My very first blog post was one of the hardest I’ve ever written. It was a post sharing when I found out about my breast cancer diagnosis; the seven days leading up to my diagnosis. In my post, I talked a lot about the significance of the number seven and how I’ve gone through life constantly hearing about this number.
Seven is the number of completeness and perfection (both physical and spiritual). It derives much of its meaning from being tied directly to God’s creation of all things. I don’t think of myself as one of those people who looks at everything as a “sign”, but… there was that number seven again.
My initial due date was Christmas. I thought it was pretty cool that I would be receiving my “Christmas miracle” in the form of my baby girl. However, as my pregnancy progressed, my date was changed to December 19th, which ironically was the date I started my chemotherapy in 2014. This pregnancy was much different than my previous two. Not just because doctors had told me that it was unlikely that I would be able to have any more children, but I struggled quite a bit.
The closer I got to my due date the more miserable I became. My doctors were concerned with me developing gestational diabetes (I had to take the horrid glucose test twice) and I was SWOLLEN. My hands, legs, face and feet were huge. I went in for my weekly appointment after taking my blood pressure, the doctor looked at me and said, “I need you to go to the hospital. Your blood pressure is extremely high.”
The one time I told my husband I would be fine to go to my appointment alone, I got sent to the hospital. Luckily, the hospital was literally a few steps from my doctor’s office. I wasn’t sure if I was going to be sent home or given a room. Once I reached the front desk of the hospital, the lady rushed me back to a room where I changed and was immediately hooked up to monitoring machines.
I had tubes everywhere and a nurse came in and drew my blood. She told me there was no need to call my family yet and that I’d probably be going home. I was relieved because I wasn’t prepared at all. My boys were in school, my husband was at work across town and my parents were working as well.
I had so many thoughts racing through my head. It wasn’t long before the nurse came back in with a half grin saying, “now would be a good time to call your husband. Looks like we’re having a baby girl today.” I was nervous, excited and running through my to-do list in my head. I called my husband who couldn’t get off the phone fast enough.
It was really happening! I was sure I had at least another week to go, but my little lady had other plans. I was already 4 cm dilated and the monitors were going crazy! My husband and parents had arrived and it was time to roll over (literally) to the operating room. I had 2 previous c sections with my boys, but I was extremely nervous.
Once I had made it through the epidural, it was time. I tried to keep calm by thinking about seeing my baby girl for the first time. My husband must have asked “are you ok? Everything good? “a thousand times.
As soon as the doctor began cutting, something wasn’t right. I was literally shaking. I was expecting to feel lots of pulling and pressure, BUT instead I felt pain. I could literally feel the doctor cutting my stomach. I made EVERYONE in the room aware. They immediately began administering more pain meds. I’m not sure what they did, but I instantly felt as if the room was spinning and I was struggling to keep my eyes open.
I can’t really find the words to describe how terrified I was while lying on that operating table. I literally prayed “please God don’t let me die” to myself. I felt like I was slipping out of consciousness, all while feeling the pulling and tugging from the doctor and her team. It felt as if it took forever.
FINALLY, I heard my baby girl. I was still half way out of it, but I was immediately put at ease when I laid my eyes on my baby girl.
MaKinley Grace Parker made her grand entrance on December SEVENTH, 2017.
I've always believed that we tend to be the most effective in areas where we have been the most affected. It's often our deepest pains that draw us closer to our purpose. Those words never really hit home until I was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer at the age of 28. I had watched both my mother and grandmother battle the disease, but never thought I would find myself in the same battle, especially not so young. I've learned through this journey that it's not what you go through, but how you go through it. I wanted to share my story in hopes that it will inspire someone to keep fighting, keep the faith and live on purpose.