Monday, March 9, 2009

We needed a miracle...

I was on my way to a new wing of the hospital- Labor and Delivery ICU. I had oxygen on my face along with a few tears. My mom was frantically following along trying to get Robb on the phone. Several nurses were flitting about the room hooking things up and wheeling machinery around and into place. One nurse checked my oxygen level while another began to administer the first of many bags of Lasics to help rid my body of excess fluid. And then we watched the monitor....

O2 level - 65%, 75%, 55%...

I couldn't stop watching it. For the time being, that machine seemed to hold the keys to life and death (atleast it was a reflection of that for me). I'd look away and ask my mom to look and tell me what my percentage was - like that changed anything. I was still in denial to some degree, but I was about to be confronted with the real truth. And the truth would really hurt.

Robb arrived about a 1/2 hour later - he made record time as you can imagine. The head nurse came in and explained the situation. Her speech went something like this:

Mrs. Kirkland, your heart is unable to pump the amount of fluid circulating in your body. Because of this, your lungs have started to fill with fluid. We are trying to remove that fluid with the lasics. Do you understand that much? (nodding yes) It looks as if we will have to deliver your babies tonight in order to preserve your life. Do you understand what that means for your children? (nodding no) We are going to bring in the Neonatal team to explain what you should expect at 26 1/2 weeks gestation. For now, we need you to relax, so we are going to give you Morphine to help stop your contractions, to calm you so you can breathe more easily, and we will have to just wait for further instructions. Do you understand everything I have just told you (nodding and crying by now).

I had two very important questions:

1) When you give me the morphine, am I going to wake up and still be pregnant?
2) When you give the morphine, am I going to wake up at all?

The nurse looked at me with sad eyes and said, "I can't answer that." She proceeded to tell me to "have a moment" with my mom and husband.


I could read between the lines. I was dying. My babies could be dying too. And I had all of 5 minutes to say goodbye to my husband and mom. I couldn't talk. Robb grabbed my arm and we just looked at each other. Through tears, I barely was able to say I love you to him. And like many people facing death, I began to plead my case before the Lord. I knew I would be with Jesus, but I wasn't ready to die.

The morphine was administered and I was in a state of shock. The three of us waited in silence and prayed for a miracle.