Mattie's Story

Mattie B as we so fondly call him was born with a heart defect and left us when he was only 11 days old. Matthew was our first-born. Mattie's Daddy and I were so excited to be expecting our first child. We relished each moment of the pregnancy, the first kick, the growing of my tummy and yes even the hormones raging. All through the pregnancy I kept telling Mattie's Daddy something was wrong, and as good husbands always do he told me not to worry that is was probably just first time jitters. I think all mothers know in their hearts when something is wrong, but because I was new at this I let it go. The weeks flew by for us. 

By the time I was 32 weeks along I started to have problems with Matthew moving he just was not very active to begin with so when his movement slowed way down I began to worry much more. The doctors had me coming 2 times a week for NST's just to be sure everything was going along fine. When I was 36 weeks pregnant I was sent for a biophysical sonogram. The tech was in a hurry that day and only checked for movement and when he found a little he sent me home saying everything was fine. That night I had developed a severe headache and my husband took me to the hospital where I was admitted and observed. The doctor on call never came to my room to see me; he called me on the phone in my hospital room and told me that I had a sinus infection to just go home and rest. Needless to say my husband was not very happy because he new I had a very high tolerance for pain and I would not have gone if it was not severe. David took me home and I did not sleep all night the headache was so bad. 

The next morning we were at the doctor's office before they even opened, my doctor discovered that I was becoming toxemic. I was then sent back to the hospital to be induced. I started labor very well; I was determined to go through labor free from pain medications. I had an allergic reaction to the inducing medication and my blood press dropped extremely low, as that happened my sons heart tons went down we were both at serious risk of dying. I was rushed to the operating room for an emergency c-section. 

Matthew was born 5 minutes after they got me in the operating room. Matthew was then taken to the intermediate nursery to be observed because his glucose was low. In the meantime I was stitched back up and sent to my room. Matthew was born at 10:54 in the morning and at 6:00pm that night I got out of my bed to go see him for the first time. He was so little he weighed 5lbs. 9 oz. And looked just like his daddy. They said he was doing a little better and that he would more than likely be in my room the next day. We were due to move in to a new apartment that next day so my husband told me he was going to finish helping my brothers finish with the moving and would see me later on in the day. I kissed him good-bye and said we would be waiting for him and that hopefully Mattie would be in my room when he got back.

A doctor came into my room about 2 hours later and told me while I was all by myself that my son had a heart defect and had to have open-heart surgery. The doctor said his chances of survival were about 30%, I could not breath I was so scared. I kept thinking why did you tell me this when I am alone with no one to help me though the pain stabbing my heart. To this day I have no respect for that doctor I think he is the most unkind person I have ever talked to. I know it is his job to tell us what is going on but to do it to a woman who just gave birth and was alone in a room with not one to support her is just uncalled for. My only consolation is what goes around comes around and God must have new he was wrong to have done what he did because when he stood to leave he hit his head hard on the TV set in my room it even knocked him back to his chair. My nurse was a godsend she came in and held me while I cried. I had to compose myself enough to call my husband and parent to tell them Matthew was very sick and would probably die. I was afraid and alone. 

Matthew was transferred to the children's hospital to have his surgery. We waited 8 hours while the surgery took place. Each time they came out to give us an update my heart sank to the floor, I was prepared for the worst. Then came last time, he was doing well he had died once on the table but they brought him back. He was taken back to the CICU to settle in after surgery. He was so tiny he looked so fragile. He did well for the first few days, but then things started to change. Matthew was on a pacemaker and was receiving 18 different medications a day; his little body was just not coping well. The medications were making him bloated and his kidneys were failing him. The doctors advised us that he would not survive if his kidneys failed him and that a transplant was out of the question. 

Mattie's Daddy and I went to a room to be alone and we decided that if his kidneys failed him we would turn off his life support, we did not want him to suffer any longer. The next morning we were called in and told by the doctors that he was getting much worse, and we told them to turn off his life support. Matthew died within seconds. I held my son for the first time that day without any tubes or wires. He was peaceful an angel in heaven now finally free from pain. I just held him and cried I just could not believe my first-born was gone. I kissed his head, his fingers, his toes, and finally his lips, I told my son good-bye. It was the worst thing I ever had to do. I MISS HIM SO!