A year has passed since we said goodbye, and so much has happened. I wanted to write to you today to tell you more about your story, and why we are passionate about Autumn’s Legacy
You are loved and will always be loved.
We miss you every day, and your sisters are sweet and spirited little girls. When I look at Leighton, I know I also see you with her.
You were always wanted. Because of my cystic fibrosis, it was always difficult to conceive, so we saved every penny we could for four years. And then, finally, the day came when they transferred your embryo.
This was the beginning of our love.
10 days later, to our surprise and joy, we discovered that we were having twins. Our single embryo had split into you and your sister. This was a wonderful surprise.
We knew that we were high risk – my health and your shared placenta were huge risk factors.
But you were loved.
At 19 weeks, your anatomy scan said you would be born with a cleft lip or palate. This didn’t matter to us, and it meant many surgeries to correct this – but we knew that this was something we could handle. It just made you more special to us.
You would always be loved.
At 21 weeks, we got more bad news. You and your sister had developed Twin Anemia Polycythemia Sequence, and you were anemic. Because you shared a placenta, the blood was not shared equally, and this put your lives in danger. We chose to go ahead with laser surgery to try to save your lives.
We loved you more than words could say, and because of this, we took a risk.
Things were cautiously optimistic for a few days after the surgery, but on January 16th, 2020, you lost your fight against TAPS. My heart broke into a million pieces, and I couldn’t understand why you would be given to me, only to be taken away cruelly.
I carried you under my heart for the rest of the pregnancy. You were always with me, and that’s where you are now.
You will always be a part of my heart.
On the day you were born, you came in silence, but you looked over your sister as she faced some difficulties. You were her guardian angel that day, and because of you, she came through.
The hardest part was leaving the hospital later that week without either of my babies. Your beautiful sister, Leighton, came home after a month in NICU, and we brought her home with all the love in our hearts.
But we missed you so much.
The grief a mother feels when she loses a child is like no other feeling. It cant be expressed in words how deep it hurts. Just like no words would ever be enough to fill the emptiness it leaves behind in your heart.
As the months have gone on since our precious baby girl has passed, I have often wondered how I have made it out of the darkness surrounding me. I couldn’t catch my breath; it felt like a long time. It literally hurt to think about that day, and it will echo in my head for the rest of my life.
We loved you, and we lost you
We tried so hard to save both of our girls and did what we knew was the best decision. And at the end of the day, it still was not enough. That was our reality.
There is the harsh reality of always wanting more time. We wanted more ultrasounds of a kicking strong, lively baby next to her growing twin sister. But there she was each time we went in for appointments, slowly fading into the distance as her sister grew stronger and took over the ultrasound screen.
You will never fade in our memories.
Autumn, I promise you this. Your story will never go untold. I want to help make a change in your memory, and help research continue into TAPS.
Your name will live on and help many other babies, like you and your sister.
You will make a change from where you are, looking down over your sister, and our family.
Sweet Autumn, you will never leave us. I have many hopes and dreams for Leighton, and for you, I have dreams that your name will live on forever in the hearts of TAPS families.
I love you, baby girl.
Until we meet again,
All pictures and videos in this post are used with the permission of the family, and may not be reproduced or replicated without permission. We are grateful to the family for sharing their moving and inspirational story with us.