When Phil and I got married we had a ‘plan’. We were going to wait 3 years before we started trying for a baby – we had only known each other for 1 year when we got married and felt that we wanted to be on our own for a little before we became a bigger family. However, after a year of marriage, we were broody! We were ready for a change, ready for the pitter patter of little feet in our life! And so in January 2009 we took a great big step and stopped using birth control.
You can imagine our surprise when just 6 weeks later I was holding a home pregnancy test with TWO little red stripes! Blood tests later that day confirmed that we were indeed going to have a baby. WE TOLD THE WORLD!! I posted it on facebook, sent out text messages, phoned, emailed… you name it – we told everyone about our little blessing. For two weeks I felt every little niggle my body threw at me – I was completely aware of our little person. I had been praying about a week before we found out and strongly felt the presence of The Holy Spirit. I felt like I had been kicked in the stomach when I heard the words ‘his name is Jonah’. Later that day I told Phil that we were going to have a little boy and his name is Jonah – Jonah means ‘bringer of peace’
…and then, we lost him! I woke up on a Friday morning with period pains which didn’t worry me too much as I knew that little niggles here and there were bound to happen with implantation etc. After lazing in bed for a bit I got up, coughed and slowly but surely felt the trickle of blood down my legs. I hoped for the best, but in my heart I just knew that we had lost him. We raced off to my gynae where a scan confirmed that he had indeed left us. We cried and cried and wondered why on earth we had named him Jonah when it meant what it did! For two whole weeks we had thought about and planned for our baby. We had whole heartedly fallen in love!
Another two weeks later and the bleeding had still not subsided so my gynae felt it was best to do a D&C. I was grateful for this as I felt like it would finally bring an end to the pain we were feeling. The D&C was a success and my doctor said that we should wait one cycle before trying again. Which we did.
Fast forward two months and I was holding another positive home pregnancy test in my hands…again we were ecstatic but this time decided we would only share our news with those closest to us. However, news got out and before long everyone knew that we were expecting another baby. This time, I went straight to my gynae for blood tests so that she could monitor my progesterone levels (which were a little low). A week later, I hopped on a plane and headed to Cape Town to coach a few of my skaters through the Cape Inter-provincials competition.
I was in Cape Town for just a few hours when I noticed spotting. I honestly did not think that I was losing another baby – I believed that I had had my chance to lose a baby and it was done now. Everything was going to be ok…. but it wasn’t! A scan and blood tests two days later confirmed that this baby too was gone! This scan also revealed that I was suffering from PCOS (poly-cystic ovarian syndrome) – a condition that often renders women infertile. I was one of the few that had no trouble falling pregnant – I simply could not hold onto our babies. Now I know that miscarriage is common, I know that most women will experience at least one in her lifetime…. but it is NOT easy! It is not something that you simply get over! Miscarriage leaves an ache in ones heart that you somehow cannot express, that no one will never understand until or unless you have experienced it. I will miss our babies for my entire life and I believe with everything in me that I will one day meet them in heaven.
I will always be grateful to Dr Russouw for the step she took next – she referred me to a fertility specialist immediately – before we risked losing any more babies!
We were under the amazing care of Dr Rodrigues at Medfem Fertility Clinic for a total of 9 months before we held another positive pregnancy test. My treatment included various tests, drugs and a laparoscopy, limited drilling into the cysts and the removal of a little endometriosis. Dr Rodrigues then continued to look after us for the first 12 weeks of my pregnancy before we headed back to Dr Russouw…and in November 2010, almost 3 years after we were married our first daughter, Tailei was born. I have never felt more grateful for any gift – she was perfect and finally the deep ache for my babies we had lost was gone.
When Tailei was 3 weeks old I did a little more research into her name – we knew it was Fijian and we knew that the inherent meaning was ‘dew from God’ what we didn’t know was that the Fujian meaning for Tailei is… ‘PEACE’
Since the birth of Tailei we have spent another very short 20 weeks with Dr Rodrigues before moving back to Dr Russouw with our 4th pregnancy – things were so much easier this time with no invasive treatment needed. I had weekly intragam injections to help sustain my pregnancy for the first 12 weeks and on 18 June 2013 I gave birth to another perfect and beautiful baby girl, Keatynn.
God has been so good to us! Our journey to a family started with a few humps and bumps…but here we are today – blessed beyond measure!
Though we never met you
Your face we never saw
Though we never heard your heart beat
We could not have loved you more
Tears of joy rolled down our cheeks
When we found you on your way
You were growing fast inside me
More and more each day
We prayed for you dear baby
That God would help you grow
That He knit you together
Tiny fingers, precious toes
And as you grew my angel
A piece of us grew too
The love that’s in our hearts
That was meant for you
Now you are in heaven
You gaze upon our Lord
And I know you know in full
You truly are adored
We love you little one
This love will last forever
And you will always be
Our very first, little treasure
written for our Jonah (March 2009)