Carolyn and her husband Jeremy have been married for 13 years. They traveled from Connelly Springs, North Carolina to our tubal reversal center in Raleigh for a reversal of her tubal ligation.
Most of our patients come to us for reversal because they are in a new relationship and would like to have more children. Carolyn and Jeremy came to us for tubal reversal not because of a new relationship, but because they lost their two youngest children in a house fire.
Jeremy took this photo for us the morning after Carolyn’s surgery. This was the only time during her visit with us that I saw her smile.
Carolyn sought hope by having her tubes untied and said this surgery was giving her a reason to live.
She wanted to share her story for the benefit of other women who may also be going through what she and Jeremy have had to endure.
The fire started in their house at 3AM. The cause was felt to be electrical. They were all in the house sleeping at the time: Carolyn, Jeremey, their oldest son William (15), their middle son Xander (11) and their youngest daughter Piper(6). Xander was the hero that night.
By Carolyn’s account, Xander was the only one who slept with his door open. This allowed him to detect the fire first. William heard Xander frantically banging on his wall at 3AM. This woke William and allowed him to escape. William was able to exit the house naked, unharmed, and alive.
Xander then went to save his little sister. Piper was seen trying to climb out of a bedroom window but as she was doing so, she fell back inside and was never seen again. Neither was Xander.
Parents are not supposed to see their children die.
Carolyn being the loving mother she is seems to have taken this the hardest.
She has a college education and has worked as a cashier. Since the accident she has not been able to work because of the emotional trauma she has endured.
She had images of Xander and Piper tattooed on her chest as a way to memorialize her children.
Carolyn expressed to me that tubal reversal was going to provide her with a reason to keep living. In her words,
“I lost two of my babies in a devastating house fire that left my oldest son, husband and myself with nothing but a pile of ruble and ash and broken hearts that will never heal. We could have dealt just fine without the house… but losing Xander and Piper was so devastating that it literally broke our hearts. I don’t remember how I stumbled upon this site (tubal reversal), but I am glad I did. I know having another baby won’t ever replace my beautiful angels, but it will give me a chance to want to go on. That is what Dr. Montieth and his lovely staff have done for me. Given me a chance, a chance to move forward. A chance to give more love and maybe even receive more hugs. The surgery was nerve-racking before I arrived, but once I arrived, everyone at the center made it impossible to not be comfortable. The surgery itself was easy and everyone involved was so heart-warming. I encourage anyone who is thinking about doing this to do it. They are truly miracle makers.”
Tubal reversal providing a chance
Carolyn wants women to know they should take advantage of any chances life gives them. In Carolyn’s words,
” Any chance to have a baby is worth it. If you have even a little chance… take it.”
Through my interactions with Carolyn and Jeremy I could sense their life’s events have undertandably caused them tremendous pain. Jeremy seems to have internalized this trauma. Carolyn seems to want to share and talk about it with others as her way of dealing and coping. Sharing her story with others is helpful for her.
Although eating after surgery may seem like an odd subject to discuss in light of the above events there is a reason I am bringing this up.
We have recently liberalized our eating after surgery policy and we now allow patients to eat whatever they like if they feel up to it the night of surgery. As a result, I have been taking an informal poll of what our patients have had to eat after surgery and how they felt after eating.
As Carolyn was leaving her post operative appointment, I asked her what she had for dinner the night of surgery?
She told me a family member had visited her and brought her Chinese food from PF Changs.
As she was leaving she gave me a big hug as an expression of thanks for having done her surgery and of hope for a better tomorrow. After she hugged me she started to walk through our lobby doors. She looked back at me and quietly told me her fortune cookie said,
“You will be receiving a precious gift soon.”
After Carolyn and Jeremy left I found myself desperately hoping their fortune does indeed come true.
Others may take solace in the fact they are not alone after losing children. To read the stories of other patients who have had tubal reversal after losing children visit the links below:
Although you can never replace a lost child, the desire and hope to regain what was lost is a powerful feeling among patients who have suffered these events. Many of our patients have been ‘fortunate’ enough to become pregnant and have children after tubal reversal while others have not.
We wish them well in their endeavors and we thank them for providing us with a greater appreciation of what we have.
Submitted by Dr. Charles Monteith