Camille and Randy
Updated: Sep 18, 2018
"This is the happiest thing we will ever be sad about."
Camille and Randy were so excited to find out they were pregnant. Her pregnancy started off with a lot of nausea and even then the excitement stayed. They shared their news with friends and family and began to imagine all the possibilities of this child.
In her second trimester Camille was still very sick. The doctors assured her it was within the norm and suggested she take a higher dose of anti nausea medication. But instead of finding relief, Camille found herself throwing up every 15 - 30 minutes and unable to keep down water or the pills that were supposed to be helping. After multiple frustrating visits to the doctor, they were finally admitted because her blood pressure was much higher then it should have been.
After a few days of observations they sent Camille home on bed rest and asked her to take her blood pressure every few hours. If it was higher than their threshold she should come back in. Within a few hours they were back in the hospital.
This went on for a few days, back and forth with no answers or solutions.
Finally they sent Camille for an ultrasound in another city to get a better idea of what was going on. The baby was measuring small and they asked again if she was certain of her due date. The ultrasound tech said that they were going to send her to the hospital because something was wrong, they didn't know what, but she needed to go immediately.
In the hospital they took Camille directly to labour and delivery and started monitoring her vitals. A doctor came in and said very directly, "You are going to deliver today. Either you or the baby will die if we don't do something soon and what we care about is you."
They gave Randy time to come into the city so that they
could be together. While waiting Camille's vitals stabilized and the doctor told her she could stay pregnant for one more day.
That day turned into a week of constantly waiting for the worst to happen, for Camille's life to become endangered again. They had made it to 24 weeks and the potential for them to be able to help baby Finn.
They had another ultrasound and the tech swiped over the umbilical chord and it became apparent that there was something wrong. Finn was not growing any more. He was too tiny to be able to do any interventions if he was born alive as he was measuring closer to 21-22 weeks gestation. If he stayed in the womb he would not grow. So the impossible decision was to chose between delivering shortly in the hopes of having a few moments with Finn while he was alive, or waiting for him to die in the womb.
Camille and Randy took the night to decide and in the morning they induced Camille.
After a difficult labour, Finn was born without a heartbeat or breath. Their hopeful few moments were gone and so was their sweet boy.
"Finn was absolutely perfect when he was born. He was very red because he hadn't gotten his fat yet, but you could see he had Randy's nose and my lips. The nurses said he had my feet too. He was so tiny, 14.14 oz, and he had white blonde little hairs. When they first put him in my arms I kept thinking he couldn't be gone. He looked so peaceful, and he was resting his face on his fist. He stayed that way the whole time we had him and I kept waiting and waiting for his eyes to open or to hear him cry. He didn't fit the clothes they brought for us, so we kept him in a toque and blanket. I remember falling asleep holding him and waking up and I was still holding him close. I remember his smell, and how soft his skin was. And how smooth, he didn't have any blemishes or marks.
For his memorial we asked my mom to write a letter to him, and in her letter she said "I think you knew you wouldn't be around as a teenager to drive your parents crazy, so you did everything you could to drive them crazy in the womb" because I was so sick when I was pregnant. There were tons of hospital trips until the final stay in Calgary."
They spent a few hours with their son Finn and then had to make decisions that no one wants to be faced with. Instead of holding their sweet boy, Randy and Camille were filling out paperwork and making decisions about what to do with his body, when all they wanted was for none of it to be real.
Finn matters, the love his parent's hold for him matters and his story matters.
Get a group of parents together and at some point they begin to talk about their kids. It is no different for a bereaved parent. Sharing Finn's life with others isn't about garnering attention, or seeking sympathy.
"I just want people to know that Finn was here."
The love that they have for Finn does not go away. It lives in them and acknowledging it gives them a chance to share that love with others.