Post-Birth Details

The short story version: click here…

If you want to read Hope & Passion’s Story -Pre-Birth click here…

1 September 2011 — Hope&Passion teaching us through their birth

I gave birth to Hope&Passion this morning. It was the best start into spring ever and I am blissful, joyful and tired. Yet I am challenged again in keeping faith for Hope, which makes me also feel worried.

Both girls are in the NICU and being observed very closely. Passion is doing very well. Hope’s lungs however haven’t matured past 24 weeks when she had low levels of amniotic fluid. She is on the highest support in regards to breathing support and we are praying for her. Also her kidneys are cystic and at this point it is not clear wether they are working.

Lots to take in and here is where I welcome all your prayers and blessings.

We want to take both of our girls home with us, show them the world, see them grow up together, giggle, play … this is again where Hope teaches us about the true meaning of her name.

I love you so much my two girls

~ my little one ~

2 September 2011 — Celebrating Amya Mirica Hope’s life

With tears in my eyes I want to ask you to celebrate Amya Mirica Hope’s life with us.
I honor the gift she is to us – however long she will be able to stay – it will never be long enough for all the dreams we’ve been dreaming…

I love you my sweet girl and accept your karma and your purpose for being with us — you have taught me how much I’m capable to love you and be sad of not having you to grow up with your sister, not being able to show you all the beautiful things that I so much wanted to.

You’re the biggest teacher in my life.
With all my love and all my tears…
I hold you in my heart forever

4 September 2011 — Saying Goodbye

3 days ago I had the most amazing experience as I gave birth to my two beautiful angels Hope&Passion and they became my precious little daughters Amya Mirica Hope and Ananda Mae Passion. They were so small and needed to go on life support as soon as they came out of the womb to see the light.

Yesterday I held them both together on my naked skin for the first time – what a blissful feeling. We were faced with the most difficult decision in our lives ever: we had to let Amya go as she wasn’t able to live on her own outside the protective surroundings of my womb. How can one ever let go of their child that they’ve just birthed into this world?

I held her in my arms as she gently slipped back into her angel form and back into the spirit world. This was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my entire life and yet it was so beautiful and honoring. She took her last breath and moved her little body gently as she slipped away with the sound of Deva and Miten’s voice singing the Gayatri Mantra.

I’m learning to deal with this pain with every warm tear running down my cheek and the echo of every cry that escapes my aching heart. I will take my time and I have Ananda Mae Passion here with me helping me / us through this.

Today it’s Fathers Day and we celebrate Chris who is such a beautiful caring and nurturing dad. It is also so sad and painful to see him grieve the loss of his daughter for which we had so many dreams and ‘hopes’. Amya and Ananda can feel his love and his heartbreak and there is an angel smiling at us.

I also feel so sad for all our family who never ever get to meet the physical presence of Amya and who are grieving with us. I’m also deeply aware of the impact Hope had on so many of you my friends who have been looking forward to meeting her. We feel your prayers, blessings, tears and singing…

I’m so grateful for my sister’s (Michele) serendipitous arrival on Wednesday – not a day to late as the emergency birth was on Thursday morning. She’s an angel in physical form looking after us all, including the little newborn babies as I lay in recovery.

I’m amazed by the supportive stuff here at the hospital we are – so many angels in the form of midwives, nurses, doctors etc. Too many to name…

Thank you Hope for all the gifts that come through you. Thank you for accompanying your sister to her earthly life. We are so sad and sorry that you were not meant to visit us for longer. We will miss you always.

9 September 2011 — Remembering 1 September 2011 – Hope&Passions coming into this world as Amya Mirica Hope & Ananda Mae Passion

A week ago…
4.30 am – I woke up and am called to paint the girls in my picture for Hope&Passion.
Now I cannot sleep and go down to Newborn Care (NICU) to care for my baby.

A week ago…
5.30 am – I am still pregnant and we are getting ready to drive to the hospital. I feel my two babies stirring inside of me.
Now I feel Ananda Mae wriggling in her cot as I visit her in the NICU.

A week ago…
6.15 am – We are driving to the hospital singing ‘Happy Birthday to you’ for Hope&Passion.
Now I’m lying in my hospital bed as the new day dawns. I’m preparing myself to go home without my babies…
6.30 – in the room next door on the antenatal floor someone is listening to their baby in uterus’ heartbeat.
A sting in my heart – a tear on my cheek.

A week ago…
6.45 am – We arrive at the hospital. I am so excited. ‘I’m here to deliver my twins.’
Now I’m no longer able to sleep. It has been a restless night with strange dreams. What will await me at home?

Now I just had my obstetrician visiting me – she’s another angel in human form – checking in on me. I feel touched yet again for she is driving across town in early morning rush hour traffic to a hospital where she does not usually work just to see me.

A week ago…
7 am – we are admitted. We are listening to the babies’ heartbeat. They are fine. No signs of distress. I have a shower.
Now I’m having my last shower at the hospital. I feel strangely attached to this place. I feel sad to leave my babies behind.

A week ago…
7.50 am – We are ready to go down to where the operation theatre is. I still walk with my ripe belly, proudly carrying twins. I’m looking forward to giving birth – I’m smiling, excited, and can’t wait – in bliss before an operation 🙂 I am hungry physically and to become a mother.
Now luckily I don’t have to fast and I’m having my last breakfast delivered to the bed. I’m thinking about my two babies – one here, one in the spirit world.

A week ago…
8 am – we are starting the process with epidural / spinal block. The anesthetist is great. I’m relaxed, breathing deeply supported by Chris all dressed in blue gowns.
Now I feel my aching belly as I walk without the support belt.

A week ago…
8.15 am – Sue, my obstetrician arrives. She sets up our music while we wait for the epi to kick in. Everything is ready.
Now I’m looking out the window and wonder where Hope is as I asked her to be close today.

A week ago…
8.30 am – My belly is getting rubbed down with orange antiseptic and I imagine an aboriginal ritual painting is done on my bulging babies’ belly. I’m smiling from behind the sterile curtain.
Now I’m walking down the corridor past the aboriginal painting. I’m smiling at Hope’s plan.

A week ago…
8.35am – ‘Nathalie we’re starting the op’, says Sue. Chris is right beside me whispering ‘I love you so much’ into my ear. I feel tugging and moving. I speak softly to my babies.
Now I’m visiting Ananda Mae…

A week ago…
8.41 and 8.42am – The beautiful girls are being lifted into the light. At the same time the sterile curtain is being lowered and I’m able to see them for the first time.
Now I’m holding Ananda Mae in my arms celebrating her one week birthday. Tears of joy and sadness as I’m holding just one of them. I miss Amya Mirica’s little body.

A week ago…
8.50 am – The girls are rushed to the NICU after a brief cuddle and kiss with me. Chris is with them, followed by Aunty Michele.
Now I’m just breathing through the pain. Still holding Ananda Mae.

A week ago…
9.30 am – I’m in recovery wondering what’s happening in NICU. I’m still in so much bliss from the whole birth. I’m smiling.
Now my dear friend Tanya just arrived and I’m not alone.

A week ago…
10.15 am – Unfortunately they cannot take me to the NICU on the bed as renovations are in progress so I’m being brought straight to the ward.
Now I’m so lucky as I’m not being rushed out of this room here. The hospital ward is so supportive and they let me stay today as long as I want.

A week ago…
10.45 am – Chris comes up to the ward surprised why I didn’t come to the NICU. He’s updating me: Hope&Passion both on high level life support. I’m worried and can’t wait to be able to go down to see them. I need to wait until the epi wears off. I’m moving my toes inside but nothing can be seen from outside.
Now I’m breastfeeding my little girl. Bliss – pure bliss. I’m in love with her

A week ago…
11.30 am – I’m on strong drugs. I don’t remember much. Still blissfully remembering and talking about the birth experience.
Now I am holding Ananda Mae in my arms. I could remain like this forever.

A week ago…
12.45 pm – Lunch, I’m starving as I haven’t eaten since a long time, it seems. I’m extremely thirsty. Scavenging hospital food – my sister is in disbelief.
Now I’m eating beautiful lunch provided by Iku and organized by one of our beautifully supportive friends. I bow in gratitude.

A week ago…
1.30 pm – Chris and Michele are hungry and get some lunch. NICU has rest time and no visitors allowed. I’m resting my body.
Now I’m learning more about fully mothering my child and the art of breastfeeding a premature baby.

A week ago…
2.30 pm – I’m resting and waiting for my legs to get some sensation back so I can go down and see the girls. Still no outside sign of me moving my toes.
Now I’m able to walk around pretty well given the operation just happened a week ago and they cut my tummy open. I’m packing up my belongings. I’m readying myself to go home.

A week ago…
4 pm – Suddenly I can move my legs from side to side. My legs have enough control to get into a wheelchair to go down and visit my girls. First time touching them with my hands. Both in humidicribs on breathing support.
Now we are preparing to part from Amya Mirica’s little body in a beautiful ceremony just us and Mel the social worker. Tears… And joy for the little time we spent and the gifts and precious tenderness of heart Amya Mirica has given us.

A week ago…
4.15 pm – I’m in awe of the miracle of those two tinny little bodies that I’ve given birth to. Amya Mirica is all taped up to a high frequency breathing machine. I just lay my hands onto her body and sing to her. Ananda is also in a humidicrib.
Now we are wrapping Amya Mirica’s little earthly body in an angel’s dress, putting her on a bed of roses, wrapped in a pink beautiful cloth. We say our good-byes from her body. How ready can you ever be in letting a child go?

A week ago…
4.45pm – Tired easily I sit back down into the wheelchair, ready to go and lay down.
Now I’m standing next to Ananda Mae’s cot changing her nappy with my beautiful partner and father. Amazed at being parents.

A week ago…
5 pm – I’m resting, more pain medication, blood pressure cuffs, temperature measurements and crying babies next door. I’m dozing off.
Now I’m holding my girl skin to skin. I’m in mother’s trance.

A week ago…
5.30 pm – It’s all a blur and still bliss chemicals rushing through my blood stream. I’m processing the birth experience.
Now it’s Daddy’s skin to skin time. I’m smiling seeing him enjoy, sing and talk to our daughter. We have a child. We have two children – one in the spirit world.

A week ago…
6.30 pm – Dinner time – hungry and thirsty. During the end of pregnancy I was eating little as there wasn’t much space for a stomach. That has changed quickly.
Now we are going down to the seminar room in the hospital to talk to the teacher of the twin antenatal class we never got to finish. Some other parents come and are deeply touched by our story. Too much speaking still tires me. I want to tell them that whatever might come, they can handle it. I feel strongly that I will support parents going through the grief of losing a child one day.

A week ago…
7 pm – Chris is preparing to stay at the hospital the first night. I’m so grateful as I’m not able to move much let alone think much.
Now we are ready to go home and I walk out of the hospital the first time in the fresh air after a week. Gentle rain is touching my cheeks.

A week ago…
8 pm – Is it time to sleep yet? Chris is going to say good-night to our girls.
Now we arrive home. I kneel in front of the altar of gifts, cards, toys, shoes… that we have laid out for both girls and weep gently for one will never get to enjoy all those earthly pleasures.

A week ago…
8.30 pm – Chris is back reporting how they are going. They need a lot of attention from the staff, machines and they are hanging in there. Chris is exhausted from all the beeping noise in the NICU and the experience of the whole day.
Now I have a bath, relaxing my body at home, ready to start a new phase of taking care not only of this body but also my little girl’s body.

A week ago…
9 pm – Ready to sleep we lay in the hospital bed together going through this most amazing experience of day.
Now I’m keen to send out the announcements for the birth of our girls and I forget that my body needs rest.

A week ago…
10 pm – I’m finally resting and trying to find a comfortable position in a strange new bed. My body is aching.
Now I’m expressing food for Ananda Mae’s feed tomorrow. A women’s body is amazing.

A week ago…
11 pm – Sleep
Now I’m finally ready to go to bed and sleep until sooner than later I will get up again for my girl. All mother’s love.

~~~ tiny tiny girl ~~~

15 September 2011 — No, I’m not doing fine…

I might be driving to RHW at 6am and coming back at 9pm every day
I might be having a shower daily and dressing myself in clothes to celebrate Ananda Mae every day
I might be breastfeeding her
I might be single mindedly focuse to get Ananda to come home
I might be smiling at times
and ‘trying’ to keep my life going…

But no, I’m not doing ‘fine’
And time will heal no wounds
And there is no reason and purpose in everything
And ‘luckily Ananda Mae is healthy’ will not bring Amya Mirica back
And a ‘nice story’ won’t mend my broken heart
My daughter has gone from me and I will ‘only’ take one child back home
from the hospital I’ve entered with two moving in my tummy and where I’ve birthed two…

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