First, though, I need to tell you the story about my Roland. Roland Michael Manson Huntley was born on January 1st, 2006 and died the next day. He was a beautiful, precious little fighter, born without some of the organs that we need to survive. I love him and miss him every day. I was admitted to the hospital to stop my labor and try to save him on December 29th. I tell you this because that date will become important again in a bit.
I had, after decades of wanting to do so, finally started the adoption process and was far enough along that I had identified my daughter (I say identified, not selected because I'm convinced that she was always mine) from a list of waiting children, had submitted the first round of paperwork, and had received an email that had stated that I was approved. The next day I realized that I hadn't eaten in, oh, say, days. I knew what that meant, but walked upstairs to my midwifery kit and pulled out one of the pregnancy tests that I would buy in bulk for clients. Sure enough, two pink lines emerged, and I immediately called an OB with whom I had worked in the past and asked him to get me in immediately. I have a history of miscarriage, a miserable history that includes seven lost babies, and knew we had to be proactive.I also calculated my EDD (estimated date of delivery) and discovered that I would be welcoming a baby on or around August 10th. Bear this date in mind; it's important. A few days later I went into the ultrasound room and saw what I had seen so many, many times before. Nothing. No heartbeat. No sign of heart vessels even. No spine. Just a sad little sac where that flashing light should be. In most cases this is a sign of two things, a very early pregnancy or a blighted ovum. My pregnancy was eight weeks along; there should have been a little flashing light. I was devastated. The tech didn't understand. Obviously, she told me, I just had my conception date wrong. She said it looked like a healthy two week old fetus. Here's the thing,though. It wasn't. I knew my conception date. Our family was living in two different states and so there had only been one time in the preceding weeks in which conception could have happened. I'm pretty sure I knew the conception minute.
So I went home, devastated, so devastated that I didn't cry. I didn't pray. I just put my head down and pushed through the two weeks, weeks that included a Christmas spent in North Carolina with the in-laws, until my next appointment. At the next appointment we would be scheduling my D and C. The worst part of blighted ovums is that after the baby dies you have to carry it for up to three months while experiencing all of the symptoms of pregnancy. Eventually, your body realizes that you are no longer pregnant. Until then, it's hell. So, we'd decided to go ahead and have the procedure, but were going to wait until I was CERTAIN that the baby was gone. So on December 29th I went in to the doctor's office without any hope. I was going through the motions. We started the ultrasound and I didn't even look at first. Why? I didn't want to see the emptiness again. But then I did. Maybe part of me knew. Maybe I wasn't really as hopeless as I felt. So I looked and I saw the flash. Then I heard it. There was a heartbeat. A perfect, glorious little engine chugging along. We looked some more and found that the heartbeat belonged to a TEN WEEK OLD baby. In two weeks my baby had developed eight weeks. We calculated the EDD and found it to be August 11th. One day later than the original.
There is no medical reason this should have happened. The conception date was correct. I had known it was, and when that glorious flashing heartbeat showed up on the screen it belonged to a ten week old baby, not one who was four weeks along. The tech did not just miss the heartbeat; I'd seen this before, it was a sad little black sac. No. There was no life, and then there was. In a time that I was too devastated, too hopeless to even pray a miracle was happening inside of me. God reached in and created life where there had been none. On August fourth I delivered a healthy, perfect baby boy and named him Caedym - Victory in Battle.