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Article updated: 10/7/2013 9:19 AM

Yorkville mom feels like someone is missing

Kristin Salazar has been pregnant six times, but has experienced loss more often than joy with three miscarriages and a stillbirth.

Kristin Salazar has been pregnant six times, but has experienced loss more often than joy with three miscarriages and a stillbirth.

 

Courtesy of Kristin Salazar

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By Kristin Salazar

I have actually had six pregnancies total. With my first son, who is 6 years old, the pregnancy was perfect. No issues except for morning sickness. He was born at 40 weeks, six days.

Then I had three miscarriages over the next two years. The first was only four months after our son had been born, at 5 weeks gestation. The second was at 6 weeks and 4 days, right before our son's first birthday, and the last was March 17, 2009, at 9 weeks. I miscarried naturally all three times. We then decided we were OK with only one child.

However, in 2011 we were blessed to find out we were expecting again and had our second son in November 2011.

We decided we wanted one more. We found out I was pregnant again in November 2012. I was terrified of having two children under 2 years old but still excited.

I had a terrible feeling that something was going to go wrong this pregnancy though, like my other three losses. Due to my history, my doctor checked my HCG and hormone levels and they were fine. I was still terrified. I just had this feeling in the back of my head that this was not going to turn out fine.

During our first ultrasound at nine weeks we saw the little heart beating. I was still apprehensive, but hopeful because they say that once you see a heartbeat, your chances of a loss go down dramatically. I also knew that we still could lose him.

Everyone else told me to stop worrying and it was going to be fine, even the doctor. Honestly, I wanted to punch them. I never did, but I really believe in my intuition.

I went to my 13-week appointment expecting to hear there was no longer a heartbeat, but there it was, in the 160s. I started feeling better. I was still apprehensive, but that little voice wasn't as loud. I had made it out of the first trimester.

Our next appointments were at 16 weeks and 20 weeks. I had told my husband I was too impatient to wait for the 20-week ultrasound, so I wanted to do an elective gender scan. He agreed with me and we scheduled it for Feb. 10. I would be 16 weeks, 5 days. We went and I was still terrified that we were going to get bad news. But, thankfully, we saw our little baby kicking and squirming away. We also found out we were having another boy. I was ecstatic.

I had to reschedule my regular 16-week OB appointment and ended up going when I was 18 weeks, on Feb. 20. I couldn't wait to hear the heartbeat again, as I had just heard it that Monday at home with my Doppler.

I remember the sky was bright blue with a few puffy clouds that looked like cotton balls. The temperature was warm for February, too. I was also excited because our big ultrasound (the 20-week) was just two weeks away.

I went into the room and the doctor commented on my weight loss, which was due to morning sickness, and then she checked the heartbeat with her Doppler but couldn't find it.

"Sometimes they still like to hide," she said. "Let's go take a quick peek on the ultrasound machine."

She took me down the hall to the ultrasound room and I was so excited to get an extra peek at the baby. My joy instantly turned to dread when she told me she was sending me downstairs to have another ultrasound because she couldn't find his heartbeat on the ultrasound. I knew then that we lost our third son.

We chose to induce. At that point, it was either an induction or a D&E. I honestly felt that was the best way to honor our son. It was very surreal delivering a child that you know is not going to be breathing. Having had two other vaginal births, I knew what to expect. This delivery was by far the easiest labor physically but the worst emotionally.

It's been six months since I delivered Lucas, our third son. In some ways it seems like it was just yesterday and other days it seems like it's been years. Actually, it seems like it happened to a different person and I am an outsider looking in.

I am not the same person I was before we lost Lucas. I am more reckless in some ways and terrified to move forward in other ways. When we make plans for the future, I always feel like someone is missing. When I take pictures of our boys, I feel like there is someone missing and look around for the third son we should have and then realize he is not here.

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