Wednesday, January 26, 2011

How I spent my Christmas Break

I've always known I have wanted children. Being one of three children, I know I definitely wanted more than one child. Sure, at times my sisters can drive me bananas but I love all the memories of my childhood of having siblings. Also, having nieces and nephews rock! This was always something I knew that I wanted for my life, to have children.

When I found out I was pregnant with Noah I was very surprised. I can't lie and say that I wasn't nervous, scared or shocked. Clint and I have only been married for about 6 months when I found out I was pregnant. We were scared. We were just learning how to balance our own bills and now we were worried about how we were going to take care of a baby.

Once the initial shocked left, I was more than happy to become a mother. I was more worried about giving blood, bed rest and labor than I was ever worried about changing diapers or 2AM feedings. I knew this was what I wanted and was over the moon about it happening by surprise.

I know it's so cliche' but I have no idea how I lived without Noah. It's amazing how a 6lb baby can change your life in one second. In one second I have never loved any thing or any one more than him. He was my life wrapped up in a little blue blanket and my life changed forever in a flash.

Fast forward to the present. Clint and I always knew we wanted more children but the "perfect time" was heavily accounted for as to when we would start trying. Since we get pregnant so easily for Noah, we knew that if we were ready to start trying that it may happen the first month so we waited until Noah was a little over 2.

The first few months went by and we weren't pregnant. We didn't think too much of it because we know that it can take a normal couple up to a year to conceive. To help our chances, I began to chart my basal body temperature (BBT) and use ovulation predictor kids (OPKs) to pin point my ovulation.

I was a bit obsessed with charting and peeing on sticks to see if I was ovulating. It took over my life by waking up to putting a thermometer in my mouth and then logging the temp into an application on my phone to track it. I was fully committed to trying to conceive (TTC) and drove my closest family and friends sick talking about it (Sorry Ann!).

Months went by and to be honest, I got upset every month I wasn't pregnant. I just assumed it would happen quickly since we got pregnant for Noah without using any of these tactics. I played all the cards right and it just wasn't happening for us....until a few weeks ago. On December 13th, I was due for my period and anxious to pee on a pregnancy test to see those 2 beautiful lines...and TA DA it was there!

The first test I took the lines were SO faint Clint could barely see them and he thought I was seeing things. I started to think, well maybe I am just seeing things but I was so excited over the possibility of being pregnant that I wasn't taking a "maybe" for an answer.

So, I headed to work and along the way I stopped at a CVS for another brand of a pregnancy test. And yes, another test showed 2 lines but they were faint! A line is a LINE, right? To convince myself that I was indeed pregnant, I debated on stopping for another test. So that's precisely what I did.

I then drove some more and stopped at a Walgreens for a digital pregnancy test. I bet you are wondering how I took these tests, well I saved my first morning urine (which is the best to test with) in a cup and I covered it with foil and brought it with me. Yes, I was that dedicated to this whole process.

Well, there I was sitting in the Walgreens parking lot waiting for my digital test to show "PREGNANT" or "NOT PREGNANT" and within a few seconds "PREGNANT" appeared. I can even begin to describe how excited I was. I was so happy I started crying hysterically while I called Clint to tell him the news. For him to believe it, I took a picture of that beautiful test that read "PREGNANT" and sent it to him.

I was EXCITED, too excited for words. I bought Noah the most adorable shirt to announce the pregnancy. On the front it read "Guess what Santa is bringing me?" and on the back "A new baby brother or sister!". My plan was to announce this on Christmas Eve at our annual party to our families/friends as I was keeping it a secret until I went to the Dr. on the 22nd.

The day before I got my 1st positive test I started spotting. I didn't think much of it because I know spotting can be normal but I've been having more since then and some cramping. I told my doctor about this at my appointment and she decided to an ultrasound to just check everything out.

I anticipated going in and everything being fine and leaving so ecstatic and ready to announce on Christmas Eve. It didn't end up that way though. During the ultrasound they couldn't see anything in my uterus. The tech said maybe I was just too early and my doctor told me to come back next week for a follow up.

We took additional blood work and I would find out the results the next day. The results weren't good and she told me that I may miscarry over Christmas weekend and gave me instructions if it happened. She was pretty convinced it wasn't a healthy pregnancy.

I just couldn't take that answer. I kept on trying to convince myself it was too early. However, since I was tracking my ovulation I knew how far along I should be and it wasn't matching up with the blood work or the ultrasound.

On Christmas Eve around 11PM I started to have some more bleeding. I was so upset and very emotional. I'm not proud to say but I had some heated words with the man in the sky. I thought I was miscarrying and kept on thinking, why are you making me lose my baby on the birthday of your child? Why? Why me?

Christmas Day wasn't any better. I started having some serious cramps and passing some clots, so I ended up leaving Christmas day at my parents and coming home. Christmas is supposed to be the most happiest time of the year and I spent it alone crying in a bathroom thinking I was miscarrying my child.

That Monday and Wednesday we had another ultrasound and more blood work. I just couldn't accept the fact that I was losing this baby. My doctor kept on telling me if it's in a tube, it could burst and I could lose a tube and it would affect my future fertility. I was given 2 options, I could have a D&C or receive a shot of Methotrexate.

I googled each option and did the pros and cons for each. It was such a hard decision and a decision that I most certainly didn't want to make. I chose to get the shot.

It's a shot given to cancer patients, so I had to get it in a clinic surrounded by cancer patients. I felt terrible because I was seated next to old men who thought I had cancer and were giving me the biggest saddest puppy dog eyes. To add insult to injury, I had to wait over 4 hours to get this shot. 4 HOURS! I was built up with anticipation, nervousness and obviously sadness since this shot will make me lose the baby.

The shot itself hurt because I got one in each hip. I can still picture the little room we were in and the shots and the nurses face. It was a terrible day and all I could compare it to was a lethal injection to end the life of my baby I'll never get to meet.

I spent the days following in terrible pain. The pain was so excruciating at times where I thought I was going to have to go to the ER. I had to go in for follow up blood work for a few weeks after. One time when I had to go give blood at EJ the tech had no idea what was going on with me obviously. She asked me with such enthusiasm "So are you expecting?" and I casually said no. She then asked me "Oh are you getting this because you think are you expecting?" and I just sulked in my chair. Sure, she had no idea what was going on but still I didn't know how to answer. I politely told her that no, I'm doing quite the opposite. I'm getting checked to see if my ectopic pregnancy is over. That made her stop talking real quick.

Thankfully last Monday I'm finally in the clear and no more blood work is needed and that my levels are back to 0 and that I'm officially not pregnant any more.

It was a long journey and I'm glad it's over, but I can't stop asking why this happened. I'm obviously very scared for when we can start trying to have another baby. Will this happen again? Will I ever get pregnant again? Will I have another child? Will Noah have a sibling? Is there something I can do to avoid it happening?

I'm full of questions that nobody can answer and full of fear for the future. I know we will start trying when we can but I'm so afraid of this happening again. My risk is now increased but there is a risk with every pregnancy, right?

If you made it this far, thanks for reading. I'm sorry to be a Debbie Downer in this post and I promise to give you a fun fill post this week from my girl weekend in Dallas!


JennySays said...

Mary you are very brave for posting this! I'm sure so many people have had the same experience and my heart goes out to you and everyone else. My advice: keep on tryin' wink wink

Dani said...

You are a BRAVE, strong Mommy! We <3 you and are thinking of you!
Good things will happen for you! No doubt!

Kara said...

I can't even begin to imagine all that you went through. I think you are an amazingly strong woman. ((hugs))

Brooke Hemmelder said...

Mary, I am so proud of you for being able to share this. I think a lot of women go through this type of experience, but they don't talk about it. I know you're helping someone out there by speaking about it. I'm pretty sure you're someone's wonder woman today. You are still in our prayers EVERY night. We're thinking about you often and sending lots of good thoughts your way for a soon-to-be healthy pregnancy :-).