Friday, December 7, 2007


Owen's autopsy revealed some evidence of abnormal bleeding, especially in his brain, which is believed to have led to his death. There really is no explanation for this bleeding which is usually the result of severe trauma (for example, a major car accident or if someone beat the cr@p out of me), cocain.e use, some sort of bleeding disorder (either mine or his), or the oh so satisfying "unknown etiology."
Since we could easily rule out the first two, the doctors suggested that, while it is highly unlikely I have any bleeding disorder given my history of no bleeding problems and two healthy living children, I consult with a hemotologist. So, given my insane need to try and find a reason for all of this, we decided to go for it. I met with hematologist/oncologist several weeks ago. She was nice but her office is in a major cancer center. She ordered a whole slew of blood tests, the last of which I had done this morning. You know your life really sucks when the bald, emaciated cancer patients in the waiting room are tearing up and telling you how sorry they are for you. These particular tests required drawing what felt like half my blood volume for platelet testing and then something the lab tech called a bleeding time test. This was great fun. Basically, he put a blood pressure cuff on my arm, pumped it up, gouged my forearm, and stood there watching me bleed. I guess it went well. After the test was over, he was bandaging me up and commented, "You are so fair, this definitely going to leave a scar. You'll probably have it the rest of your life." I replied, "At least this one will be visible."


C. said...

I would go to the ends of the earth to determine why this happened, why my baby died. Your need to find an explanation is certainly not lost on me. The physical scars that could result from getting answers pale in comparison to our emotional scars, don't they?

I hope this battery of tests gives you some answers, Ashleigh, and some peace of mind. I wish that for all of us. XO.

Carole said...'s so so true. There is always that huge invisible (top the world) scar from losing our children. I hope you get the answers that you are looking for. I know these appointments must be very frustrating. I remember how I felt after meeting with genetics.

Thinking of you.

Coggy said...

I wish I had answers for Jacob's death. I used to think I didn't want any, now not knowing is harder than I thought.
I hope these tests bring you answers and like c says some peace of mind if that is possible.
The scar or lack of from all this is true. I sometime wish it was more tangible and not just the searing internal scar that we have to walk round with now.

meg said...

Ashleigh, I had these same tests...or most of them. I also went to the cancer center and I felt so badly while I was sitting there...watching a young girl walk by with her head scarf and her IV bag. I didn't know his office would be it freaked me out. But I wanted to know too.

What everyone has written about the scars is so true.

kalakly said...

Ashleigh, I was in the middle of posting to you and my computer crashed so I don't know if this will be a duplicate or not.
I wanted to say thank you for reaching out to me. I know the journey will be easier being surrounded by moms who know.
I hope you find answers about Owen. When I had the same/similar tests done, the doc, who was by far the best doc I had seen in all of my testing not just in M.D. experience but in human kindness (I'll blog about him I am sure), told me that one, with my history of two healthy, normal pregnancies and babies, it was unlikely they would find anything wrong with me and two, it was better if they couldn't find anything wrong because that meant it was even more unlikely that it would happen again. And that's a kind of answer too. Maybe not the one we want but one we can live with, espicially if we want to try again.
The scars...the physical ones are so easy to explain in comparison with the real ones, that no one sees or will ever understand. Except us.
((((Big Hugs)))

MogosMom said...

I totally understand your need (our need) for answers. I am here to say that reasons and explanations did not make anything better for me. Trisomy 13 was just another thing that I could know about my son. I craved any information that I could get about who he was. I wanted to know every detail, every medical term and if I could not know what his cry sounded like or how his breath felt on my skin, I would know why he had no spleen or why his ears were still closed. Still, the reasons never really helped me be ok with it all - or at peace. It just made me feel more like his Mom.

Perhaps the information was helpful after all.

charmedgirl said...

the need for physical evidence (scars), i get that. also, somehow that bloodletting sounds strangely satisfying, like a visual to what we are feeling emotionally.

i wonder if that sounds psychotic...maybe i am.

Becca said...

I'm so sorry :-( I hope you are able to get peace of mind from this. Stay strong, we are here for you.

Becca said...

I'm so sorry :-( I hope you are able to get peace of mind from this. Hang in there, you are so strong through all of this.

Ann said...

Yes, it really does suck knowing that you're the person other people feel sorry for now--even cancer patients. I almost hesitate telling my story to people because I know it will stop them in their tracks. That oh-so-innocent question, "Do you have children?"...