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Ivy Hope's Story   — Hope's Mother


I used to be a regular on this list, but have been pretty busy. I'm glad to hear someone is compiling stories to make an impact.

Here's our story:

On March 10, 1997 I gave birth to a beautiful 7lb. 9oz. baby girl. My pregnancy was perfect, and the birth fairly quick. She was perfect in every way; healthy, pink, fat... She started nursing fairly soon, although, we had some difficulty staying latched on.

On March 18, 1997, Ivy Hope woke early, approximately 6:00 a.m. She had slept nearly the whole night, and in fact, before putting her to bed, I had to wake her to eat. I had noticed that in our short week together that she was sleeping an awful lot. Everyone said, "Oh, she's a newborn," and "Count your blessings," and so we did.

When she woke she wouldn't eat, and started grunting. At that time I thought she had a tummy ache. Her fever was not high and so I was not alarmed. However at about 10:00 a.m. I decided to call the dr. My dr. was out of town so I talked to another' nurse. She said bring her in.. the dr. examined her, and at that time she was still responsive. He said, that her fever was 101, but newborns made him nervous. So he ordered an oral antibiotic, some blood work, and a chest xray. My husband, 3 yr. old daughter and I took her to the pharmacy, then the hospital. Ivy had finally fallen asleep when we arrived at the hospital (or so we thought.) We took her in, they poked her foot (she didn't even flinch and the lab tech thought she was getting good at poking babies,) and the xray tech took her xray. All this time she was laying limply on a table or in our arms. Again, thinking her morning of fussiness had finally caught up to her we disregarded her as being unresponsive. My husband had managed to get one dose of antibiotic down her before the hospital work, and so when that was finished we headed home. I laid her in her bassinet, and started to fix lunch. My husband checked on her in less than 30 minutes, and she was not breathing, in fact she was blotchy and turning blue. He also noticed lots of phlegm coming from her mouth, and was able to extract some more with his fingers. I phoned the dr. and we returned to the emergency room.

My husband started CPR on her as soon as he found her. When we arrived at the hospital she was a very sick little baby. We stayed there while every known emergency dr., etc. in our small community came in for their opinion. It was finally decided that she should be flown to the nearest PICU, which was Albuquerque, NM. It seemed like forever for the plane to come, and pick us up, and when they did they let me look at Ivy one more time before boarding us on the plane. My husband left, driving to Albuquerque because they would only let one of us fly. The ride there was only 45 minutes, but it seemed like forever. Hale-Bopp (the infamous comet) was high in the sky and I watched it nearly the entire ride. I prayed, but in my heart of hearts I knew that if Ivy survived this ordeal, she would be damaged. So I prayed then that if that were so that she should be taken.

We arrived in Alb. around 7:00 p.m., rushed to a pediatric emergency, and a dr. and nurse took over her care. Thank God I was surrounded by friends and family, as my husband was on the rode, for at least another two hours. At 9:00 the dr. came in and gave us very little hope. He had no idea what was wrong with her, how it happened, etc. etc. Shortly after that he returned to say Ivy died. That her little heart, finally, had given out. My husband arrived about 10 minutes after and we stayed with her for quite some time. He felt she waited for him, he felt her spirit in the room. The next day they did the autopsy, another horrific event for parents. But the conclusion was that she died of gbs Meningitis. She was so perfect, I said. How could this happen. I was never tested throughout my pregnancy, and when I was tested I was negative.

We brought Ivy home with us that day, my brother and sister in law driving us. And the following day, we buried her atop my husband's dad. We had a very small, private funeral for her, with Wayne, my husband conducting it. He also prepared her body for burial by washing her and dressing her. My brother in law built the tiny casket, and we laid her in white pendleton blankets. She was a perfect angel.

My heart is broken, and I know we will never know what Ivy will grow up to be.

Copyright 1999-2004 Jesse Cause Foundation