To Our Beautiful Son, On His First Birthday

February 2015 they told me it was more than likely an ectopic pregnancy, and I should have it taken care of. I waited.

Three and four months in I was rushed to the hospital because of some scares. Sub Chorionic hemorrhages. They disappeared.

On Sunday, August 23, 2015, the doctor came in and said, “We are doing this now.”

I had been in the hospital for 5 days already due to extremely high blood pressure levels. My blood pressure has always been normally low, so I knew something wasn’t right. I knew a week ago something wasn’t right. I could barely walk—my feet were so swollen and sore. I looked like the marshmallow puff man.

I’ve had this uneasy feeling for a week or so. We had a baby shower that past Saturday and a couple of things headed me off. First, my niece, Leighton, came up to me, touched my belly, and told me there was something wrong with the baby’s heart. It bothered me, but I shrugged it off. The next part scared me to death. I was opening presents and noticed Brennan, my 4 year old nephew, left the room. We found him in one of our old bedrooms noticeably upset. He wouldn’t come out for a while. Then, he wouldn’t even look at me.  His body language told me it had something to do with me. I would find out later what had frightened him so. He finally opened up to my sister, his mom, about his experience. He saw a one armed man while we were opening presents that day. Something about the man terrified him. I don't think I need to tell you that there was no one armed man beside me at that party. I still don’t know what that "man" told him or what exactly he saw. All I know is this man had something to do with me and his name started with an L. I’d like to think this man was there watching over us while my body was beginning to crash.

So, during my routine doctor’s visit the following Wednesday, I was sent to the hospital for observation. I didn’t leave until 9 days later. My son didn’t leave for 17 days.

We were six weeks from his due date and I was diagnosed with preeclampsia.

They monitored me for five days until they decided to do an emergency c-section. They wanted to see if the meds would regulate my blood pressure. But, they did not. They wanted to induce me, but it wasn’t safe. Jared stayed with me the entire time. They didn’t have cots there so he slept on the little chair in the room. We watched Harry Potter, I tried to do some work, and napped the best we could. The whole time I kept getting whiffs of old pipe tobacco, and it calmed me. On Sunday they quickly wheeled me into the OR and prepped me for surgery. I remember the needle didn’t hurt at all. For someone who is anxious, I was very calm. I knew my grandparents were with me—watching over me. Where else would the smell of pipe tobacco come from?

They began to saw into me, at least that’s what it sounded like—a table saw. Jared stayed behind the sheet. He didn’t want to be traumatized. I don’t blame him, but I would have been right up there in it if I could. Well, I tried. They had to put me out because I kept grabbing at everything over the sheet. I could feel them pulling and prying and my body just wanted to put it all back in! All I remember is asking if he was okay. I heard him cry. Then, I was out.

Carraway was born 3 pounds 10 ounces of beautiful. He didn’t even need a ventilator. I thank the good Lord upstairs for that. He is a fighter. When he wouldn’t eat well and they put a feeding tube in he just pulled it right back out. Needless to say, he started eating after that—not well, but he ate.

Here we are, one year later, with a handsome little boy who eats way too much, loves his cuddles, swimming, climbing stairs and talks in his sleep. I have never been so thankful for anything in my life. This little boy is our miracle, truly. Happy Birthday, Carraway David Alexander Baize. Mmma and dada love you!