Thursday, June 3, 2010

The time has come for me to tell the story of baby Emmersyn.

I received a call Thursday afternoon, May 26th from my mom. She informed me that my sister-in-law, Karly had an ultrasound earlier that day and was told she had Preeclampsia. Her doctor said she was at risk for seizures and/or stroke. Knowing full well Emmersyn's previous diagnosis, they decided to send her down to Grand Rapids where they would induce labor later that evening. I knew right then and there that I was not going to miss the birth of my niece, especially if she only had a short time here on this earth. I rearranged my work schedule and headed downstate with my mom and Aunt Lorie.

Around 9:00 pm, as we all sat around the birthing room watching the American Idol finale, a Genetic Specialist came in to check on Karly. She annoyingly asked Karly a lot of questions such as, "Your baby has Triploidy, do you know what that means?"
Karly answered yes.
To which the doctor then asked, "What does that mean?"
Karly patiently responded, "It's fatal."
And my heart broke.
We had been diligently praying for this child. Everyone I knew was praying, and those I know who have yet to believe in God's power, said they're thoughts were with us. Everyone was behind this baby, pulling for her, rooting for her. Her life was meant to be.
The doctor then went on to say Emmersyn wasn't made right, and I blocked everything else out after that.
She was made precious in His sight.
We may not know WHY she was diagnosed with this disease, WHY this had to happen to our family, but we know WHO God is, and WHAT he says, and one day, we will be able to ask Him these questions.

Karly was given Magnesium Sulfate via IV to fight any chance of seizing, and it made her horribly sick. Her mom lovingly held a bowl while she vomitted into it. To say I felt bad for her is an understatement.

Around midnight, Karly was given her first pill to induce labor. The second was to be given to her at 4 am, and the third and final pill at 8 am. Then they figured they would administer pitocin at noon on Thursday. I figured at this rate, Emmersyn wouldn't make her appearance till Thursday evening. Needless to say, everyone was tired, and we decided to go to our hotel room and get some sleep. My brother, Dale, promised to call if anything progressed.

Around 2:30 am, Dale called.
"She's between 8 and 9, you might wanna get back here."
'She was just 2 cm 2 1/2 hours ago, how on earth is she almost to 9?' Was my first thought.

We dressed and got out of that hotel as fast as we could. We got up to the third floor as quickly as our feet would carry us. The nurses were already laying out the tarps, for lack of a better word. Karly was desperately uncomfortable and moaning. She felt like she needed to push. I closed my eyes and prayed Emmersyn would just be born alive.
'If nothing else, please be alive. Your mama has carried you all these weeks, please just be alive.'
 The nurses had long since turned off her heart monitor, focusing mainly on Karly, and her potential risks. We didn't know what to expect.
Karly cried out that she needed to push, and one strong push later, the doctor held Emmersyn in her hands. I remember thanking God for that one, single push.
Relief flooded us as we stood, cameras in hand, staring at the new addition. She came into this world quietly; No screams or cries. She had a perfectly shaped head, revealing absolutely no struggle through the birth canal. At 3 lbs, 15 ounces, and 15 1/2 inches long, with only 33 short weeks to develop, she was beautiful.

And those lips, oh those lips...pouty and perfect.
As I got a little closer, I could see her mouth pushing out those puffy little breaths. She was alive, with a slow but steady little heartbeat. Emmersyn Kay Hagenbuch was an answer to prayer. Fighting many odds, she was 1 in 10,000 babies diagnosed with Triploidy to be born with a heartbeat. Our girl was definitely a fighter.

The nurses and doctor carefully cleaned her off, checked her vitals, and handed her over to her mom and dad- who had anxiously awaited her arrival.

We left Dale and Karly alone in the room with Emmersyn for those next bittersweet moments. They bonded and they loved.

What seemed like a long time later, Karly's parents, my mom, aunt, and I re-entered the birthing room. Karly's mom held Emmersyn next. As she admired her granddaughter, Karly said quietly, "You know she's gone, right?"
And we knew. Forty-three precious moments later, she took her last breath, in the arms of her loving parents who would have given up everything to see her survive. But God had bigger plans for her. She fought to grace us with her presence, and less than an hour later, she was gone. We don't know why she was taken so quickly, but why isn't important. She was created in her mother's womb, intricately woven, beautifully and wonderfully made, for a PURPOSE.

(Here I hold our little Princess. I told her how much we love her and how grateful I was to be able to meet her.)

In the hours that followed, she had her first bath, her first dressing, baptism, and LOTS of kisses. There was no shortage of love for that little peanut. She was passed back and forth, each family member savoring their time with her. I know she was in heaven smiling down.

I can't wait for the day we are all reunited. We will tell her how much we've missed her, how there were over 100 people at her gravesite service, as we said goodbye to her here on this earth. How, no matter how many tears, her mama and daddy were the picture of strength, and how her brother and sister love her dearly. And I will tell her how she made me so grateful for my loved ones, how she reminded me that God performs miracles, and how her little face was forever branded in my memory.

We'll miss you, Emmersyn.
No matter how short, your little life was more significant than most.
I love you,


Carrie said...

Beautifully written Karlee and a wonderful tribute to Emmersyn. I love when you said she was made precious in Gods sight. So very true.

mom said...

love it

Dad said...

Karlee,I can see that this is written with alot of Love by her Auntie...Now its time for you to write a book:)

Denise Crownover said...

my heart is with you and your family! beautiful!
Love, D
(Joy's sis in law)

joy said...

Karlee, I have been checking your blog each day waiting for this... thank you for sharing your heart and Emmersyn's beautiful story. I too am looking forward to your book :)

Love, Joy Lee

Curtis said...

That was the most beautiful "Eulogy" I ever read.
Thanks for sharing.

karlee said...

Thanks for the comments, everyone. Our girl serves as a constant reminder of how precious life is.

Jessica said...

Thanks for this story. It certainly made me cry I am currently 30 weeks pregnant with a triploidy baby, Kara Grace. I also beleive she is perfect just as she is. This is how God planned for her to be!

Anika Anne Upton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ellie said...

I recently lost a daughter to triploidy. She was born alive on July 4th 2012 and lived for five beautiful days. Since I had chosen not to do an amnio the doctors immediately intabated her which is why she lived so long. She was born at 38 weeks 2lbs 10ounces. For how tiny she was she had such a big a big personality. I loved reading you post it reminded me of my family and our time spent with my daughter Anika. Savoring every single minute of her life. Making sure she was baptized before all else. On Anika's headstone I put the verse Psalm:139 13-14. Although in the medical world she had many things wrong with her to me she was absolutely perfect and I wouldn't change a thing. My daughter had two of her fingers fused together my family jokes "what if we get to heaven all angels have their fingers like that." :) I know Anika was here for a reason. Truly a miracle and blessing just like your little niece Emmersyn. They may even be playing up in heaven right now. I'm so looking forward to the day I will see my little angel again. Thanks so much for sharing little Emmersyns story.

karlee said...

Ellie, I have no doubts that both little angels are playing up in heaven, void of all the hurt and heartache of this world. Thank you for sharing the story of your girl:)


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