When Lexi was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis in July, it made a lot of things make sense. So, since this is the girls journey, I wanted to document what got us where we are now.
Adam and I were married in November 2001. Pretty quickly after we got married we got pregnant! We were so excited. I wanted a baby so badly. I remember that Mother’s Day. Knowing the next year I would be a mommy. I could not have been happier. That all changed the day after Mother’s Day. I started spotting that night and was in severe pain. That Tuesday morning, at Banner Medical, we found out we had lost our first precious baby. If you have lost a baby during pregnancy you understand. I still remember the heart wrenching pain that I felt through that time. A mother’s day does not go by that I don’t think of the little man we lost. He will always be our first baby. Not our first born, but always our first baby.
I had always wanted to be a mom. So loosing our baby caused this fear, the what if I can’t have a baby. So for me I had to try right away. I had to know that I could have a baby. Thankfully, after a few months of trying we were blessed. I didn’t realize how terrified I would be that I might loose this baby too. To complicate things I had ovarian cysts and Hyperemesis Gravidarum. HG is a condition where you vomit all the time and uncontrollably. At 18 weeks I started bleeding. Bleeding a lot, and we just knew I had lost another baby. There was so much bleeding that it took two hours before they listened for a heartbeat. And they found one!! So they rushed us for an ultrasound and we got our first glimpse of Lexi. To this day we don’t know why I bled, but it doesn’t matter. We had our Lexi. Every pain, doctor’s appointment, pregnancy induced high blood pressure, vomiting, and bed rest was worth it. At 39 weeks, after 36 hours of labor, we had our baby girl.
Where we live they don’t do newborn screenings for CF, and as far as we knew no one in our family every had CF. Constipation and colic pretty much sum up those first few months. Thankfully she grew out of the colic, but never the constipation (CF clue). Lexi was a handful. She liked who she liked and hated every stranger. She was always in a hurry. She slept through the night at 7 weeks. She needed to explore the world during those waking hours! She was running and climbing by 9 months old. There was no holding her back.
After our first two pregnancies were so rough, I had said no more. I didn’t think I could vomit again for 40 weeks. Adam didn’t think he could handle the stress of those 40 weeks, or the constant worry about loosing another baby. We had always wanted 4 kids. Well, Adam wanted 3, and I said no odd numbers, so 4 it was. About Lexi’s first birthday, as she was moving full speed ahead at life, we both knew she shouldn’t be an only child. She needed a sibling to run off all this energy with!
The doctor told me that there was only a 50/50 chance that I would get HG with another pregnancy. Well you know what that means. Yep, once again I got HG. Adam and I would quickly learn that when it comes to anything medical we draw the short end of the stick. Anyway we got pregnant quickly, and I was just as scared as during Lexi’s pregnancy. Sitting in BJs Restaurant on Memorial Day and the contractions started. Brooklyn wasn’t due till late August. It wasn’t awful, and I remember calling the doctor and the doctor insisting I go to the hospital. That was the start of 2.5 months of contractions. Medications. Doctors 3 times a week. Thankfully the contractions were simply a chronic pain, and weren’t productive, so at 39 weeks God gave us Brooklyn!
About the time Brooklyn was born Lexi’s lung issues started to appear. Thanksgiving weekend that year both girls got very sick, and Brooklyn was admitted for a week to the hospital. This is really where I think if we had lived someplace where CF was a newborn screening, if we didn’t have a significant history of asthma and GI issues in our family, well maybe we would have learned earlier that the girls had CF and things would have been different.