Monique's Story

May 8, 2001,

As I sit here and wonder if I could put
Monique's story into simple words, I think
it has been over two years since the night
she was born.There isn't a simple way to describe
the events of her birth and the 21 months we were
blessed. I don't know how to begin this story. I
guess the beginning is always hard.So I pray that
the Lord and Monique's spirit touches me so that
I can put it all into words. Some stuff will be
left out until Monique's lawsuit is finished.
So onto Monique's story and let her voice and her
life be heard.

Before you read her story let me leave you with some words from the Bible Luke 17: ''It would be better if a millstone were hung around your neck and that you were thrown into sea than to cause harm to a child.''

When I found out I was pregnant it was a mixed bag of emotions. I already had a 1 year old not yet out of diapers and my marriage was going through changes. I was bit overwhelmed at the thought of another child to care for. My husband and I were both working full time and barely able to juggle our work schedules as it was. But as the weeks passed I guess I accepted the pregnancy. I didn't really think about it. I never had any morning sickness or other pregnancy issues. Other than I had to pee alot. But when I had my ultrasound at 4 months and seen that little life inside of me I fell in love instantly. I watch her little heart beating like I have never seen an ultrasound before. 

That's when we found out the baby was a GIRL. I was happy. Now my oldest daughter would have a little sister to grow up with. The ultrasound really hit home to us that I was pregnant and we both we fell in love with that little baby on the screen. There was no problems with my baby girl. She was normal. I was having a complete normal pregnancy. Which is no surprise my first child was a normal pregnancy also. So as the 5th and 6th month flew by the whole family was discussing girl names. I don't know exactly who suggested Monique I think it was mother in law, but I have forgotten by now. Monique was to be her name and her middle name was to be Alexandria after my husband's grandfather. 

During December I had a urinary tract infection and had to go to triage. The baby was doing great. I was sent home with some medicine and follow up with the doctor. Everything was okay in January. Or so I thought. I was still working but not so many hours. 

February 13, 1999 I worked that night, but I got a page my husband that he was getting off early. So I got off early to pick him up. I gave him his Valentines Day card because I had to go to work the next morning early and didn't want to wake him. We went to bed early that night. I woke up a little while later. I had wetness underneath me and on my leg. I was like jeez my bladder is already doing this and I am not even close to having this baby.So I got up and went to the bathroom in a sleepy stupor. I sat on the toilet and felt a huge gush. I never broke my own waters before. They were popped by the doctor with my first child. I flipped on the light and looked down. There were huge blood clots the size of my fists. There was blood running down my legs. I started screaming. My husband jumped up thinking someone was attacking me and rushed to my rescue. By then there was blood pouring onto the bathroom floor. I was in shock standing there. He rushed back to the bed and threw back the covers. There was clots and blood on my side of the bed. He threw on some clothes and helped me into mine. We got into the car and took off for my assigned hospital. It took about 5 minutes to get there. When we got there my husband forgot something for my daughter and to go back to the car.

 So I went on up to Labor and Triage. First thing that happen was the receptionist and me got into an argument because I didn't call ahead. I was like "If I am bleeding to death. I am not calling no one" So after 10 minutes of argument she takes me back to a room. I got the gown and cup off the bed and went into the bathroom to change. I remember peeling the jeans I was wearing off me.They were soaked in blood. You could ring the blood out of them.I put them in a bag with my shirt and went and got on the bed. I never saw that bag of clothes ever again.The nurse asked me a couple of questions by then my husband had returned. Complain that he was locked in between the security doors and they wouldn't let him in. I was in alot of pain by then I couldn't hardly breathe

. I had stomach and back pain.After one hour a doctor finally shows up and sees me. He tried to do a pelvic exam but couldn't complete it because there is too much blood. Let me mention at this time my blood pressure was really high and the baby was throwing d cells (not good for a baby). Her heart was going up and down.And at one point went down to the 90's. The doctor tells me "We are not equipped to handle a premature baby or this type of situation.We have to transfer you to UMC." I was scared to death.I felt like I had no choice in the transferring of me. It was be transferred or stay here and you and your baby dies. I was never once told that I was having a placental abruption.

 No one told me why I was bleeding. I thought I was just in preterm labor. I vaguely heard of placental abruptions in pregnancy books I have read. So they have me sign form for transfer. Never explaining the risks. They never explained nothing to me. The doctor came back and did an ultrasound and couldn't see because of the blood. They couldn't fully see the placental because the baby was blocking the view. I saw the doctor a total of 3 times. I was still bleeding alot of blood and was in alot of pain.I was blacking in and out. It took them a hour to get me ready to transfer.

 As they put me in the back of the transport unit they shoved the stretcher hard.I got a big jolt. Right then the pain became so intense. I felt like a huge knife was being shoved into my stomach and being twisted. I started screaming. The transport guy was holding my hand and told me not to push. Let me stop here and explain again. The hospital did not fully tell the transport unit or UMC my true condition.I was not listed as an emergency or monitored en route to UMC. The baby was not monitored either.

 The transport unit stopped at every red light.And my blood pressure was soaring near stroke level and my bleeding worse. After 30 minutes we get UMC and up to triage. The admit nurse was mad at the transfer nurse because I didn't have no records or fetal heart rate strip. I remember them yelling at each other vaguely. By then the pain was so bad I was in a daze.I was rolled into a room and an ultrasound was placed on my stomach. The doctor was silent for a minute and said something that would change my whole world. She said " The baby heart rate is in the 20's. OR stat." I was wheeled out of the room fast. A cap was placed on my head as we rushed down the hallway. I remember screaming for my husband and for them to save my baby. I will never forget that as long as I live. We got into the OR and I was place open the OR table. My arms were stretched out on each side upon cushions. A mask was placed on my face. I remember struggling. Thinking to myself if I just get up and walk away everything will be okay. I wonder if they could stop me from leaving.I felt the first cut then everything went black.

 I woke up in recovery and to my husband stroking my hair. I asked about the baby and he said the baby had been rolled by so fast they didn't stop and let him see her. A hour later I was shown to a room.I asked the nurse about my baby she told me I needed to call the NICU. Soon as I was settled I called the NICU and they said they would send a doctor down to tell us about our baby. About 30 minutes later an intern came down and told us what happened. I had came to UMC with an placental absorption and my baby heart rate was in the 20's. She was born not breathing and took 19 minutes to get a heartbeat. After that she suffered seizures. Then the intern tells us that our little baby will be brain damaged severely because of the lack of oxygen. My whole world shattered. I couldn't believe it. I wanted the world to end.My husband fell against the wall and started crying. The next part of the story belongs to NICU.


Two days after my c section I was allowed to go up and see my daughter.The fact that she lived past 24 hours was a miracle in itself. I remember being wheeled in to the NICU level 3 and was shocked. It was like another world. All these huge machines and tiny babies. When I saw my Monique I cried my heart out. She was so little and skinny. Her eyes were closed and was hooked to a vent. She had wires and tubes everywhere. All these machines doing the job my body was supposed to be doing.The one thing I noticed was her hands were down balled into fists. Now I know that wasn't normal that most babies throw their arms up behind their heads.The nurse told me that was a sign of the brain damaged that she had sustained.

I couldn't stay too long. My c-section was hurting and I needed to lay down. So I said good night to my baby and headed back.The worst thing was having to share a room with another mother that have given birth to a normal child.To hear those little cries was enough to have me in tears with the baby. I remember the mother grumbling that she was not getting any sleep and complaining. Oh how I wanted to snatch that curtain back and slap that woman.To tell her be thankful your child is normal and healthily while my child is fighting for her life upstairs.

One week after my c-section I was released. The pain I felt walking out that hospital empty handed. I felt naked. I spent many hours in the NICU. They couldn't figure out why Monique couldn't come off the vent. By this time I knew that she was 95% brain damaged. They did an operation to find out why. Her vocal cords were paralyzed from the brain damaged making it impossible for her to breathe of her own.So at 4 months she got her trach. A trach is when a hole is cut into throat where you breathe and a tube is placed in. The doctors pushed us not to get the trach but just take her off the vent and let her go.That with her brain damage her life would be awful. But there was no way I was going to let my little girl just die. Not when she fought so hard to stay.

 At this time I was given the information that I was really 32 weeks when I had Monique and that her lungs were fully formed. And that if I had a csection at the first hospital Monique would have been able to breathe and not had the brain damage. I was furious. I was lied to. I entrusted those doctor and nurse with my life and my unborn child life. Because of them my daughter had been taken from me.All my hopes and dreams for my daughter crushed and stomped on. That's when I sought out a lawyer. At 6 months Monique got a GTUBE. Which is a tube inserted into the stomach and you can feed her through the tube. So Monique could come home.


Before Monique was released we found out she had severe cerbal paisley because of the brain damaged. She was in a complete vegetative state. She couldn't move, talk, or even blink her eyes. She had so much equipment. I couldn't believe all that equipment was for one child.We had a special needs daycare and in home nursing 10 hours a night. That's when they showed up though. A lot of nights we had around the clock feeding, medicine, and suctioning her trach.

 It was a 24 hour a day job.I remember the sleepless nights like yesterday. She had numerous hospital admissions.A simple cold would turn into RSV quickly. We had doctors appointments with all kinds of specialists.

Most of the doctors didn't want to do much for Monique because they figured she was going die soon anyway so why waste the money.I knew the statistics for children like Monique and knew she could suffer from central apnea. So I fought tooth and nail for equipment and treatment for Monique. I soon found out peoples true colors. 

Neither of our family cared to learn for Monique. They didn't want to be bothered. So we were on our own.Life revolved around Monique and her schedule. She couldn't go outside because she couldn't regulate her temperature. 

October 5, 2000 we were driving home and her monitor that monitors her heart rate and breathing started beeping. I shook her a little and it stopped. Then it started again and Monique was looking blue. I climbed into the backseat and began CPR while my husband rushed to UMC the nearest hospital. But it was too late Monique wanted to go home. My Monique died in her mommy arms right where she wanted to be. With no suffering or pain.

Graveside Services

My Monique was buried today. I felt a piece of my heart and soul go into that little grave. I wanted to grab that little casket and demand that she wake up.I couldn't believe that my daughter was in that casket about to be buried. I read a poem and said a few words. It was the hardest thing I ever had to do in my life.

Now I want to pause and say that a member of our family made a complete butthead of himself. He said ugly things in front of everyone. He hurt me and my family to the core.I only mention this because once a child dies people will say things because they don't know what to say to grieving parents. But if you know someone said these things intentionally its best to distant yourself from them. You need time to heal and grieve.


It has been 7 months since my Monique has left me and went home. There is an empty hole in my heart where she once occupied. As I watch my other 2 children play I feel deeply someone is missing. I cant help but think there are suppose to be 3 children not only 2. That Monique would be two years old now. She should be getting potty trained right now and watching the Teletubbies. But instead she is gone forever. 

In Monique's story I mentioned hiring a lawyer. Which we did. Seems the hospital and the doctor was completely at fault for her brain damaged and finally her death. They tried to cover it up and get rid of records. The truth being this hospital should have NEVER transfered me and my unborn child unstable.They had the ability to do a csection and care for a 29 week (which I was really 32 weeks) baby in their NICU level 2.

 Monique's lungs were developed and she could have breathed on her own. However because I was on Medicaid at the time I wasn't worth their time and a waste of money. If you didn't know, Medicaid gets a discounted price not the original price like other insurance companies. 

My child had died twice for me. The first time at birth when we learned she was brain dead.The second time when she died in my arms. My child was murdered by a hospital and a doctor. By the very people I trusted to care for me and my child. Please dont let this happen to you. Never consent to transfer unless the risks are explained to you. 

Please think twice before completely putting your life and your child's life in their hands. Make sure you make all the decisions. We are set for mediation in my daughter's case in July and trail in September. 

During the doctors disposition he actually said that "The nurses didn't tell him about my high blood pressure and the baby's heartrate being low.If he knew that he would have never transfered me." A little too late now. My little Monique is gone and nothing can bring her back.


After three long years of waiting for acknowledgment and justice for Monique's death. The Hospital settled out of court.

After four years I finally have the peace I have long sought for. The doctor settled out of court also.His name will be forever linked to my daughter and the horror of that night. His record will reflect he was sued for medical malpractice, found guilty, and settled. This info will be accessible to anyone doing searches for doctors. Whenever he comes up for promotion, applies for a new job, or hospital privileges he will have this on his file. 

I hope everytime he hears my daughters name he will feel the pain that he has caused me and our family. It took 4 long painful years to get that on his records but it was worth it. I now know that other parents will have the ability to be forewarn in choosing his as a doctor. That is what the lawsuit was filed for. It was never about the money. It was justice for my Monique and hope that this will not happen to another child. 

August 8th 2002 was the day my anger and hurt was freed from my heart and soul. I went to Moniques grave today and released white balloons. I felt her presence and I know she is okay and no longer suffering. I know she happy that her mommy is no longer in pain.

 I love you Monique and your memory will forever be in heart and soul!


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