Im Haley, I’m 23 years old. I have a 5 year old. son, 4 year old daughter, 13 month old daughter and then along came Elijiah, our son who I had to terminate at 20 weeks gestation, and the story follows.
So, I went to Emergency room due to bleeding during pregnancy at around 9 weeks pregnant.
I found out at that visit that my baby had an omphalocele.
They then sent me for genetic testing after it being visible at a check up 2 weeks later.
They wanted me to get further testing done including bloodwork and more ultrasounds.
I then had a CVS test done at 14 or 15 weeks pregnant.
The tests came back positive for full trisomy 18.
But still I didn’t want to give up on my baby.
I went to another ultrasound appointment at 18 weeks pregnant where they determined my baby had a VSD, and ASD, large omphalocele including liver, pulmonary embolism, a lemon shaped head, mitral valve stenosis, a problem with the spine, pushed back jawline and a shifted aorta.
We also were able to tell from CVS results that our baby was a boy that we had been trying for.
I went back and forth for so long before I made the actual decision.
I had the appointment to terminate 3 times before I actually showed up.
Every time I missed the appointment I would call and ask for more tests and the would say they’ve been doing all the tests they can.
It wasn’t until that final ultrasound where I just was like no– I cant do this anymore. I cant put a baby through this. And I finally went.
I tried to oversleep that morning and everything, but something woke me up. Even through a panic attack in the car on the way there I made it.
That whole week is a blur.
I remember going into the OR and just crying.
I woke up crying as well, so part of me feels like I cried the whole time, but I definitely feel like I made the best decision.
I don’t ever regret it at all.
My son is still with me everyday and I wish I could have met him.
But after that last ultrasound, finding out the extent of my son’s condition, I made the decision to terminate my pregnancy.
It was the HARDEST decision I’ve ever had to make, but when I thought about my son’s chance of survival, and not only that but what kind of life he would live if he made it, it just didn’t seem right to me to put such a tiny baby though that.
My son, whom we named Elijiah Krystopher Walker, was removed March 5th, 2019.
I had him cremated. The hospital gave me a box with a book on how to grieve, a last ultrasound photo, footprints, and a white candle when I woke up from surgery.
I had him cremated and picked him out an urn at the funeral home and now he, and the box from the hospital, are both on a special shelf in my room with framed ultrasound photos of him.
My due date of July 26th is fast approaching and I feel like that’s going to be one of the hardest days.
Still to this day (3 and a half months later), I still feel kicks at times, I still rub my belly at times, and sometimes I totally forget that I’m not pregnant anymore.
My son is still with us everyday, and while he’s no longer actually here with us, he’s in my heart everyday 💔
TFMR stands for termination for medical reasons. It is when a woman chooses to terminate her pregnancy due to healthy complications.
Trisomy 18 is also known as Edward’s Syndrome. There are fewer than 20,000 cases a year. These babies have severe developmental delays due to an extra chromosome 18.