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Twenty weeks into her second pregnancy, Shayne Lamas had to be rushed to the ER with excruciating stomach cramps.
Her baby son was growing outside of her uterus and had attached to her bladder, eventually puncturing her placenta. The doctors had to perform a full hysterectomy after her husband Nik Ritchie made the heartbreaking decision to sacrifice their baby to save his wife's life.
The season 12 Bachelor winner talks to In Touch about her heartbreaking experience and coping with the pain.
IT: Walk me through that whole day.
SL: “Sunday I was at home, watching cartoons with my daughter and then out of nowhere I had cramps coming from all sides of my stomach—these terrible cramps down the side and middle, cramps like I had never ever felt before. This was when I fell to my knees. I was screaming for my husband.
They forced me into emergency surgery and I was knocked out. I woke up two days later and that is when I was told I had lost the baby and that I had a full hysterectomy.
I screamed when they told me the news that I had lost him….I screamed from the top of my lungs. I never thought it would happen to me. You never think that something like this will happen to you and then you are told that you cannot have children. I felt like someone hit me again and again and again.
IT: Did the doctors explain what was wrong, what happened to your body?
SL: “The pain that I felt that day was because I was dying. He had actually gotten so big that he punctured the inside of my placenta and I was bleeding internally...They had to remove everything that my son was attached to. So at the end of the day, it was kind of a nightmare…He left my ovaries.”
IT: How did you tell Press about your son?
SL: “She asked when I got back from the hospital, ‘Where did the baby go?’ She knew that the baby was in the belly and I had a belly before. When I was in the hospital I lost a lot of weight and I said, ‘The baby is an angel now.’ And she said, ‘An angel?’ And I said, ‘The baby is in heaven’ and that was the last of that.”
IT: Are you and Nik closer after going through all of that?
SL: “I cannot tell you the love and the bond that we both have for each other. It goes so far beyond anything I ever imagined I could have with him. It is almost like we love each other all over again. He looked at me the other night and said, ‘I have so much more respect and love for you and love for Press than I could ever imagine.’
We didn’t have any names picked out. We had thrown a few around and my husband was thinking, ‘How am I supposed to do this? I don’t know what Shayne wants.’ He had to name our son alone. When I found that out, I was so touched that he had been through all this I didn’t care if he named him Bob. It was surreal.”
IT: How are you keeping his memory alive today?
SL: “We have purchased a small tombstone and my husband picked a place in Orange County overlooking the water where all the little babies go. So that is where he will be. He was cremated and he was spread in the ocean.”
IT: How does it feel when you think about him?
SL: “When I think about him, I let myself think about him. It is so hard to think about it and not cry and I hate crying in front of my daughter. I have done enough crying…I want to get everything back to normal as quickly as possible. But it is so hard when I am giving Press a bath and in my head I am picturing that in August, there was supposed to be another one in the bath too.”
IT: So you will have more kids one day?
SL: “Yeah absolutely! Absolutely…Someone is missing and I don’t want to have a child to fill that void but I am feeling I am missing something...Even though the surrogate could be a long shot—it is a whole process obviously—you have to look at the beacon of hope.”