Friday, February 10, 2012

My World Stopped

My intuition is almost always spot on, so when I started spotting around 6 weeks, I should've listened to what my body was telling me. But others assured me it was completely normal so long as it wasn't red and I wasn't cramping, so I believed them. The spotting continued, off and on, but was always very light. I even mentioned it to my step-mom when she came to visit. She told me not to worry, so I didn't.

August 5th came and I was 10w5d. It was time for my first appointment. I was nervous but also excited. DH took the morning off work so he could go with me. I even took the evening off work - but for a reason I can't ever let myself forgot. I told myself in the back of my mind that if something was wrong, there is no way I'd be able to go to work. But I just didn't want to believe that anything was wrong, even though something just didn't feel right.

We were one of the first appointments of the day, so the waiting room was empty when we walked in. I reveled in the fact that I was wearing stretchy yoga capris and a tank that showed off my tiny pooch. I was even thrilled that I had to pee as soon as we arrived. The nurse called us back to go through lots of paperwork and discuss some general information. Near the end of the conversation, I mentioned to her that I had been spotting. Her face changed at that moment, and she left the room to go ask the doctor if he wanted to do an ultrasound. Just a couple minutes later she came back in and led us to the u/s room.

DH and I both tried to relax. After I had changed, I just kept looking up at the u/s screen with my name on it. Finally the doctor came in and the u/s began. Talk about an awkward first meeting. "Put your feet in the stirrups, please." A few moments passed and the room was silent. Finally, I saw the sac. And as I focused on it, the doctor began explaining that there was a sac but that it was empty. My heart dropped, but I didn't really realize what he was saying until the u/s was done and he was about to leave the room.

He thought that maybe I wasn't as far along as I thought, but I knew that wasn't the case. I knew that the baby had stopped growing weeks before this appointment...but I just hadn't let myself believe it. I had still felt all the pregnancy symptoms...hungry, exhausted, sore boobs. I was bloated and I was starting to grow a little belly. My body still thought it was pregnant, even though my baby was no longer growing :(

That entire weekend, DH and I just sat around the house...sad and shocked. We told his mom, and because she had wanted so badly to be a grandma, she just didn't believe it. She even told us "but there's still hope..." As much as I wanted to believe that, I just knew it wasn't true. 3 days after my appointment, I began bleeding and cramping. It started off as just very sharp cramps every so often...but then they got closer together. Minutes apart. And stronger. The bleeding started to become very heavy and I couldn't even get off the toilet. There was just too much. Eventually I couldn't take the pain any longer and made my mom drive me to the ER, while DH waited at home. My dad and step-mom were driving in from out of state...so once they arrived, DH would drive with them to the hospital.

In some ways, I wish DH would've been there with me...but in other respects, I'm glad it was my mom holding my hand. I really didn't want DH to have to see me this way. Mom and I arrived at the ER and it was packed. I told them I was in the middle of miscarrying, but there were no beds so I had to wait. I clutched my gut in pain. It was awful. I imagined this is what labor would feel like without medication, only worse because I was losing my baby. The contractions were SO strong and only a minute or so apart. I was actually scared to stand up for fear of bleeding all over myself, so I made mom get me a wheelchair so that once it was time to be wheeled back, I didn't have to walk.

She finally talked me into going to the bathroom in the waiting room. I agreed. The bleeding was horrific. I must've sat on the toilet bleeding and crying for at least 20 minutes. Mom waited outside the door for me and had to turn people away telling them I'd be a while. I finally came out and got back into the wheelchair...and the pain had improved A LOT. I passed a lot of tissue, so I think that helped the pain to subside a little. Shortly after that, I got taken back. They took a urine sample, put in an IV and did the standard bloodwork. I also had (a very messy) ultrasound. But the u/s tech was very sweet and told me that she had miscarried her first pregnancy as well. Shortly after arriving back in my room, my dad, step-mom and DH arrived and were surprised to see me fairly comfortable.

Eventually the doctor came in and did a pelvic to clear away some of the tissue clogging up my cervix. This part was truly awful. I was still bleeding, my legs were in stirrups, my family (even mom) had to leave the room. And while the doctor was clearing stuff out, he said to his assistant "bring the trash can over here; I'm going to need it." This horrified me. Here I was losing my baby and he was throwing pieces of it in the trash like it was garbage. Lucky for me, this part wasn't really that painful physically.

An hour or so later, the doctor came back in and told me that he didn't see the sac on the u/s and I must've passed it. No sh!t doc...I nearly bled out in your waiting room bathroom! My step-mom then pressured him for a D&C and he said he had talked to my OB, who had said that it wasn't necessary. My step-mom was livid! She used to be a nurse and is now on the Indiana State Board of Nurses...so she KNOWS what she is talking about. Regardless, we were discharged and told to follow-up with my OB in a couple days. I actually WALKED out of the ER.

One would think this was the end of the story...but the next day I made an appointment with my OB and my step-mom went with me. It was basically him being very COLD and stating facts about miscarriage. He showed absolutely no compassion, even when I started bawling. My step-mom stepped in and started asking some pertinent questions about what to expect and why I wasn't being given a D&C. He didn't like being questioned, so he snapped right back at her. Finally, we just said OK and I was scheduled for a follow-up u/s a week later. I couldn't get out of there fast enough.

A week later, I made my mom go with me. Lo and behold, the u/s revealed that there was still tissue remaining and I'd need a D&C. 3 days later I went in for the procedure. I wasn't overly nervous as I had surgeries in the past and been put under (laparoscopy for endo; and removal of a kidney stone). I knew once I was under, I wouldn't remember or feel anything. I was 12w4d the day of D&C.

I was in and out pretty fast. I did wake up in recovery with some cramping and requested a Vicodin. 20 minutes after that, I was on a post-op area. Had a quick discussion with the doctor who checked to make sure I wasn't bleeding profusely and I was discharged from the hospital.

As I type this, it's been 6 months and 1 day since I lost my baby in the ER, and I'd be lying if I said it wasn't the hardest thing I've ever been through in my life. The first few weeks I didn't want to live my life unless I was pregnant. I was angry that it happened to me...and jealous of those that were still pregnant or those that had children. I cried every day for a while. Eventually, as weeks turned into months, my tears lessened, but my love for my baby never did.

My desire to be pregnant again, however, had strengthened. I always knew I wanted children, but never did I realize just how much until I lost a child. It's definitely an experience that you can't understand fully unless you have been through it. It brings with it a truckload of emotions including anger, jealousy, and sadness, all of which ebb and flow as time goes on.

I will never, ever forget my baby...I don't think anyone who has ever lost a child due to miscarriage can say that their life isn't forever changed. Miscarriage takes a piece of your heart away...but at the same time, it also brings about a strength thatyou didn't know you ever possessed...and a desire to remain close to God. All lives are created by God...and He chooses everyone's path in life. I choose to keep him close to my heart because I know He will bless me again when the time is right.

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