Dash's Story

I want to take the time to thank you all for your overwhelming support and empathy during this horrible time for our family. We would like to share the story of Dash's birth with our close friends and family who follow our blog.This is kind of a detailed story just to warn you all but Dash was our son and the story of his birth deserves to be shared just like any other birth story...
As many of you know we went on a family trip to Seattle Wed 4/14. Just that Sunday we found out we were having a boy and Tuesday 4/13 I had a prenatal appointment and heartbeat was strong and I was healthy and measuring on schedule. I brought my fetal heart monitor along with us on the trip, I liked to listen to little one about once a week just to ease my nerves. Friday 4/16 I couldn't find his heartbeat, I was a little worried but I know they can "hide" and make it difficult to hear sometimes (even though I had always found the heartbeat right away). I tried to find his heartbeat Sat, Sun and Mon and still couldn't. We got back to Arizona Monday afternoon and I made an appointment first thing Tuesday morning with my doctor to make sure things were ok.
Tuesday Alex, Addison and I went into the dr's. 2 nurses tried to find the heartbeat but couldn't, they were naming off all kinds of reasons they may have not been able to find it and they got me in right away for an ultrasound "just to check." As soon as the ultrasound tech started I knew he was gone. There was no beautiful heart beating, he wasnt the active little dude we had seen a week before on the 3-D ultrasound, he was still. He was there and he was perfect but his heart had stopped beating. The dr came in to confirm that he had died and from there we talked about our options. I had had no symptoms and the dr told me it could be a few weeks before my body recognized the baby being gone and went into labor so we chose the induction and scheduled it for Wednesday 4/21.
My dad flew down Tuesday night and went with us to the hospital Wed morning. I had to be admitted into labor and delivery which was one of the hardest parts. My room was all set up for a beautiful, healthy baby to arrive but unfortunately we knew we wouldn't have that. They started me on a med to hopefully dilate and soften the cervix and start contractions. I think I cried pretty much all day, we met with preachers, social workers and friends and family came to see us. I really didn't want to see anyone but it was nice for Alex to have support. After 3 rounds of the cervical gel, it was 9pm and there was no progress. I hadn't slept in a few days so they started me on a different med that I could take orally and hopefully get some sleep. By morning still nothing had changed, it was absolute torture. I was started on a different stronger cervical pill which started to cause some noticeable changes by 11am 4/22. I still hadn't progressed much by 1pm so they gave me another round of it and as the symptoms started getting worse I got pain meds every hour which made me really sleepy so I dont remember the last few hours very well. I just remember feeling a lot of pressure. My water broke around 3 and at about 6pm the pressure was so bad that we called the dr in and it was time.
I had no idea what to expect but I think it was even worse than what I thought. I pushed a few times and Dash was born at 6:07pm. The nurse wrapped up baby Dash and gave him to us to hold and love. We spent 5 hours with him, praying, singing songs, crying, admiring how perfect he was. He was blessed by a friend of ours who is ordained and my dad was able to hold him, his grandson.
Dash had long beautiful fingers and tiny fingernails, toes, eyebrows, it was absolutely amazing, he really just looked like a small sleeping baby. Our amazing nurse Judy treated Dash with dignity and care and I will be forever grateful to her for that. She took him to the nursery to be weighed, measured and get his little footprints and handprints done. He weighed 2.9oz, 7" long. Judy brought him back in a little outfit and warm blanket and we held him some more. Finally around midnight we had the hospital call the funeral home to pick him up.
We picked up his cremains yesterday and although it was hard, I couldn't help feeling that as we left with them, our family was whole again although I know his spirit is with God in heaven. I have done so much spiritual examination of my life and I read a wonderful book given to us by one of the ministers entitiled "Safe in the arms of God." It is a book about miscarriage, stillbirth and infant loss and answered so many of the questions I had like "Is my baby in heaven?" "Did my own sin somehow make God decide to take my child?" and "Will I ever see my baby again?" I am eternally grateful to Howard for sharing this book with our family. I feel like the most horrible chapter of this can come to a close now and we can think about the beautiful times we had with him, his ultrasounds, listening to his heartbeat and feeling him move in my belly.