November 6, 2021


Dear Friends,

Thank you so much for your love and support over the past week.  The calls, messages, comments, flowers, visits, and food meant so very much to us.  This has been the darkest time in my life and your kind gestures and thoughtful words really showed me how people have the ability to bring their light and help lift you in times of need. 

I want to address what happened in hopes of helping others and letting those who have dealt with something similar know that they are not alone.  So, here we go:

On Friday October 22nd, Russ and I went for massages (mine was pre-natal and completely safe), got takeout, and came home to watch a movie.  I started developing a dull headache, which had been happening on and off throughout this pregnancy.  Now that I look back, I honestly hadn't felt well the majority of the past few months, but I simply chalked it up to being older, having a toddler, and no longer able to have the freedom to just do nothing but focus on relaxing.  The headache continued to get worse through the night and nothing was helping. Saturday morning started out okay, but by the afternoon I started to vomit.  Tylenol wasn't working to help alleviate the pain, which started to make me nervous.  I was able to sleep but continued to wake up from a headache throughout the night.  On Sunday I couldn't get out of bed other then to put my head underwater in a bathtub to help relieve some of the pressure.  I remember crying and telling Russ that something was not right - my maternal instincts just knew.  At around 9:30 I went to the bathroom, saw I was spotting, and knew it was time to call the doctor.  They told me to go to the hospital. My dad came over to spend the night with Lawrence, and off we went to begin what would be the worst few days of our lives.

I spent several hours in the ER before finally seeing the Resident OB. They did a pelvic exam, swabbed for amniotic fluid, and performed an ultrasound which showed perfect levels of fluid surrounding my perfect little boy. The results of the swab came back positive for fluid and we were told there was nothing that could be done to save our son. We would be moved to Labor and Delivery where we could talk to my doctor and come up with what our plan would be. We sobbed and held each other, not understanding any of this. How? Why? What did I do wrong?  Accepting this news was not something I was willing to allow, and something this doctor probably should not have said so matter of factly. I began to google what our other options would be, and an article came up about a family that had gone through something similar, and their baby survived...low and behold I realized I had actually met this woman at the Reward Style conference in Dallas years ago (newly pregnant with Lawrence!).  I immediately reached out to her and she shared so much love, support, and helpful information which provided me with the hope I needed to pull myself together and advocate for my child. I will be forever grateful to her.

When I arrived to L&D they performed another pelvic exam (I had 4 in the course of 24 hours) and swabbed again, which again, was positive, but because of how far along I was, and given my bleeding had increased, it was very possible to have a false positive. They performed another ultrasound and his fluid was still perfect, but it was discovered that I had Placenta Previa, which means my placenta was covering my cervix. This could explain the bleeding, and everyone's hope was that this was the only problem, and that he would be fine.  As for the headaches, the medication they gave me was actually working and I felt for a minute that things were under control.  My mom was also now with me, and the prayers happening around the world (thanks to all of you), made me feel safe. 

On Wednesday I met with the high risk doctor. He spent so much time with us, and put my fears to rest. He did not believe anything was wrong and agreed to let me go home, but he did want me to come back to his office the following day to do a vaginal ultrasound.  I was discharged around 4:00 and had never been so thankful to be home.  I took a bath, snuggled with Lawrence, and tried to eat some dinner, but something wasn't feeling right again.  I started to feel freezing cold, like teeth chattering cold, but my head felt hot.  I probably had 5 layers covering me, but could not stop shaking.  They took my temperature and it was 103.7.  I refused to accept that and actually made Russ go to CVS for a new thermometer because I was convinced mine was broken.  Unfortunately, it was reading the same number and I agreed to call my doctor. We called an ambulance and back to the hospital I went, throwing up the entire way.  Mine, and the baby's heart rate were spiking because of the fever and it became very clear there was now an infection and things were about to become very scary.  

Once our heart rates and fever were stable, we were scheduled for an amniocentesis to test for infection as well as to insert a blue dye which would confirm whether or not my water had indeed broken.  Unfortunately our results did not bring the news in which we had hoped. I was in fact leaking fluid, there was an infection, and my body was preparing itself for labor.  I would have to deliver my sweet baby boy the day before we would mark 18 weeks. There is no pain I have felt like this in my entire life. I was angry, I was confused, and I was scared. I opted not to have an epidural because, at this point, I didn't trust anything or anyone. If there was a risk, it was not happening.  As I labored through the pain, I just kept picturing Lawrence. He was my strength. I didn't understand why this was happening, but I knew I had to get through it for him. 

Our sweet angel, Lukas William Fritz was born having already joined God. He was beautiful. We were able to hold and kiss him, pray with him, and play music for him. We will miss this version of him forever, but believe his spirit will come back to us, which has brought us peace. Life will never be the same, but we will be okay because that's the only choice.  To be okay, and to trust again. To appreciate all that we have been given, and pray for all that will be brought to us in the future. 

It's not too near for me
Like a flower I need the rain
Though it's not clear to me
Every season has it's change
And I will see you
When the sun comes out again
As I lay me down to sleep 
This I pray
That you will hold me dear
Though I'm far away
I'll whisper your name into the sky 
And I will wake up happy
When the sun comes out again
When the sun comes out again

-Sophie B. Hawkins

Love and light to you all. Xx


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