Guest Post – Brooklyn’s Story

Written by Brooklyn’s Mother Catherine

I considered my life pretty normal, filled with love and laughter between my husband, family and friends, until the day I lost my daughter. The pain of losing her has changed me forever and has changed my entire outlook on life…

After navigating through life from teenagers to adults, graduating from school, and becoming established in our careers, my husband and I finally decided to start a family of our own. It wouldn’t take long and in July of 2016 we discovered that our biggest dream was now a reality… We were pregnant!

In October, life would get even better when we discovered that we were having a little girl. Brooklyn. We always knew we would have a girl first. It was just a feeling that we both had always had. We dreamed of her, what she would look like and began to experience a love deeper than we could ever imagine. Our life could not have been any more perfect at that time… We were so blissfully happy and more than excited for our new journey together as parents.

But on Thanksgiving Day 2016, our perfect world would soon start to fall apart when we were admitted into Labor and Delivery. After an ultrasound, we would find out that the diagnosis was Incompetent Cervix with hourglass membranes. My cervix was shortening and opening too early and my amniotic sac (membranes) was prolapsed through my partially dilated cervix. Someone with an incompetent cervix may not experience any signs or symptoms or they may have mild symptoms that can begin as early as 14 weeks. My ultrasound done at 20 weeks was perfect and I did not experience any symptoms until that morning when I woke up feeling only mild discomfort in my abdomen and began bleeding shortly after… We rushed to the hospital as fast as we could, but despite arriving to the hospital quickly, our girl was at risk for coming too early… My heart dropped… It was terrifying not knowing what could happen, not having control over my own body and not being able to protect my baby. I wanted nothing more than to keep her safe and at only 21 weeks and 5 days, I knew that every second I could keep her in was precious.

IV fluids, antibiotics, tocolytics, bedrest in the Trendelenburg position and a rescue cerclage was attempted… We cried and prayed every day and every night… I begged God to let me take my daughter home… But despite our doctor’s best efforts, my water broke Monday, November 28, 2016 and Brooklyn Naria Johnson was born on Tuesday, November 29, 2016 at 8:38 pm at 22 weeks and 3 days… She weighed only 14 ounces and was just a little over 11 inches… She had the thickest eyebrows, cutest little nose, and looked just like her Daddy… She was beautiful.

Our sweet Brooklyn would pass away that same evening in our arms and it was the most unbearable, horrifying moment of our lives… I couldn’t bear to let her go and truthfully, I never have… I carry her with me every day. I carry my endless love for her, I carry the pain of losing her, and I have carried the guilt and pain of being unable to protect her… A piece of me died that day… Who I was and everything I thought I knew was gone, broken, shattered… But my husband’s strength and love, our faith, and journaling and writing have saved me… My husband and I have gone through every second of this together and he has saved me more than he will ever know… And writing in honor of our daughter has been an outlet that has helped me sort through my grief…

And although this is a journey that never ends, one filled with so many different emotions and one that we continue to try and navigate each day, I know that God is not done writing our story… I believe that… Because I believe His love for me is just as real as the love I have for my daughter… And we wait for the day to see more of what He has written for us…

We will love you forever, Brooklyn…

http://dearbrooklyn.org/

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