Posted by Anonymous.
"I'm sorry...we can't find a heartbeat."
Those words still bring tears to my eyes. It's been six days and I feel that lump in the throat when I read that sentence. It's the one that you try so hard to swallow down, but it seems like nothing can make it go away. Nothing but hot tears streaming uncontrollably down your cold cheeks.
Talking about it has helped a lot, so I figure the best way to get past all of this is to write about it. So here is my story.
I had a miscarriage.
That was last week. This story begins several years ago. My husband asked me about two years ago if I was ready for kids because he "didn't want to be an old dad." (I'm 27 now and he's 28) But I wasn't ready.
Last year, we celebrated our 3 year wedding anniversary and I told him over a candlelit dinner that I wanted to have children. We'd paid off our credit cards, we both had stable jobs and we owned our own home. I felt like the timing was finally right in my life. He was excited and surprised to say the least.
A few months later I got off of the pill. At first, my periods were a slight disappointment, but there was "always next month." After four months of failure I convinced myself I was pregnant. Turned out it was just a stressful month and my cycle was irregular. I cried the night my period started. I started to lose hope. I couldn't understand why this wasn't happening as quickly as I wanted it to. I wanted this so badly.
We decided to get away from it all and take a long weekend in Vegas. One of my best friends and her husband met us there. I had cramping in the airport on the way there. I figured my period was starting again, so I didn't think much of it. After three days in Vegas, my friend convinced me to take a pregnancy test.
It was positive.
And so was the one after that.
I cried, I shook, I was absolutely in shock. I was so happy, so elated. So scared. I was in utter bliss after that moment. My dream--our dream, had finally come true.
As soon as we got back home I started to feel sick and have severe cramping. I cramped so badly I woke up in the middle of the night unable to breathe or even cry. I called the doctor and she suggested I have my blood tested. My hormones were "a little on the low side." So at six weeks, she prescribed some hormones for me to take.
At eight weeks I had my first ultrasound. The ultrasound technician turned off all of the lights in the room. The only thing turned on was the monitor hanging on the wall. The room was consumed with the sound of the pounding of that little heart. "There's your baby" she told me cheerfully. It was so surreal. It was so wonderful. It was terrifying. I really did have this little baby growing inside of me.
I heard the heart beat. I saw the heart beat. It was a little slow and since I've researched everything to death I automatically recognized that there was a problem.
Later the doctor mentioned it to me in passing. She suggested I take another blood test and come back in two weeks to monitor the heart rate. She also mentioned the baby was only measuring 7 1/2 weeks. But she didn't seem alarmed. If anything she seemed optimistic. She was my personal cheerleader.
The next day I got the call I was dreading. My hormone levels were still too low. I found out that at 6 weeks my progesterone was only at 15 and should've been at 20. At 8 weeks, my progesterone was still at 15...that was with my intake of hormone supplements. It should've been at 25...on my own. The nurse told me to increase my hormone supplements some more.
As soon as I hung up the phone I burst into tears. For the first time in this pregnancy, I was really terrified for my baby. I was so scared. I was so utterly helpless.
The following weeks consisted of me trying to be even healthier, going for walks with my dogs, eating more fruits. I did everything I could to make this baby healthy. I took my hormones, my pre-natal vitamins and I avoided anything that I had read anywhere could possibly be harmful.
At 10 weeks I went into my precautionary ultrasound. My heart raced and I felt more nervous than I had ever been in my life. I had a different ultrasound technician, she seemed confused as to why I was there. I explained the low heart rate to her. So she began the ultrasound.
Silence overpowered the room. Then I saw the baby. I was so relieved to see it. The technician asked me a second time how far along I was.
"This baby is only 7 1/2 weeks along."
Someone please wake me up.
She left to get the doctor to "get a second opinion." The ultrasound technician who does ultrasounds all day long. The woman who earns her living looking at fetuses and listening to their tiny hearts beat was getting a second opinion...
I laid on the cold table begging myself to keep it together. Begging and willing myself not to cry.
She came back in without a doctor, but had a small teddy bear in her hand. I thought to myself, please tell me they don't give you a teddy bear to console you for the loss of your child. That's when I recognized it as a breast cancer bear.
"Look what someone gave me in the hallway. I had breast cancer five years ago." She went through and told me about her very personal and private fight with cancer.
That's when I was positive my baby was dead.
Why else would a complete stranger tell me these events of her life, other than to offer me hope and perspective. Yes it's a horrible thing, but hey, it's not cancer.
Then my cheerleader came in. She checked the ultrasound again. The picture this time was very clear. The baby had not grown. The baby had no heart beat. My baby was gone.
"Are you alone here today?"
That's when she told me the words that I would've done anything not to hear.
I burst into uncontrollable sobs. I lost all of my self-control. I became a blubbering mess. I was so embarrassed. I was ashamed. I couldn't think straight at all.
They led me to another room to sob in silence for a few minutes. All I wanted to do was leave. I wanted to run out of there crying. I wanted to crawl into my bed and sob until I couldn't breathe anymore. I wanted to erase all of this.
But I sat in that room. I sat in that room and tried to compose myself. I was halfway there, when the doctor came in to discuss my "options."
Wait for it to happen, or make it happen.
I decided for the surgery. I wanted to put this all behind me. I wanted to forget. I wanted to pretend like nothing ever happened.
But it did happen.
The rest of that day I spent telling the people I love and care about the most that I had lost my precious gift. The thing I wanted so badly was gone forever. Each time I told someone it became more real to me. It forced me to accept this undeniable truth. And no matter how much I was consoled about "next time it'll work out" it'll never bring this baby back.
I kept trying to remain logical about it...It wasn't meant to be...It was for the best...Something was wrong with it...It was still early in the pregnancy...It could've been worse...
All of these things help, but not enough. The questions that flew through my mind that weekend were overwhelming. I went from complete sorrow to utter rage. Why did this happen to us? We are good people! What did I do wrong?! Why me? What did I do to deserve this? Why do I have to be a statistic? I don't care that it happens to 1 in 4 women. Why me? Why us? WHY?!
Then I began to feel contempt and jealousy for any pregnant woman or woman carrying a baby. She's not taking care of it. She's not a good mother. I could do so much better. This isn't fair. It isn't right. She doesn't deserve that baby.
Yes. I thought those things. I felt those things. I said those things. I spewed hatred for anyone who had what I lost. People who knew nothing of my situation. People blissfully unaware. People who had the most amazing gift of all.
I hated myself for thinking those thoughts. I hated the person I was becoming.
My dad used to say "it takes a significant emotional event to change a person." Those words rang through my ears as I contemplated whether or not I was to change. And what would I change into? A hateful, barren woman who avoided children at all costs? That's not who I want to be. I love kids and I always have. I've felt nothing but joy for parents-to-be.
My family and friends have tried their best to offer their help. Everyone has different ways of helping and all of them in their own way have helped me immensely whether they realize it or not.
My husband has been nothing but supportive these past few days. My personal comedian and entertainer. He's done everything he could to lift my spirits and help me get past this. I worry about him. He doesn't really talk about it, but I know he's trying to get through this just as I am. I don't know if I could've made it through this without him. He's been my rock. Even as I relapsed this past weekend into sobs of anger and sorrow he was there for me. Consoling me every step of the way. I've always known it, but this experience has shown me that we truly can get through anything together. We are an inseparable team.
I had my D&C a few days later. The medical term sounds so much nicer than what it really is. So much nice than "removing my dead baby from my womb." My D&C. I was scared and I was nervous. Without going into too much detail, I was put under full anesthesia and felt nothing but some cramps afterward. When I woke up my first thought was "it's done" and a tear filled my eye. But I quickly remembered where I was, and pushed those thoughts to the back of my mind. I was released the same day and brought home to rest.
Going back to work was nerve wrecking. I didn't think it would be. But the night before I hardly slept a wink. I was so worried about the stares, the thoughts. The looks of pity. I didn't want that. I just want to put it behind me. It was nothing like I pictured. I was accepted back to work just as I had been before. Nothing was mentioned. Nothing was said. It was just as I had requested and for that I'm unbelievably gracious.
I hope someday my dream will come true. But it doesn't change the fact that this baby is gone. What happens in Vegas, apparently does stay in Vegas. Because I will never hear my baby cry or hold it in my arms.
And I can never bring it back again. Ever. It's gone.