Missy Mossor has given birth to five infants. Out of those five, she has buried four. Her fourteen year old daughter MacKenzie survived, but is now fighting for her life alongside Missy. The underlying culprit? Missy had an unknown case of Lyme disease. This is an exceptionally intricate and heartbreaking story that every mother must hear. When beginning her story, Missy opened by saying, “I hope you will bear with me. I am writing this on the verge of tears …I hope my brain will not let me down. From the time I was an adolescent, I suspected something was wrong with me, health wise. If I had only known what it was [Lyme disease], I could have saved myself, my ex-husband, and our extended families a lot of heart ache and grief.”
Marrying on her twentieth birthday, Missy had her whole life ahead of her and was excited to start a new family. After a mere six months of striving to conceive, her doctor performed the first of many invasive pelvic surgeries that she would endure over the next few years. She was then placed on hormones, resulting in her first pregnancy. Joy was short lived, as red flags of an unhealthy pregnancy quickly surfaced.
Every mother’s worst nightmare began for Missy early on when she experienced breakthrough bleeding. Although doctors advised her not to worry, the need to worry was confirmed by the time she was half way through her pregnancy. At twenty weeks, she was awoken by what she describes as “excruciating” back pain. Throughout the day, her pain worsened and she was rushed to a nearby hospital to no avail. Passing her mucous plug while in the hospital, Missy was shocked when the doctor dismissed it and sent her packing. Unable to bear the pain, she drove herself home at ten miles an hour. By 9:30 PM her symptoms had worsened and she was rushed back to the hospital. Arriving only fifteen minutes later, her OB/GYN was furious to learn that doctors failed to check Missy’s cervix during her previous visit that day. When Missy’s OB/GYN finally checked her cervix, she was dilated ten centimeters. Her water broke shortly after. Immediately, Missy said she could smell the infection as she gave birth to a still-born baby girl. Doctors and nurses did not blink as Missy experienced this heart shattering tragedy. They tried to place her in a room with a mother who had just given birth to a healthy baby. As if they had not rubbed it in her face enough, they relentlessly pushed on. Weeks after returning home, Missy was forced to carry out the dreaded task of ridding her house of items she had collected to prepare for her baby’s homecoming. While doing so, she received an envelope from the hospital containing pictures of her dead baby lying naked on a newborn blanket. When asked to further describe this event, Missy simply said, “No clothes. Not swaddled. No little pink toboggan. In one picture they had pulled a blanket halfway up her body. I was devastated. I couldn’t believe how heartless and cruel people could be.”
Told it was rare for her previous pregnancy experience to repeat itself, Missy and her husband had high hopes when she became pregnant with triplets the following year. Once again, at twenty weeks pregnant, she was rushed to the hospital after excruciating back pain. She had dilated again. Attempting to delay labor, doctors inserted a “purse-string” cerclage around her cervix. One of her fraternal triplets had an infection surrounding it, much like her still-born baby girl, Angel, whom she buried only a little over a year before. At twenty-four weeks the purse-string cerclage broke, moving the bottom baby partially into the birth canal. Missy was taken into surgery for an emergency caesarean section and gave birth to three baby boys named Tristin, Logan, and Dakota. Tristin and Logan lived approximately twelve to fourteen hours. Dakota, the smallest of the three, passed away twenty-four hours later. According to doctors, Missy would never be able to conceive on her own again.
Despite what doctors said, Missy became pregnant again within a few months. This time she gave birth to her baby girl, Mackenzie. She was six and a half weeks early, and weighed six pounds and fifteen ounces. Missy could not believe it. Mackenzie was the healthiest looking baby in the unit, with little fat rolls and long dark hair. Unfortunately, this did not prove to be Missy’s happy ending.
Last year Missy found out she has had Lyme disease the whole time, resulting in all her previous pregnancy complications. Without knowing, she passed Lyme to her daughter. Mackenzie, who is now fourteen, is now unable to go to school due to the aggressive progression of her disease. Both her and Missy are debilitated and spend their days within four walls struggling to win their battle against Lyme.