Sunday, May 25, 2014

My miscarriage

Be forewarned I plan on being very open about my miscarriage. I feel like little is ever said about it and I just thought I would jot down some details. If you are not interested do not read on.

I never knew what a miscarriage entailed until a good friend of mine recently shared her experience with me that it was actual labor to pass the baby at whatever stage you were in. If the knowledge of losing your baby wasn't enough! I've only heard of people having miscarriages. No one ever elaborated on that. I knew it was sad. I've decided instead of being the norm that I'll be open about it. Serve as a journal for me, to remember and acknowledge this baby of ours, and also for educational purposes to those who were in the dark if not actually experiencing it for yourself.

My D&C is scheduled for May 27th. It turns out I may not need it after all because this past Wednesday morning (marking exactly my 10 week mark) I started bleeding. I woke up at 6 am to wet undergarments. I didn't just start spotting like I've heard it described by others. There was blood, fluid, and a little tissue. There would be no question what was happening if I hadn't been expecting it. At that moment I was overwhelmed with peace and a feeling of extreme gratitude for having had the opportunity to carry this baby at all. I had no pain or discomfort at all on Wednesday. I was surprised about that.

I took a day off on Wednesday from working out. On Thursday I decided to workout anyway. Thursday the girls and I went to do a photo shoot for the church at the Oquirrh Mountain Temple for a couple of hours and then went straight to choir. Whew! That day was a doosy. I was in pain and had to sit more than I should have at choir. I think I pushed it a tad too hard that day. I have not made that mistake since.

Friday continued the bleeding, clots and cramping. It's been the worst period of my life cramping and bleeding wise. I decided to opt out of an activity or two and take it easy at home.

Saturday morning I had a feeling to go use the restroom. As I wiped tissue about the size of a TP square appeared. I looked at it and tried to analyze it a little to see if there was anything that could appear to be the baby. To an untrained eye there wasn't. I expected in order to pass the tissue (gestational sac and fetal pull) there would be cramping miniature labor style (not that I even know what labor feels like). It just appeared. There was no pain related to it either. I was surprised about that as well.

My emotions were close to the surface Saturday morning at a brunch we went to with some great neighborhood friends. My friend Lindsey and I have a goal to run a half marathon in September. I jumped into that idea. I think it's just what I need. I need a new goal completely opposite of my last goal (pregnancy). What's the longest I've ever ran at once? 6 miles. The only organized races I've ever ran have been 5K's but I think it'll be a fun goal. Work off the weight I've gained from the IVF, pregnancy, lack of quality workout and such and work towards a positive goal. We need to formulate a specific plan but I'm excited.

From the brunch we went to a baptism/baby blessing for two of our nieces. It was a sweet experience even though it was during nap time and both of the girls were crabby. When Alyssa went to get in the water to be baptized I had the girls walk up to the font. Charity looked through the glass at the water. I think it was reminiscent of the aquarium because she asked "Fish? Fish?" haha! Too cute! I missed the baby blessing because I was out in the hall with the girls. It was nice to be around family though.

Sunday I went to choir as standard. At church later I was in pain and emotionally exhausted so I left a little early for some R&R. I feel I've done pretty well through this process. I hit the acceptance stage right before the miscarriage started happening naturally. I think that's helped me a lot this past week. Life has been happening as usual. There have really only been two things I've cancelled. There have been a couple of tears shed and I expect things to go on for a while. I'm not sure how much longer it will take to stop bleeding or for my hormones to even out.

I tried calling my Dr's office to ask a nurse what to expect through this on Wednesday. My Dr was out of town all week last week so I wonder if his nurses have been as well because no one ever returned my call. I doubt anyone will be there on Memorial day tomorrow. I'll have to call early on Tuesday because I don't expect to need my D&C anymore.

A friend of mine posted about her miscarriage on her blog and shared the following poem. I though it was really sweet.

Just Those Few Weeks
by Susan Erling

For those few weeks--
I had you to myself.
And that seems too short a time
to be changed so profoundly.

In those few weeks--
I came to know you. . .
and to love you.
You came to trust me with your life.
Oh, what a life I had planned for you!

Just those few weeks--
When I lost you.
I lost a lifetime of hopes,
plans, dreams, and aspirations. . .
A slice of my future simply vanished overnight.

Just those few weeks--
It wasn't enough to convince others
how special and important you were.
How odd, a truly unique person has recently died
and no one is mourning the passing.

Just a mere few weeks--
And no "normal" person would cry all night
over a tiny, unfinished baby,
or get depressed and withdraw day after endless day.
No one would, so why am I?

You were those few weeks, my little one
you darted in and out of my life too quickly.
But it seems that's all the time you needed
to make my life so much richer
and give me a small glimpse of eternity.

A friend of hers commented on her post by sharing this little tear jerker.

I thought of you and closed my eyes 
And prayed to God today, 
I asked, "What makes a Mother?" 
And I know I heard him say: 
A Mother has a baby,
This we know is true 
But, God, can you be a mother 
When your baby's not with you? 

Yes, you can, he replied 
With confidence in his voice,
I give many women babies, 
When they leave it is not their choice. 
Some I send for a lifetime, 
And others for the day, 
And some I send to feel your womb, 
But there's no need to stay. 

I just don't understand this God, 
I want my baby here. 

He took a breath, 
and cleared his throat, 
And then I saw a tear. 
I wish I could show you, 
What your child is doing Here... 

If you could see your child smile 
With other children and say, 
"We go to earth to learn our lessons 
of love and life and fear, 
but My mommy loved me so much 
I got to come straight here!" 
I feel so lucky to have a Mom who had so much love for me, 
I learned my lessons very quickly, 
My Mommy set me free. 
I miss my Mommy oh so much 
But I visit her each day. 
When she goes to sleep, 
On her pillow is where I lay. 
I stroke her hair and kiss her cheek, 
And whisper in her ear,
"Mommy, Please don't be sad today, 
I'm your baby and I am here" 

So you see my dear sweet one, 
Your children are okay. 
Your babies are here in My home, 
And this is where they'll stay. 
They'll wait for you with Me, 
Until your lessons there are through, 
And on the day that you come home, 
they'll be at the gates waiting for you 

So now you see 
What makes a Mother, 
It's the feeling in your heart, 
It's the love you had so much of 
Right from the very start.


I shared briefly in my first post about IVF round 3 that Chuck gave me a priesthood blessing when I began to fear the worst learning there was no yolk sac. In the blessing Chuck said that if things did end in a miscarriage this pregnancy I could relate to those who have been through the same thing on a whole new level. Nothing was definitive at that moment but I knew the risks. The priesthood blessing brought the spirit into my heart and did bring peace with it.

I don't expect to bleed much longer. I anticipate this experience coming to a close. I'm grateful things happened naturally. I'm grateful it hasn't been terribly painful or horrible. I don't have all of the answers. I don't know exactly how things will work out in the next life as considered in this article. I am a very religious person. I have faith and hope this will work out regarding this pregnancy and hopefully there will be more pregnancies in our future. I think I've continued talking about this to keep the remembrance of this baby. I assume I will return to these posts for solace and remembrance in the future. I plan on moving on to happier topics from here on out though. I love my Father in Heaven and do not doubt He has a plan for me. I do not doubt Him and His plan because my life, husband and daughters are more incredible than I could've ever imagined. I'm blessed beyond measure and know He is the giver of all of those blessings. I love my Savior who suffered all that I might not suffer. He endured what I could not. I am grateful for my loving, understanding husband who has been there for me through this process and has loved me unconditionally, and taken things as they've come, and has been there for me in every way. This baby will always be a part of me and for that I am grateful.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Ups and downs...

I feel I've been taking things rather well lately (considering). Like I said in my last post I must have been in the denial stage of grief. I can confirm that because I've since move through the anger, depression, and bargaining stages.

I'd been fine for days. I hadn't cried for a while. Thursday night I broke my approx. 4 day streak and lost it. I cried at choir to a sweet friend who knew nothing about our third try but has followed our path of infertility all along and has had children struggle as well. Then I came home and had a talk with Chuck and full on lost it. I was just sad. Miscarriage just seems like such a sad, horrible thing. I cannot wrap my brain around it. I cannot get it. I think that's another reason I was in denial for so long. It's simply unfathomable to me. I know there are things much worse than a miscarriage that happens in the world but I can't wrap my brain around those things either.

I don't understand why babies wished, dreamed and prayed for can't come to good, prepared, loving parents. Why would we be denied of that? I feel those little miracles are Gods blessing and under His control. IVF is the most medically advanced way to control the process of getting pregnant. There is still just a 55% likelihood of people getting pregnant. Then there's always the chance of miscarriage of course. I believe God is capable of miracles. I believe if it was His will, right for us and right for that baby it would've happened. There are a lot of things in this life that I don't understand. I do believe that with all of the work we've put into getting our little twins here HAS made me cherish them all the more. I feel that applies to anything we really have to work for in life. I feel anything major I have attained in life I have really had to work for ie. Chuck, MOTAB, my babies. All the hard work has benefited me in the way of totally valuing what I have attained from the hard work. The victory at the end of all of the effort makes the prize that much sweeter. I do believe that. I hope in the future we'll have more kids and this experience will add to appreciating them all the more.

I have not lost faith in God. I still trust in His love, plan, and timing. I do have questions. I don't understand why we felt so right about trying IVF for the third time right now only to have it work but not result in a baby. I still get sad sometimes. I still hope and pray for a miracle (bargaining stage) but I'm gradually becoming more prepared to say goodbye if and when I have to. Nothing is happening naturally. I decided I'd let things got until 10 weeks. My doctor is out of town next week so things will have to wait until 11 weeks. I've done my research on cost vs doing the D&C in our fertility clinic vs doing it in the hospital with my OB. It's over $1000 cheaper to do it in our fertility clinic. So, there you go. I've scheduled an ultrasound beforehand just to be absolutely sure nothing has changed between 7 and 11 weeks.

Chuck has been absolutely fine (the day after our bad news). I've had my ups and downs. No highs but I have had lows. Chuck reached the acceptance stage right away. He isn't happy about losing the baby but he has come to grips with the bad news. He has been there for me and been my shoulder to cry on through numerous stages of my grief. I've had little experience with the stages of grief luckily. This time around I've been much more aware of what I've been experiencing through it. He has been so amazingly supportive and kind through my mood swings. He has never blamed or questioned me. I am so appreciative of that. I don't know if the roles were reversed that I could be so gracious.

I'm glad nothing happened naturally yet. It's given me time to prepare for the worst. It may not make a difference though. What is better? Go through the grief before or after the actual occurrence of a miscarriage? I'm sure the grief process would've been just as bad had I not had an IVF pregnancy following every stage and just having the surprise of things happen naturally on their own. Either one is hard, heart breaking, disappointing and just seems wrong.

Again. I don't know why we're going through this trial but I believe it is giving us experience, I believe and have hope in the future. We have felt the prayers, love, and support of others. I have felt the peace only the Holy Ghost can bring. I believe that even though Chuck and I have had very different grieving processes it has brought us closer together. I have faith and hope good things can come from this time of sadness.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

8 weeks???

I'm not sure how to keep track of how far along I am in this pregnancy. Do you count what your baby measured at or how far along you are until your body officially rejects the pregnancy? I have no idea. TECHNICALLY I would be 8 weeks along today. In the past six days (since finding out this baby would not make it) we've had such an out pouring of love. I can't call it anything other than that. I've always wondered why people wanted to avoid announcing their pregnancy in the early months for fear of losing the baby. I always thought that if I lost it I would want the love and support from others. NOW having actually gone (going through it currently) through it I can say I stand by that. I respect people for feeling the way they feel but for me personally I would not have been able to make it without the hugs, messages and talks with people who have been through similar heartbreaking situations. I could not have done it without you. You know who you are. It has helped me so much. There has been so much comfort knowing and mourning with those who can relate. Thank you, thank you for opening up to me and sharing your stories with me as well. It has helped in innumerable ways.

I feel I'm doing surprisingly well with it at the moment. I don't know if I can attribute it to having twin babies and just having to press forward with life, feeling the prayers of others and the comfort of the spirit in my life, OR being in partial denial about this whole thing or ALL OF THE ABOVE. Nothing has physically changed in me. I still battle with fatigue and feel the exact same way. I have not started spotting or bleeding. I still don't know how I want to move forward. I've talked to people about what they decided or what happened for them and swayed my opinions from natural to D&C so many times. I am still on the fence about it. Part of me is afraid of the bleeding, cramping, passing the baby (sorry if that's TMI). The other part of me is somewhat curious and feels that I can only fully experience the situation if I go through it on my own. I don't know. I really don't.

As I said I have no regrets about being so open about our IVF round. I have loved the hugs, the talks, the kind words, kind looks, offers to help etc... I know the best people ever and am so grateful for you. Even if you haven't know what to say you've been there for me. For that I am so grateful. We've also received heartwarming gifts as well. I've never had so many flowers in my house at one time in my life before. I won't say who gave us what to avoid embarrassing anyone but I want you to know it was so loving and so kind of you. It's a constant reminder of your love and support. It has brought me comfort. To all of you I say thank you, I love and appreciate you for being in my life and being a shoulder to cry on.

One thing that has been hard is some sweet friends in the choir who heard I was pregnant through the grapevine haven't heard all of the news through the grapevine quite yet. On Sunday I still had a couple ladies ask how I was feeling in relation to the pregnancy. I think social media makes this a little easier. I think that's why being open is easy for me. I just have to tell my story once. If you're interested you'll know my situation. I don't have to tell and retell my story to everyone I come in contact with. It's out there. I can tell it once to all my friends and then move on from there. As positive as this situation can be, it has been because all of you and because of my loving, supportive husband, my beautiful beams of sunshine twin baby girls, my loving Father in Heaven and sweet, sweet Savior who has been through all we can ever suffer.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Pregnancy and Miscarriage

We went in for my ultrasound this morning. The doctor saw us in the hallway and asked if I'd had any pregnancy symptoms recently. I never had many symptoms with the girls and my hormones were through the roof with twins so I wasn't sure what to expect this time around. I didn't think it was a tell tale sign that things weren't going well. We'd have to wait for the ultrasound for that.
Right away it was visible that there was still no sign of a yolk sac. A heart beat was still not visible which the doctor said at this point should be very apparent. The baby only measured 6 weeks 0 days when I'm technically 7 weeks 1 day. It could now be determined without a doubt that this baby is not going to make it. My doctor talked to us about our options. He said he doesn't usually see a baby and no yolk sac. Usually it's the other way around. There is medication you can take that will basically put you into labor to pass the baby quickly but he strongly discouraged it. Our other two options would be either a D&C or to let things happen on their own. My doctor shared a personal experience of his wife and her two miscarriages. He said she had two miscarriages and tried a different option with each. She hated both. I can see that. It seems there is no win in this situation.
Ugh! This is so hard. I instantly started tearing up. Chuck and I held hands as I lay on the table listening to our options. Miscarriage has always been one of those things I've heard about people close to me experiencing. It seemed harder to deal with than infertility because we never made it that far into actually being pregnant. I always felt so bad for those who have gone through it and always hoped to never experience it for myself. I don't know if knowing ahead of time to somehow anticipate it is worse or better than just seeing it out of the blue. I suspect they're both horrible.
Chuck and I aren't sure what we're going to do at this point. The Dr said for us to take our time to grieve which is what we have been doing. Chuck stayed home from work today. We've been talking about and opening up to each other about our hopes and dreams of this pregnancy. We both thought and wished for a boy. Chuck longed for a boy he could one day take on father/son camp outs, teach scouting, etc. We've cried and held each other. We both feel drained of energy and find this reality very difficult to face.
I know there are worse things that could happen. Still births, losing a child, or spouse would all be harder than this I believe but this is very much a loss. I was pregnant. There was a baby. I never heard a heart beat. I never saw movement. This is hard but we still have very much to be thankful for. I know our Father in Heaven is aware of us. I know if we were meant to get pregnant now and it was that baby's time to be on earth it would have worked out. Even though we felt strongly about trying now we are still hopeful there are more children in Heaven for us to parent. We know things will work out when they are supposed to. We have to beautiful, healthy, perfect little girls to enjoy now. We have a wonderful marriage. I would never ask for this trial but I know we are well equipped to face it. Chuck is my rock. Our family and friends are there for us. It's hard and I'm not looking forward to actually losing this baby.
We still have three more embryos in the freezer and I've known people who have struggled for years to have a child and miraculously they have one on their own, without fertility treatments. For whatever reason things did not work out right now but we are not giving up. We know this experience will help us relate on a different level with those who have been through this very same thing. We will be strengthened by them and be able to strengthen others as well.
We were so looking forward to this baby. I'd already started thinking of little boy names. I had changed my diet and workout routine. I started reading "What to Expect When You're Expecting". I reserved my parents to come into to town to help with the birth. I had arranged the perfect time to go to KY to visit family and have my amazing sister take pregnancy shots with the girls. How cute would that have been? I thought of our little boy being close in age to my sisters baby boy. I had anticipated missing this years MOTAB Christmas concert, dinner and devotional because of this baby. I was planning fall and winter outfits in my pregnant body. I was gearing up for the weight gain and discomfort. Now I'm trying to wrap my brain around changing all of my plans for no baby.