The phenomenal Beth Fletcher with her son Elijah (4) and daughter Clara (2). Beth is also mother to Anna (11), Noah (10) and twins James and Jake who were still born on February 26, 2008. Beth had preeclampsia with Anna and was induced at 35 weeks. She was put on Magnesium Sulfite so her body was fighting that stopping the birth and pitocin trying to start her birth. They broke her water but her body never responded at all and after 24 hours she delivered via cesarean. Anna had high blood pressure in her lung and had difficulty breathing. She had to go to NICU and be intubated and Beth was unable to touch her daughter for 4 days. Thankfully, Anna was able to come home a week later. Less than a year later Noah was born and Beth had planned to have a VBAC. At 37 weeks he measured over 9lbs on ultrasound so they chose to deliver via cesarean at 38 weeks due to his size. Noah was 10lbs and had the same lung condition as Anna. Beth and he had to be taken to a different hospital via ambulance where he was intubated and stayed in the NICU for 2 weeks. Beth had never been able get Anna to latch but always pumped and thought she'd try again with Noah. She was able to nurse for a few weeks but had a difficult time with Anna also being so young and stopped early on.
Her delivery with her James and Jake was her only natural, vaginal delivery. Knowing that they had already passed she wanted to feel everything and every connection with them that she could. It was the only pregnancy that she labored and dilated and she said in what it was it was perfect. She labored for 12 hours, her water was broken and James and Jake were born shortly after. Beth's placenta didn't deliver so she had to have an emergency D&C but said she didn't care. She just wanted to go away. She kept her boys with her overnight and then, she never saw them again. They are still so much the part of their family.
Beth had an early miscarraige the following year. She started seeing a specialist who helped her through her first 12 weeks with Eli. She was excited to show her older two children what having a baby was supposed to be like. Elijah was also delivered via cesarean but Beth fought to have him with her right away. With the help of lactation consultant holding her breast she was even able to nurse him immediately in recovery. It was just what she'd wanted and was willing to fight for. Eli nursed for 15 months, until Beth was 6 months pregnant with Clara. She had another wonderful cesarean birth and successful nursing relationship with Clara.
Beth came to share her story with us because she has been angry with her body for failing her and her twin boys. She has always loved her body and herself and has struggled with feeling like she needed her body to protect her and her boys and it just didn't do what she needed it to. She said that while she very much feels she knew something was off the day that her boys passed, one of the things she thinks about most is that as a mother, she wasn't able to be there for them as they were dying. In that moment they need her, she couldn't hold their hands and whisper that everything would be okay and that she'd love them always.