We found that we got pregnant in January. And this afternoon, barely five weeks later, we miscarried. Or rather, I choose to say that we “delivered” – 30 weeks early.
I want to pen everything about it from the beginning to the end. I want to be able to remember everything about baby years from now. Half of this was lovingly written in the past five weeks; I was waiting for the day when I could post an ultrasound scan of a big baby and tell the world! The other half was mostly tearfully scribbled yesterday and peacefully written today. It may be a little tmi at parts..
Like anyone who wants to get pregnant, we were hoping to get there asap. But six months into it, all I had was a polyp on my uterine wall. After removing it, we left for Kellogg, where we had no luck until after winter break in Sg.
Sito was starting to get busy, and tired, with recruiting. By then, I was over with obsessing about babies. I was pretty zen about it, so zen that when my temperature dropped on CD32 – by right, the cycle resets with a drop in temperature –, I was simply waiting for my period to happen. All symptoms were there – boobs starting to hurt, (strange) period cramps in the past two days.
But no period the next day. And the temperature remained low although it climbed a little. Decided to take a test the next day to convince myself that there was no pregnancy.
The next morning, Saturday 22 Jan 2011, temperature rose a fair bit. Strange. Nevermind. Then, faint line. I couldn’t believe it! I vaguely recalled that a faint line also meant a positive. I booted up the mac and checked – yes!
Woke Sito and we were happy :)
Turned out we had a faulty thermometer *.*
I started telling a few girls that week or so. Sito went a step further – he told two interviewers! :p But we decided to wait to see the doc before telling the family.
There was so much happiness and hope in those days..... We totally enjoyed it, especially me – no morning sickness, only painful boobs, lost my sweet tooth and gained a love for walking in the gym! Good baby!
I was so excited about 15 Feb 2011 until that very afternoon, when excitement gave way to anxiety. At the doc’s, a nurse took my weight and blood pressure, and sent me to a room. I remember feeling vulnerable while waiting for the doc to come in. Who wouldn’t when they’re half naked!
Doc did a PAP smear as part of the standard procedure and felt about my insides. Then she attempted to find baby by scanning my belly as my bladder was full.
Turned out that my bladder was too full! So we had the transvaginal probe. And once she found the baby, we could only focus on that little pea on the screen :)
It was so tiny! Only 14.19 mm! The measurement put it at seven weeks and five days. Later when I looked at the picture, I couldn’t tell the head from the bottom. But the heart was beating fast in the middle, the little flicker on the screen, captured on video on our phone. Sito didn’t even realise he was blocking my view while video-ing its beating heart :)
It was such a wonder that there was a tiny being pumping blood within itself within me.
She continued to probe a little and pointed out a black shadow next to baby. It could have been another baby, which somehow didn’t make it.
Oh well, if it was meant to be, it would have been...
Which made our baby a survivor from the start!
That evening, Sito received more good news – a second offer! We told the family the next morning – baby and his internship. At least one piece of good news will endure..
Our survivor didn’t survive for long.
On Sunday, 20 Feb 2011, I had some spotting and slight cramping around noon. But everything stopped that afternoon. All was well until Friday, 25 Feb 2011, when I had a brief spotting episode. The next day, it wasn’t so brief and there was a tinge of red by the evening. My worries worsened the next day when I was positively bleeding even though I felt no pain.
Finally, yesterday. Doc said my cervix was closed and there was no tissue in my bleeding, but she sent me to the hospital for a detailed ultrasound to be sure.
While waiting for my turn, I wrote a little prayer for baby. But it was too late. The measurements put baby at eight weeks and a half – that was wrong, it should be nine and a half. Deep down, I knew why my boobs stopped hurting for the past week or so, and why I started to be able to look at chocolate and eat it too. But I was still hoping to see the heartbeat.
Then I saw baby. I thought it was more baby-like than the last time – it was so cute.. But I couldn’t see the beating heart like we did the last time. I was hoping that the sonographer’s eye was better at that. But she said she couldn’t see the heartbeat too. And when she turned on the sound, there was no sound.
I felt emptiness all round while she left the room to consult my doc. Encouraging words to baby were said but likely not heard..
When she came back, she put me on the phone with the doc. Went for a blood test immediately to confirm hormone levels before a D&C. The alternative was to wait and let my body do the job but it might be painful or I might still need surgical intervention in the end to remove any remnant.
I didn’t cry until I got home when I realised that there would be no baby to hold and love come 26 Sep 2011. Sat on the toilet and cried. Wrote and cried. When Sito came back from a work event, I hugged him and cried.
Sito was more zen. Since a miscarriage is usually due to some chromosomal or development fault along the way, we should rather it end than result in an unhappy baby. I knew he had a point but it was just difficult to accept at that point.
Eventually, we discussed and agreed on the D&C. I didn’t think I wanted to see baby come out; I wouldn’t know what to do with it. I certainly don’t want to flush it down the toilet!
Cramps in the middle of the night. More bleeding. I kept thinking and fearing that baby might come out but it didn’t.
This morning, I was no longer teary, just resigned. While Sito was at school, I googled about what people did with their miscarried babies. I was thinking of cremating it and keeping it in a little vial. But various sources said that such small foetuses would be burnt to nothing! When the doc called us to her office, I asked her what others did. She said I had a choice if I wanted to bring the “tissue” home. Baby became “tissue”..
Anyway, my hormone level was less than 20% of the expected level for 10 weeks. Another ultrasound showed no heartbeat. And baby looked like a little lump. But at least Sito got to see it one last time before the scheduled D&C for the next day.
Turned out that it wasn’t the last we saw of it.
We had lunch and Sito took a nap to sleep away his cold. While I watched drama - it was a good distraction; kept me from crying my eyes out yesterday –, I had this cramp and backache which got worse and finally, I couldn’t sit or lie still or concentrate on the drama.
Baby slipped out at about 4.00 pm, followed by a gush of liquid. I was so shocked, first by the sensation then the sight. I had a plastic box just emptied of its golden raisins this morning. So I took a plastic fork and scooped it out of the toilet into the box!
Then I woke Sito and told him that “there’s something gross in our toilet”. He didn’t hear that line until I told him just now. And it was only just now that I realised that I called our baby gross!
Anyway he took a look and confirmed that it was baby. So I called the doc who asked us to bring baby over right away. It didn’t happen right away cos the cramps continued for a while before another lump came out...
On the way, we decided to just let the doc deal with baby.
Doc took baby away to have a look. When she came back, she said it seemed that everything had come out, sac and placenta. After a pelvic exam, I was sent away with prescriptions against infection and for uterine contraction. She would call me tomorrow morning to check on me before deciding if we should continue with the D&C.
Then we left the clinic without baby. The doc didn’t mention anything, and we just let it be. I said a little goodbye as we left the clinic. A sad “goodbye, baby” said with a little smile, after many happy days of “good morning / goodnight, baby”.......
The way things turned out was better than a D&C after all. Delivering and seeing baby – even in its unrecognisable state – was some sort of a closure. I asked the doc how my cramps compared to actual labour contractions. She said they weren’t too different, just that the latter would be more protracted. So baby and I had gone through the front and end of pregnancy together despite missing the middle part.
Now, I’m feeling much better. Less bleeding. Less backache. Sito is back to bed :p I think friends and family may feel worse for us when they know. But the worst for us both should be over. We’re managing and we’re looking forward to having a healthy baby in the near future. Thanks to all who have written back :)
It just happened that yesterday, CY replied to an inspirational email I forwarded her last week, saying that she liked this particular part in the story:
“Attitude, after all, is everything. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
You didn’t know it then but it meant a lot to me – thank you :)
And baby, you were so loved and you will be missed and remembered forever. 放开不代表遗忘⋯⋯
Update 2 Mar 2011
Yup, no D&C. I’m empty enough as it is.