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Danielle's Pregnancy Journal

Introduction
~ Meet Danielle

FamilyHello, my name is Danielle (36). I work in the computer field where I met my husband Jeramy (35) back in 2001. I have a wonderful stepson who is almost 17 and a house full of animals. We have had a great life together but have experienced so many struggles in the baby department. Hopefully this is the one. We love football and look forward to taking our baby to the games year after year.

I found StorkNet last year during my last pregnancy and just loved reading the journals. I really wanted to write my own journal during that pregnancy but was apprehensive because I had 3 previous miscarriages and didn't want to get too excited about the pregnancy out of fear I would jinx it. When I made it past the 12 week stage I was very excited as none of my pregnancies had even made it to 8 weeks. I began forgetting about that fear and started to enjoy what was happening then at my 19 week ultrasound they found our little girl had AV Canal heart defect; a defect commonly associated with Down Syndrome. Even though we had initial screens which came back normal and our quad screen came back normal, we were devastated. We opted to forgo the amniocentesis because we knew we wouldn't terminate regardless of the chance she might have Down Syndrome. The doctors monitored her heart defect throughout the remainder of my pregnancy so we knew she would need heart surgery after she was born and began accepting and preparing for the long road ahead.

The pregnancy continued on a bumpy road as my GTT test came back pretty high showing I had Gestational Diabetes and I ended up having to go on insulin. Then around 34 weeks I started having issues with high blood pressure but managed to make it until 39 weeks gestation when they decided to induce. We met with so many specialists while pregnant that constantly talked about the likelihood our baby would be born with Down Syndrome, she would also be bluer than the average baby because of her oxygen levels and she would more than likely need to be hooked up to a breathing monitor once they began administering a necessary heart medication.

BayleeOur beautiful baby girl Baylee Marie was born on December 9th 2009 without Down Syndrome, very pink and didn't need a breathing machine. She was re-diagnosed after birth with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome and Coarctation of the Aorta. We were optimistic at this point since the doctors said the surgery has a 90+% success rate. On December 17th at 8 days old she went in for heart surgery and after 7+ hours the doctors informed us her heart defect was just too complex and they couldn't repair the main valve as it continued to leak. She passed away a short time later. That was the absolute worst day of our lives.

So here we are again. Even though I fear similar complications with this pregnancy, I am hopeful and look forward to sharing our journey with you.

Danielle

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