My Birth Story – Zak Joins The World

Well I thought I would write my birth story to give you all a little bit more of an idea how Zak came into the world.


On Sunday 14 Th May (06) I called the nurses at PP Hospital and told them I had not felt movement for 2 days. This was actually a fib as I had felt him on the Sat but I just didn’t feel things were right and I didn’t want them sending me home and saying I was just being paranoid.
They told me to go to the nearest hospital and get it checked out. We went to LB Hospital where I was monitored. Heartbeat was great, all looked good. They could tell that Zak was moving a little (I just couldn’t feel him) but after about 10 min I started having contractions. (4 min apart).

Things still seemed ok. I was given steroids and some drugs to help stop the contractions (that I had obviously caught there!).
I was sent for a big scan …… things still were ok. He was measuring at 35 weeks instead of 32 weeks so he was nice and fat.
The movement was not huge and a few things just didn’t add up so the Dr’s thought it best that we go to a hospital that delivered before 34 weeks.
Their suggestion was to get him out. LB Hospital called MM and RW. Both refused to take me due to lack of beds. Gold Coast had a bed for me but not for Zak. (They were going to chopper me …….. happy about that! NOT)
So it was then decided that I would have to go to

Sydney. I asked that they call PP Hospital. I knew they wouldn’t deliver him but wanted my Ob to know what was going on. PP was told if they didn’t take me I was off to Sydney. The
Ob on call said to send me right there. Arrived at PP on the GC around 10 pm. Was monitored for a few hours and it was decided that Zak definitely needed to come out but they didn’t think they had the right amount of care for him so they had words with GC Hospital and we were moved there soon after midnight.

Arrived at GC Hospital and was once again monitored. The Dr I had then thought maybe if he could stop the contractions all would be ok. THANKGOD HE DIDNT. If he had sent us home things would have been so much worse.
Monday I got to see an
Ob from GC Hospital who took me for another scan. Things still didn’t add up. Everything was good in the scan but movement was limited.
We were asked if we wanted to wait a few weeks to get him out but risk there not being a heartbeat or get him out and deal with the fact he was premi.
We wanted our boy out. We needed to see what was wrong with him so we could fix him. I was sent for a c section at lunchtime. Zak was very breech. The c section went well. There was a premi team waiting to take him but as soon as the bag was cut it was apparent that he had been swallowing meconium (sp) and that he had lots in his lungs. He was handed to the premi team.
Within seconds about 5 more emergency premi team members ran in as they tried to bag him to get him oxygen.
We asked the
Ob if he was a boy or girl as we had not seen or been told.
Ob had passed him over to the premi team so fast he also didn’t know. Zak was rushed to NICU. I was stitched. S was with me as they didn’t want him to go with Zak till he was stable.
I was moved to recovery where S stayed with me until he could be with Zak.

Zak was on 100% oxygen. They dropped him to 90% but he didn’t cope well at all. He had a lot of blood in his lungs that needed to be sucked out.
It was soon decided that he needed a better oxygen machine and MM Hospital said they would take him. I was taken down to see him. I couldn’t see much as I was still in a bed but S had taken loads of photos for me.
Zak was moved to MM Hospital and I followed a few hours later.
He did much better on the high frequency ventilator.
He was put into ICU for Babies. The machine pumped at 600 breaths per minute so his little chest was going very fast.
Overnight they got him down to 40% oxygen so his little lungs were doing really well.
They got the blood out and most of the meconium. He had a very strong heart rate and things were looking much better. On Tuesday morning they discovered he was having little seizures and was then monitored for that. (He was heavily sedated so you couldn’t see him having the seizures other than on the brain scan machine). A few different drugs were tried to stop the seizures but none of them worked. All the time his lungs were getting much better though.

7 pm Tuesday a drug was found that stopped all his seizure activity. They wanted to do a MRI scan but needed to wait 5 – 7 days to get a correct result so they decided to do a u/s of his head but told us his little brain would be a little to swollen still to get any real answers.
He was very close to be taken of the oxygen so things were looking really good. Wed u/s was done. The Dr’s were shocked to find massive bleeding into his brain on both sides. They told us it was very severe but also very unusual this far along in a pregnancy. More likely to be found in a little baby under 25 weeks gestation.
We were informed that he would have an 80% change of being VERY VERY severely handicapped. Unable to breath, swallow, walk or do anything for himself other than to lie there. And a 20% chance of being VERY severely handicapped.
We were asked what kind of life we wanted for out precious little man.
S and I decided that it was unfair to make him live like that with no quality of life.
We asked how long we had to make the decision to turn the respirator off and were told if we didn’t turn it off NOW he would be breathing in the morning by himself and would have to live severely handicapped.

It was the hardest decision to make as he looked so perfect. Other than the tubes he looked healthy, big and not at all sick. He was 5 pound10 (2555 grams) and surrounded by babies who were 700 and 900 grams so he looked wonderful compared to others there.

Wed at around 4pm we had a naming service and at 5 pm we turned the respirator off.
We were taken into a private room to spend time with him without all the tubes. He was a little fighter and lived for 7 hours without the respirator. We requested morphine for him to make sure he was in no pain and he lived on until just after
He passed away peacefully at 12.05 Thurs morning in my arms.
We got to bath him and dress him and spend lots of time with him. Both S’s and my parents were in
Europe but on their way home. They all arrived at the hospital very early Thurs morning. We were able to all spend Thursday with him. The hospitals give you lots of time to say goodbye and getting lots of cuddles. We didn’t really want an autopsy done but the Dr’s thought it might be a good idea as they were unsure if the bleeding came the day before he was delivered or the day after.

His problems were not due to being premi. He was a very good size and his lung problems were getting much better.
At this stage they think that on the Sat he may have put some pressure on his cord and that stopped the flow of oxygen to him.

There has been a few investigations into a few things one of the hospitals did, or didn’t do. This is a on going investigation but I will let you all know the outcome as soon as I do.



10 Responses

  1. Oh honey, my heart breaks for you both- what a special little man Zak is…. xxx

  2. Sweety thankyou for sharing. Such a beautiful Angel.

  3. Hi Brenda, I came across your blog through another. I am so very sorry for your loss (((hugs))).

    It turns out that you and I were in GC hospital at the same time having our babies so I felt I had to at least say hello to you.

    Thank you for sharing Zak’s story. He sure was a handsome little man:)

  4. I should have signed my comment properly! I’m Jill and my blog is at 🙂

  5. Well i’m not sure if I can leave a comment on my own blog, but hell, it is my blog so I guess I can do what I like.

    Jill thankyou for your thoughts. I just need to say that I really hope you were not the lady beside me at GC hospital after my c section. I was put into a private room but not before I upset the couple beside me who had to listen to me crying like a 2 year old that wanted her dummy.
    So if it was you, I am very sorry. 🙂

  6. Nope, wasn’t me:) If it was you would have made a friend not felt as though you had upset someone:)

  7. I’m so sorry for your loss, Brenda. What a horrible way for your son to die, and such a horrible end after all you’d been through.

  8. This just breaks my heart… you are such a strong and determined woman… hang in there, your day will come


  9. Your story is so similar to my sister and my nephew Ben.
    He was born prem though and only lived for 10 days. He also had a massive brain bleed and they decided to switch all machines off. Ben wasn’t a big strong boy like Zak so they had about half hour to cuddle him. I never got to hold him or say hello or goodbye but I love him anyway and miss him lots.
    I am sad for your loss of this lovely boy who you must miss so very much. I hope you get your happy ending like my sister…. at IVF # 9, she had her b/g twins who are now 3 years old.

  10. Oh my goodness. I am so sorry you lost your beautiful little boy in this way,


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