Brittany and Bill's Story - Chapter 1 "The Choice"

Brittany's Words

My husband and I got married 9 years ago, a year into our marriage we started trying to have a child. We eventually found out that we would not be able to do so without medical assistance. For months we went to Kansas City almost weekly for check ups, hormone treatments and procedures. Then finally in early April 2009, we found out I was pregnant. 

Brittany and Bill

Two weeks later we went back to Kansas City to make sure everything was proceeding as expected and to be released to my local doctor. However, when we got there I found out that I was not pregnant with a baby I was pregnant with THREE babies. Out moment of excitement and joy immediately became one of worry and fear. How could we afford three kids all at once, would the pregnancy go okay, how would we fit all of these people in our little house? 

As the weeks passed we got somewhat used to the idea of three little ones. Our family and friends were so supportive and my mother even offered to move to Missouri from Maryland for six months to help us. Then at 23 weeks I found out two of the babies were in distress. My husband and I had to fly to Houston that day for an in vitro surgical procedure. Unfortunately by the time I got to the hospital I was already in labor. Because the babies were under 24 weeks they were not viewed as viable. We had to decide if we would try and stop labor knowing that at least two of the babies would die with the hope that I could get the third to make it a few more weeks or to let nature take its course. 

We made the hard decision that they had always been three, that they came into being together and that they should remain together. All three babies were born and died August 22, 2009. My husband was wonderfully supportive and allowed me to grieve in my own time. I spent weeks crying non stop. I could not wait to try again because I just knew I wanted to be a mother. My husband while supportive, felt that he was done trying. We had taken a lot of time and money to try and be parents and it just hadn't worked. He was ready to just be 'us' and be okay with that. 

Little by little I got back to being me and six weeks after delivery I was back at being an attorney with the law firm I worked at.  Things were not good but every day they got better and then I had a mini-stroke while sitting at my desk talking on the phone with a partner of the law firm.  My secretary took me to the ER where they found out I had had two mini strokes and that there were due in part to a hole that was in my heart.  If I had had one of the blood clots that had caused the mini strokes when I was pregnant I most likely would have died.  They would have been unable to give me the medication that broke up the clots because it would have been toxic to the babies.  Four weeks later I had an experimental surgery that sealed up the hole. The surgery went great and I have had no complications. Six months later I was pronounced healed up and have no need to follow up with a cardiologist or neurologist.

Brittany and Bill 2

With the loss of our babies and the strokes, It was the scariest time in my life and I felt so alone, but I wasn't. My husband was there for me any minute of the day that I needed him, he also knew when I just needed space. After my heart surgery I decided I agreed with him that we would not be trying any more to get pregnant. A year later we decided that we were not going to try and adopt either, that we were good and happy just being us. 

Somehow, we got through it all and are stronger for it. I know that the wedding vows that we both said we meant, we have been through sickness and health and never wavered. I know that we would have loved being parents, but we love so many other things too. I don't think our marriage is missing anything it is just different than it could have been. 

Since getting well, I quit working at the private law firm I had been at for over 6 years and accepted a job at the Juvenile Office here in Greene County (Missouri) where I remain today. I no longer spend my days suing people that haven't paid their bills, instead I spend my days keeping kids safe. So in a way all of the kids of Greene County are my kids that I watch out for.