Your Words

In the back drop of last week was this thing. It’s a thing that has me worrying, fretting, freaking out. I have watched 7 bad action movies in the last 3 days and knit compulsively while trying hard not to think about the thing. Every time I did think about the thing, it hurt to breathe.

The thing started simply-with an email, would I be willing to talk to the media about pre-eclampsia and some new research?  I thought maybe some local media. And then we moved it up so the eastern media could come. Then CBC wanted to interview me at home.

I’ve done media before, for local issues. I have never talked about Gabriel on TV. (Excuse me, I am getting that “it hurts to breath” feeling again.) Yesterday was the first interview (at home) and then there’s a press conference today at 1:00 PM MST.

Yesterday I talked about what happened, the first time I heard the words “pre-eclampsia.” I talked about Gabe and how he died and how I lived. I said I hoped that the new research means that someone else won’t die. Maybe this means that there will be life, maybe this means that we are a few steps closer to the cure.

When it hurt to breathe, I thought about seeing my son on the ultrasound machine, and I thought about holding him in my arms as he died, and I thought about sitting on my kitchen floor and sobbing, unable to believe I could ever live with this pain. I thought about the times when I was convinced that it would have been easier if both Gabe and I had died, because I didn’t know how I could live with without my baby.

I thought about the friends who couldn’t see past their lives and into our pain, and the people who weren’t friends but became friends in tragedy. I thought about all of you, and I thought about my husband and how this disease almost took me away from him and I took a deep breath, and I started talking.

Today, tomorrow and yesterday I can stand up, I can say that babies die, they die for ridiculous reasons, because we don’t have a cure for this terrible disease, and we should. Women and their babies still die, they die every 5 minutes. Over and over and over they die. And when I got that funny “I can’t breath” feeling in the interview, when I get it as I type this with a camera filming me, (because I talked about blogging and baby death and now all of you are being filmed too), I thought about the 18 women who died during the 90 minutes of filming. You can’t tell your story when you’re dead.

All I have are my words. I am rubbish as a researcher – I’m just a story teller. So, for the sake of the research, to get someone else the help they need and to remind others that we are still dying, our babies are still dying and we can cure toe nail fungus and not the 5th leading cause of perinatal mortality, I can use my words.

Keep Talking.

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24 Responses to Your Words

  1. Sarah says:

    Do you know when it’s going to air?

  2. a says:

    Good for you. It’s so important to put a face on things – people can ignore clinical research, but it’s harder to ignore a grieving mother. I’m glad you were able to breathe enough to talk about what’s important.

  3. Rebecca says:

    Cheryl I can only imagine how hard that must have been for you and I want to say how amazing you are. To speak out for the women who can’t, the babies who can’t, dealing with your own pain is so admirable. I pray that you can find a small measure of peace helping others.


  4. Oh, Mrs. Spit. You are simply incredible. I am SO in awe with you. Thank you for speaking up …

  5. Reyna = Nana says:


    You are one of the bravest women I know.

    Kudos for you and Owen, maybe your pain will help someone else through theirs. And if enough voices are raised in agony, maybe someone will hear.

    <3 Reyna

  6. Birdie says:

    I would LOVE to see it!

  7. wow, that is such an amazing thing to do. Its is SO SO hard to tell our stories. By telling yours, you’ve given voice to so many you can’t. I too would love to watch the interview.

    So proud of you and all you do.

  8. HereWeGoAJen says:

    If you can share it with us, I’d love to watch it.

    I know that was difficult for you to do. We are all proud of you.

  9. Kristin says:

    Thank you for finding the strength to talk about it. I had a much,. much milder case of pre-eclampsia than you did but it still scares me when I think about what could have happened.

  10. Paige says:

    As always, your strength and eloquence astound and humble me. Your grief moves me and your determination to share your experience so that you might help others simply awes me.

    My thoughts are with you and I’m impressed by your bravery in using your words. (((((Cheryl)))))

  11. Shelley says:

    Mrs. Spit, you have yet again, left me tearful and speechless. I have lurked here for a long time and never commented before, but I just have to tell you how much your words move me. Again.

  12. brown owl says:

    I can not think of a single person more capable or eloquent than you to speak for/of all those Babies, their Moms and Dads, who are lost or grieving.

    Stand Mrs. S… use this incredible opportunity to speak out for all those who have no voice. I am so proud of you.

  13. sara says:

    Thank you for writing this, you make me stop and think. I thank you for your strength it took to talk about this and I pray for others to find this strength as well.

  14. Betty M says:

    Good for you indeed. Each story that is told helps people understand the importance of the battle to overcome this disease.

  15. loribeth says:

    I hadn’t even read this yet, but I just saw you on the CBC Toronto’s suppertime newscast!! They said they were doing a story about pre-e & then I saw your face & said, “IT’S CHERYL!!” lol You were great & it’s so wonderful to hear they are making some progress on this issue.

    Do you know if there’s a clip online?

  16. Oh, Cheryl, you amaze me with your strength and your fragility too. You are a lifesaver in the truest sense of the word. I will keep listening and I am glad that people learned your story, Owen and Gabriel’s too.

  17. mrs spock says:

    Good for you, Mrs Spit!

  18. Reese says:

    I am so glad you found the strength (we all know you have) to tell yours and Gabe’s important story. Wish I could catch it here down south, but I know you were great.

  19. Jacquie says:

    Your words are always so powerful, so moving. I am sorry that you have to have any sort of knowledge of this, but if there was a voice to be had for pre-eclampsia I am glad it is yours
    (does that make sense? does that sound like how I meant it? I hope it does)
    ((Hugs to you and the Mr))

  20. Gloria Mason says:

    I just saw the clip. It was well done…I was nearly in tears.
    As difficult as it was to share so publically it is for a great reason….awareness and hopefully one day soon….a prevention or cure. Gabe would be very proud ((hugs))

  21. Angie says:

    We lost our baby too, from HELLP syndrome, also in September. Thank you for what you are doing to spread awareness of this horrible disease.
    And for me, it’s not much consolation to be a “survivor” when you’ve lost your baby. I love what you have written here.

  22. debby says:

    “We can cure toe nail fungus, and not a cure for the 5th leading cause of perinatal mortality.”

    “All I have is my words.”

    Mrs. Spit? You use words as powerfully as anyone that I know. All you have is your words? Trust me. They will be enough.

  23. Stacey says:

    I don’t know whether you feel this way or not, but you are incredibly strong and so full of courage. I’m so proud of you for speaking about something so very painful, and caring enough to get your story and message out for the sake of others. I think you honor your son’s life every day.

  24. Trish says:

    Thank God for your words.

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