Sisterhood of Angel Mama’s Magazine | Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Edition October 2021
Angel Father’s Story Time
Written & Photos by Marcus Torres
Sunday, December 11, 2016 a day like any other day, Vanessa and I woke up early because we recently picked up a crib that had been in her family for years. I had planned to go to Home Depot to pick up some safe paint and primer for the crib and my goal was to sand paint that day. It was Vanessa and I’s 1 year anniversary, so when we got to Home Depot she went on a pregnant pee run and I picked her up some flowers from the front. We got the perfect shade of neutral charcoal grey (goes with everything) and went home.
I dropped Vanessa off at home and went to 7-11 because I forgot her charger broke and she needed another one. By the time I got around the corner to pick up the charger, I went home and laid down for a second. Vanessa comes in my room crying and screaming about pain in her stomach so we went to the emergency room and then up to labor and delivery.
We saw this lovely nurse that did a routine ultrasound first to locate the baby’s heartbeat. It was very faint and slow. A typical baby’s heartbeat is near the 150bpm and it was constantly down to 100. The nurse did what she thought was right and left to get another nurse for a fresh set of hands and hopefully she can find it, no problem. Instead, she brought the doctor to do an ultrasound and count the heartbeats. It was still down to 100. By this point, there is an anastesiologist asking Vanessa questions like have she ever been through anesthesia and medical history.
The doctor needed to get the baby out to see what was wrong. I was given my scrubs and was told to put it on and when I came out of the bathroom, Vanessa and everyone were gone. I was not able to do what dad’s do. I was not able to cut her umbilical cord or hear it’s a girl. I was in a chair outside of the waiting room, alone. I heard the button get pushed because help was needed. I saw nurse after nurse come in to aid on Vanessa and Catarina. It had been 30 minutes since I heard the status of my baby and Vanessa.
The pediatrician was trying to explain something to me that ultimately said she doesn’t have much time. She told me that she hasn’t started to breathe on her own and it has been 30 minutes that they have done chest compressions. She invited me into the operating room to meet my daughter. As I was about to walk in the room a nurse was walking out to inform us that my baby is breathing.
This was a slight sigh of relief but we weren’t out of the woods yet. The hospital needed to try to stabilize her so I went to Vanessa’s aid and she woke up from Anastasia. She was confused and I just kept telling her how beautiful and hairy our baby was. Once I was finally able to see the baby, it was a whole different picture, she was experiencing small seizures that just broke my heart. After 8 hours of life she was still struggling with breathing on her own and was on a respirator. Her heart rate would spike to where they would need to do chest compressions again. With all of the lack of oxygen to the brain we decided if she was to survive all of this pain that she would not be able to live a full life. She had lack of oxygen to her brain and that she could have been paralyzed or in constant pain so we found that this is not a life worth living, so we ended her suffering.