Enoch James Cook
MY FIRST CHRISTMAS IN HEAVEN
"I see the countless Christmas trees around the world below, with tiny lights, like heaven's stars, reflecting on the snow. The sight is so spectacular, please wipe away the tears. For I am spending Christmas, with Jesus Christ this year. I have no words to tell you, the joy their voices bring, for it is beyond description, to hear the angels sing. I know how much you miss me. I see the pain inside your heart, but I am not so far away, we really aren't apart. So be happy for me dear ones, you know I hold you dear, and be glad I'm spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this year. I send you each a special gift from heavenly home above; I send you each a memory, of my undying love. After all, love is a gift more precious than pure gold, it was always important in the stories Jesus told. Please love and keep each other, as my Father said to do, for I can't count the blessing or love He has for each of you. So, have a Merry Christmas and wipe away those tears. Remember I'm spending Christmas, with Jesus Christ this year. "
I love that poem. I found it on the internet somewhere. It is the perfect reminder for me. This Christmas is not going to be what I planned, I planned on having my sweet little boy to snuggle and love on. Apparently holidays are harder (and having his due date at the same time makes for a double whammy) But today being his due date, I thought I would share his story.
Enoch was our 3rd precious baby. We were so excited. His pregnancy was a really hard pregnancy right from the beginning. I was diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum pretty early on and put on a zofran pump almost right away. I was throwing up around 20x a day and lost over 8 pounds in one day. I couldn't do anything. I have never thrown up more on the side of the road then I did with this pregnancy. The zofran pump is similar to a diabetic pump, you give yourself a shot in the belly every day or two and then the port would connect to the pump with the zofran syringe so that you have a continuous drip of the zofran. The pump went everywhere with me. The end prize was going to make it all worth it in the end....
This was my last day on the pump. It was very exciting to finally be done.
They were watching me pretty closely because of complications from my past pregnancies. With Isla I went into preterm labor at around 25 weeks but then they were able to stop it, but she was born IUGR. Graham was born prematurely at 35 weeks due to a placenta abruption and was also IUGR. So my Dr. had me see the perinatologist, and Enoch passed like a champ. Nothing was wrong. He was a perfect and healthy boy. They kept telling me that being so sick is a really good sign.
At 16 weeks my doctor started me on progesterone shots to try and prevent preterm labor. I was going into the office weekly to get these shots. I was just going in for a shot and didn't think I was going to see the Dr. because I had just seen him the week before. He came in to check the babies heart beat. It was just me and the two kids. My kids were being wild and I was just chatting with the Dr. I laid there and he just kept searching..... he couldn't find a heart beat. I wasn't instantly worried because when he told me he could feel the baby I assumed he meant he could still feel it moving...so i just figured the babies moving around like crazy so they can't catch the heart beat. But I was nervous. He sent me for an ultrasound and the second my baby popped up on the screen I knew it. There was nothing, no movement, no heart beat....I just sobbed. I couldn't believe it. Someone took my kids out of the room and they then told me what to expect. Did I want to go straight to the hospital, wait till the morning...
We choose to wait till the morning because Justin was still at work, and I had to make arrangements for the kids. Justin's brother Jeremy came and picked the kids up that night and my sweet sister in law Lana watched them for us. We had a few visitors, Justin's other brother Jared brought us some flowers, and some people came over to give Justin and I a blessing. Justin and I headed to target to get things for the hospital. I still had to pack a hospital bag. With Graham I wasn't prepared and didn't have bag packed. This time I had big plans, I was going to be so prepared and ready, but nothing could prepare you for this. I got some new pajamas and a blue robe, and a lot of junk food. So I packed my bag minus all the sweet baby things...my baby wasn't coming home. It was hard to sleep, knowing that this would be the last time he would in my belly.
(on our way to the hospital)
I decided to wait till the morning to deliver my sweet baby. My mom was able to fly in and come to the hospital. It was so nice to have her there. She has been through the same situation... she understood. The hospital was really great. I had one nurse the entire time, and she was really great and also a pretty good distraction when needed. They mark your door, then everyone knows you are the sad room. It was a picture of a flower... I should have printed out my own emojis. I was induced that morning around 10/11. We went on a walk to the gift shop. Waited and waited some more. I couldn't decide on getting an epidural or not. They told me that you are already feeling so much pain, there is no need to feel more pain then needed. Which I think is really great advice. So I decided to get an epidural. I am not sure why but this epidural hurt. Like REALLY hurt. I have had them before, no problem at all. Pretty much I am now scared to death of them.
A stillbirth is very different then a regular birth. You aren't hooked up to all the monitors, you don't have a lot of people coming in and out. It is just as the word implies, still. We just waited. Then my Dr. came in around 5:40 and was just kind of checking the progress. As one of my friends put it who also lost a baby "pushing meant it was over, pushing meant I wouldn't be pregnant anymore. Pushing meant saying goodbye, and I wasn't mentally ready to do this." But I pushed a few times and there he was. The hospital had me stay in the same room and I am really grateful for that. That made it so I wasn't surrounded by heathy happy baby noises.
We then just spent some time with our little Enoch. We decided on a name, and made all those decisions that you never plan on having to make. We held him and loved on him and cried.
There was nothing obviously wrong when he was born, but he was born with the cord wrapped around his neck. Babies are born pretty often with cords wrapped around their neck and are just fine. But that is the best guess we have... a cord accident.
"We were going to have a baby, but we had an angel instead."
What I never realized is that when something like this occurs is that you still have to deal with all the after birth stuff you normally deal with. So i bleed for like 7 weeks straight, my milk still came in.... So it isn't really a quick process. I still have to loose the baby weight. Today would have been my due date. Time has helped to ease the indescribable grief... but the loss is still very much there. I will always miss my boy.
* I have a little phone journal that I have been writing thoughts down... my little Enoch thoughts. Maybe at some point I will share them... but who knows. I also plan on doing a post about some good gift ideas for people who have lost a baby. Ya know, things you can do so that they know you care. Because that is very important, and I was very blessed to have so many loved ones support and love.