This is not the blog post I envisioned writing. I had such visions of a lot of blog posts I would be able to write in the near future. I did not see this being the only one I would end up writing about this topic. It is a blog post I never wanted to write. I did try to write a different post, a happier one. But when I started this blog up I vowed I would show you the honest side to motherhood. I can’t write about something happy if that is not how I am feeling. So I have to be honest with you all and this is where we are up to in our lives at the moment.
On the morning of the 12th August I woke Stuart up by running into the bedroom and shouting “WAKE UP! WAKE UP! I’M PREGNANT!” waving two pregnancy sticks in his face (two, you know, just in case one was wrong). As you guys know we had been trying to conceive our second child for a couple of months and we never thought it would happen so quickly. We felt incredibly lucky and were so over the moon. Even though you tell yourselves not to get too far ahead because it’s early days, you just can’t help it. We spent the next few days with permanent smirks on our faces. We called it “our little bean” because Ivy had been “our little grape” when I was pregnant with her. We talked about Ivy having a brother or a sister and how she would react with them. We even talked about names. We told our parents the next day. I rang the hospital and we booked our first midwife appointment for the first of September, my mum’s birthday. For five whole days we were blissfully happy and a soon-to-be family of four (five because I include the dog!). Looking back I feel so foolish and naive.
You were but two little lines upon a stick.
The following Wednesday throughout the day I started having on and off cramps low in my tummy. I didn’t think too much of them because I experienced the same kind of thing with Ivy. Until around 5 pm when the pain became quite intense and travelled into my back. An hour later I went to the toilet and that is when I noticed bright red blood. I was frozen. I couldn’t move. I sat staring at my worst nightmare before me paralyzed. I managed to come around and compose myself and remained strangely calm as I went and got a pad and walked into the room that Stuart was in. “I’m bleeding.” And I burst into tears. I knew straight away that something was terribly wrong. Everything else I did that evening I was on autopilot. I rang the hospital who told me to go straight to A&E. I rang my mum and she came and got me to take me there while Stuart stayed in with Ivy, who was in bed asleep. While at the hospital my bleeding stopped, they took my blood and sent me home to return in two days for repeat bloods. And the next day my pains went away. I just couldn’t understand what was going on.
The next few days that passed have to be some of the most emotionally draining and physically tiring of my life. I was back and forth from the hospital every two days to monitor the levels of pregnancy hormone in my blood. I had them taken three times. This confirmed what I know I knew deep down, the pregnancy hormone was decreasing. My baby was dying or had already died. But my body was still refusing to believe it. I was still having pregnancy symptoms. I physically felt pregnant but emotionally I was numb. I began to hate my stupid body. It had given me false hope. I began to hate it for not being able to keep my baby alive and then I began to hate it for not being able to get rid of it as well.
A week after finding out the devastating news and a week before I was supposed to have my first midwife appointment, my body finally accepted that it was no longer pregnant and I experienced the worst night of my life. I can’t describe the physical or emotional pain; I just know I wouldn’t even wish it on my worst enemy. The only way I could cope with the pain was to get in the shower while Stuart held the scorching hot water on my back and we both watched on as all of our dreams for the future went swirling down the plug.
I wasn’t sure I was going to write this down never mind share it with you. But if it wasn’t for the online community I would never have gotten through this past week. I know people say you shouldn’t Google things but I had to. The wait was too agonising, I had to know what was instore for me. I wrote a post on a forum that I have been on since I was pregnant with Ivy and the response I received was phenomenal. All of these women had been through variations of the same thing. I couldn’t believe how common it was. In my time of need, even though I had Stuart and I was surrounded by our closest family and friends, I still felt like the loneliest person on the planet and these women are what helped me through. I remember reading a statistic that “the overall risk of miscarriage under 12 weeks in known pregnancies is 1 in 5” which completely shocked me. So why is it never spoken about?
I know why. Our minds trick us into thinking that we are failures. That a woman’s body is made to carry a child to term and some see that as our only purpose in life. So it’s hard to cope when we fail at the one thing we think we’re supposed to be good at. So I knew I needed to write about my experience, I wanted other mums to know I have come out the other side, stronger than I was before, it is possible. I’m quite an optimistic person anyway; I like to see the glass as half full and all that. But this experience has tested that to the core. I went to a very dark place where I didn’t want anyone or anything and I couldn’t see a way forward. I wanted this baby and only this baby but that had been taken away from me, ripped out of my body.
It took me a little while to try and find something positive to take from it. We learn from all of our experiences and if this has taught me anything it is that life is fleeting and we never know what is coming around the corner so we make the best of what we’ve got. We teach our children to learn and to grow but I also believe we learn a great deal from them.
So my “Little Bean” wherever your soul may be, you were only carried for such a short time but you have taught me to hold my daughter a little tighter, to forgive and forget about the small stuff, to live my life to the fullest and to never take the future for granted. For the rest of my life you will always be remembered and you will always have a place in my heart, “I carry your heart with me [I carry it in my heart]”.
See A Week Has Passed to read my next post on my miscarriage.