In eight years, Sydney mum Melissa Desveaux fell pregnant six times. Four times she lost her babies through miscarriage and stillbirth. Now she’s sharing her story to help other mums through pregnancy loss.
Melissa is the proud mother of two beautiful boys. There's no mistaking they're brothers. Damien and Ethan sport big brown eyes, glossy brown hair and gorgeous olive skin. At three-years-old and seven-months-old they're too little to understand the pain and heartbreak their mum went through as her body struggled to carry a baby full-term."I first fell pregnant in 2007. We'd been married for three years and we were so happy. I was only 27 at the time, so I certainly wasn't expecting a miscarriage… and I was devastated when I lost the baby at nine weeks," Melissa says."I didn't know anybody else who had miscarried, or lost a baby, so I went online to find support groups and more information. A few months after I miscarried, we fell pregnant again."
Melissa's second pregnancy would turn out to be even more devastating than her first, when, at a routine scan she was delivered some heartbreaking news."At my 18 week scan I found out my little girl wasn't growing inside me. For several weeks I knew something was wrong – I went to test after test, ultrasound after ultrasound," Melissa says."The placenta wasn't giving my daughter the nutrients she needed to grow, and at 28 weeks she died. I had to deliver her naturally, and after being induced I laboured all day," she explains. "It was horrible. Just awful. It still feels strange talking about it all these years later," she adds.As Melissa made preparations for baby Charlize's funeral, she began to think she would never get to hold a baby in her arms, never have a baby room in her home."I was put on high blood pressure tablets before I fell pregnant again, which I did around the middle of 2009." Agonisingly, Melissa would once again lose a baby to miscarriage."Again I was upset, and had to return to my doctors for more pills. I fell pregnant for the fourth time towards the end of that year, and started injecting myself daily with medication that would help keep the pregnancy viable."
Melissa was induced when her baby was 37 weeks, and while she hoped for a natural delivery, her son was delivered by emergency caesarean after his heart rate dropped."Holding Damien in my arms for the first time was just instant love. I was so so happy," Melissa says.She started a blog after the pregnancy, sharing her story from loss to motherhood, and her determination to have a sibling for her first born."I was diagnosed with epilepsy after my son’s birth, after suffering a big seizure at work. This meant I had to add more medication to my list – none of which is 'good' for a pregnancy."After suffering yet another miscarriage, Melissa fell pregnant for the last time. Seven months ago she was delivered of a healthy baby boy – Ethan – and she now says her family is complete."I had no idea what to do when my pregnancies kept ending. It was so hard to keep going, to keep positive, but you have to if you want to have a baby," she says.
"I wrote my book, with the encouragement of my husband, to help other women with pregnancy loss. I want those women to have hope – be strong and believe you will have a baby… one day, you will."