*** This is not a cooking, crafting or funny Lily Ruth story post. This post contains information about pregnancy and miscarriage. It was begun as a diary of a pregnancy, and is now the chronicle of a miscarriage. I am not going to edit it down to match the tone of the rest of my blog. This is what happened. It is what it is.
02/23 - I'm starting this post now (day 5 after finding out) and will update it until we are ready to 'tell the world'.
Here's how it went down: 1) I decide that heartburn and extremely painful nursing necessitate the purchase and use of a home pregnancy test on the day that my period is due. 2) I got this:
A faint positive is still a positive, people (Special thanks to August for making something that I peed on look arts-y)! 3) So as of February 18, 2011, I am considered to be 4 weeks pregnant.
I thought that Don was feeling 'meh' about the news, but I found him looking up baby names the first night that we knew... Softie.
So far, I've managed to keep the list of people that I've told about this to a bare minimum. Since it is so very early, and I am having very very light spotting AND I have miscarried before, I am going to try to make it until at least week 7 before spilling the beans. I will have had my first OB appointment that week. If all is well, We should be able to tell our families and our best friends then. It has been torture not to blurt it out yet - sorry Kittyn!!!!
02/24 - It's almost the end of week 5, and I am still (very lightly) spotting. It makes it easier not to tell people because I am fairly certain that I won't get to keep this baby. I'm still trying to stay positive. I feel good aside from the heartburn and the exhaustion. I already have a beautiful and healthy family. It is still so very early on. If this pregnancy is not meant to go full term, it is MUCH better that it end now rather than later. It's just a time to be patient and calm. I'll pee on another stick tomorrow and see if it still comes up positive. If not, I'll cancel the OB appointment and we'll be just fine.
I let myself be dragged into an online debate about vaccinations this week. Ugh! The thing that rattles me the most is that the parents who choose not to vaccinate are relying on my vaccinated kid to keep their kid healthy. What about the people who can't receive vaccinations due to medical conditions? Your decision now puts them at risk as well. Not to mention the current resurgence of diseases that were all but wiped out in this country due to vaccines. How do they explain that away? Nobody wants to watch their child hurt. Holding them down while they get shots SUCKS. I do it for her. I want her to have the best chance possible to grow up healthy... now I'm all wound up again and can't talk anymore. *harumpfh*
02/25 - end of week 5 - still very light spotting, but I got THIS today!
a much darker positive!!! I take this to mean that my hcg levels are increasing, but I'm not a doctor :-/ Oh, and Don blurted out our news to my parents and grandparents tonight. I had planned on waiting until after the appointment, but he's too excited. Very sweet.
02/27 - week 6 day 2 - some heavier bleeding today and more cramping. In a moment of superstition and panic, I un-joined the 2 'due in Oct 2011' boards that I had added to my browser this week. It may have worked... I was certain that this pregnancy was over, but now the bleeding seems to have slowed down again without ever becoming truly heavy. The back and forth of not knowing if this is a viable pregnancy is taking a toll on me. I'm trying so hard not to become emotionally attached, but I'm starting to feel like maybe I should just throw my emotions in whole-heartedly. If it's meant to be, it will be. If not, the baby will exit this world feeling the full force of my love and knowing that it was wanted. Ugh. I can tell that if nothing else, my hormones are still WAY out of whack.
The thing is - home pregnancy tests are too good these days. In the last few years, they have become accurate at a ridiculously early stage and are fairly cheap. This means that waaaaaay more women find out about a pregnancy in the 4th or 5th week (like me). At that point in the pregnancy, so many things change so very fast. Many many pregnancies terminate at this point on their own for reasons completely beyond our control. In days past, we would have just assumed that our period was late for any number of reasons. These days we find out as soon as possible, so we are 'expecting' and therefore we go through a loss. Maybe we were better off not knowing until later.
02/28 - Feeling oddly hopeful and a little bit proactive, I called the doctor and mentioned what was going on. They said that they'd be happy to have a nurse practitioner take a quick look at me tomorrow. I like this new practice already :-)
03/01 - I should have stayed home and saved the $40 co-pay. Urine test positive for pregnancy. It's more blood than she'd like to see. Just like she thought, it's too early to see anything on the ultrasound. Let's draw some blood, and maybe take some more on Thursday. If the bleeding increases significantly, they'll want to see me again... really?... why? If the bleeding increases significantly, I'll have my answer, and won't need to come back... feeling sad, mopey and sorry for myself. This too shall pass. No matter what the outcome.
afternoon update: Since leaving the office, I had a round of heavy bleeding. Now I'm back to 'too much, but not actually heavy'. Welcome to another swing of the insanity pendulum. I wish I could shut off enough to nap.
p.m. update: I am a roller coaster of insane emotion. Hopefully it is an internal roller coaster - I would hate it if Lily Ruth was on to my insanity. Every time that I prepare myself to accept a loss this time, the bleeding slows to barely spotting, and I get my hopes up again. I spent the afternoon looking up 'bleeding at 5 weeks' on Baby Center, and am now clinging desperately to the 'hope' that I found there. There are a LOT of women who have had (what they consider to be) massive bleeding at this stage who then go on to have healthy pregnancies. The biggest difference seems to be that they all had some anomaly on their ultrasound that explained the bleeding whereas I did not - all my 'stuff' looked good. Granted, the nurse practitioner admitted that ultrasounds are not her forte. Her caveat was that at this early stage, it would take some serious talent to find anything... perhaps my ultrasound tech on Monday will have serious talent... OR, my blood test results will come back tomorrow, and my hcg will be too low, and I will have my answer. I just want an answer... please.
03/02 - week 6 day 5: I woke up this morning to the end of my pregnancy. I will spare you any further physical details, but there is no doubt that this is now a miscarriage. I am actually relieved just to know one way or the other. Physical awfulness aside, it was nice to have a direction to go in instead of being pretty sure that it was over, but needing to behave as though it's not over just in case... plus, I had full caffeine coffee today. I love coffee.
I called the doctor's office to update them. The nurse tried to get me to come in today. I finally said 'I'm not trying to tell you that I know how to do your job, but I'm not going to come in. I feel fine. I'm not scared. There's nothing that would necessitate a visit.' She allowed as how that was acceptable, and gave me parameters for exactly what would necessitate a visit. Then she called back to say that I needed to come in tomorrow for another blood draw. My levels were low (like I kind of thought they would be), but they need to make sure that they continue to go down. I agreed, but now I think that I'll call them back and tell them that I'll come in on Monday to do that. There just isn't a need for me to drag myself and my baby out there tomorrow and lose our whole morning then we could be doing something fun.
O.k., so I called and put off the blood draw to Monday, and cancelled the OB appointment all together. Now it is time to get my house back in order. I have spent the last few days in a haze of uncertainty. It shows. It will feel good to clean up and air out. Then miss Keely-kee and I can take a good mind-clearing walk together. We need one.
Oh, I did sit down and tell the baby 'I love you'. I've also said 'good bye, and thank you'. A few tears have been shed, but this is not a time for misery. It is simply a time of change. Acceptance has already come. Love and grace have been here all along.
*** Edit / Update: I did not spend the afternoon cleaning. Instead, I slept like a LOG for the first time in ages. It was heaven. The cleaning is getting done in fits and starts.
Also, the doctor's office called me... they want me to come in before Monday for my blood draw. I'm pretty impressed. I made an end-run around the nurse who wanted me to come in for the draw on Thursday and keep my appointment for Monday by calling the appointment-maker to cancel the appointment and move the draw to Monday. I figured that in a practice that size, they'd never notice, and I could slip away unnoticed until I was ready to schedule a regular exam. They were actually keeping track, and asked that I please come in on Friday. Huh. Fine. So I'll go...