It was a Thursday.
I noticed a couple walk into the waiting room and I welcomed the distraction. I could only guess that she was about 20 weeks along. Her husband was with her and that was the dead giveaway… ultra sound visit! I could tell right away she was a lot like me. Her face said it all. Cautious smiles, suppressed anxiety and a flood of excitement and fear all at once. Ultra sound appointments are everyone’s favorites! The gender secret is let out of the bag and it’s a down hill ride from there, but for me, and I could guess for this mother to be as well, ultra sounds are nerve racking event that can only be enjoyed once you know all is well inside your growing womb.
As they walked back to the ultra sound room I said a silent prayer for them. “Heavenly Father, Bless them with good news. Bless their sweet little baby to be healthy and strong and perfect in every way.” I was so nervous for them. I remember thinking that their lives could be changed forever in a matter of minutes if they found out something was wrong. I sat there wondering and waiting and hoping for the best for them. I’m strange like that. I occupied my mind with their situation selfishly because I was so desperate for a distraction from my own.
20 min. passed and I saw beaming faces turn the corner. I felt a sense of relief. Smiles mean good news. Smiles mean life will be normal and a healthy baby is on its way. I couldn’t help but smile myself and a new relaxed feeling overwhelmed me. Perfect strangers gave me that tiny little gift that day. For those few minutes before my appointment I was content and calm.
Finally it was my turn to be seen by my o.b. I had put this appointment off as long as I could but your first prenatal appointment is hard to not think about every single day. 8 weeks along and there I was lying on the table with cold gel on my stomach and a reassuring doctor hovering over me. He could tell I was nervous. Words of encouragement and a “let’s get this show on the road” attitude got the appointment moving.
It’s amazing how fast your doctors mood can change with a simple glace at a sonogram screen. Poor guy had to force a smile and try to convince me that his machine was better suited for a medical museum then for an exam room. He shuffled me over to the ultra sound room where a sweet gentle woman greeted me with large sad eyes and a tight narrow smile. I knew already that something was wrong. Truth be told… I knew all morning.
My heart ached for this ultra sound technician as much as it ached for me. I held my breath as she pressed on my stomach, adjusted her angels and measured an empty spot on the screen. I begged her in my mind not to have to say it. I stared into the back of her head and tried to make her know how sorry I was to have to make her share bad news. ” I’m afraid I don’t have good news for you, honey.” she said. And right then I inhaled a lifetime’s worth of air and slowly let it leak out with cries and tears and all the fear that had been pent up inside me for months now.
She held my hand.
I tried to breath.
I looked for Mike but remembered I came alone.
The whole morning came full circle. I was all of a sudden the patient who’s life just changed in a matter of moments.
Not again. Please! Not again.
It was only a few months before I experienced my first miscarriage. Late March, as I walked the streets of San Fransisco while on vacation, I started bleeding. I remember telling myself then that I joined a club…a club no one wants to be a member of but in reality, this club is larger then anyone wants it to be. 1 in 4 pregnancy’s end in miscarriage. This was my 1 in 4.
So why? Why I am here again lying on a table with a sweet lady holding my hand telling me there isn’t a heartbeat? I met my statistic. It’s 1 in 4 not 2 in 5!!!
I drove home feeling empty. I was scripting my phone call to my husband but I could never get past the “Hello.” How do you tell your husband that once again it’s not to be. It took us forever to feel like a 4th was in the cards for us. Twice we made that important decision. Twice we were thrilled with the news of being pregnant and now twice we were left with nothing.
It was a Friday.
That next morning we woke up. Dressed. Dropped the kids off and drove to the hospital. Mike held my hand as I nuzzled into his shoulder in the waiting room and cried quietly. It’s the oddest feeling in the world to know that in a matter of hours a precious part of you, a hope for the future, a baby or what was suppose to be, will be removed from your body. I leaked tears from the moment I woke up that morning till I kissed Mike goodbye just outside of my operating room.
I woke up and felt a feeling I had never in my life felt before. It was so heavy. It was dark and lonely and empty. I wept. I whaled. I cried out in such sorrow that even I didn’t recognize the sounds coming from myself. I ached for what I thought I was going to have and what I was suppose to be. I was lost in my own body.
Two days later I posted I was taking a summer blogging break. Truth be told, I was recovering from a broken heart.
The second miscarriage hit us both so much harder. My first one I expelled the pregnancy naturally. I was more accepting of my fate and chalked it up to statistics and natures way of “blah blah blah”…. But when it happens to you twice, back to back, you question everything. Is this a sign? Will it happen again? Should we try again? Is something wrong with me? I have no answers. I am scared and I’ve been pregnant off and on since Feb. so my hormones aren’t helping the matter much!
It was a Wednesday.
Two and half weeks after my D&C I laid in bed in horrible pain. The day before I tried my hand at my very first Spin class and it kicked my butt! I had only been cleared for exercise for 4 days and I thought I just over did it. At 4 am I woke and soaked in the tub to try to help relieve my aches . At 6 am I woke again and soaked in another hot bath. I thought I started my period the day before so I wasn’t surprised when I noticed I had to change my tampon. I took a Motrin and tried to go back to sleep.
Minutes later I was back in the bathroom taking care of some strange heavy bleeding. By 7:30 I had gone through 6 tampons and was starting to drop fist sized blood clots. Something was wrong and once again we were heading back to the hospital.
Mike and I spent our 10 year anniversary in the ER. I was failing every test they gave me. My heart rate was as high as 150 and dipping down to 70. I was clotting and gushing blood and the medication they gave me wasn’t working. I was calmly freaking out inside as I thought the worst and tried to concentrate on not passing out. I had never seen so much blood. Mike was scared. I was scared and the doctors had no answers.
Blood work came back and showed that I was pregnant. What the FREAK!!! Vaginal exams and internal and external ultrasounds were ordered. Not the funnest exams to have when you are literally leaking blood at the same rate as a slow urine stream. More crying. More worry.
All of a sudden the situation turned urgent and it was determined that the only way to stop my bleeding was to do an emergency D&C. I was quickly rushed over to an O.R. and all of a sudden anger and fear filled me. Why am I having to experience this? Haven’t I been through enough? This time around I felt scared that the operation wouldn’t work, that they would have to remove my uterus or that I would simply die 10 years to the date after I started my life with Mike. The irony was killing me!
This operation was more extensive then the first. My blood loss made my recovery much harder. I wasn’t experiencing the sorrow like last time but frustration and fear that something else was wrong filled my thoughts.
During all of this we told very few people. I couldn’t talk about it. It was still so raw and felt like a deep wound that wasn’t healing. I all of a sudden became that “needy fragile” friend and I was embarrassed. Just when I felt the sunlight on my face again something would go wrong. Just when I started feeling a hint of normalcy I slipped down a slope and the climb back looked so daunting.
Besides all of the pain and heartache that I’ve been feeling I can’t even begin to describe the looming question marks that hover over my head every day now. I am scared to death to get pregnant again but equally scared to let my fear dictate my future.
I am not who I was 6 months ago. I miss who I was before I became so consumed with getting pregnant and staying pregnant. I pray for a clear head. I pray for a day where I don’t think about what I don’t have and what seems to be what everyone around me is blessed with. I pray to not focus on my two due dates that will come and go with no celebration. I pray to not be jealous and angry and confused. I pray to figure out the lesson I am suppose to be learning. I feel shameful for not seeing it. Shouldn’t it be so clear when it hurts so much? Open my eyes, Heavenly Father! Speak to my heart. Fill me with an understanding. This is my prayer every. Single. Day.
Time does heal. Over these last few weeks I have been working hard on moving forward. Exercise has been the best natural anti depressant a girl could ask for. I am shocked at how much I enjoy going to the gym. I think it’s my bodies way of willing me to keep the good endorphins coming. Sharing all of this has helped as well even thought it’s taken me a while to open up. Every time I share my story it feel like the knot in my stomach has been unwound a little more. I know this will become easier. I know we will get the clarity we are looking for. It’s just going to take more time.
So I apologize if I’ve not been myself. I appreciate all the love and support I have gotten from close friends and family and readers who have reached out to check in on me. It means more to me then you will ever know.