Voices of Hope: Never Give Up!
The following is the personal story of Dawn and David Hill's journey . Just a brief bit about these two amazing people:
Dawn is from Andalusia, Alabama and David from Birmingham. They met, fell in love and were married in December of 2010. Dawn was a music teacher but chose to set that aside to stay home and be a homeschooling mom to her step-daughter, and now along with their younger two children. David has been in pest control most all of his adult life. He started Dave's Pest Control as a part-time/weekend company that has since gone on to be his full-time job.
Thank you for being willing to open up and share this part of your life with us all. It is so heartbreaking and yet so full of encouragement and inspiration!
When my husband and I decided to have children, it was an easy discussion. We both knew we wanted a big family since before we were married. I became pregnant after only 2 months of trying! It was absolutely perfect and we were over the moon. Shortly after, however, I miscarried the baby at only 6 weeks gestation. It was sad, but we still had so much hope. “These things happen,” we were told, “and many women go on to have healthy pregnancies.” Since it only took us a couple of months to get pregnant the first time, we started trying again with high expectations. Month after month the disappointment of not getting pregnant became greater and greater. I gained weight as the sadness grew. Finally after a year, I went to my doctor, still not pregnant. As was protocol with the practice he was with at the time, he sent me to the infertility department within the hospital. They proceeded to give me fertility medicines and monitor me several times a month. The medicines were torture on my hormones, and the depression set in. They told me that I should lose a few pounds, but as time went on and the hormones got crazier, I could only gain more weight. After being with them for a year and having a couple of procedures done with no results, we decided to not go back.
Just a month after “quitting” the infertility department, I came up with a positive pregnancy test. It was an amazing feeling! We were shocked and so excited. I could not believe that after two years of waiting, we were finally going to have a baby! The excitement did not last long, for we lost that baby after only 6 weeks gestation just like the first. All that time of not being able to conceive, just to lose another baby was crushing. The feelings of moving on were unbelievable. I couldn’t imagine going through another 2 years of infertility and sadness. It was at that point that my doctor (now with a different practice) told us about a newer drug that was showing wonderful results, without going back to the infertility department. We decided to go for it, and were pregnant again after only one month of taking that medicine. I was shocked, but didn’t have high hopes. I held my breath until we made it to 6 weeks. I was still pregnant, but I continued to hold my breath for most of the pregnancy even though they assured me everything was going as it should. Nine months later, my son was born as healthy as could be! My dream had come true!
The new medicine gave us hope that we could still possibly have a big family, so when my son was a year old, we decided to take it again. Sure enough, after only two months of trying, I was pregnant again. Ten weeks in, we found out it was another boy and my imagination soared with dreams of my two boys playing together. Our second choice of names with our first son was “Logan,” so we knew immediately that was this baby’s name. I made it through the first trimester and was finally feeling better with less nausea and more energy. We had an at home fetal monitor, and listened to the baby’s heartbeat most evenings, just as we had done with our first son. One evening at 16 weeks gestation, we couldn’t find the heartbeat. It worried us, but we kept telling ourselves that maybe the baby was turned a different way. The next day, our doctor worked us in immediately, and upon looking at the ultrasound, they knew the heartbeat was not there. I could not believe what I was hearing. I lay on the ultrasound table in tears. We were shocked. We went into the hospital that evening to give birth to our sweet baby Logan. I held him in my arms and cried over him as I said goodbye. He was perfect. I counted his fingers and toes, and kissed his little nose and said goodbye. No one knew why. No one knew what caused this.
They said that after having such a healthy pregnancy before, there were no answers, but no reason to think this would happen again. We wanted to try again. We still had some hope. We were given the choice of going to see an infertility specialist, or simply trying again with the same medicine that worked before. We opted to try again without the specialist. Sure enough, I was pregnant after two months. First trimester came and went. We found out it was a boy, yet we were afraid to name him. I was afraid to dream again of my son having a brother to play with. At 16 weeks gestation, we could not find the heartbeat at home. We went in, and the people at my doctor’s office loved on us as they rallied around hoping and praying for the best. They didn’t make us sit in the waiting room, but took us to ultrasound immediately. Nurses came and loved on our 2 year old. My doctor held my hand as we saw the baby had no heartbeat. This time I didn’t cry. I just sat up and started talking about details. We needed to check into the hospital that night, “what time should I be here,” I asked. We called my mom to come babysit. I cried on the way home. I tried to pray. I wanted to understand why this was happening…again. Why would anyone have to live such a nightmare twice? I gave birth again to a sweet baby boy. I held him close and counted his fingers and toes. I kissed his nose and said goodbye. To this day, I wish we had named him. One day I will.
I tried to face the fact that I would never have another baby. I loved on my 2 year old, and I cried a lot. My boys were always on my mind. We decided to go to a fertility specialist. In my mind, I wasn’t there to get pregnant, but for answers. After lots of blood work from both my husband and me, we had guesses, not answers. The fertility specialist gave me some hope in trying again. He said he had seen this type of blood work many times, and felt confident we could get pregnant again and keep it. We decided to try one more time and let that be it. After 2 months of fertility medicine, I expected to be pregnant. However, during that cycle I never received a positive ovulation test. I also didn’t get a positive ovulation test during our 3rd cycle of trying. I began to feel hopeless all over again. This had not been a problem since before my son was born. Was I facing another couple of years of infertility? I didn’t think I could go through that again. I went back to see the infertility specialist, ready to give up. He had a plan; he was not worried. We were going to increase the dosage of the medicine, but first he had to do some blood work. His office called me that afternoon to tell me that my blood work showed that I was pregnant. I argued with her! Seriously, I told her I didn’t ovulate, that I couldn’t be! She just giggled at me, told me sometimes the ovulation tests were not accurate and made an appointment for me to come back in. I went in once a week every week for awhile and was taking mega doses of folic acid and giving myself a shot of blood thinners every day. We found out this baby was a girl, but I was too scared to get excited. My OB wanted to celebrate a little at the 18 week mark since we had made it past the point of the previous two, but I wouldn’t let him. He said he would be cautiously excited for us as he continued to pray for us. My husband and I had a difficult time accepting that this pregnancy might actually make it to full term. We didn’t discuss names until a month before she was born. I didn’t even want to have a baby shower until that last month. I started getting excited, but felt hesitant and scared to prepare for her arrival. I had a friend that offered to take maternity pictures, but I was even scared to do that. I didn’t want to lose this baby and have these perfect happy pictures to haunt me. It wasn’t until we scheduled to induce, that I giggled, looked at my husband, and said “we are going to have a baby girl!” He just told me to wait until she was here. Even his heart was having trouble realizing this could be possible. I believe that the maternity photos were taken only 2 days before we went to the hospital! I am now thankful that we have them, for they are such happy memories!
During the loss of our two boys, we had the same nurse who was so caring and gentle. I had thought about her several times, wondering if she even remembered us, hoping to see her when our baby girl was born. Believe it or not, she did remember, and even asked to be on the schedule for the birth of our baby girl! What an amazing lady that had been praying for that whole time. She even remembered what rooms we were in before with the birth of our boys, and made sure we were put in a different room for positive memories. Everything at the hospital during baby girl’s birth was as smooth as possible. I held her in disbelief after she was born, just praying and thanking God for this sweet blessing as I counted her fingers and toes and kissed her nose – then didn’t say goodbye.