A couple of months ago I never imagined that I would be sat here writing a fundraising page for Arc ( I had never even heard of them), I should in fact be coming up to being 26 weeks pregnant and getting excited for the arrival our third beautiful baby, sadly for myself and Ry this isnt the case.
On the 2oth November we attended the hospital for our 20 week scan, we had been through the process twice before and knew how lovely it was to see your baby wriggling around on the screen. We hadnt given much thought to there being anything wrong, I had been REALLY sick which was meant to be a good sign and I could feel the baby moving around all the time so felt that things were ok. This meant we were both completely unprepared when the sonographer turned around and said 'I'm really sorry, your baby has severe brain abnormalities.' I will never forget that moment ever, it was everyones worst nightmare happening to us then and there. We were ushered into a small room to wait for a consultant to come and see us, while we sat there trying to process what we had been told we could hear other couples excitedly talking about their scan pictures. I had to go through another scan when the consulatnt arrived, and she confirmed what the sonographer had seen. We were then sent down to the ante natal clinic around the back where the 'quiet room' is, the room where you go when you have been given bad news, the room no parents want to be taken to. Here we sat down and talked to the bereavement midwife, and this was then I first heard about ARC. ARC stands for antenatal results and choices, it is a charity for parents like myself and Ry, parents who are given the earth shattering news that there is something seriously wrong with their baby.
We had to wait three days before we could see a specialist consultant who could explain to us exactly what was wrong with our baby and what our options were, however after speaking to the midwife it was clear our babys prognosis was not good. These three days were complete hell, how we survived them I dont know but I know I would have not survived without Ry, he was my rock when I needed him to be and he didnt leave my side. Over the 3 days Ry rang the ARC helpline, they offer support and advice at a time you just need to speak to someone who understands what you are going through. At this time I couldnt speak to them I was numb but knowing Ry could and that he could pass on the information and advice they had given him was a huge comfort.
When we finally saw the consultant and had another scan it was clear that our very wanted baby had such severe brain abnormalities that they had no chance of any sort of quality of life. We therefore made the heart breaking decision to end the pregnancy. I then had to deliver our baby two days later, to deliver a baby and to not take them home is soul destroying, I have never experienced anything that comes near to the emotional pain I felt that day and I know Ry felt the same. You are a mother from the moment you find out your pregnant, although we never met our litte baby we loved them like we love Spencer and Flo, our hopes and dreams for them were the same and I pray everyday that they know how much we wanted them.
When I got home i was broken, I didnt know what to do with myself and thats when ARC began to help me. ARC runs a forum for parents who have had to end a pregnancy like us. The forum has been and still is a lifeline to me, it connects you to other parents who are in the same situation as you. No one can understand what it is like to go through this process unless they have been through it, and with ARC you can speak to hundreds of parents who understand and are at different stages of their grief. I have loved being able to support others as they go through what is truly the worst time of their life, as in turn other Arc parents have helped me. The website is full of information and advice which again is a massive help when you get home.
I want to raise as much money as I possibly can for ARC as they are a small charity which has helped us already in a huge way and it is so comforting to know that they will be there in the future should we need any support or advice. I know I am going to find the next few months hard as we approach our babys due date but to know I am contributing to something which has helped not only us but hundreds of others of families who find themselves in our situation eases some of the pain.
Thank you for reading our story, please donate it means alot to us xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx