I wrote this about four months after that terrible day that was the beginning of this whole nightmare.
WHY. That’s the only thing that is going through my mind. Nothing makes sense. I am so sad. I am so angry. I am so disappointed. I am so frustrated. I am so lost.
Nobody ever told me that it would actually be difficult to have a baby. I knew of things like infertility; that people had a difficult time getting pregnant. I figured that would be my issue. But, no, that’s not the issue at all. I can get pregnant. Obviously I can get pregnant almost at the drop of a hat. I never thought it would be that easy. Little did I know that getting pregnant was the easiest part. Actually carrying a baby would be the most difficult part – at least it has been so far.
Todd and I had an amazing wedding. Our honeymoon was so relaxing and we really hated for it to end. It did – and fast. On Tuesday, March 27th, I randomly took a home pregnancy test because I had just been feeling weird. The Thursday or Friday before that, I woke up with a swollen nose, enlarged lymph node in my jaw line, light spotting, and a bump inside my nose. Those were all signs of my body saying, “Hey – we have something new in here!” We did have something new growing inside of my body, and the fast response to the pregnancy test proved it. I absolutely was stunned. I couldn’t believe it. I immediately got scared at the potential of becoming a parent and just cried when I told Todd. Little did I know that would be the beginning of the one of the biggest letdowns of my life. And letdown is saying it nicely.
Within days, I had all of the symptoms of pregnancy. I was so incredibly tired that I felt the need to take a nap to get ready for a nap. Smells and foods were instantly unappealing to me. For the first time in my life, I quit drinking caffeine and alcohol cold turkey – and I was still alive! I was feeling very differently, and still couldn’t believe that we were going to have a baby.
I went to the doctor for my first prenatal appointment. My mom went with me because Todd had to work. Other than blood work and another pee stick, the appointment was fairly uneventful. I had been taking prenatal vitamins for a couple of months, and I also changed my medications to be pregnancy-safe. I was officially pregnant.
I called and emailed just about everyone in the world. I was so thrilled that we were going to have a baby and that one of my biggest dreams in life was going to come true.
That dream began to fracture just a couple of weeks later. I woke up early on a Wednesday morning to learn I was bleeding. Not heavily, but it was blood. I was only 6 weeks, 3 days, and I knew that blood was not good. I kind of walked around in the dark for a minute, just trying to catch my breath and not freak out. Todd woke up and asked what was wrong. I told him and that’s when I began to cry. I quickly went online to book a substitute, started typing out lesson plans, and waited until the doctor’s office opened so I could call.
Todd called in for a sub that morning as well. We went to the doctor and had an ultrasound. There was really nothing to see since I was so early in my pregnancy, but the sac was measuring about a week and half smaller than average and nobody seemed too concerned. The doctor said the pregnancy could really go either way. I was “vampired” as I call it (blood was drawn), and after the results were in, I was put on progesterone, a hormone that is produced by the developing fetus. My team at work made me take the next two days off to rest. I had my first official ultrasound scheduled for two weeks out, so the doctor said unless anything significant occurred, that he would see me then. Nothing overly eventful occurred, other than me being worried but trying to maintain hope. Multiple times a day, I told the baby to hang on for dear life because everything would be okay. I began to feel more hope as each day passed.
The day of my ultrasound was finally here. It was Wednesday, April 24th. I was 8 weeks and 3 days pregnant. When I woke up and went to the bathroom, I wiped blood. I didn’t worry too much because I had learned in these past two weeks that spotting & even blood did not mean a for sure miscarriage. I dressed in black sweater with a black tank top that was longer than my usual ones because my belly was getting bigger. It was bloat, and I knew that, but I was getting bigger. Todd and I left for the appointment and I was so nervous. He tried to calm me but nothing was working. I wouldn’t be better until the ultrasound showed us our baby. I figured the very worst thing that could happen was that the baby’s heart had stopped beating. What was about to happen felt worse than that to me.
The ultrasound technician, Elizabeth, quickly started the ultrasound and Todd was seated to my left. She quickly found the sac and said it only measured at an increase of less than a week since my last ultrasound two weeks ago. That didn’t make me feel good. She checked out my fallopian tubes and ovaries and said they looked fine. She went back to look at the sac and searched. There wasn’t really anything to see, and I told her that there didn’t seem to be anything there. Where was my baby? Dead or alive – where was my baby? The screen on the ultrasound machine just showed blackness where my baby should be. It was a black hole. It was just a fucking black hole with no baby to be seen. What the hell was happening???? Where was the baby that was supposed to be inside of me? That’s when she put her hand on my knee and said, “I’m sorry.” I just started to cry. I remember seeing the ceiling tiles through my thick tears. This couldn’t be real. There was no way that I was beginning to live my nightmare. Elizabeth left us, and I just laid on the table crying while Todd held my hand. I eventually got up from the table and just held Todd and cried on his chest. A large part of my heart was instantly gone.
I finally got dressed and we went in to meet with the doctor. I just cried and tried to hear what he was saying, but his words were shadowed by the racing thoughts in my head and the breaking of my heart. The doctor said that unfortunately these things happen and it’s because there is something wrong with the baby early on. He called it an “empty sac”, which I later learned is medically called a blighted ovum (meaning “bad egg”). He told me that eventually I would begin to bleed and miscarry this non-baby inside of me. I asked the doctor how long that would take. He said it could take days or weeks to begin. I immediately requested a D&C and wanted it that afternoon. I was told that I should think about it and that’s when I started crying harder. I remember saying, “I cannot go another day feeling all of these pregnancy symptoms and not getting a baby at the end of it all. I want a D&C.” My doctor then agreed to check the surgery schedule and get me in the next morning. I wanted this nightmare to go away, but now I know it never will.
Since the maid was cleaning our house, Todd and I didn’t go home. We instead went to get some lunch from our very young, pregnant waitress. I can’t believe I was even able to eat, but I don’t even remember eating. We still had some time until the maid was finished, so we called my sister and went to her house. Since she had miscarried in the past, she was a great source of comfort at that time. Phone calls had to made, and I completely and totally hated making them. How do you say to people, “Oh, never mind. We were pregnant but there’s no damn baby inside of me.” Really, is there any way to say that???
The hospital called and scheduled my D&C for the first thing the next morning. Todd and I had to leave my sister’s and go back over there to fill out paperwork and meet with some nurse person in the outpatient surgery center. I remember very few details about it all except for the paperwork I had to complete. The first set of papers at the front desk had me fill out the usual – name, social security number, etc. Keep in my mind that we had only been married six weeks, so according to my identification, I was still Kristin T., not yet Kristin H. I didn’t even know who I was. The worst part of the paperwork asked if there was any possibility I could be pregnant. At that point, I threw the pen down and said, “How the hell am I supposed to answer THIS?” I began to cry and luckily the girl behind the desk took the paperwork from me at that point. The other bad part is that the next set of paperwork the nurse gave me said medical abortion. Lovely. Now I’m an abortionist as well. I felt as if I’d earned all sorts of descriptors – all except mother to be.
Anniversaries suck. Reminders suck. Today sucks. Flashback - April 25, 2007 tomorrow.