When her water broke at just 18 weeks, Diana Stone found herself fighting for the right to stay pregnant with her twin boys.
It all started on a Friday. She was at home with her daughter Bella when she felt the urge to pee. She said it was “like a balloon burst.” At first, she was in disbelief. But it just kept coming.
She laid herself on the bathroom floor and propped her legs up while she called her husband and 911. Her husband, Sam Stone, rushed home.
“Once the medics came, I was taken to the nearest hospital (not our current one) while Sam followed with Bella. I was refused admittance into their L&D as I didn’t meet the 20 weeks pregnant standard, and put in an ER room for the next 4 hours hooked to nothing. Eventually they did an ultrasound scan, and the Dr came in.”
With the twins at least 6 weeks away from feasibly surviving on their own and the high risk of infection to Diana (which could endanger her own life) doctors advised her to induce labor and terminate her pregnancy. Still, as she puts it:
“…all I could think of was, ‘What if…'”
After being informed of how high the risks were, Diana and her husband reluctantly agreed to induce. But something still didn’t feel quite right.
After careful consideration, the Stones made a difficult decision. There was a small chance that if Diana’s leak sealed and she was able to keep her babies in her belly for at least 6 more weeks, they could survive.
“I thought I was going to die. I’ve never, ever felt anything like that in my life. We were told the babies would be born alive at first but there would be nothing they could possibly do to save them because of gestational age and weight. All I could think of was how I’d hold them in my hands and watch them pass away.
It was too much. I was updating Facebook and stumbled upon a comment that changed our lives, basically asking if we knew we didn’t have to induce and there were other stories like ours out there. I began to click and look and read – I knew what risks we were facing both to myself and the babies, but what if I didn’t at least try? Sam and I decided we couldn’t choose to play God if we had other options still.”
Apparently, the hospital staff was visibly upset by her decision not to induce. Diana shared appalling details about her treatment at the University Medical Center in El Paso, where doctors refused to offer her a bedpan, insert an IV drip, or tilt her bed – all common practice in cases like hers.
“Omg. Shaking I’m so angry. Was woken up by an MD who told me basically I’m an idiot taking up an expensive hospital bed and need to go home.”
Her story has sparked an outpouring of support. And thankfully, a patient advocate has recently stepped in. Diana is now on strict bed rest as she tries to save her twins.
She has been chronicling her pregnancy on Babble’s “Being Pregnant” as well as on her personal blog, “Hormonal Imbalances.”
Today she wrote:
“I do want to start by saying the apology, explanation, and further treatment at our hospital has been phenomenal. We found out that it was a lack of resident communication that started all of this, and we are grateful for the way the heads of each department have stepped up and made the changes needed to ensure this doesn’t happen again.”
“And now we’re here. 19 weeks and 3 days. We have talked to our MFM about options in a few weeks which I’m holding out for…We have been assured at 23 weeks they will start to throw everything they’ve got at us to get the babies bigger, stronger, and able to survive from there on out…This is day by day. We know anything can change at any moment, but we also know that whatever happens is in God’s hands, not ours.”
What would you do if you were in Diana’s position?