Conceiving wasn’t the problem, but with multiple complications throughout pregnancy and then the unbearable loss of their child, Sadie’s wish is to tell her story to help others.
"On the 8th day of Jack's life, he experienced complications and passed away. The heartbreak engulfed my body but my baby was at peace and not experiencing any discomfort or pain anymore. As difficult as this experience was, I am not the only mother to experience it, nor will I be the last.
My name is Sadie and I am from Houston, Texas. I am a mechanical engineer working as a project manager for a nitrogen chemical plant in a small city in Ohio, where I met my husband. We had an instant connection and got married very quickly. In the whirlwind romance, we got pregnant. We were very excited to jump into creating a family and we both want a big family with lots of kids and a loving home where everyone can feel welcomed.
I had terrible morning sickness during the first trimester of pregnancy and would secretly hug the trash can between my knees while at work. The first doctor's appointment where the OBGYN checks measurements and listens for a heart beat went well. It was all so exciting to experience. By the time the morning sickness subsided, it was time for our second ultrasound and gender reveal. When we went into the doctor's office, the ultrasound tech was excited to tell us the gender of our little one, but not too long after she started taking measurements, the excitement wore off. She left to go get the doctor and when the doctor came in, she informed us that there was a problem with the amniotic fluid in my uterus. They were transferring me to a specialist in Dayton ASAP in order to get a better look at what was going on. After a few sleepless nights, we finally got an appointment with a specialist in Dayton, where we were told that our baby's urine was trapped and had no outlet from the bladder, which is why there was no amniotic fluid in my uterus. Amniotic fluid is recycled as the baby digests it and then releases it back into the uterus. The doctor told us our only options were to abort or give birth and provide comfort care until the baby passed away, as the kidneys would be cystic and the lungs would not develop without amniotic fluid. This was not the answer that we were looking for and we asked to get a second opinion and to be transferred to Cincinnati Childrens Hospital for a second evaluation.
Shortly after, we were able to get an appointment with specialists in Cincinnati. After scans, MRI's, and tests, we sat down with a team of specialists that reviewed our case. We had hope that we could receive treatments to replace the amniotic fluid and give our baby a chance to develop lungs, knowing that he would require dialysis and a kidney transplant once he was born, but he would have a chance at a healthy life once receiving a good kidney. We drove 2 hours every Monday and Thursday to Cincinnati to receive amnioinfusions after I had surgery to get a port installed on my rib cage that ran tubing down into my uterus. It was an extremely hard pregnancy, but I was not the only mom undergoing treatment in hopes of saving a baby. There were moms with all different stories and conditions that were trying their hardest to provide the absolute best care for their babies.
After my 20th amnioinfusion, at almost 35 weeks, an hour after arriving back at our house from Cincinnati, I went to get into bed and felt a small gush, as if I had uncontrollably wet my pants. My husband rushed me to the local hospital where they checked to see if my water was truly broken. When they discovered that it was, they called in to our specialists in Cincinnati and scrambled to arrange transportation for me to get back to the Cincinnati hospital. An hour later, I was life-flighted to the Cincinnati Good Samaritan hospital where I was placed on bed rest with the hopes of trying to keep the baby from being delivered for as long as possible. It was critical that his lungs develop so he could have a fighting chance to survive.
My sweet husband commuted back and forth every day to and from Cincinnati to go to work. 2 hours, both ways. With my family in Houston and his family in Indiana, we were determined to be the strongest support systems for each other and the small family we created. After 10 days of bed rest, the doctors had to deliver. They did a c-section and removed my port afterwards. Jack was born and we cried when the doctor's said he was breathing. His lungs were working. The doctors rushed him to get hooked up with a cpap so he could get the help he needed to breathe and ran some tests on him. We made it to delivery.
C-sections are nothing to be taken lightly, as you know. After the hospital released me, we still had to stay with Jack in the NICU. Getting around a NICU with a fresh c-section, while sleeping in the NICU recliners at night was not easy, especially when there was no way to hold Jack for the first few days and the lactation nurse needed to keep me pumping so I could produce milk quickly and build a supply for Jack while he stayed in the NICU indefinitely. Being engorged and 2 hours from home with only the hospital bag at hand was a very interesting experience. I know that I am not the only mom that was experiencing this at the time. What the body will sacrifice for the betterness of a child is amazing.
On the 8th day of Jack's life, he experienced complications and passed away. The heartbreak engulfed my body but my baby was at peace and not experiencing any discomfort or pain anymore. As difficult as this experience was, I am not the only mother to experience it, nor will I be the last.
Motherhood is so much more than physically carrying and growing a baby. It is more than giving birth. It is more than the challenges that our bodies face after giving birth. There are mothers that never get to experience that, no matter how badly they want to. There are mothers that experience it but don't get to raise their babies. There are mothers that get to experience it all but that isn't to say that they don't also face their own challenges. The experience of motherhood has so many avenues and creating ways for women to connect and share their experiences is so important. Every person has a different journey that no one else will understand fully, but we can learn and grow from each other as a community and support each other while we figure out the challenges that life presents us with. Support and love from others is not something we should take for granted. My heart goes out to all women, no matter their circumstances, learning how to embrace the physical and emotional aspects of the miracles female bodies create.
What you are doing, the work to unite women and gather a support system for mothers to come together and get a chance to share their unique stories and journeys is a reflection of your character and love for others. Although this might not be a story that you can use with pictures that you can't use for the business you are creating, the fact that you are working to bring women together is amazing. I fully appreciate and respect the work that you do and the family that you are raising. Your influence on my life has been so positive over the last few years and my heart wishes nothing but the best for you and your family as you start on this next venture together!!
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