Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Miscarriage Truths

Tonight I did some Retail Therapy, which isn't really like me. However, I bought a beautiful asian-themed shirt, some clothes for Jim, and some potential Christmas gifts. Oh, and I bought 20 mini-size pumpkins for our neighborhood's Halloween bash on Friday - I am in charge of helping the kids decorate them. If it doesn't rain it should be a nice time.

I am steadily getting better... I've had a few minor setbacks, but overall I've been making progress.

I keep thinking there are warnings that should have been issued to me when it was found that I had lost the baby. Knowing that these things were coming might have saved me some sanity.

So, here is my list for any of you that are unfortunate enough to have to travel this road. And, any that have already travelled it - feel free to add to my list!!!

  1. Your husband/SO may need to see the doctor's report, or ultrasound, to feel sure that the baby has died - he needs closure just like you. Be sure you as your Dr. to try to accomidate him.
  2. Once the initial shock has worn off you will find that grief comes in waves. Much like the ocean tides, they can be 2 inches to 20 feet.
  3. Grief waves will hit you when you least expect it. Especially when it is inconvient to be seen crying.
  4. It is VERY LIKELY that you will occasionally forget that you are no longer pregnant. Remembering may bring you crashing down. This is normal. The frequency and severity of these episodes will decrease over time.
  5. Your husband/SO may not want to talk about it. Or he may want to drown you in his thoughts. It was his baby too - try to be supportive. If you can't be there for him, try and be up front about it, maybe ask to wait until another time to talk (not too far in the future).
  6. The shifting of your uterus back to its former size/position feels VERY MUCH like a baby moving and kicking. This sensation may cause you to forget momentarily, which will cost you some added hearache.
  7. People will say the wrong thing... You should plan for this and try to have a "get out of jail free" line to offer them. That is, unless you want to claw that person's eyes out - then you can feel free to let them have it.
  8. You will want to scream, cry, and tear your hair for want of your baby back - this is normal. This might last for a few days or weeks - that is normal too.
  9. Your parents are coming to grips with loosing their Grandchild. Don't forget this...
  10. You will realize eventually that you will never get back the time you spent trying to have this child. For those with infertility, you will cry when you count the # of months that equals.
  11. "What's next?", is a question you will repeatedly ask yourself. For your body and RE that answer is at least 3 months away. You may find that a rough sketch of your plans will help you put these questions to rest for a short time.
  12. IF you don't want to open cards from your family/friends you don't have to. Really.
  13. Get out of the house as soon as you can after your miscarriage - home needs to be a sanctuary, but not a cave to hide in.
  14. Knowing the reason your baby died can lighten your burden, but it won't stop the "What if's".
  15. Wearing your pre-pregnancy jeans will happen faster than you think - discovering this will not be a pleasant and happy moment.
Maybe this list can help someone who is greiving. At a minimun, it has helped me get the close-following demons out of my head for now. Well, at least for the moment.

Monday, October 26, 2009

It's All So Different Now...

Why is it that EVERYTHING is different once you loose your baby mid-pregnancy? I think people assume it is just the sadness of the loss that consumes you. Instead, I am coming to find that every waking moment has the potential to bring a rush of sadness and pain.  Until now, I didn't realize how many little things I did in a day to ensure my comfort and the safety of my little one.
Everything in the list below has occured today and caused me to physically pause and take note of the baby's absence, my sadness, my emptiness. I find my day is moving forward, but not on normal time. It is being spent in small, jerking moments of reflection - as I realize that I do not need to think of or do these simple things anymore. 
THIS day-to-day task list represents the real pain that lies in wait for me - and this is only through 1 PM:
  • In the morning - I don't need to carefully choose pants and shirt that still fit.
  • I don't need to be sooooo careful on the house stairs.
  • Not eating a healthy breakfast may or may not leave me starving by lunch. Do I still need to pack a snack for 3 PM?
  • At the office - I used to take the elevator, not the marble winding staircase that is falling hazard galore.
  • I usually don't eat the tuna they make at the office cafe - who knows how old it is (even though it is probably safe, and is very yummy)
  • I never choose cold cuts in the cafe, unless I know I can get them microwaved first
  • I don't eat too many sweets/carbs, don't want gest. dia.betes - guess that's not too likely now
  • I answer the call from the Dr's office re: how I'm doing, then cancel 2 other no-longer-needed appointments *sigh*
  • I hit my tummy on the desk and flinch out of habit *sigh* now it just feels like a normal tummy
  • I get asked about the baby, and then kindly untell 3 or 4 people at the office**. Then I feel I need to apologize for making them sad. *sigh*
  • I get very sad at the prospect of no other children, so I Google for options regarding next steps (when I would rather look for baby gear instead)
  • I dry tears for the 14 millionth time since I lost our little one...
I know that things will get easier as I work these daily habits out of my life. I also realize that some things will never be the same.
I am trying really hard not to focus too much on why I'm having to do the things I'm having to do to make plans for the future. I do need to know what I want to do next. I need a Plan to feel secure that it will all be OK eventually. I need somewhere soft to land - somewhere with some hope.
**Since our loss I have threatened one or two people about statments that started off "It will be OK. You are still...". I have promised to break arms if the sentence gets finished. Let's just say It has been an effective deterent to people showing their stupidity.

Friday, October 23, 2009


Thank you to everyone who has come by to offer condolences. It has been helpful to have our little one's existence acknowledged. The support and shared grief has been good for me, as I don't feel so alone, as I have in previous (early, before anyone knew) miscarriages.

I am at home recovering from a D&C that I had at 6:30 AM this morning. I'm still a bit knocked out from the sedation and meds, but that is to be expected, I guess. So far it hasn't been too bad as far as recoveries go.

The hardest part of the whole D&C process was the paperwork. I was required to fill out a Death Certificate. It was the hardest thing I've had to do yet. I cried the whole way through it. It did feel like closure, but I wasn't sure I was ready for that just yet, as it felt kinda forced. It made it all feel very final though, like I was publicly and formally acknowledging officially that my baby had died. In a way, it made me feel better that there was a real and tangible record of her on this earth, even though it didn't ask for a name or sex of the baby - it was enough.

It will probably be a little while, but I will eventually try to explain what the findings from our test results were. Also, I'll tell you guys what happened at the hospital the night we found out, but I'm not ready for all that just yet,

Thanks again for all your love and support.

-- Protect the time and space to carry out your dreams -----

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Waiting Is Over...

We got the CVS results today, but the answers are moot.

Our little girl has died at 14 wks and 1 day old.

Goodbye my baby girl, I am sorry we never got to know you.

Thank you everyone for your love, prayers, good vibes, hugs, and support.

We Have Some News... Still Grey

Just got our results back. They weren't good, but also may not be totally horrible. We are going to need more testing done at 16 wks to know more.

I'm trying to learn what I can right now. I need to understand more before I'll feel like I can really explain it.
I'll have to get back to you guys. Wish I could say more, but I'm not sure what to say just yet...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Halloween Costumes...

Still no news... On with the show...
I saw what I thought would be a useful link in a spam message... A link to 100's of homemade cosutme ideas - I've bought Jim's for this year - he's going to be a puppy, but I thought it would be fun to look at what other very creative people have been up to. 
However, I was HORRIFIED at the very first entry I saw! Can you spot the issue?
 I keep wondering how long does this kid have before he passes out due to lack of oxygen? I think the costume is GREAT, but I can't help thinking this is a parenting FAIL. There are no obvious air holes, which means they aren't big enough to get him a reasonable amount of fresh air. That, and those balls - they will be lots-o-laughs when the kid trips, falls, hits his "globe" on the ground and gets a face-full of ball-pit-balls!!!  Ha! 
Really, these people obviously put some real time into that costume, but I'm hoping the lack-of-air fail isn't present in actuality. Ugh.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Still No News...

Thanks so much for everyone checking in on me!!! We still have no news, but I'm getting used to it. :)

I've sort-of managed to find a middle ground where I imagine that everything is mostly OK with the world, and I hate to say it, but I've almost convinced myself that there isn't a baby until I hear otherwise.

This method seems to work until I feel the baby kick, which is pretty often now. I've been able to feel him/her since the evening of our not-so-happy-news Ultrasound. Good timing, huh?

What's Jim been up to? Gosh, I haven't said anything much about him for a while. I'm a bad Mommy.

Jim is growing like a weed and talking up a storm. He is now able to say almost anything he can think of, with mostly good results.

We do play frequent and fascinating games of "Did you say ____ ?" Where Mommy gets to guess what was said before her somewhat spoilt boy starts crying and becomes unintelligible. So far Mommy is doing well at mastering the game. Daddy, well... He just kinda goes ahead with whatever he thinks is being said, and if it gets too bad Mommy sorts it out.

He has received ALMOST all of his teeth, but these last 4 are proving to be quite challenging for everyone involved. He frequently stops mid-meal saying "Owie" and puts his finger in his mouth to show where it hurts. Yep, I say, that tooth does hurt I imagine, then we all resume eating. Really, how much more is there I can do? It hurts often... poor thing.

He's starting to do way more climbing - including on the kitchen chairs. This has lead to much more traumatic and fantastic-looking falls and spills. It is a thrill a minute!

However, I'm spending lots of time telling Daddy that "It's OK if he climbs up there - he's got to learn sometime." That's about when he chooses to prove Daddy right by making a spectacularly loud bump, followed closely by the super-sonic scream. We are all learning the hard way, but it has to happen sometime.

Overall things in our household are going well. We've enjoyed being out and about together quite a bit lately. We seem to be really trying to spend more family time, and it is bringing us closer together, I think. Having Mommy be tired, and a bit distracted, hasn't been that great for all of us, but we are surviving that the best we can for now.

Hope all is well in everyone's households in bloggy-land. I'm reading your blogs, but not commenting - I'm kinda in quite-mode for some reason.

Friday, October 16, 2009

No News...

We have no news. No news because this test can't come back in 7 days, it takes a minimum of 10 to 14 days. So, it can't have been back today. :(

No idea why the Dr. said it would definately, most assuredly, be back today. Ugh.

So... We wait... Again.

Monday at the earliest, Friday at the latest - but then we've had and "at the latest" answer before. Right?

Monday, October 12, 2009

The News... And We Wait.

I called the perinatologist's office after I updated my blog. They had the initial results in - hot off the fax!
The results were normal for the 4 tests they do - Trisomy 13, 18, 21, & the XY sex chromosomes.  All were normal, and I was very happy to hear it!
Downs (the trisomies listed above) are the ones that the Dr. had called out as likely to cause the issues he saw. However, he called me and said that I should be cautiously optomistic, since that is only 4 of about 44 chromosomes that they test for anomolies. He felt that we should not talk about "what's next" until after the results come back on Friday.
So, while the test brought some initial good news... We are still in wait-and-see mode. Tick - tock - tick - tock, I can hear the clock saying. It is going through it's motions slower than usual for some reason.
Let's play a little guessing game while we wait...  
What do you think I'm having?  A boy or a girl?  You have to give your reason for your guess - even if it is "...just a feeling".
Yes, I do know the answer! :)  
-- Protect the time and space to carry out your dreams -----

No Results Yet... Methinks Tomorrow?

*Sigh*  No results yet.  
Don't you just know that I'm in hurry up and wait mode?  I know it could be tomorrow... I do. But I would like some kind of info today. :(  Please?  Pretty please? 
BTW - for anyone that is interested - the rapid-results test is called FISH - fun name huh? It is an alternate form of testing that can turn results around in 1 day or less. However, it is not as accurate as the full testing because with it they don't distinguish between the mother's cells and the child's. So, you could get "all clear" results, only to find that the cells were your own. Ugh.  
Supposedly that kind of mix-up doesn't happen too often (guessing they test more than one sample), but this test can lead to false-positives for when Mom and baby DNA has been mixed together. When that happens it appears that the child has a specific type of other chromosome issue... I won't go into all the detail, but it sounds like a mess.

Hopefully we'll hear something soon...

-- Protect the time and space to carry out your dreams -----

Sunday, October 11, 2009

This CVS Doesn't Have a Drive Through

I had the CVS on Friday. Sorry I didn't post about it - it's taken me a while to figure out what I think and how I feel about it.

First, let me take a moment to say thanks to all of my online friends that supported me, checked on me, and/or prayed, sent good vibes, or good wishes for me. Thank you so much. It's times like these that I realize that support is a treasured thing. I hope I can be there to support you ladies should you need it.

Also, I'd like to say a big thanks to my Mommy - aka Nana - I was so thrilled you agreed to come to help us last minute. When your grandbaby Jim got sick on Thursday with a 104.6 fever, and I called you, it was a blessing to hear your lack of reserve in offering to help. Friday was already expected to be so hard - I didn't know how we were going to handle it with Jim so sick and me unable to help out after my procedure. 48 hrs of not being able to lift him wasn't going to be easy without the illness... With your help we made it through and it was a nice weekend overall. Love you Mommy!

On to the CVS Recap...

The procedure took lots longer than I thought it would. They took a long time to decide how to best access the baby. It appears that this one is sitting high, so they chose the abdominal route.

I was really, really, really hoping they'd choose the drive-through option... I've had catheters in my Vjayjay before - I was prepared for that. I really was terrified at the idea of the needle in the belly. Turns out I knew what I was thinking.

Does anyone want to know what being stabbed feels like?!?!? I can tell you...

Yes, they did numb the skin, but that isn't what hurt. It was when they, without warning, poked a needle through my non-numb uterus. OMG! I swear, they could numb that shit... they really could, right? Ouch, fucking, ouch.

I had on headphones and was rocking out to an old-school song, so I might have just not heard the warning that I was about to be stabbed. I'm willing to give the Dr. credit on that one.

However, once we were in the car, my husband replayed for me the volume with which I "said" the now-famous line, "FUCK! THAT HURT!". <--- note the use of all caps, suggesting I did not so much say it, as yell it, so that everyone in that Dr.'s office should have heard me clearly and come running to my aid.

So that everyone understands, the procedure was bad, but I know that even knowing what I know now I would feel that the test was the right way to go. BUT I would go into it differently - I might ask for what kinds of meds they could give me to help me relax or take the edge off. I don't think women's medicine has caught up with women's needs for painless proceedures.

According to my Dr's office there is the possibilty that we will get preliminary results back on Monday/Tuesday. These results would be from a rapid test that is around 90 - 95% accurate. It can tell us if there was any markers for Trisomy 21, 18, or 13, and the sex of the baby.

The final results will come in by Friday, most likely. Those will be the most accurate results. I'm not sure how the results compare, or if the full testing checks for more things. I'm going to try not to stress between now and then... We'll see how well I do at that.

Monday, October 5, 2009

12 Weeks - Who Let the Fear and Sadness In?

Sorry I've been so quiet. I have felt very wary of this pregnancy for the last few weeks. I've been spotting and not feeling quite right. A couple of you have emailed to check on me - I appreciate that!  I guess you could say I've been holding my breath until today...

We went to our 12 wk maternal fetal US today - they were supposed to do the genetic anomalies ultrasound and blood draw. However, the baby is measuring too small to do the testing. It is measuring 11 wk 1 day - about a week smaller than it should be.
We were told that a couple of the things they saw on the US were markers for Downs - an umbilical cord cyst and an enlarged bladder. There is the large possibility that this baby has Downs. If it does have Downs it also has a large chance of complications from the enlarged bladder (low amniotic fluid, deformities, and mid-to-late-term death).

I am set to do a CVS on Friday - the results, assuming the test goes well and they can get a sample, would be back in about a week.

Here's how it all breaks down:
- The baby being small is a bad sign by itself, but isn't insurmountable, and could resolve over time if it was an anomaly.
- The bladder issue by itself is bad, but could resolve spontaneously or with surgery in-utero.
- The chord issue by itself is bad, but could resolve spontaneously or could stick around and cause no harm until delivery. From what I read today, delivery would have to be a C-section if there was a cyst by that point, since the cord is compromised and could burst during delivery.
- Put all 3 of these issues together and you are most likely looking at a child with some underlying issues that have caused things to go awry.

Needless to say, this has been a bad day. I have told a couple of family members and my best friend, but haven't made a public spectacle of myself - unless you count crying hard while driving. :(  I hope I'll be able to just lie low at work and keep my sadness to myself until I know what's what. Then again - it will be a LONG time before this is all resolved, unless the baby dies naturally, which as it sounded today isn't that unlikely.

*sigh*  I feel really empty, but then I clearly see that imagine of my baby hanging in there, trying to survive, and I feel sad - I just want him or her to be born happy and healthy, but I can't imagine I'll be getting that wish granted. *sigh*