Wednesday, September 22, 2010

River Daniel

River was born April 30, 2009 and passed away May 6, 2009. He is our first born son, we found out we were pregnant in August of 2008 and we were so excited! Nervous, but so happy we were beginning our family.

The pregnancy was completely normal, despite the fact that I fractured a bone in my foot and was on doctor ordered bed rest for 3 months so it could heal. This was to avoid surgery during pregnancy or after he was born.

I began having contractions 3 days before our due date, with active labor beginning the next day. It was fairly normal, except I was dilated to almost 8 and my water hadn't broken yet, so the doctor asked if I wanted to wait and let it break on its own or if I wanted her to break it. As there was no concern for River's health, she said it was up to me. The pressure was becoming unbearable and I told her to break it.

After an hour and a half of pushing, River was born, with the umbilical cord around his neck twice and the Dr unwrapped the cord very fast, but he was not responsive. His APGAR score was very low (at this point I don't even remember what it was), I just remember thinking that he had to be OK. My husband cut the cord quickly and the doctor and nurse whisked him off to get him breathing again.
They it did fast, even though it felt like eternity, we finally heard him cry! The next day he began to develop jaundice so we were in the hospital until day three, then were home with the "bili-blanket" (aka glow lights) until day five with everything going normal.

We had his one week check up on day five and our doctor said everything was perfect. The jaundice had lowered to a safe level and he was gaining weight. Yay!! We were relieved that we seemed to be doing everything right. We were so happy, that our little boy was healthy, we could take him home and watch him grow!

On day six we woke up to find his color off. My husband immediately grabbed him and tried to wake him, then we started CPR with 911 on the phone. The EMTs arrived within minutes and took him by ambulance to the ER. When we arrived there they told us he didn't make it. Looking back, I already knew he was gone before they even left our house, I could feel it. Despite this feeling, the entire way to the hospital I was praying I was wrong. The ER doctor as well as the medical examiner told us it was most likely SIDS as they could see no other apparent reason. We felt as though we had let our guard down. We were so relieved with the results from his doctor's appointment, that for the first time since he was born, we both actually slept...and River died.

We didn't know that it was SIDS for sure until our autopsy came back which wasn't for four weeks or more, I really can't even remember. When the medical examiner called, they said "we looked and looked to try and find a reason, as you know there was no disease or trauma." What??? SIDS is what they classify a babies death as when they can find no other cause. It is the "reason", when there isn't one.

My husband and I have discussed a number of times, that we feel that River was probably not supposed to make it out of the delivery room. We got 6 days with him, and he could have died before we ever got to see his bright eyes and beautiful smile, for that we are grateful. We both know in our hearts, that we wouldn't be who we are if it weren't for him. He is a very special little boy that has been able to help us do things we never thought possible.

River has a little brother, Asher. We are teaching him about River. We want him to know about his big brother. River was here for such a short time but has impacted us tremendously. He will be carried with us every moment of every day.


Melissa said...

Beautiful story Deanna. I'm sorry it has to be told at all, but I'm glad you'll have this blog to share how River has touched your life.

Deanna said...

Thank you Melissa, I am also sorry for the loss of your beautiful Mikayla. It is amazing to read others blogs and how our children impact our lives. I am sad we met under these circumstances, but glad we met. Thinking of you!

Mom2005 said...


I am so sorry for the loss of River. When a loss is so unexpected it breaks my heart very deeply since I have been there too. Congrats on you new baby.

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