Friday, June 26, 2009

How to devastate a woman.

So this is what's going on with me.

Friday morning marked 10 weeks and 3 days of my first pregnancy. I haven't really talked about the pregnancy with anyone because I loved having this sweet secret between me and my husband. Plus it was early so I wasn't ready to share about it yet. But I have been floating on happiness since the first positive pregnancy test.

I had been spotting a little since Tuesday and on Friday morning it was more. I called Telehealth right away and the nurse recommended I go to see my doctor as soon as possible.I gave my husband a call at work, he was away from his desk so I left a message - I'm sure - just saying I was going to the doctors and would call him when I got back. My midwife's office was closed, and she is in a town a half hour away anyway so in the interest of expedience, I went in to the doctor in town. She palpated my abdomen, did a pregnancy test (still positive) and requisitioned blood work for the BHCG levels and an 'urgent' ultrasound. I was crying in the doctor's office, and I felt she was pretty tactless about the whole thing. She kept talking about "if the baby died" (no easier words to help me handle it) and being all perky, saying "it's not the end of the world!" Maybe not for her but it sure felt like it to me.

I went over to the blood lab immediately and got the blood drawn for testing, still crying in the waiting room - can you believe not a single person asked me if I was okay this whole time, from the two receptionists to the 10 or so people waiting - anyway - I came home and was just getting on the phone to update my husband, when he came rushing in the door. He said my message was that I'd gone to the ER at the hospital, and he'd gone there to find me (of course I wasn't there). I swear that's not what I said but he swears it is. So he was pretty stressed and upset and of course on seeing him I burst into fresh tears and told him what had been happening. We called and got a rush appointment at the imaging lab for the afternoon.

At the lab they brought me in and lay me down on the stretcher for the ultrasound. She started it up and I could see very clearly that the screen was showing what looked like a black hole. She said she was seeing the gestational sac but nothing inside it. At that point she called my husband in, explained what was happening, I got to go pee (finally!) and then she had me lay down again for a vaginal ultrasound (TMI? sorry). The vaginal u/s showed a fetus but she said it was not the right size for 10 and a half weeks. It looked more like 6 weeks. She said there may be a dating discrepancy but she also could not find a heart beat (though if it were 6 weeks she probably wouldn't anyway).

After a couple of discussions on the phone with our midwife and the doctor's office, both suggested a further blood test on Monday to check my beta levels. But I already knew what was going on. I knew the possible conception dates and 6 weeks was not one of them. I was very upset and basically spent the afternoon crying. My husband was still living in denial and kept telling me I didn't know for sure what was going on. He actually got pretty angry and suggested that if the dates were wrong and I did have a six-week old fetus I could be causing harm by getting so upset. But he couldn't feel what I was feeling. I already knew in my heart what had happened. After the ultrasounds I started having cramping, and last night I started bleeding.

We have lost this pregnancy. I am devastated. And it will be harder still with so many of my girlfriends pregnant. I am surrounded by pregnant women and soon will be surrounded by newborns (literally - 4 of our 5 neighbours are pregnant as well, and there are two other newborns on our street). Of course I am happy for them but it brings our loss into sharp focus.

It feels so pointless to have gone through all this - the rollercoaster of emotions, the first trimester pains and constant nausea, just to have it end this way. I did everything 'right' that I could control. And I know the stats, it's not uncommon, it's probably a congenital defect or chromosomal abnormality, there was nothing I could have done, blah blah. It doesn't help to know that stuff. It still hurts like hell.


  1. Oh, Emily. I am so sorry for your loss. Having experienced one myself, I know there isn't anything at all that anyone can say so please just know that right now I am crying for you as my heart breaks for you and your husband!

  2. I am so sorry Emily. I am sorry that you have lost the baby and sorry that the expereince of the doctor was so awful. What you need in that situation is kindness, lots of kindness.
    I was thinking of you yesterday. I will think of you still today. Let us know how you are doing.

  3. I am so sorry for your loss. And I'm sorry that you encountered so many people that had a lack of concern about your feelings and wellbeing. I'll be praying for you and your hubby.

  4. I came here to steal the link for my button (thanks again for posting the event) and read this. I'm so sorry you had to go through that. I have been there. I lost one pregnancy at just 5 weeks and another at 9 weeks. You are right, there was nothing you could have done (which really makes you feel helpless but is also reassuring in a way too). I have 2 beautiful children though, so there are happy endings down the road...

  5. Oh, Emily. I'm so sorry for your loss. You are in my thoughts.


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