Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I had a nightmare on Friday night.

I had just given birth to Jacob. He was born at 21 weeks, but he hadn’t died before he was born and they tried to save him. I was in the NICU, which was a large circular room with babies in beds all over the room. I was walking quickly around and around the room trying to find him. I looked at each baby, but I knew that Jacob wasn’t one of them and I was getting more and more frantic by the minute. I couldn’t find a doctor or nurse to tell me where he was and I was feeling completely panicked. I started saying to whoever would listen that he was dead, I knew he was dead. I found my husband, Mom and sister Laurie standing together near a gurney, still in the NICU. I lay down on the gurney, completely worn out and hopeless. They were talking to a doctor. The doctor told them that Jacob was dead and that he had been dead for awhile. I asked him if he said that Jacob was dead and no one would answer me. Finally, Laurie said that he was dead. I turned over on my stomach, buried my face Jacob’s blanket and started screaming. I did at least 3 huge screams, screaming like I have never screamed before. I just wanted to die, I didn’t see how I could go on. I woke up then, my heart pounding. I was shocked that I wasn’t really screaming and that Ted was sleeping peacefully beside me. It was horrible.

I’ve thought about the dream a lot since then. All I want is a nice dream about Jacob, one that I can see his face in, feel his arms around my neck, feel his hand in my hand, but I got this dream. Sometimes I think that the dream was a way to relive what happened (although Jacob was already dead when he was born and was never in the NICU), and to show me another way that I could have reacted. When I found out that he died, I cried. I cried a lot. But I didn’t make a lot of noise. And there were periods of time when I didn’t cry, when I was just in so much shock and I just thought I had to be strong for others (even though I didn’t need to be). Maybe the dream was a way of releasing the emotions that I really felt on May 31st, I really wanted to scream, but I didn’t. The shock and everything else stopped me. I’ve screamed since then, but even then the screams were not like the ones in my dream. The ones in my dream still haunt me.

Then I had a really disturbing thought. What if I was dreaming of something to come. What if the baby I was looking for wasn’t Jacob, but my next baby? What if I lose another baby? Maybe I was screaming so much in the dream because I lost another one and this time I didn’t hold back. What if I do lose another one? I don’t care what the statistics say about the odds of having another stillbirth, I beat the odds this time (in more ways than one) and I can beat them again.


Drew's Parents said...

I am hoping and praying that that dream was only a way for your mind to express the anger and pain that your shock denied you on May 31. The horrible thought of having this happen again will be looming over us until we are holding a healthy newborn in our arms. I hate that we have no control over what happens to our baby. But if love and prayers can be enough to ensure that you will have your rainbow, I will be loving and praying with everything I have. (((Hugs))) I love you!

mommy4boys said...

I am so very sorry you had this nightmare. That's a really tough one to have. I honestly believe that there must be something more to this timeline of grieving.
Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers.
Lots of love

Jennifer said...

Dana, I'm sorry that this nightmare happened. It's tough enough to be haunted by our grief during our waking hour but to be visited by nightmares during our sleep is just debilitating. I pray that the next days would be calmer and gentler on you. ((HUGS))

Rhiannon said...

Dana, I am so sorry about your nightmare. Grieving is such a roller coaster and unfortunately I think that even though it feels like we have been dealing with these terrible, horrible feelings for so long, we are only beginning this journey. I sometimes wonder about what you said too. I beat the odds once, who says it won't happen to me again? I have moments when I feel so helpless and lost like my life will never be what I want (Mom to a living, healthy, happy child) and others when I feel like I might actually survive this and have another chance at mommyhood. I hope that as the days pass, we will all start to have more feelings of hope. I know you will have your chance at mommyhood too. :) Thinking of you!

Angela said...

I'm sorry you had a nightmare, Dana. Maybe you had the nightmare because you felt like you should've screamed when Jacob died so you went back to that time, although it was set up a little differently, and let out all the pain you needed to. Dreams are weird, and I'm no analyst, but maybe?

I know it's hard to think about the next pregnancy and a good outcome, but I believe we will all have healthy rainbow babies. The next pregnancy is going to be hard, but we'll all be there for you and you will make it through.

Elaine said...

That's horrible! I was having really bad dreams until the wise physicians medicated me too. Now I sleep much better. I know the next pregnancy will be a rough one. You'll have to take it day by day or even hour by hour. But you will find the strength and courage to get though it. Just as you are finding the strength and courage to get up everyday now. I'm hoping you get pregnant really really soon!! Like tonight!


Julie said...

oh, sweetie, please don't dwell on the possibility of this happening again. i've thought about it, too, and i'm not naive enough to think it could never happen again, but you and ted and jacob's younger siblings deserve for you to believe that your dreams will come true.

Violet1122 said...

I hate, hate, hate dreams like this. Don't get caught up into thinking dreams are telling your future. I know that's easier said than done.

I know that once you've been on the wrong side of statistics, you live forever in their shadow.

But you know... statistically... you have every reason to anticipate a happy, healthy pregnancy with your next baby. And to bring home your new little one, safe in your arms.

I've got you in my prayers constantly - I'm hoping that rainbow baby makes an appereance soon!

((Big Hugs))