Thursday, August 28th, 2008 • No Comments
It was an awful, painful, bloody night. When I finally got up this morning (after sleeping off and on and then napping until almost noon), I decided I couldn’t wait until my prenatal appointment tomorrow to find out what I was certain I already knew.
I went to the hospital this afternoon and they confirmed my fear. There was no heartbeat. I knew there wouldn’t be when the silence in the room lingered for almost five minutes. Sunday, they located the heartbeat within a minute. Today, it was as if the doctor was seeking some elusive treasure that was not to be found.
I knew it. And yet, I still hoped.
I go back to the hospital tomorrow for more blood work, to be sure my hormone levels are falling as they should be. I’m fairly certain the worst is over and there won’t be a need for invasive procedures. That’s one small blessing in all this—my body knows what to do once it’s over.
I’m hanging in there. I’m being tough. I’m looking toward the future because there is so much to look forward to and so many good things on the horizon. We’ll try again, when I’m ready. When I’ve healed, inside and out. Maybe next time will be my time.
I have hope.
Tuesday, August 26th, 2008 • No Comments
I got my hopes up Sunday. I thought that was a good thing, to be reassured. Now, I’m not so sure. I am starting to think I will not be in the ninety-fifth percentile. I’ve been bleeding since my ER visit. Today, it’s been like a regular period, including the heavy cramping.
I’m miserable and I can’t take anything for the pain but Tylenol. I’m scared because I don’t feel pregnant, but I want to believe there’s a chance it will all work out. That chance seems less and less likely as the hours pass.
I know I could go back to the hospital. Probably should, since the bleeding is heavier. But they can’t do anything for me if I’m miscarrying and I don’t have the energy to sit in the waiting room of the ER for hours. It’s scary, this not knowing. But I’m not sure I’m ready to know.
My first prenatal appointment is Thursday. That seems forever away. I’m afraid I won’t be offered the same reassurance I was on Sunday. I’m afraid there won’t be a heartbeat to see.
Sunday, August 24th, 2008 • No Comments
I woke up this morning hoping I wouldn’t have a reason to go to the hospital. I had intended to call on the doctor’s office on Monday, tell them I was having some bleeding and convince them I needed an ultrasound.
Things started out well, just some cramping and very little bleeding. I was hopeful. But as the day progressed, it got worse. By six o’clock, I knew I needed to go to the emergency room. So I went—alone—armed with two books and a notebook, just in case I was waiting all night. Thankfully, it wasn’t that bad.
Urine sample, triage, brief exam, ultrasound. I was waiting for the ultrasound. I was waiting for them to tell me there was no heartbeat. I was prepared for the worst news because I’ve been through these exact same symptoms before. The resident finished listening to my heart and lungs and stepped out to get his attending and a nurse. They set up the portable ultrasound (attached to a laptop) and I laid there, waiting for the inevitable news. It didn’t come.
They saw the heartbeat.
I didn’t get to see it because of the equipment (ER versus obstetrics), so I was staring at the table as the three of them stared at the laptop monitor. After a moment, I looked up and there were three people looking at the image on the screen, smiling and nodding and saying, “There it is.”
The heart rate was in the 140s, which I gather is a little low, but not a big concern. The embryo is measuring 6 weeks 4 days and I am 7 weeks 1 day, but again, they said it wasn’t a big concern. So, all good news there. I’m still bleeding a little and the doctor suggested it might be the placenta imbedding, so we’ll see. They’re calling it a “threatened miscarriage,” which seems… well… threatening, but I was assured that seeing the heartbeat gives me a 95% chance of carrying to term. Ninety-five percent sounds pretty good to me.
The resident (a really sweet guy, which has not been my general experience with military health care) was shocked that I wasn’t being seen sooner than ten weeks, given my age and history of miscarriage. He went out the nurse’s station, pulled up the appointments and got me one for this Thursday. More good news. I’ll be going to the naval hospital rather than my doctor’s office, but right now I’m okay with that. And if I have a good experience with them on Thursday, I may be content to stay put rather than seek out a civilian doctor.
Now I’m just hoping the bleeding stops so I can relax. I’m probably fooling myself—“relax” is not likely to be a word in my vocabulary in the next eight months—but I’ll take it one day at a time. After all, they saw a heartbeat.
Maybe I’ll get to see it on Thursday.