Category Archives: miscarriage

A Punch to the Gut

So last weekend I went home to my parents for a few family birthday parties.  My husband and I stayed in a hotel Friday night and had a really nice time.  We invited my brother and sister-in-law to play games and one of my husbands friends showed up as well.  It was fun.

The next day we went to my parents house for the party.  As usual I was the first one there.  The next one in was my cousin, who is more like a sister then a cousin.   She and my mom go upstairs and they call me up.  I go up and my little cousin (who is 14) is wearing a shirt to tell me his mom, my cousin, is pregnant.

Cue the gut punch.   She had told me years ago she wanted a second child but her husband said no.  About 4 years ago she said they weren’t going to try because he didn’t want one.  SO I had no reason to believe they would have another one.  Plus my little cousin is 14!  He’ll be almost 15 when the baby arrives.  I couldn’t believe it.  I smiled, I hugged her, I congratulated her, then I ran downstairs to my husband.

I smiled as they told him as well.  He began rubbing my leg as he heard the news.  We both smiled and pretended it was such happy news.  I truly am happy for her, she’s been wanting another one for years.  But it was such a gut punch and no one warned me.  Yes, no one in my family actually knows what we are going through but my parents know I want kids and that I’m getting old.  They should have known.

So after about 10 minutes I grabbed my phone and ran for the bathroom.  As I cried I typed a message to a board of friends who have the same struggles as I did.  I needed support and I needed it ASAP.  Thankfully they all came through.  I cleaned up, took a deep breath, and went back to the party.  The next 4 hours were tough for me.  It was hard sitting there while everyone talked about the baby.

I went home that night really sad.  I cried some more.  The next 4 nights I had horrible dreams and barely slept.   I figured out she was only 6 weeks pregnant and telling everyone.  She hadn’t even had an ultrasound yet!   SHe also announced on Facebook.  I personally think that is crazy that early on, but I also lost my baby at 7 weeks so that might be why.

After a week I texted her and asked her some questions.   It looked weird that I didn’t initially.  I spent 10 minutes texting with her about it.  It’s much easier to text then anything else.  I’ll tell you what, I slept soundly that night so maybe my subconscious knew I needed to talk to her about it and try to give her some support.  She’s so happy and I’m going to try to be.  It’s easier because I live 3 hours away but it’s going to be a rough 7 months for me.

The Holidays are Hard

Well it’s been several weeks since I’ve written.   I’ve had my ups and downs.  Some days I’m totally fine while others are so hard.   I’m tired of hearing about pregnant people and tired of seeing friends with their kids.   My husband and I are older so I think people have finally stopped asking us if we’re having kids.  They assume we are not even though we’re still trying.

I wish people wouldn’t announce pregnancies in Christmas cards.   Do I really need to open a card to find out you are pregnant?  If you don’t want to call or write or let me know before hand we must not be that good of friends.  I don’t want a Christmas card and I certainly don’t want one telling me you are pregnant.

Then with the holidays comes children.  Everyone is talking about what to get their kids for Christmas.  They are talking about all the activities they are doing with their kids for the holiday.   It’s painful to sit and talk to people.

I went to a Christmas Party the other night and was actually sitting by two other couples who went through IVF and were successful.   As the night went on one of the men asked us to name a tradition we want to pass down to our kids and one we wanted to stop.  I played along but it totally killed me to answer that question.  It’s just hard at the holidays.

I think about how my baby would now be 7 months.  If I hadn’t miscarried last fall I’d have an adorable 7 month old right now and we’d be having such fun at the holidays.  It’s hard to think about.  It’s even harder when I realize the chance of me ever having a child is slim.

Today would have been my EDD

Today is May 4th.   Any other year it would be just that….May 4th.  This year it’s a sad day for me as it would have been my estimated due date.   I can still remember my first ultrasound when I saw my baby’s heart beating and the tech turned to me and told me I was due on May 4th.  I thought, what a great date.   It’s a good time of year, we don’t have to worry about bad weather, and no one in my family has a birthday in May.

My angel baby

Now of course May 4th is a painful day for me.  I started thinking about it 2 weeks ago.   I started getting weepy and my husband was asking why.  I finally told him I was sad because my due date was coming up and where we should be getting ready to hold our little baby, instead we are gearing up for another IVF cycle.  I know my baby obviously wasn’t healthy enough to survive but I think about the baby a lot.

I haven’t looked at the photos of the embryo they implanted in many months but this weekend I took the photo out again and looked at it.   It’s the only picture I have of my baby.  They didn’t give me one during that first ultrasound…the only ultrasound where my baby was alive.  I’m sad about that and if I’m ever pregnant again I will make sure I get a photo of my baby and its beating heart.

While time has helped heal me there are still times when I think of what could have been or what my baby would have been like.   Today has been a hard day already and its only just begun. Today I’ll think about and pray for my little angel baby that I’ll never meet.   I hope my angel is in a place where they are happy.

I haven’t done anything to memorialize my loss and I’m not sure I will.  I thought about planting a tree or a bush and I still may do that but I’m not sure.  Now would the time.   My hospital also has a butterfly release for anyone that has lost a child or a baby so I’m thinking about doing that next month.   In any case, my baby may be gone but certainly is not forgotten.

The weeks after my miscarriage

Life as I know it has changed.  The day after the D&C we had to go to my brother’s rehearsal dinner.  During the rehearsal I was having a hard time, read the wrong scripture, and just wasn’t feeling it.   When my favorite cousin came up to talk to me I started crying.  She asked what was wrong and I told her I was just having a bad day.  I didn’t want to ruin my brother’s wedding so I didn’t tell anyone what was going on.

The day of the wedding my husband was amazing.   I was still not in a great place but I managed to smile and forget for a few minutes.  At the reception my husband and I danced all night.  He isn’t a dancer and I knew he was doing it to help me get through the evening.  I thought being at the wedding after my loss would be really hard but in actuality, it helped to get me out of the house and be with my family.

The next 5 weeks were a blur.   I cried everyday for the first 2 weeks and then it started to get easier.  I would only cry every other day, and then every 3 days, until it was about once a week.  I felt like a piece of me was missing and it was hard.

I had a beta draw once a week to track my HCG levels down.  It took 4 draws until my levels were below 0.   5 weeks after my D&C my period started again.  I can honestly say I’ve never been happier to get a period in my life.  It meant that we could start over again.  I also had an appointment with my RE that week.

When we go to the RE’s office he simply talked to us, no exam.   We discussed the miscarriage and what our next steps were.  He told us we could try again right away but I told him we were just going to give it a few months of trying naturally before we would go back into treatment.  He told us that was a good idea and then we left.

Trying to conceive after a loss

The first time we had sex after the miscarriage was rough.  I don’t know how else to describe it.  It took about 2 months after the D&C for me to be ready to try again.  When we did it was fine during it, but after we were done I sobbed.  My poor husband didn’t know what to do so he just held me feeling bad.  I told him it wasn’t his fault because it wasn’t.  I was just sad.

I’m happy to say that’s the only time I cried.   After that first time things went back to normal.  It was just getting over that first time before I started feeling better.

My husband and I also decided to change RE’s.   We decided to go with the RE who we monitored with and who performed my D&C.   It wasn’t because we didn’t like the RE, it was simply because this one is only an hour away from us instead of 2.  Initially we couldn’t start with him because my insurance wouldn’t cover him, but it changed in July and now he’s covered.

I made an appointment to see him for an “initial consult” December 12.  It’s funny that I had to go to an initial consult or new patient appointment since he’d been seeing me for 11 months by this point but that’s the way we had to do it.   This gave me a timeline of knowing when we were going back into treatment. It would be 3 months after our D&C that we would start back into treatment.

My D&C

My D&C happened on Sept. 18, 2014.   It’s a day I won’t forget.  It was 2 days before my brothers wedding.  My husband and I went to the hospital and up to the OB unit.  That’s where my RE performed surgeries.

I was put in a room and asked to put on a gown.  The nurse that came in to work with me was a blessing in disguise.  She was so kind and understanding and was with us for the 6 hours we were in the hospital.

She first came and got my history and put it in the computer.  Then she took my blood pressure.   She asked us some questions and answered our questions.   She prepared me for the surgery.

The anesthesiologist came in then.  He was not kind.   He was kind of a jerk and both my husband and I were not pleased with him.   In fact, the nurse could tell and sent him out of the room.  She ended up putting my IV in herself.  She tried it in my hand but my vein there always blows so she got it in my elbow.

My doctor finally came in and explained everything to me.  He told me they would put me out and then he would go in, remove the fetal pole, the sac, and any other material that needed to come out.  He then told me I’d be sore for a few days and probably would bleed for a few days as well.

When it was time to go I gave my husband a hug and they wheeled me into the OR.  Once there my doctor and another OB picked me up and put me on the table.   The anesthesiologist gave me a dose of meds but it didn’t put me out.  I must have looked terrified because my doctor patted my leg and told me it would be ok.  He looked at the anesthesiologist and that’s the last I remember.

I woke up with a pain in my lower abdomen.  My husband was there holding my hand as I started to cry.  My baby was gone…it was really gone now.  We sat together in silence until the nurse walked in.  She made sure I was comfortable and gave me some extra strength Tylenol.  She then told me I had to eat something and use the bathroom before I could leave.

She brought me crackers and Gingerale.  I slowly drank the Gingerale.   I ate a few crackers then I had to use the bathroom.  The kind nurse put a pair of disposable underwear on me and helped me to the bathroom.  In the bathroom I cried when I saw all the blood.  I took a deep breath, stood up, and walked back to my room.

The nurse took my vitals again and gave me my discharge paper.  She then tolld me t wait a minute that she had something for me.   She brought in a postcard with a picture of a leaf with a single dew drop.  On the back was a poem about loss and hope.   She had tears in her eyes as she read it to me and I could hardly stop the tears from running down my face.  Even writing about it has me tearing up.

She handed me the post card and told me it was mine.  She told me she had hope that things would get better then she gave me a hug.  I truly believe she cared about me and my situation and it was nice to know someone did.

As she left my husband helped get me dressed.  I put on a pad to catch the blood from my D&C.   I hadn’t eaten all day and it was 7pm by this time.  We ran to a Chinese buffet and ate dinner.  Then we made the hour drive home.  Unfortunately I had a cake to make…my brother’s grooms cake for the wedding.

The only hope I had for the weekend was that I’d be too busy to worry about myself and the baby.  I had medicine I needed to take and I had my husband by my side.   I knew that though it would be tough, the two of us would get through it.

The Aftermath and another Ultrasound

Saturday and Sunday were the hardest days I’ve ever had.  I stayed in bed most of the weekend crying.  I had to be coaxed out of bed by my husband to eat dinner on Sunday.   I was having a hard time facing the fact I would have to get up Monday morning and go back to work…to all my students.

Monday I woke up early and started my normal routine.  It helped to keep my routine.  I was like a zombie going around doing what needed to be done before school.  I got in my car and headed to school.  When I got there I was glad no one  else was around.   When my aid got there I had a hard time holding myself together but managed.

The worst part was when the kids came in.  After the weekends a lot of the kids need hugs and love and while I was more then happy to give it to them, that Monday it hurt.  All I could think of was that I might never have a child.

I got through the day and early the next morning we went back to the RE.   I lay on the table with my husband holding my hand.  The RE performed the scan quickly and then told me to meet him in his office.   He told me that there was no heart beat and that the baby had stayed the same size.   He let me know that I needed to decide if I wanted to let a natural miscarriage happen, use medication, or have surgery.  I promised I’d called the next day and left.

That ultrasound was easier then the first.  I was void of emotions and just stared at the screen and stared at the doctor.  I cried some on the way home and had to go to work when we got back.

The next day, Wednesday, I called the RE crying.  I told them that I wanted to have the procedure, that I couldn’t keep waiting for something to happen.  My brother was getting married on Saturday and I couldn’t risk having the miscarriage during his wedding.

I took Thursday and Friday off from work.  I already had Friday off for the wedding and took the whole day off on Thursday as I had to be at the doctor’s at 11.  They wanted to try to get the baby out in the office without any medication but once I got there and they saw how jumpy I was they knew that wouldn’t happen.

The RE took me into the room to speak with me.   He asked me what I wanted to do and I started crying.  I told him I couldn’t handle having my baby, without a heart beat, inside of me anymore.  He told me to wait and came back 10 minutes later.  He told me to be back there at 1 the next day for a D&C.

Well that’s all it took.  I really started sobbing.  I told him I couldn’t come back tomorrow that my brother was getting married out of town and I had to be there.  I was a total wreck.  My husband wrapped me up and told the doctor tomorrow was impossible.  The RE left again.

When he returned he told me that he had cleared his schedule and would meet me at the hospital in 1 hour.  He was going to do the D&C today.  I was so grateful to him for taking the time to do this that I didn’t even know what to say.  He told me to just get over to the hospital and he would meet me there.

IVF #1 The Day my World Collapsed

The day after I saw my baby’s heartbeat I woke up smiling.   Life was good.   I headed to the bathroom first thing in the morning and when I wiped I saw bright red blood.   Not a lot, just a tiny bit, but enough to freak me out.

I headed out to the bedroom and told my husband.  He told me to call my nurse and that everything would be ok. I called my nurse and she said a little bit of spotting was normal.   Nothing to worry about.   I tried not to freak out but later that afternoon I had more spotting.

The next day was more of the same.  I was starting to panic.  How could I be spotting?   I called the nurse again and heard the same thing.  Spotting is normal.  Unless I was bleeding through a pad in an hour or so, I should be fine.

The third day after the ultrasound I had a bit of spotting but it was brownish.  I felt much better.  My dad also came down that day to help us around the house so I had a distraction.  I ended up going to bed early because of the stress and when I woke up the next morning I had more bright red spotting.

This time when I called my nurse she told me if it would make me feel better I could come in for an ultrasound.  I agreed and called the RE’s office closer to me.  They could take me Saturday morning.

Saturday morning came and I was going to go by myself but at the last minute my husband came too.  He didn’t want me to go alone.   We went to the RE’s and I sat shaking in the ultrasound room.   He looked at the ultrasound, measured the baby, told me he saw the fetal pole, he saw the sac, and then he was quiet.   After a minute he looked at me and told me he couldn’t find a heartbeat.

miscarriage

In that moment my world shattered.   I burst into tears and started gasping for breath.  My husband squeezed my hand tightly and told me it would be ok.  He began stroking my head.   Both of us were looking so hard at the monitor.  The RE looked at us again and said he couldn’t see a heart beat and I was still measuring 6 weeks 2 days.   He told me to get dressed and he’d meet me in the other room.

I lay on the table, undressed, sobbing until my heart completely broke.  My husband gathered me into his arms and tried to whisper to me that he loved me and it would be ok but I knew I would never be ok again.   After calming down as much as I could, I got dressed and walked dully into the other room.

The RE told me that he was sorry he couldn’t find the heartbeat but that he’d like me to come back in 3 days so they could check again.   He didn’t think they would find one and he began giving me my options.   I could just wait and see what happened, I could take medications to make me lose the baby, or I could get a D&C.   I sat staring at him while my husband told him that we would think about it and wait until we came back.

I got into the car and my husband got into the driver’s seat.   I’ve never been so grateful that he came with to the appointment.   I cried the entire way home and crawled into bed once we got home.   My husband crawled into bed with me and just held me all night.

I am writing this post 3 months after I found out my baby’s heart stopped beating.   While I have stopped crying everyday, and the pain has lessened, there is a hole in my heart where my baby should be.  Time may soften the blow but I’ll never forget my baby.  All I can do is keep trying and look for a brighter future.