After 3 years of infertility I had finally decided I needed to do something else with my life. I had sat around waiting to get pregnant for 3 whole years and nothing had ever happened. So I filled together all the courage I had and applied to go to teachers college to train to be a Primary School teacher.
On Monday, December 18th I made the long drive to the University to have a group interview which was absolutely terrifying. I'm terrible at interviews. And one where 5 of us get interviewed by 2 people at one time sounded just awful. I was so ridiculously nervous. I felt like I was going to be sick.
The interview turned out fine and that afternoon I received an email welcoming me into the program. Hooray!
Of course it was also that night everything changed and I found out I was finally pregnant with our precious, long awaited baby.
I had been feeling sick for a few days and I'd actually vomited once which was so unusual for me. And for about a week or so my body kept telling me “you are pregnant and you're having a boy.”
I sort of just dismissed it because I'd been trying so long and had wondered if I'd been pregnant before plenty of times. But this bodily intuition just hung around.
As soon as I got home from the university that night I took a pregnancy test and within seconds I had my little plus sign. I wept with joy, I praised my God and spoke words of love to my tiny little baby. It was the longest hour ever waiting for James to get home.
When he pulled in I ran out onto the driveway. He started apologising for being late home. I totally cut him off saying “ I don't care, I'm pregnant!”
Not the most elaborate or romantic way to tell him for sure but I couldn't hold it in any longer.
He stood there and stared at me through the darkness. He said “are you joking? Because if you are it's not a funny joke.”
I wasn't joking. He sat straight down on the driveway right where he was. Overcome with joy. Finally our baby!
We told our immediate family 2 days later. We aren't very good at keeping surprises. They were all so happy. They'd all been hoping and praying we got our baby one day.
We felt so blessed!
So soon after that the morning sickness kicked in. I was sick and throwing up every day. But it was all worth it.
We had an ultrasound booked in to tell us how far along we were in the pregnancy because my cycles were so irregular I had no idea when we had actually conceived. From a guess we were pretty sure we were about 7 weeks along.
I'll never forget that first scan. Everything was so new. I was so scared. What if nothing was there. What if somehow the tests I'd taken were wrong and I had never been pregnant.
That scan was beautiful. There was our baby. A tiny, perfect, little blob. Our special loved baby blob. It was emotional. 3 years if waiting and there it was. Our baby.
The ultrasound man gave us a surprise by telling us we weren't 7 weeks but 9! And to come back soon for our 12 anatomy scan.
Come back we did and what a difference there is between 9 weeks and 12! Blob to baby in such a short amount of time.
Baby was bouncing around happily and sucking on its little hands. We were so in love! We had a video of it taken and put on a USB for us to keep forever. So worth the $25!
At 13 weeks things started to change. I had a terrifying bleed. It flooded and covered me in blood. I was terrified. I thought I was going to lose my baby. I had another ultrasound at 13 and a half weeks and they said they couldn't find any reason for it. Probably a cervical bleed. They were worried. Baby was fine. It wasn't effecting it in anyway.
So 4 days later when I had another big flooding bleed I wasn't so worried. I called my midwife and she said it was likely another cervical bleed. 2 days later I had another one. This time the bleeding never really stopped. I wasn't flooding anymore but everytime I went to the bathroom there was some blood.
On Sunday 11th of February I started having some weird abdominal pains but it was only for around an hour and then it stopped. They were on and off but unfortunately everyday after that I had these pains. Everyday they were getting worse and they stayed longer. I knew something was wrong. I made an appointment to get an ultrasound for later that week. On Wednesday the pains were getting to me at work. I was emotional and knew something was off. I went home early that day to rest. Of course it was Valentine's day and James and I were going to have dinner together. I was in so much pain I just couldn't do anything. I went to the bathroom and the blood was so bad. I knew this was the end. I started vomiting all over the floor because the pain was so excruciating. I had no control. James was super worried about me and because we live in the country with no phone or cellphone reception he left and drove the 2 minute drive to get my parents. They came straight down and were amazing. They were all right near me as I laboured my baby. The pain was beyond what I could bare. I was sure I was going to die. I was actually getting quite close to passing out when he was born. I remember all the screaming pain disappeared at that moment and everything just went grey silent. Like I was in a foggy haze. Disbelief and sadness. My worst fear had come true. I had lost my baby.
Waru Woods was born at around 8:30pm on February 14th at 14 and a half weeks. He was more loved and more precious than anything.
We called him Waru while I was pregnant as a jokey nickname. James had said he didn't want his baby's initials to be WW. And he didn't want any names that weren't English and easy. I told him we should call him Waru because it didn't fit his criteria at all. It is Maori for the number 8. He was supposed to be born in August, the 8th month.
He was born too early we had only ever called him Waru. So that just was his name. And we love our little Waru so much.
I got upset at the thought of burying my baby boy somewhere and then in the future James and I being buried somewhere else with our possible future children. The idea that Waru might not be buried with us made me cry and cry. So in the end we decided to have him cremated. That way he can always be with us no matter what. Just like he was supposed to be.
He was cremated on the 20th of February. That was the hardest thing I've ever had to do. Place my sweet baby in a tiny coffin, say goodbye and leave him. I cried so much that day. But we have him back now. In a different form but he's with us. James made him a lovely yellow box where we have put his ashes, a letter I wrote him, a picture of James and I while I was pregnant with him and these two little koala toys. When James and I had to live apart for a little over a month last year we had a little koala toy that we would clip to our finger when we went to sleep to symbolize each other. James had a Lydia koala and I had a James koala. Now Waru has them both. And just like they symbolized James and I before, they symbolize us now. Waru's mummy and daddy.
We loved our little boy and we so didn't want things to turn out this way. I wish he was still inside me growing happily. He would have been 17 weeks today. But things happen. Things we don't necessarily like. Even though losing Waru was the hardest thing I've ever had to go through, I feel like I've grown so much through this experience.
My faith is stronger than ever. There's no point in me getting angry at God. It won't change anything and it feels bad to be angry. So why do it?
I want to be a better person now. I am Waru's mummy. If he had been alive how would I have wanted him to see me? He gives me inspiration to better myself.
We have been shown a huge outpouring of love. We have had so many flowers, meals, cards, prayers and messages plus a never-ending amount of support and care. We are so grateful for all of this. I want to give back to people now and show them the same sort of love I've been given over this hard time.
Through it all, my God has never left me. He loves me and is sustaining me day to day. It's easy to think of this whole situation as a punishment for something. But God isn't trying to hurt me. He is a God of love. He is my Father.
"Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you." ~Isa 43:1-2