Friday, December 5, 2008

Forever Missed

December 5, 2006

Jowell and I could've been parents before we had MiLo, but God decided that it's not time yet. At 9 weeks and 5 days (age of gestation), our Gon went to Heaven and became an angel. Today is his 2nd Angel Anniversary.

To share our story, here's a "copy and paste" from my old blog:

The Greatest Gift

Christmas started early this year for me and Jowell. On November 1st, two days before my 28th birthday, we received the greatest gift ever. Two lines registered on the home pregnancy kit that Jowell bought earlier that week. We are going to have a baby - a blessing we thought we’d never have. We were ecstatic. We both thought that we were not capable of having our own child. But, in God’s own beautiful time, He blessed us with this wonderful gift. But, God had another purpose.

On November 16th, Jowell and I went to our very first pre-natal visit to an ob-gyne at The Medical City satellite clinic at SM Fairview. I was anxious. I am hypertensive and I read on the Internet that the pill I am taking to control my blood pressure is fatal to the baby. While in the clinic and lying on the bed, I kept on praying to God to please make our baby healthy and well. He heard my prayers as the ob-gyne detected a heartbeat on my tummy. I was comforted and had a big smile on my face when I stepped out of her clinic to meet Jowell.

With the doctor’s confirmation, Jowell named the baby on my tummy, Gon. We were not sure of the baby’s sex yet, but Jowell insisted that we call the baby Gon for the meantime. So, on that the day, our blessing was called Gon.

My family was excited upon hearing the news. Yes, they were a little surprised, but the thought of having the first apo and pamangkin made them really, really thrilled. But, the thought of me getting married and living somewhere else bought tears to our eyes. At that time, I was only ready to be a mommy, but not yet a wife. I am 28, with a good job, a loving boyfriend, and a baby on the way, but I was not ready to leave home just yet. I am still a girl with many fears and uncertainties and leaving Mama’s side was not a welcome option. That tensed that situation between me and Jowell. But, being the super understanding boyfriend that he is, he let me have my way.

After the first visit with the ob-gyne, everything was going well. We agreed to have our civil wedding on the first week of January 2007 and have the church wedding sometime in 2008. I was perfectly happy and contented with the way our life was going.

With Mama’s advice to see another ob-gyne from a “more established” hospital, I went to see another ob-gyne at FEU-NRMF on November 18th. Lying on a different bed and a different doctor poking me here and there, I said the same silent prayer. Minutes later, I went out of the clinic with no smile on my face. The doctor said that she detected no fetal heartbeat on her Doppler and suggested that I get a transvaginal ultrasound (TVS) the soonest possible time. I was heartbroken, but my faith and hope did not waver. Dopplers are not very accurate. The TVS would confirm that Gon has a heartbeat and that he is healthy and well.

Armed with my faith, I had my very first TVS on November 20th at FEU. I was scared once more. The result of the TVS was not what we hoped for. It was confirmed that at 8 weeks and 6 days, Gon still has no cardiac activity. A follow-up TVS after two weeks was recommended by the ob-sonologist. I felt numb. But, Mama comforted me saying that some babies are late bloomers and that they show no manifestations of cardiac activity until they are bigger and older. I believed her. With four healthy children she gave birth to, I trusted that she probably knew what she was saying.

I was not scheduled to see my ob-gyne until Saturday. For five days, I was restless, but I was not giving up. On November 25th, upon seeing the result of my TVS, I knew that just by the look on my doctor’s eyes, that it was not good news. Indeed, it was not. She said it could be a case of missed abortion. I have no idea what she meant by that, but the word abortion itself made me wince. She suggested that I undergo another TVS and no longer wait for the 2-week period that the ob-sonologist recommended.

I held back my tears. I was quiet and just staring out of the cab’s window as we were going home from the hospital. I knew that the moment I would speak, tears would start flowing. Mama was very hopeful. She tried to cheer me up by saying that once gets her Christmas bonus in December, we would start shopping for maternity clothes. And once Gon’s sex is confirmed, she’d start buying the clothes and other baby stuff. I was scared, but I managed to smile just for Mama’s sake.

I called Jowell as soon as I got home. The tears that I held back the entire trip going home from the hospital fell the moment I heard his voice. Even without seeing him at that time, I felt his pain. We are about to lose Gon. But we are not giving up just yet.

Every day and every night before the second scheduled TVS, I talk to Gon. I tell him to give mommy signs that he is OK and that he is fine. But, he never gave me a single sign. I kept on asking for God’s grace to please make Gon well. As would-be-parents, Jowell and I held on. We believed that our baby will be OK and that I will give birth to him on May 22nd 2007.

The second scheduled TVS fast approached. On November 30th, together with Jowell, we went to St. Luke’s. The result of the second and my last TVS finally confirmed that our baby, Gon, still showed no signs of cardiac activity at 9 weeks and 5 days. I am having indeed a case of missed abortion.

Jowell was by my bedside the entire time I was having my second and last TVS. We saw Gon on the monitor. He was shaped like a kidney-bean. He was so tiny. But in spite of it all, what we saw was a beautiful baby.

After we had the results, I pretended to be angry. I did not want to talk to Jowell. I did not want him to hold me. I wanted to feel angry so that tears would not fall. Just like the cab ride with Mama, I was quiet. I was looking out the window again, but tears fell silently as I was holding my tummy and talking to God that if this pregnancy was not meant to be, I am praying that He welcomes Gon in Heaven and that He blesses me and Jowell with the strength to accept our fate. I held Jowell’s hand when the “fake” anger has subsided. No words were necessary to convey what we were feeling exactly at that time. We were in pain and hurting, but our love for each other was greater that we stood the challenge.

Together with my sister, Bru, I went to see my ob-gyne on December 2nd. I already knew what she was about to tell me. I was ready, but the pain in my heart was still there. I opted for Gon to pass through me naturally. I just wanted to be 101% sure that there is no longer hope for our baby. My doctor agreed, but she only gave me a week. If Gon doesn’t come out, she has to induce the abortion (I hate that word!) on Saturday, December 9th, to prevent complications on myself.

While waiting for Saturday or for Gon to pass through naturally, I still talk to him every day on my way to work and every night before I sleep. I tell him that mommy’s ready whenever he is. However, deep within me, I was not ready to give up and let go. But, last Tuesday, December 5th, Gon decided that it was time to go. At around 8:30 in the morning while I was having my 15-minute break in the office, I bled. It was not really hardcore bleeding, but as advised by my ob-gyne, I took it as a sign that I needed to go to the hospital imeediately. My lower back was hurting and so was my abdomen. With those signals, I asked my supervisor’s permission if I can go home.

I called Mama first, then texted Jowell next. Mama and I agreed to meet at FEU’s ER. I was admitted before lunch, but Gon was still with me until 7:30 that evening. For 7.5 hours, I stayed at the labor room for observation. Jowell wanted to see me, but I was in a sterilized area so he was not allowed to go. But, I was able to text him, Mama, and Papa to assure them that I am alright and that they need not worry.

For the last time that Gon was still in me, I told him not to be scared because once everything is over, God will be welcoming him in His loving arms. I asked Gon that once he gets in Heaven and he becomes an angel to watch over mommy and daddy all the time and that we will eventually see him in God’s own beautiful time.

Before 7:30pm, I was wheeled to the delivery/operating room. They were preparing me for the D & C procedure. During the entire time I was being “operated”, I felt no physical pain. The anesthesia was doing its magic. Before I knew it, the ordeal was over. As I was being wheeled to the recovery room, I saw Mama and Jowell waiting for me. Jowell’s face was gloomy so I said “Hi, honey,” when my bed passed him. I did not see whether he smiled or not, but I’m sure he was relieved that I recognized him and that I was fine.

I was at the recovery room for two hours. The thought of Gon gone has not sunk into me yet. My head was spinning. The ob resident has asked me if I wanted to see Gon’s placenta. I told her to please give it to Jowell instead and he’ll show it to me. I fell into a deep sleep.

Two hours later, I was being wheeled to my room at last. I saw Jowell first again then, Bert and Chelly. Mama went home to get some personal stuff for my confinement. When Bert and Chelly left, Jowell gave me the box that he bought where we would put Gon’s remains after the D & C. But, the doctors did not give Gon's remains to him for biopsy purposes. They only gave Gon’s placenta. The box was beautiful. It was perfectly fit for an equally beautiful baby. It was just a tiny box with the letter G, O, and N on top. I admire Jowell’s courage for preparing the stuff we need to put our dearest Gon to rest. I saw Gon’s placenta and that immediately bought tears to my eyes. His daddy’s eyes were sad, but I told him to smile. Hakuna matata, honey. No worries. Gon is in Heaven.

I was alone the next day. After breakfast, I was feeling sleepy after taking my medicines. On my way to slumber, I was talking to Gon and asking him to give mommy a sign that he is in peace and that he is happy. I dreamt that he was in a playground. The weather was fair and the sky was blue. I woke up happy. For the first time, our son has talked to me and assured me that he was OK.

I was confined for a day, but my ob-gyne has advised me to rest for a week and better if for a month. I feel OK physically. I can come to work on Saturday already, but my parents and Jowell are all begging me to rest until Wednesday.

The wound from my D & C is healing well. My parents and Jowell are relieved that I’m OK. I am relieved that they are OK. But between me and Jowell, we both know that things are not going back the way they used to be. We are different persons now. Our love for each other is deeper. Our appreciation of our parents is greater. Our faith in God is stronger.

Gon is gone. But, he is still the best gift that Jowell and I have received in our three-year relationship. He has given us much joy and happiness. In the short time he was with us, we felt so blessed and loved. As would-be-parents, Jowell and I are still very much in pain for losing Gon, our very first baby. But, we are coping pretty well. I am thankful that God has blessed with courage and strength and with people who care for us dearly.

Jowell and I are not pushing through with our civil wedding on the first week of January 2007. It will happen when I get “regularized” at work in May. But, Jowell insists that whether I get permanent at work or not, we will get married civilly this year. After losing Gon, that is something I am looking forward to.

In one month, God and Gon have changed my life. I used to be a girl scared of leaving Mama’s side to start a life of my own. Now, I’m a woman. I’m still scared of the things unknown to me, but I have now the courage to face the things I fear. With Gon, as my own angel, I am no longer scared.

Sweet dreams, my beloved Gon.
It's been 2 years and yet after re-reading the story again, it seems that it just happened yesterday. The pain is not as intense 2 years ago, but the longing remains. If Gon lived, he would have been a year and 6 months old.

I discovered something extraordinary when I was computing Gon's age. Remember my #7th Random Thought on a previous entry something about Tuesday's being my (un)lucky day? According to the birthday calculator,
"Your date of conception was on or about 29 August 2006 which was a Tuesday. You were born on a Tuesday under the astrological sign Gemini."
Come to think it. December 5, 2006, the day I had D&C, was also, well, Tuesday! Freaky, but wow!

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