Our son, Sebastian Hawking Maughan, was stillborn on March 21, 2018 at 27 weeks and 1 day. We are heartbroken, and we are dedicated to ensuring his memory survives.
Until March 20th, we thought we had a healthy baby. That day, Sebastian’s movements slowed and then stopped. An ultrasound that afternoon showed that he had developed non-immune hydrops due to profound anemia, but he was still alive. We had no idea why he was anemic, as all the tests for common causes were negative. We were scared, but we planned a fetal blood transfusion for the next morning. When we arrived for the transfusion, we learned that he had died overnight. He was just too sick to keep going. Labor was induced, and Sebastian was born at 11:05pm. We had 24 hours with him to hold him, kiss him, read him a favorite story, and sing him lullabies. His big brother Andrew and his grandparents were able to meet him. We tried to give him a lifetime of love in that short time.
Since his death, we have received incredible love and support from our friends and family. Our care from the doctors, nurses, and medical assistants in the hospital was compassionate and kind. It cannot take the pain away, but it helps us know we will get through this, albeit forever changed. We are pursuing additional testing to try to find out what caused this, but we realize we may never find an answer. This tragedy makes us more committed than ever to research, family support, and advocacy, and this is why we are affiliating with the Star Legacy Foundation. Thank you for reading Sebastian’s story and helping us remember him.
Karen Gibbins and Brandon Maughan