Leo’s Life in One Envelope

So, after requesting back at the start of April – after we got home from our first post mortem appointment – we finally received my medical notes.

You literally ask and ask and chase and chase and then pay the £25 cheque (yes, cheque – my cheque book has two cheques used. Leo’s headstone and my medical notes. Seems the world of baby loss needs to get with the times). When it arrives, it’s like “wow, seriously, you fit his life in one envelope.” Granted, it was one of those that had extra room, but still – one envelope.

I was mildly expecting – hoping maybe – that they’d contain some shock horror page that would give us proof for some huge wrong doing, some massive missed answer that would allow us to find blame and direct anger. But nothing’s changed. Because, our hospital hadn’t tried to hide anything it seems. When things like this happen – sorry, when babies die – you tend to only read about them in the news when there is blame, lawsuits and compensation. I guess that’s why a small voice in my head went go on, let’s have a fight then, what’s his life worth?! But that’s silly, I know how he died, I understand why the decisions that were made, were made… But maybe I’m just holding out for a little extra information somewhere?

Anyway, that’s small fry in the grand scheme of it all and not really a big deal. I did manage to scan in each individual page one at a time, and get my notes sent off to a specialist and now we are waiting for the next stage. The stage that has kept us going. We are finally nearing the last unturned stone. The slow speed of unturning them means I am slowly building some level of acceptance for it all – for the evidence, not the death – and the anger is subsiding. At least, the anger directed towards be medical profession.

I was quite suprised that there wasn’t even some funny tidbit from labour in my notes. Not long ago I requested my eye hospital notes (spanning a good 25 years!) and they were amusing to say the least. My maternity notes were very factual. Some hard to read elements, especially our Maternity Assessment Unit admission notes, the bereavement care checklists with the “baby/fetus” bits – why have the /fetus? Is that necessary?

They’ve mostly been flicked through, scanned and then put back into the envelope of life. I’m beginning to think that the build up to all these small, tiny steps are the emotional aspects. I took a deep breath when I saw it fall through the letterbox. And then, nothing. It was like looking into the past – life before.

So very surreal & anticlimatic.

And it hit me how if we get pregnant again – how different those notes will look, from day one.

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2 thoughts on “Leo’s Life in One Envelope

  1. I can see how the build up would have been more than the event itself. And yes, in another pregnancy, the file will probably become a lot thicker. Hugs to you, sweet mama.

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  2. Isn’t it absurd you have to pay for your medical records? I had to pay for the autopsy report too. But I agree with you, very surreal and anticlimatic. And sad, her autopsy report made me cry reading the description of her hair and facial features, etc. Hoping the specialist has some insight for you.

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