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Christopher James Reif

Born October 17, 2011- Died October 15, 2011

Saturday 10/15/11 started out like any other day. Ashley had a volleyball tournament at 8:15am so I got up and took her to that and then went to breakfast with a homeschool friend. Went home and got the kids ready to go to my Godson’s birthday party. We went to the store and picked out his gifts and then headed off to my sister’s house. Ryan had the boys at a church thing and then was going to meet us there later. The party was nice and I worked on finishing my newborn longies for the baby. That was the last of the newborn knitting I had to do.

Around 7:00 p.m. I was getting really tired and sore and had these flu like body aches and I just wanted to get home.  It was a 45 minute drive home. We got home and I went straight to bed. I had a low grade fever. As I was sleeping I realized I hadn’t felt the baby move all day. As it was, I seldom felt normal movements other than hiccups, but I hadn’t even felt those. I got up and drank some cold water and told my husband we might need to go to the hospital if I couldn’t get him to move. I laid on my left side and waited. Nothing. I got an icepack and put that on my stomach and started to doze off. Still nothing.

As I was dozing I could see the doctor saying he was gone. It was strange and I can’t explain the visions in my head. I pushed really hard on my belly and could feel him, but he did not push back. I got up and called the doctor and he had me go into labor & delivery. I thought we will hear the heartbeat and it will be fine and we will come home. When we got there the doctor came in with the ultrasound machine and did an ultrasound. I am so sorry, but your baby has passed away...I will never forget those words.

We came home to get things in order and tell the kids. We called our parents that night and told them. Ryan called our priest as well, who has been with us everystep of this nightmare. I didn’t sleep at all and Ryan slept some. Baby Eeyore still did not have a name so we had to pick one.

We were going to go back to the hospital between 8-9 p.m. Sunday, the 16th, to start induction. We realized we did not have a shirt to go with his longies and I wanted that to be his burial outfit. It was so hard to have to go buy your baby’s burial outfit. Ryan lost it a little.

When we go to the hospital, 15 of our friends were there in the family lounge praying for us. They stayed until between 10-11 that night. I asked the dr. to do another ultrasound just to be sure and, of course, there was no change. The doctor checked me and I was dialated at 4 cm so we decided to try for some sleep and break my water in the morning. The doctor said I didn’t have to have any pain with this labor and I told him I wanted a natural birth and to follow my birthplan. The staff was so good.

We broke my water at 6:00 a.m. Monday morning, Oct 17th, and labor started pretty quick. Friends came back up and prayed in the lounge again. I used the tub and my birthing ball and the toilet. At about 10:30 things started getting intense. I got up on the bed and laid on my side/stomach with one leg drawn up and that really helped. Stayed that way for about 15 minutes and even slept a little. Things got more intesne. We knew he was breech and he ended up being a double footling breech. I got up on the squating bar and sometimes would get the urge to push and went with it, other contractions didn’t have the urge. The doctor had told me to just do what my body wanted me to do. I pushed and felt a plop and it was the last of my water breaking. Then a little foot came out. The nurse called the doctor and he came in and we finished deliverying. I was so tired and when we were about to the butt, I ended up kind of on my back/side. I kept feeling for him because he was stuck and I thought it was his head. It was his belly that was stuck because it was so full fluid. Once we got past that his arms and head came easy. Christopher was placed on my chest and I was still praying for a miracle. I looked at the clock to remember the time since I knew no one else was going to since there was no need. He came to me at 11:20am. The nurses were crying at his birth as well.

Ryan did a conditional baptism right away and then called our priest to let him know Christopher was here. Our priest was there within five minutes and came and baptized him and confirmed him. The doctor and nurses left the room for which I was grateful because the only thing the doctor did that I didn’t like was trying to rush me having the placenta. There was no reason for this since I was not losing blood or anything. Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep came and did pictures. The kids came up later that evening. Ryan stayed with me at the hospital and we left tuesday morning after spending a little more time with our baby.

Then it was all the things like going to the funeral home and picking out the cards, etc. Then to the cemetary to pay for the gravesite and get the things to choose a grave marker. Then to the stores to get Christopher a rosary and try to find a baptism blanket to be buried with.

Wednesday was another day of doing too much. Had to get the boys new dress shirts, my husband a suit and a couple of the girls dress shoes. Then to discover I have nothing that fits so I had to get me an outfit too. Our priest got Christopher a beautiful casket handmade from monks in Iowa.

Thursday was the funeral and now to rest.

1 reply on “Christopher James Reif”

Thank you so much for sharing your story. I can only imagine the pain involved in such a loss, and I pray for you and your baby in heaven.

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