all my heart, I wish it were different. With all my heart, I wish he were here with you and John, doing all the things a 6-month-old does to make his parents beam. For your comfort, for your courage, for your strength, for your peace, for your joy in the new life you carry, I lift you up in prayer. With love for you and your children.

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  7. Sweetest Friend,

    Many, many tears...my heart is so heavy reading these words. You tell Matthew's story with such love and through everything you endured your FAITH in GOD "never" wavered, never. What a strong testament to you and how strongly you believe.

    God does send us angels on Earth and Jade and Margaret Anne did their jobs perfectly. What amazing women.

    Thank you for being courageous enough to relive those precious moments, to honor your sweet boy. If I could tell Matthew one thing, I would say this, "your Mommie believed in you and never gave up on you, and loves you just the same today and each day forward"

    Lifting you up, as I know this was difficult to write. Continued prayers to you and John.

    Much Love to you Sweet Friend,
    xoxo
    andrea

    ps that sweet little face is one I will always remember

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  8. Oh God Lori. I cannot imagine how difficult that was to write. My heart remains so heavy for you and I am without any other words except I am so so sorry. So very sorry.

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  9. Wow. Full of tears. I know that must have been so hard for you to write, but I hope it was healing for you to write it as well. Thank you for sharing Matthew's life with us.
    xoxo

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  10. Thank you for sharing your story. Matthew's story. You are always in my thoughts and prayers.

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  11. Lori,
    Thank you for sharing Matthew's story! He was SO beautiful. My heart is broken for you and your family. I have no words, other than I am so sorry for your tremendous loss.

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  12. Thank you for sharing Matthew's birth story. I am in tears, and I have no words... ((hugs))

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  13. Lori, my heart aches for you. Those details, those photos. You write so beautifully. That precious little boy has such a sweet mother.

    Thinking about you, Matthew, Miney and the little fishes today. Praying for peace and comfort.

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  14. Oh Lori I don't even know what to say. As I read the story and knew the ending I still prayed along the way. I felt as though I was floating above the room watching this all unfold and I felt like hugging you through the whole experience. My heart is with you today more than you can imagine. You are so brave to relive this whole day with so much detail. Matthew has the best mommy...I pray everyday for your continued courage xoxoxo

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  15. Thank you so much for telling us Matthew's story. As I sit here crying, I know my life will never be the same for having found your story. Life is so precious. My heart aches for you, but I also know that you are a survivor.

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  16. Lori,
    Thank you for sharing this, I am so glad you did. It must have been hard to write it but it is a legacy a story.

    I am crying my eyes out and encouraged all at the same time.

    I am telling you, you and John make some ADORABLE kids. He is the cutest thing ever.

    Thanks for sharing. I hope the staff at St. Mary's reads this. What an encouragement for them to see how you feel about them.

    I laughed about Dr. Finkleston. He is a great guy, I might have to give him a hard time about dissing you on the weight thing. :)

    Love you so much. Happy 1/2 birthday to Matthew.

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  17. Its official - I am sobbing for you. Crying that John had to be there alone, crying that you never got to be there physically while Matthew was being ushered into his saviors arms.
    I am in awe of your strength. Sending hugs and good thoughts your way.

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  18. Lori- I'm so sorry for your loss and what happened to you and your sweet Mathew. I soaked a huge handful of tissues and more coming. It just seems so appalling and horrific how it happened so suddenly without any notice and at the last minute. Mathew is so sweet and beautiful!!! I so wish this hadn't happened and that he was still with you. You're in my prayers.

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  19. Lori:

    Someday your other children will be greatful for that post. It must have been hard to write, beyond imagination.

    For your current pregnancy, I hope the knowledge that we are all scared for you and with you somehow makes the journey more peaceful.

    Blessings.

    Kathy W

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  20. Lori ... I am weeping. Body heaving weeps of anguish and despair for you and your husband. How God must have been rocking you in His arms during all of those events ... how wonderful that He was with you, and with Matthew at the same time, connecting the three of you in that moment when he opened his eyes to Jesus for the first time. Just the grief in your husbands face in the last picture makes me realize just how the Lord was feeling in that moment too. Devestated. In awe. In love. Heartbroken. -- Loving you from far away, and praying with all I can muster for what's to come for you. This was just so beautiful.

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  21. lori that is so sad and matthew is such a beautiful baby, your husband , bless him was so strong for being there for you and matthew, i am so sorry you didn't get to spend more time with your precious baby boy, he knew though from the 9 months he spent living inside you that he was loved . i will be with you through this next journey and we can hold each others hands , sending so much love, anne xxx

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  22. Lori - I am crying for you and for Matthew and for John. I wish I knew what else to say? Matthew's story is so heartwreching.

    I am hoping for all of you that Miney has a birth story full of joy and happiness.

    Much Love, J

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  23. Lori, you have so much love for Matthew and your husband. Your post made me cry. Our family continues to pray for yours.

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  24. Much love, Lori!

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  25. I just burst into tears reading this post. Lori, I am so sorry, my darling. It was hard enough knowing I had a dead baby inside me, but to give birth to a live baby darling and then lose him... *ugh* It breaks my heart. And bless your sweet hubby too. Awwwwwww!

    Lots of love and hugs, my friend! xoxo

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  26. He is so beautiful...that's all I keep thinking.

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  27. Lori,
    Can't stop the tears.. You are a strong person for putting it into words. I am praying for you, John, sweet Matthew and your little one Miney.
    XOXOXO

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  28. Lori, Matthew is so precious! His story is heartbreaking. It brought fresh tears reading it. It is so hard to understand why God has chosen this path. This is where faith and trust are put to the test. Thank you for sharing your sweet little boy with us. Lots of love, hugs, and prayers!

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  29. My heart aches for you lori. I can only imagine your situation but i know the hurt and the pain. I wish i had the magic words to bring our babies back or take away the hurt, but i don't , so i leave you with a hug, lots of love and prayers.

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  30. Lori, there is so much I want to say but can barely see the keys on my laptop through all my tears.

    Thank you for sharing your story, although I wish it was a story you NEVER had to share.

    I've been struggling so much these days with memories of my short days with Zac, and the horrid decision we had to make. Yet, I was told something very similar as you were "there is nothing we can do...Zac is making the decision for himself. He fought so hard for 5 weeks, and he just can't fight any more." I still can't believe I heard those words. Still can't believe that his "legend" in NICU was through his death, and not the miracle of a miraculous healing.

    My heart is with you as you share your heart with us.

    I wish I could give you a real life hug!

    Thinking of Matthew, as I do often!!

    Heather (heathershope - HP)

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  31. I'm *so* sorry...how can those three little words possibly convey the depth of how much I mean them? Every detail in this post made my heart hurt more. How difficult this must've been to revisit (as you've likely done a thousand times over) and write about. But it's necessary to honor Matthew - and so important for Miney when (s)he gets old enough to read this chapter in your family's story. They'll know Matthew well thanks to your and John's efforts, and they'll NEVER doubt what loving, devoted parents you are to your children. Hoping that tomorrow is a little easier...

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  32. I can't even see the screen right now.....thank you so much for letting us on such a personal and tragic moment in your life. We will never ever forget Matthew, what a special little guy he is. That must have been a very difficult post for you to write. Hugs and prayers always my dear.

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  33. I don't have words, only tears. Praying for God's perfect peace to encompass you friend.

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  34. Lori, many tears shed for you and your family this morning...I'm thinking of you all, and are on my heart today. Sending much love.

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  35. Lori I am sending you so many hugs right now. I imagine it was difficult to do but I thank you for sharing Matthew's birth story with us. I am so glad that you were able to touch him and feel how soft Matthew's skin was. I do want to comment that I feel Matthew did know you. You were Matthew's home for many months before he was born. You were his source of nourishment and growth. He knew your heart as you have such an amazingly loving and beautiful heart! He heard your voice and knew you. I am so sorry that you had to go through all that you have.

    love and prayers always
    elena

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  36. Heart-wrenching really. Just breath-taking, and not in a way that you want. But beautifully written as always. What a beautiful boy!! Praying for you as you continue to walk without Matthew and honor him so perfectly!

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  37. Lori....I am so sorry once again. You are in my prayers a lot and I will continue to lift you up...

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  38. Missing him today and always. Thank you for sharing his precious story. Love you.

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  39. I have so many tears as I read this. I thank you for sharing your story. Our stories are different but yet similar. I too thought that everything would be okay. He looked so healthy! Just know though that Matthew did not leave this Earth not knowing his mom. He spent 9 months close to you the anyone else. He definitely knew you. He listened to you and he listened to the music along with you. He knew his mommy! Lori you are an amazing women! I am thinking and praying for you. You come to mind often and I always lift you up in prayer when you do.

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  40. Lori, I am crying tears for you and John and what you went thru. It breaks my heart so much...

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  41. I was still crying after reading your husbands post ...now I am a complete wreck. Matthew is just perfect and beautiful. I want to tell you that I won't ever forget his story or life. You both have been so amazing to share this part of your story and I believe it will continue to touch many others.

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  42. Lori, thank you for sharing this beautiful story. I'm amazed at how strong you are, and what you must have gone through to relive and write this. I'm in tears reading it. You have a wonderful way with words, and Matthew will never be forgotten because of it. Thinking of you!

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  43. Lori,
    Thank you so much for sharing. I am in tears as I read. Matthew truly is so, so beautiful. Everything about him. And you are too...I greatly admire your beauty and quiet strength.

    Love, HR

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  44. I am literally weeping. I just want to wrap my arms around you and give you a hug. I am so grateful for all of the wonderful people you had with you that day. I have a Matthew that I fought for and it is hard for me to understand why sometimes they live and sometimes they don't. I will tell you that I have a firm belief in the fact that this baby will always be your baby and someday you will be with him again. I also have a firm belief that he is in the most wonderful, happy, peaceful place. I have always wondered if these sweet babies are simply too pure and too wonderful for this world.
    My thoughts and prayers are with you and your sweet family.

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  45. I am so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your story.

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  46. Hi Lori,

    I just read Mathew's story. I have tears running out. I have an almost identical story. My daughter died one hour after she was born on January 2nd, 2010. She was also born in an emergency c-section. I didn't meet her a life. While my daughter was fighting for her life I also was stock in my bed without feeling my legs. My husband also hold her when she died and that also changed all my world. Praying for you and your new baby.

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  47. I am reading your story on the way home from the VT/UVA. I came across your blog from the beautiful pics you took with Kristine. I have tears of saddness because of what you went through and tears of joy because your source of strength is your Lord and Savior! I will be praying for you and and your family tomorrow and always. Keep your strength in Him!

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  48. Lori--I just found your blog and in reading this post I am dumbfounded. The similarities in our stories are astounding. The pictures you have are even so similar. I can't believe it. The stat c-section, the drugs, seeing him before he was transfered, John holding him while he passed. So much....goes straight to my heart. Matthew was so beautiful. And perfect. I am so sorry you had to go through all of this. My nightmare was on April 14th, 2009 and I remember it like it was yesterday. I am in litigation with my doctor so I have not put my story on my blog. I don't know what else to say. I am just stunned. Congratulations on beautiful Matthew and the near arrival of his little brother.

    My prayers to you and your husband.
    Christy
    p.s. I am due with Chase's little brother Feb 13th. I will be following along with you...holding your hand on our very similar journeys.

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  49. Oh Lori. I just read your story about your son Matthew. I am so so so sorry for your loss!

    I won't even pretend to have any answers, but one thing that I can testify to is that God is faithful! Such loss makes me ever more grateful for Jesus Christ and the promise that awaits us in Heaven. We weep until then, but rest and unfathomable joy is coming.

    Rejoicing with you in the upcoming birth of your son Luke. Weeping with you in the loss of your son Matthew. He will always be a part of your family!

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  50. So sorry for your loss. I also have a Matthew (6 yrs old) and a Luke (2 mnths old) and I read this in tears for your loss. I just can't imagine how hard this must have been. My heart breaks for you at the loss of Matthew and rejoices with you at the birth of Luke. May God Bless your family.

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  51. Your story touched me Lori. So sorry your sweet Matthew is not with you. Know that he looks down on you every second. <3

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  52. My prayers to you. My heart sympathizes with you, tears are flowing down my face. What a long journey. Matthew was a sweet little boy, my words cannot express the sadness I feel for your loss.

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  53. On my Colton's headstone reads the phrase...."the child we had, but never had, and yet will have forever."

    As tears pour down my face, that is what I think of with you and your sweet Matthew.

    You are brave and I know he is proud of you.

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  54. I can not stop the tears from running down my face...(((hugs)))
    I am so sorry.

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  55. Hi from ICLW (#26),

    Your story is so similar to my own, though I did not struggle to get pregnant. I can feel your pain as I read. I am so sorry you had to go through such a traumatic experience.

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  56. OH Lori, I am just pouring tears reading this. I am sure that I have read this before, but as you are now one of my dearest friends, and Matthew has come to mean so much to me over these last few years, it is so much harder to read. Just know that I am here, remembering with you today and shedding tears with you and just so, so incredibly sorry for your loss. xoxo

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  57. OH Lori, I am just pouring tears reading this. I am sure that I have read this before, but as you are now one of my dearest friends, and Matthew has come to mean so much to me over these last few years, it is so much harder to read. Just know that I am here, remembering with you today and shedding tears with you and just so, so incredibly sorry for your loss. xoxo

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  58. Beautiful and raw. Thank you for sharing your story with us.
    Matthew did know you, inside out and he was with you physically for 10 months and will be in your heart forever.

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  59. he was so beautiful.
    i am so sorry for your loss

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  63. Your story is so beautiful and ironically mirrors mine with my sweet Grady that I lost. How beautiful Matthew was and I am so sorry you weren't able to hold him. How devastating. The first time I held Grady was my last. You are a strong woman!

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