Our Birth Story

Our Birth Story

Our rainbow baby Beau Robert Faison was born on April 10, 2020 at 12:45 pm and weighed 7 lbs 8.8 oz 21 inches long. He is absolutely perfect in every way. He was born at the onset of a national pandemic.

It’s hard to believe it’s been a whole year since a day I thought would never come. My due date was April 17th and we scheduled his induction at 39 weeks. I had a prenatal appointment the day before and was still only measuring 2 cm but was completely thinned out and Beau’s head was sitting so low!

Our hospital bags were packed and we made arrangements for my mom to be at our house to stay with the other kids. Although this was super convenient and I was so ready to have him here, the biggest reason we decided to have an induction was due to COVID-19. Things were changing almost daily in the healthcare world, and I was terrified the hospital was going to change the rules again. At that time, we knew wouldn’t be allowed to have any visitors and only Gene could be with me. I don’t know how I would have gotten through it without him by my side and I wasn’t going to wait any longer to see if the coronavirus would take that from me. We had initially wanted all of our kids outside in the waiting room when the baby came but Covid had other plans.

I had been having contractions all night and was still having contractions on the way to the hospital the next morning at 4 AM. Needless to say I didn’t get much sleep. Since this baby was so special and our last one, we decided not to find out the gender and I think the idea of finally finding out also had me super excited that night. I slept in and out of dreams of “it’s a boy” or “ it’s a girl.” Nervous and anxious, we left around 4:30 AM for the hospital on Friday morning with our face masks in hand ready to find out if we were having a boy or girl!

We arrived at the hospital with face masks on to huge signs outside the hospital with COVID-19 plastered all over them notifying visitors of the new rules. We made our way through the checkpoint at the door and a bunch of questions which made us feel like we were living in a sci-if movie. We rode the elevator up to the labor and delivery floor and much to our surprise the hospital was pretty empty and the women’s center seemed pretty normal. A sigh of relief.

As we got settled into our room, I opened the blinds and the sun was coming up in the most beautiful sunrise I’ve ever seen. I felt so blessed.

Once we got there we couldn’t leave our room. The hospital would deliver all of our meals, as the cafeteria was closed, even feeding Gene which they normally don’t do. I had to wear a mask any time anyone was in our room and I had to wear a mask during the delivery.

Our amazing midwife, whose name is also Mary, got there, broke my water, and started me on pitocin. The plan was to get the epidural because with my last delivery, I had complications with my placenta and I was scared we would encounter that again. It wasn’t long after we started the process that I started feeling the contractions. After rocking on the ball and withstanding the pain for a little while, I told them I was ready for the epidural. I was still only measuring 4 cm which was felt like a blow because with the pain I was feeling I was guessing I was at least a 7!

Getting the epidural felt like it took forever. I was trying to be still in between suffering the pain of contractions while the anesthesiologist was poking around trying to get it right. That was the longest few minutes of my life. My contractions were so severe by this point and it was all I could do to sit there still and let them stick me.

Once I had the epidural I felt a ton better, ate some ice chips, checked my phone, and waited. Things seemed to be going ok.

When Mary came in and checked me…. Beau was coming! His head was right there and the staff quickly prepared for me to push. I was even able to feel his head before I started pushing. Gene and Mary set up the phones to FaceTime my sister and my mama and our kids who all would have been there if it hadn’t been for COVID.

Legs up. Newborn bed was ready. Lights were on. Tools prepared. Pads were down. It was time.

I think I only pushed a few times and he was here! Mary exclaimed, “ITS A BOY!” and tears started flowing as I got to hold him for the first time. It was truly a joyful moment and I can’t really even describe it in words. Beau was here. After everything it took to get us this sweet babe, he was here. I was holding him and watching his pouty lips. There’s no greater feeling than holding your newborn baby, especially after loss.

Gene cut the chord. Everyone was cheering and smiling. Happy moments. Our kids were on the other end of FaceTime screaming “I knew it was a boy!” While I was coddling Beau, the anxiety of reliving my placenta issues set in with Gene. I could see him paying attention and looking nervous, asking questions. He quickly told me sister we had to hang up. It took a little while and after some pushing on my tummy, my placenta finally delivered. We were in the clear.

Or so we thought.

I don’t even know how much time had passed since Beau was born, but things had calmed down. Mary had come in and said she was leaving and she would see us tomorrow. We were alone with Beau in the room. And I have to admit with no visitors it was kind of nice to just be the three of us. The simplicity and intimacy of it is was just beautiful.

After a couple of checks and the nurse pushing on my belly, she said she was going to call Mary to come back. It seemed that I was bleeding more than I should. I could see Gene’s face. He had that worried look again. Mary came back and as I was still holding Beau, I was passing huge blood clots and soaking the bed with blood.

My uterus was not clamping down like it should have. They called in another doctor who came immediately. If the bleeding didn’t stop I would possibly have to have a D&C to make sure the entire placenta had been removed. On top of that, I had a fever.

Let me remind you this was the start of the pandemic and the thought of me having a fever meant I could possibly have to get a Covid test and if God forbid I was positive, I could have Baby Beau taken from me. This was my biggest fear. Fear and doubt crept in. The doctors and nurses left the room and my anxiety took over. I started balling begging Gene to do something. I couldn’t be separated from my baby. All I could picture was me in a room all by myself with my milk drying up and my baby screaming for me in the nursery. I know, dramatic right? But at the time it was very, very real.

Gene took the baby while the doctors worked on me. Things weren’t getting any better. They gave me some meds in my IV that were supposed to help stop the bleeding.

The next time they checked things seemed to be improving. I sat up to eat something more than ice chips while Gene held our sweet baby boy. The next thing I remember I was sitting there talking to everyone and all of a sudden Gene was in my face shouting my name and all I could smell was a horrid smell that stung my nose.

I passed out.

Thank God Gene was holding the baby when it happened. A nurse had rushed in and waved some ammonia in front of my nose and all of a sudden I was back.

I lost too much blood. I saw Gene disappear into the bathroom. Later he told me that he went in the bathroom and talked to God begging him and pleading with him to save me. Shortly after, our doctor, Dr. Federici came in and checked me out and the bleeding had stopped. I had to receive a blood transfusion. 2 pints of blood.

It was super eerie that someone else’s blood was being pumped into my body but let me tell you.. once I received that blood, I felt 1,000 times better.

All of that happened in just a few hours. Dr. Federici came in before he left and looked at me and said, “No more babies. Your uterus is tired.” Baby number four was no easy feat but oh so worth it. The next day, I felt a ton better and we were even able to come home later that evening.

Childbirth still amazes me. The fact that my body went through all of that in less than 24 hours is unbelievable. I was so tired and scared. I had to let God take over and get me through it and He did. This birth experience gave me a whole new perspective on and respect for birthing babies.

Beau Robert, you are one year old today! It has been one whole year of loving you, feeling so much joy in every giggle, smile, watching you sleep, nursing you, and cuddling you. Thank you for making me a mommy again and for being my rainbow.

Xoxo,

MK

Pregnancy After Miscarriage is So Hard

Pregnancy After Miscarriage is So Hard

In honor of Pregnancy After Loss Awareness Month, I’m republishing the blog post I wrote when I was 19 weeks pregnant with our rainbow baby.

Pregnancy after loss is so hard and it taught me not to take things for granted. It taught me how naive I was my first three pregnancies. It taught me in the wake of something terrible, can be something beautiful.

I’m spreading #palawarenesss to help people understand how hard pregnancy can be but how much harder it is after you’ve suffered loss. I’m spreading awareness to stop the perception that pregnancy is all glamorous and happiness. It’s ok to be pregnant and sad. That doesn’t mean it isn’t beautiful or that you’re ungrateful. It just means your scared. Those feelings are valid. Walking into that ultrasound room expecting to hear something bad, the constant worrying, checking for blood every time you go to the bathroom and breathing a sigh of relief when there’s nothing, holding your breath in between kicks praying there will be another.. imagine feeling uncertain about every second for 9 months straight. That’s what it’s like to be pregnant after loss.

I’m here to spread awareness to help people understand that every pregnancy is different and you don’t know the journey it took to get there.

Oh, and rainbow babies are real. Very real and oh so perfect in every way. Scroll down to read the post.

Pregnancy After Miscarriage written November 19, 2019

This pregnancy has been a whirlwind of emotions so far. I will be 19 weeks this week and after losing our last baby at 9 weeks, I am still extremely nervous every day.


Every time I go to the bathroom, I can’t help but look for the one thing that has the potential to change everything… blood. Every time I feel any kind of pain, it sends off alarms in my head. Every minute of every day, I have to try not to think about what could go wrong.


Am I drinking enough water? I forgot to take my prenatals. Maybe I’m sleeping the wrong way. I’m not eating healthy enough…. All of these thoughts that I have this time around because I’ve experienced how quickly babies can be taken away.


It‘s hard to see the future when the future has been ripped away from you before. It’s hard to imagine I’ll actually give birth this time or that we’re actually having a baby. Some days it still doesn’t feel real, even when I’m looking at this growing belly or putting on my maternity pants. Who would have thought that buying onesies and tiny hats would be scary?


I’m terrified. Nothing is promised and theres no guarantee I’ll be pregnant.. even tomorrow.


Looking back on when I was pregnant with my first 3 kids, I honestly feel like I took those pregnancies for granted. That I.. got lucky.. that we made it through those 9 months that I realize now are so fragile and delicate. There are so many babies and mamas that aren’t that lucky. And I had no clue until it happened to me.


So many people have said to me, things like.. I knew it would happen for you! Or… I’m so happy you’re pregnant! All things we want to hear, but in the back of my mind, I’m thinking… when will we ever feel like we’re “in the clear” this time?


Don’t worry, there are plenty of moments where I am SO excited! We are thinking of baby names, asking about family names for inspiration, and we’ve even started buying a few baby things. We’re looking at car seats and I am planning on where to put the crib, and what new furniture to buy.


Every. single. moment. I am grateful.

Even with the worrying, I am thankful, and I won’t stop praying, praying, praying that our rainbow will be here this Spring, plump and healthy with all ten fingers and all ten toes! This holiday season we have so much to be thankful for and I will continue to pray for all of those other mamas out there who are pregnant and battling their own fears… and for those mamas who are still hopeful and trying.


Xoxo,

MK

What You Should Know About The Holidays & Missing a Baby

What You Should Know About The Holidays & Missing a Baby

The holidays are supposed to be a time for family gatherings, movies & chill, yummy food, bright lights, giving gifts, and all the good things that bring joy and cheer. For the ones who have lost a baby, it may be harder it appears to be for them to get through these few weeks during the holiday season.

For the many in the undesirable club of grief from losing a baby or a child, they are missing those little feet running down the hallway this Christmas. They are missing their big bright smile when they tear open a gift or put on that “My first Christmas” onesie. They are missing cozy cuddles under blankets by the fireplace. They are missing that little person in their Christmas family photos.

I think most people experiencing grief would agree that the days come and go and we still “do life.” But the holidays brings a sense of sadness with it for those of us experiencing a loss.

For many people the holidays just aren’t as festive. Many couples don’t have a rainbow baby yet to bring them extra joy this season. Many are still waiting. Many are still suffering. Many are still trying to get by.

When we lost our baby in January of 2019, almost two years ago, a good friend encouraged me to do something to remember her by or to honor her life to remind myself that she did matter.

If you are grieving this holiday season, do something to remind yourself that your baby still matters. Allow yourself to be sad. To cry. Hang a stocking. Donate to Toys for Tots in her honor. Or wrap a gift for him. Make a new tradition. Make time for yourself and don’t forget it’s ok to say no to invitations.

If you know someone who is experiencing grief this holiday season, don’t be afraid to talk about it because you’re scared they will be sad. The greatest gift you can give to that person would be reminding them that you remember their baby. Sharing memories is so powerful. Allow them to cry or smile or hug you.

There’s no rule book in grief. We have to endure each day, each gathering, each Christmas song… with new perspective. One who is experiencing grief has an immense, overwhelming hole in their heart that has changed who they are and how they see things, especially this season.

Just know there is heartache you can’t see and there are people around you who are feeling it, some more deeply than others. For those with hurting hearts, you aren’t alone and there’s some comfort in know that it is shared.

For all of those sweet babies in Heaven, you are loved and you are missed.

Xoxo,

MK

In memory: Our Angel Baby

In memory: Our Angel Baby

One year old. One whole year. You would’ve been one year old today.

I imagine what you would have looked like. Would you look like the rainbow baby, your brother, that we were just blessed with five months ago? Would you have curly hair or big eyes? Pouty lips or chunky legs? I imagine you as a beautiful little girl, with the perfect skin, daddy’s nose, and mama’s eyes.

I can see you taking your first steps. Red hair bouncing as you stumble towards me. I can see your brother and sisters cheering you on. I can hear you saying “mama” for the first time. I can see you smiling at daddy when he walks through the door. I can hear your sweet giggle.

But I won’t. I won’t ever hear you say mama. We were robbed of that life with you. Your life. You were taken from us at only 9 weeks pregnant. Your tiny hands would never hold mine and your little feet would never learn to walk and I will never know what your sweet giggle sounds like.

Our new baby Beau will never replace you but he sure does make it easier to live without you. I still feel you missing. Missing from our daily lives. Missing from our living room, our home, our hearts.

I felt selfish today. Your due date. I felt selfish as I snuggled your brother Beau so tight. I was giving all of my love to him when I should be sharing my love with both of you. I didn’t mention you like I should have. I should have talked about you today. So you aren’t forgotten. But I still can’t. I can’t bring myself to say it out loud. That you are gone and taken from us. I can’t help but think we’d have a beautiful little girl running around right now. I can’t talk about it yet.

It seems like forever ago. It feels like I’ve been missing you for so long. One year old today. I know you would be beautiful. I believe that is why our baby Beau is the best baby. He is double the sweetness because you were watching over us when he was made, sprinkling some extra special sparkles on his little life.

Heaven has you now. You are an angel baby. Every butterfly that stops to say hi, I will think of you. And I will say hi back to you. Until we meet again sweet girl, I’ll always love you. Happy birthday.

Love,

Mama

Life After Loss: Rainbow Babies Are Real

Life After Loss: Rainbow Babies Are Real

You lose a baby. Then what? Life doesn’t just stop. Your grief doesn’t just go away. Days pass. You somehow keep going. Things get easier. Your grief comes up every day but it doesn’t tear you down the way it used to. You’re stronger. You’re braver. You’ve grown to know your grief. You manage it better than you did at first. But just when you least expect it, every now and then it will still bring you to your knees.

New hope emerges. It seems like it’s been forever. Forever since you felt that feeling. The feeling of hope and excitement and giddiness, and all that comes with the thought of a new baby.

You see those two pink lines again. God is telling you to hang in there. You are scared to death. With each doctor’s appointment there is so much anxiety. So many nerves. But with each month that has passed, you start to believe this could actually happen.

You really don’t truly believe this baby is real until you hear that first cry… or until you feel that first latch. Everything about this is different. You notice every moment. You feel every touch. You take in every smile, every milestone. This baby is real and here and you just can’t get enough. You notice every little crevice and roll in those chunky baby legs. Every diaper change. Every bath. Every time he wakes you up. Every giggle. Every smile. You don’t have any other care in the world when he’s looking at you with those big round eyes.

There is something truly special about a rainbow baby. This baby isn’t a replacement. The memories of before are still there.. but this baby reminds you that there is hope. There is joy again. And it’s that much sweeter.

Xoxo,

MK