Miscarriage

Toni’s Story

Kingston

Nothing can prepare you for these words: “I’m sorry, but your baby doesn’t have a heartbeat”.

In January 2021, we announced our pregnancy to the world via social media. We found out in December that we would have another addition to our incredible family. We were shocked, excited, amazed and so happy. We went to an 8 week ultrasound and saw the most adorable little baby with a PERFECT heartbeat. It made all of the doubts disappear and bring everything into reality. Our children were so excited, especially my son, Elijah. He prayed for over two years that we would have a baby boy. The past two Christmases he has put “baby brother” on his Christmas list.

Needless to say, this was going to be the best Christmas gift EVER! On February 8th we went to get our second ultrasound. This time the baby would be quite a big bigger, 12 weeks and 3 days to be exact. It was finally our turn to go back into the room to see our precious gift! We all got settled and the room was full of excitement and anticipation. I held a small screen in my hand and my baby girl was laying next to me, while the other two kiddos were sitting with their daddy watching on the TV. She began to show us our baby, the baby was PERFECT. All three kiddos were so excited. The smiles were big and hearts were full. Then I heard the words that no one ever wants to hear, “I am sorry, but your baby doesn’t have a heartbeat.” My heart sank, I immediately felt like time was frozen and my world stopped spinning. Her words replay in my head over and over, even to this day.

Ryon came over to comfort me, The kids were all crying and confused. We prayed as a family and then began to walk the hardest road I’ve ever had to walk.

I carried our sweet baby for almost a month after finding out I wouldn’t get to meet them this side of Heaven.  On March 3, 2021 I had a D&C. It was the most excruciating decision I’ve ever had to make. I left the hospital empty handed, but I know that he/she is in the arms of Jesus and that one day I’ll get to meet my 4th amazing child.

Our hearts are grieving but we want you all to know that God is still good. He’s never changed during this whole process. He is a loving father and he’s close to the broken hearted.

We appreciate your prayers as we move forward toward healing and restoration.

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Miscarriage

Reese’s Story

Feijãozinho

In March of this year, we finally received the gift we have been waiting on so long. Positive pregnancy tests! I cannot begin to tell you the immense joy emanating from simply seeing two lines on the pregnancy test. For the last few years, I was riddled with anxiety and sadness from just getting negative results, but now it was finally happening. 

We first saw our baby “Feijãozinho” in our 7 week scan on the 29th of March. A wee little baby. A tiny blip in my tummy. Our reality was unfolding beautifully and our love grew more and more for this wonderous miracle. We had another scan in our 8th week and we heard Feijãozinho’s heart beating for the first time. I have heard heart beats constantly in my nursing career but trust me when I say that it was the most beautiful heart rhythm I have ever heard: strong and promising. My husband woke me up in the mornings by nuzzling my stomach, I fell asleep to him talking to Feijãozinho. We started planning for the future that had been our heart’s desire for the longest time: a future where I am Mamãe, João is Papai, and we have our baby Feijãozinho. Our weekends were filled with going to baby fairs, going to maternity shops and choosing car seats and buggies. Every waking moment revolved around our child. Our love, hopes and dreams have all been placed in a baby-shaped basket.

We went around in a baby haze, continuing our daily routines but very mindful of the precious cargo we were carrying. I received my first appointment at the Coombe for May 6th. I left work on May 5th wishing my colleagues a lovely weekend and telling them excitedly we’re seeing the baby the next day for our 12 week scan.

We had no clue as to how our reality would change the day after. The morning of the scan, I was sending my friends and family photos of my baby bump. I went in the Coombe, got through my booking appointment, had my bloods taken, then rang my husband to meet me in the Maternity scanning department. I remember feeling irate as all the ladies who arrived after me got called in first. It might have been the Universe’s way to try to spare us from the pain a few minutes longer.

We went in and did our routine checks. The sonographer located the baby but fell into a deep silence. After a few seconds, she ran the color flow.

It was after that she said the words which broke my husband and I: “I am sorry but your baby has no heartbeat..”

I had to wait a week to get another scan done and I am not going to lie, there was this little voice of hope in the back of my mind wishing for a different outcome. Doctor Alex and rANP Sinead unfortunately confirmed what we already knew. I was then faced with a decision whether to wait for my body to expel the fetus naturally, take medication that will induce labor, or go for surgery. I went for the latter.


Today marks the day that our angel baby was physically separated from my body. There is a feeling of finality around the whole experience and a lingering wistfulness around the loss but my heart remains hopeful. Before I went into the hospital, I whispered to our angel baby to look after me. Feijãozinho sent nurse Joanne in St Gerard’s Ward, nurse Rita and Kuya Alfred who held my hand in the OR until I went under. I woke up to my kind and empathetic nurse, Patience, in the recovery room. Feijãozinho pulled through and looked after his Mãe and I know our baby will always be with us and that he’s being minded by his Lolo Ato & great grandma Mayet.

I look at my husband and who has been rock through this whole ordeal who never fails to give me as much affection as I want with a smile on his face. I know that my broken heart mirrors his but he has bravely put his own needs over mine and has been looking after me like a trooper. I couldn’t have picked better husband and my love grows for him deeper from all the challenges we have been through.

Our baby has gone to heaven now but we will forever be his parents. We cannot wait for the day that we get to meet again, but until that happens, we pray for the strength to carry us through every day while hoping and praying for a healthy Earth-side baby.

This is our story that I am sharing to the world as no parents should suffer the loss of their child in silence. I am 1 in 4 & I am 1 in 8.

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Miscarriage

Emily’s Story

Hazel

It’s no surprise that 2020 was a difficult year for me as well as many other people. In October, my grandfather was diagnosed with Covid and four days later he died.

I found out the Friday before Thanksgiving that we were pregnant, and I was actually kind of shocked because it had taken half the amount of time to get pregnant as it did with our son. I am a religious person and I most definitely thought that this was a gift from my grandfather to us, something to get us through the heartbreak and a baby that we had hoped and prayed for.

 A week after I found out that I was pregnant, confirmed by blood test, I had started to have some bleeding. I didn’t think that anything was out of the ordinary considering that I had had bleeding with my previous pregnancy. I had an ultrasound done to confirm everything was okay around six weeks and two days and was told that I would follow up in two weeks for another ultrasound. Those weeks were stressful leading up to the next ultrasound but I truly believed that everything was going to be okay. The night before my ultrasound I found out that our son was a close contact of a Covid positive person at daycare and would be quarantined through December 26. That was devastating because the thought of even gathering for Christmas was off the table at that point. I knew that I had to go to the ultrasound. I knew that I needed to have it done or else I would go crazy for another week and I wasn’t a close contact. 

I went to the ultrasound and the ultrasound technician was making small talk with me asking me about my previous pregnancy, what I was doing for the holidays, small talk. Once she was finished she told me that she had to have the radiologist take a look at the images because it was a follow up ultrasound. I remember thinking that this was strange because the last ultrasound they called me to let me know the results. I also just had a feeling something was off. Call it “mom intuition,” if you will. The radiologist came in and looked at the images. The ultrasound technician gave him my gestational age and he took a look again. He looked at me and said, “There is a little baby in there, but I’m so sorry there’s no longer a heartbeat.” The fetal demise was most likely five days prior. These are words you never forget.

The ultrasound technician was really sweet and she told me she already had Covid and if I wanted to take off my mask I could. She told me that I could get dressed when I was ready and she would go talk to the doctor and see what the next steps would be.  I got dressed and attempted to use the phone in the ultrasound room to call home and tell my husband that I would be a little bit later because the baby was dead.  After some time the technician came back and said my doctor was out on vacation through the new year and a different doctor would see me.  

I had to sit in the waiting room because there were no empty rooms for me to wait in. I’m sure that way it would’ve felt really long regardless of how long I actually waited but I waited roughly 30 minutes in the waiting room bawling my eyes out. Near pregnant women, new babies. When it was finally my turn, the medical assistant wanted to take my weight. I asked her if it was really necessary. She added that I could pass but it would be charted as a weight refusal. I told her I found out my baby is dead and you want to take my weight. She told me she didn’t know why I was there as I was just added to the schedule and that she was sorry. 

I waited in the room. I don’t know how long for the doctor to come in. I wasn’t on the schedule and clearly they fit me in. I don’t recall much of what he said except for it’s very common, and there’s nothing I could’ve done that caused this. He told me that when you have a miscarriage you basically have three options: you can wait and see what happens, take medication to cause you to miscarry or you have a surgical procedure most commonly known as a D & C. He went over all the risks of all of three and honestly, I was scared to death and I was sitting in a room all by myself having to make these major medical decisions without anyone that I know and trusted to confide in. Partly because of Covid and the thought of being in a hospital for surgery scared me as well as the risk factors I chose to wait and let it happen on its own.

A week and a half later I went in for repeat lab work to measure the progress of my hCG dropping. It was still at 40,000 units. I really just wanted to talk to my doctor that I knew and trusted about all of this. He did call me back once he returned to work and it was decided we’d have a follow up appointment in a week. Because of Covid, it was a virtual visit and my mental state was spiraling.

I couldn’t sleep, couldn’t stop crying. I kept thinking that maybe they were all wrong. I felt like my body had failed me again by not letting go of this baby.

We decided that we would take the medical management route. That day, I picked up my prescription and I would take them on Saturday. My doctor wanted me to be off of work for two weeks. I thought one week would be enough time and I had a bonus day off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

I had to take the pills every four hours until they were gone. The first two pills I had to stick up my vagina and would repeat that until I started bleeding. The pills were a hexagon shape and I could feel them scrape me inside as I put them inside. An hour later, I started to bleed. The pain was so excruciatig. Anyone that tells you it’s like a heavy period has clearly never had a miscarriage before. While I was given pain medication, I didn’t take it as it makes me feel weird and I don’t like that feeling.

I found a text message recently that I had exchanged with one of my friends and described the pain I felt the day of my miscarriage to feeling like death. It’s kind of fitting because part of me did die that day.

I scoured the Internet for 2-3 weeks trying to figure out when it would happen and what it would feel like, how would I feel, what would I experience and was left with little to no luck. I felt so alone physically and was alone except for my immediate family because of Covid. I think that’s part of the problem with miscarriage, that we feel so secluded.  Unless you’ve had one you don’t understand what we go through and will go through for the rest of our lives. I knew of people that had experienced pregnancy loss before me and I didn’t think it was a big deal. I know now that I was very wrong. 

It was a couple of months after the fact that I felt very strongly about how I was treated as a patient in my encounter the day I found out and in subsequent lab visits. I felt that the system was flawed within the hospital. I had completed the survey after my visits but never had heard anything from anyone regarding my concerns. That bothered me and it wasn’t until I read a book about baby loss and the writing prompts in the back asked what you wanted to change post loss. This experience was what I wanted to change. I couldn’t have my baby back but maybe we could be given some dignity and compassion while we are having our hearts ripped out of our body. I would be lying if I didn’t say that I thought nothing would happen because how could I make any change happen.

After submitting my complaint to the hospital, a week later I received a phone call from the manager of the department wanting to find out more about my story apologizing for everything that happened. Over the course of a month or so I received three or four phone calls from her with updates on their improved protocol and steps that would occur when someone finds out their baby has died. I literally cried when I read the email of all the finalized steps that they had taken. Going so far as to have baby free rooms for patients to wait in. No one needs babies all in their faces during that time. Honestly, I was a little bit angry with everything. I wished somebody would have done that before I had ever had that experience, but was happy knowing that it would be a bit easier on those experiencing baby loss.

I connected with many miscarriage accounts on social media after my miscarriage. Many had said it would get better with time though it doesn’t feel like it now. I didn’t believe it and never thought I’d ever get out of this brain fog while the whole world continued on around me. Flushing your fetus down the toilet feels awful. I recall saying hello and goodbye and hesitating to flush. I was angry that I didn’t know that there was another way, that I could’ve done something differently.

Through my interactions with the hospital, I was connected with one of the chaplains. She was a lovely woman and the first person I felt true compassion and care for our situation and through everything I endured at the hospital. They do a communal burial of all the babies lost too soon (with parental consent). She allowed us to bury momento of our choosing even though our baby was not physically present. I finally felt that my baby’s was honored and would be remembered. The memorial service was perfect and touching and I cried through the entire thing. I wished I didn’t have to be watching it but was happy that someone finally was allowing us to grieve in a more normal way.

Shortly after this memorial service happened I had a dream. In my dream my grandfather was there and he was with a little girl.  He told me that he was now 97, four years older than when he died.  The girl was four years old and he explained that this was our daughter. We didn’t know if we were having a boy or a girl. Dreams are strange sometimes. I had no idea if this was a sign of a future daughter or our baby that had passed. It seemed more logical that because my grandpa was dead that this was our daughter that left us too soon. My husband and I decided to give her a name, one we had agreed upon shortly before my miscarriage. 

It’s a few days away from her “first” birthday. I’d give anything to have her here with us. But know she is smiling down on us, proud of the work we’ve done to make things better. My sweet Hazel, I hope you know how much I love you.

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Miscarriage

Lindsey’s Story

It was the last day of September.

The fall weather was attempting to come out, the bees were finally going away, I was two months into a new position at work that I loved, and everything was okay, until it wasn’t.

I knew it wasn’t when everything was red. Red and alarming. A color you don’t want to see in early pregnancy. My least favorite color. The sight of it made me dizzy. I grasped on to one tiny spark of hope that it was a fluke, and that maybe, somehow, everything would be okay. But it wasn’t.

In a whirlwind that felt like hours my husband was in the school parking lot to pick me up. Parents had already started arriving for dismissal and I remember leaving quickly and quietly, so as to avoid small talk with them.

Then there were nurses, pads, IVs, BP cuffs, ultrasounds. No answers. Just questions. The same questions on repeat. Don’t these people communicate with each other?
“How far along were you?” Their use of past tense in this question struck a nerve with me. It was tactless, and confirmed what I already knew to be true.
“When was your last menstrual cycle?”
“When did the bleeding start?”
More questions, more notes typed into my file.
What seemed emergent to me seemed like another day on the job here.

“Wait back out in the waiting room until we get a room ready” they said.
So I sat there, in a chair on top of my folded up cardigan because I had bled through my pants. I stood in line at the front desk to ask for a few more pads. Why would they send me back out here without one? I was embarrassed and frustrated.
I waited, anxiously, for the door to open and for them to call my name.
I started to accept the situation, that the baby I had grown to love was no longer nestled safe and snug inside my womb.

Why? “Don’t blame yourself” they say. This is difficult to do when you find yourself questioning every decision you could have, should have, would have done differently.

5 minutes turned to 20, then 20 turned to 40. The nursery chimes played on the hospital intercom to indicate that a baby had been born. Tears soaked my mask as the realization hit that someone else was celebrating their miracle at the same time that mine had slipped away. For the first time since the pandemic started, I felt an ounce of gratitude for the mask that concealed my sorrow from the strangers in the room. My husband grabbed my hands and we sat in solitude. Just the two of us, when it should have been three. I thought about that scene from UP, where Carl holds Ellie. I was grateful that I had my own Carl. I felt sad for him, having to grieve our loss while watching me in pain.

I was sent home with nothing but a written excuse to be off work. I felt empty, in the worst of ways.
The days that followed that night in the hospital were dark, and despite the outpouring of love, support, and gifts from loved one, this was the loneliest I’ve ever felt.

Friends and family said every combination of all of the right and wrong things. Some said nothing at all.
I thought of the irony that it would be my luck to lose my baby the day before Infant and Pregnancy Loss Awareness Month. I tried to busy my mind with social media and quickly shut that idea down when every other post violently reminded me that my body expelled a baby that I very much loved and wanted. I didn’t need awareness for the new hell I was succumbed to.

I wondered how long it would take for me to be happy for pregnant friends? How long will this sting for when I hold a new baby, or shop for a shower? How long will I wonder who that sweet baby would have been? How my girls would have loved them, what they would have looked like, what name we would have chosen. How long will I be bitter, sad, and unapologetically pissed off at what could have been? How many times will I shake my fists and wonder why this happened to me? Will I ever be brave enough to try again?

It’s common, to lose a pregnancy. 1 in 4. I now fall into the “1” category. Why, I wondered, is it still so difficult to talk about? Why is there still a stigma associated with miscarriage?

To those who have walked this same path before me, I’m sorry if I didn’t say enough or do enough to support you. I didn’t understand then, but I do now. To those who walk this same path with me, I am here for you. To those who will walk this path after me, it’s not your fault. I share this, because even though it’s vulnerable and emotional, my loss mattered and my baby mattered. If I can help someone else heal or talk, even in a small way, then I’ve made a difference.

Thank you to my support system for being a light in the darkness. And to my beautiful girls, for giving me a reason to pick myself up and keep on going. I needed to feel needed, and I needed to stay busy, my children are perfect for both of those things.

And so I’ll grieve, in whatever way feels right. I’ll allow myself time and space to feel whatever I need to feel. And I will pause and remember my sweet baby, who only knew love.

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Coping With Loss, Miscarriage

Dear Pre-Miscarriage Me,

Hey! How’s it goin’? Been a minute…almost two years to the date since we’ve been together.

I’ve been meaning to write you to see how you’ve been, but it’s been a little hectic. These two years have gone by so slowly but simultaneously have passed in the blink of an eye. “The days are long but the years are short,” they say. But we’re not really into clichés, so I’ll just cut to the chase.

I don’t want to give too much away, but I know what you’re wondering, the only thing you’ve cared about since May of this year…do we have a baby yet?

The answer is yes.

Just not the one you’re pregnant with.

I know, this is so hard to hear. I am so sincerely sorry.

I want to tell you that there wasn’t anything you could’ve done to prevent this, even though deep down, I think you already know that. Still, in the moments in the upcoming weeks when it’s easy to think “maybe if I didn’t exercise” or “maybe if I drank more water” or “maybe if I ate less gummy worms and pancakes,” the answer to “could I have changed this outcome” is, and always will be, a resounding “NO.”

I want you to know that your intuition was right; something wasn’t right. You knew all along. And that is because you have been a great mom since you saw that positive test a few weeks ago.

You’re going to go through a lot within the next two weeks. There will be a lot of miscommunication, pain, and brief moments of hope. In these brief moments, really take a second to look around you and appreciate how you have immediate access to everyone you need: Preston. Mom and Dad. Your family. Stella. You were in the right place. This isn’t a coincidence.

Some of the interactions you have within these two weeks will define the trajectory of your life for the next few years. I know, heavy stuff. We don’t need to focus on that just yet, things are heavy enough these days…(speaking of, just a heads up…might want to stock up on disinfecting wipes, hand sanitizer and face masks. Oh, and toilet paper. Don’t ask questions, just do it. 2020 gets weird.)

What I want to focus on is the woman you’re about to become.

I want to tell you how you started those two weeks as a woman carrying a baby but ended them as a true MOTHER. Someone who did everything she could in her power to do right by her baby. Someone who fought for answers and worried and prayed for her baby’s well-being. Someone he would be proud of. (You always thought it was a he, didn’t you? Spoiler, we stick with this and name him Anthony. Yes, like Grandpa. Cute, huh?)

I want to tell you how your strength came through. For your husband, for your family. For the baby that slowly exited your body, not wanting to let go just yet.

You didn’t want to let go either, mama. I know. I still can’t let him go even now. I’m not sure we ever will.

You’ve taken this pregnancy in stride. Your pregnancy journal, weekly bump pictures, and contact with medical professionals was all the right thing. You’ve always done the right thing.

I see the dreams you have for him slipping away as your nausea decreases. Deciding on which room to transform into a nursery. Thinking of the shelves Preston will make for his books, the onesie he’ll wear when you take him home from the hospital. The years we’ll spend celebrating his birthday at the beach because it will fall during our family beach week.

In a few days, you’re going to tell your high school friends that you’re pregnant. You’re going to give them homemade ornaments that say “the best friends get promoted to aunt” and they’ll scream and flood you with hugs. This will be the last sure announcement you give for your pregnancy. (Those friends will still hang that ornament on their trees in years to come. Not that this will surprise you, they always show up for you. I can’t wait for you to see how other people show up for you, too.)

You’ll stop feeling sick abruptly. You’ll bleed. You’ll cry. You’ll go to the ER. Doctors will make you wait and lack compassion. You’ll cry some more. And then, you’ll wait.

And wait.

And wait.

Until a week goes by.

And the waiting ends.

And so does your journey in this pregnancy.

But in this, something is born.

What begins is the mother you’ve become,

With the strength and fierce love for both of your babies;

One in your heart,

and one in your arms.

I am so, so proud of you, Britt.

So is he. And so is she.

We all love you,

Britt, December 2021

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Miscarriage

Allie’s Story

Have you ever had that gut feeling? The one that gives you that sinking sense that you just cannot seem to shake. That is what I felt that day.

I had woken up with my heart racing from a dream I had – a nightmare, really.

In that dream, I tried so hard to save you. From what? I had no idea at the time. My only goal was to make sure you were safe, and even I couldn’t do that as your mom-to-be.

I went to work and tried to shake that nauseating gut feeling that I had. I was successful at distracting myself all day. I dove into a few projects before heading home early.

I walked into the house and set my things down.

That’s when the cramps started.

Blood, so much blood.

I sat on the floor of the bathroom for hours before my husband came home.

Until he came home, I thought I could make myself not feel.

I told him with a straight face, forcing myself to not show my heartbreak. I told him I thought I was losing our baby. I could see the pain on his face. He’s my rock though, always has been, and now wasn’t going to be any different.

He just held me, and didn’t need to say anything.

At that moment, I let the first tear fall, then the second, and third. Soon without realizing, I had surrounded myself with an ocean of tears. It was an ocean of dreams, of hope, of unconditional love. Part of me felt like I wanted to just float away in that ocean. Float away with everything I wished for you in this world. Every dream I had for you rushed away almost as quickly as it came. I just wanted to stay with those dreams and escape the reality of losing you.

When I went to the OB the next day, I sat in the waiting room, surrounded by pregnant women, eager to meet their little ones. I walked up to the receptionist who proceeded to ask me the reason for my visit. Saying the words “to confirm the loss of my pregnancy” made me want to run out so the other women didn’t see me lose it.

An hour later, it was confirmed. I was no longer pregnant.

As she began to trail on about how many women this happens to, and how we can try again, I tune her out.

For days and weeks following, I found myself going into the shower, just to cry and not be heard. I felt so much guilt and shame. Until I was just numb.

Sometimes I would forget, sometimes I’d beat myself up for forgetting. Either way, I have a hole unable to be filled. It would break my heart at least once a day.

Around 2 years later, I still have that hole. However, it is a little bit smaller. I have a little girl who loves me and looks at me like I’m the most amazing person in the world. She looks at me like I couldn’t look at myself for so long. She is that unconditional love I had been searching for. I think that is healing in a way.

Anyone struggling with pregnancy loss or infertility, know you are not alone. It may break you for some time, like it did me.

Something that I had a hard time with was the resentment that built up, for friends and family. Not everyone is going to say the right thing – they may say something that makes you feel even worse. Not everyone is going to understand what you went through or are still going through – and that is OK.

Just wait for that long awaited rainbow, in whatever form it appears in. 

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Miscarriage

Stepfanie’s Story

We found out we were expecting on January 1, 2021. After our January 15th wedding plans changed due to COVID, we decided in December to “maybe try” to conceive. After all, what would it matter if I was expecting during our ceremony and small family reception at our home?

We had considered the idea of starting to try sooner rather than later because, like many, the question in my mind was “how long would it take to actually conceive?” Little did I know, all it would take is that one month. 

I didn’t think I was pregnant; I experienced some spotting which, instead of realizing that was implantation bleeding, I thought I got my period. After a few days of this light bleeding, something told me to take a test that New Year’s Day morning. We were so confused when it was positive – one month of trying and feeling certain I had gotten my period… After a few more tests, we realized it was true, I was pregnant. 

Although I had never experienced loss before, I had an immediate feeling of hesitation.  I was excited, but skeptical.

“It’s not supposed to be this easy,” I thought – it was as if I was waiting for the other shoe to drop.

In the week leading up to our small, COVID-safe wedding, I had continued to experience light bleeding. My first doctor’s appointment wasn’t going to be until after we returned from our honeymoon. After calling my doctor, they had asked me to get some bloodwork done to check my HCG levels and said just go to the hospital at any time if the bleeding gets worse. The HCG levels were extremely high and rising normally so we were told there was nothing to worry about. 

When we returned from our honeymoon, we had our first doctor’s appointment on January 27th. My husband wasn’t able to be there with me due to COVID visitation policies.  The doctor briefly performed an ultrasound but was quickly able to tell me and my husband on FaceTime that there was no fetus. He quickly walked me through what to expect over the next few days – I was to expect bleeding and maybe some pain and they would check my HCG levels weekly to ensure the miscarriage was complete. I was sad but for some reason at peace with what was happening. It happens; I was ready to move on and try again.

That week, spotting continued and then I passed a small clot – “that was it,” I thought, “it’s all over.” I had my first miscarriage-confirming HCG draw a week later and to everyone’s surprise, my HCG levels rose again. The OB sent me immediately to Maternal Fetal Medicine for another ultrasound – he seemed confused, and that made me hopeful. Fortunately, my husband was able to be with me for these MFM appointments.   At that ultrasound, the OB stated she could see a fetus but couldn’t detect a heartbeat- it was possible I had just been earlier in my pregnancy than they expected. She asked me to return in a week to check again. That next week, a new OB stated he could detect a heartbeat but was very challenging to get a solid read on it. He instructed me to come back in 2 weeks. At this point, for the first time, I started experiencing pregnancy symptoms: nausea, cravings, etc. I was doing research and drawing theories on what could be happening.

Could there have been an earlier undetected miscarriage and I got pregnant again and was early in my second pregnancy? Were there twins and one disappeared and the second is taking longer to develop? I felt that there was no way I’d be going through all this for nothing. 

On February 26th – almost a month to the day of my first appointment, I had my final ultrasound. I had so much anxiety going into this appointment because the pregnancy up until this point was such a rollercoaster. It was the same OB I had two weeks prior and as he reviewed the ultrasound, he looked at me and confirmed, there is no heartbeat. “I’m so sorry,” he said and left the room as I cried with my husband. I was fine with the initial diagnosis but to have gone through the last month thinking there was hope and ending with the same outcome, I was devastated. I told my doctor I really wanted to have a D&C – I couldn’t return to a doctor’s office for this pregnancy ever again. The D&C went well and recovery began.  

We were fortunate enough to get the news that we were expecting our rainbow baby on July 1, 2021. Oddly enough, I am due almost exactly a year to the day of the D&C with my first. When I miscarried, I thought if I ever found out again I was pregnant I wouldn’t be able to be happy because I’d worry about loss again. In fact, the opposite happened. I felt more secure in this pregnancy than I ever did with the first.

Something told me, this was my baby. 

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