You can read from the start here
I have spent a lot of time working through all the feelings associated with my miscarriages and the aftermath – how I have felt since it happened. But I’ve avoided talking about what it was like to realise I was miscarrying. I’m going to write about that today because I don’t think I can try again with out facing what happened.
When we fell pregnant with George (who I miscarried), we knew straight away. It was a bit of a shock! We had been thinking about trying for number 2 for a while but hadn’t committed to trying yet. Then one evening we had a long chat and decided we were finally brave enough to try. My pregnancy with Boo (our daughter) had been ROUGH and full of fear and worry. It took a long time to think we could put ourselves through another pregnancy. We were in a good place financially and I was in a good place physically and mentally. So after a few drinks, I decided I was brave enough. I could cope with another pregnancy if it meant Boo having a sibling. Approximately 6 hours after the conversation I woke up and felt dizzy. And foggy. It was 4am. I knew in that moment that I was pregnant and felt instinctively that it was a boy.
10 days later a pregnancy test confirmed I was pregnant.
I was so so happy! But also stunned that a conversation had become a reality in an instant. There were lots of times M and I would look at each other and say ‘we are having a baby’. We were overjoyed but it took a while to sink in. This was really happening.
To help it sink in I bought clothes for the baby. I had no doubt that the baby would be here and pet of our family. My due date was Christmas Day 2017. But I knew baby would be here before Christmas as I would be induced early again. I felt sure that I would get ICP again as the chance of recurrence is high and I hadn’t stopped itching from my last pregnancy. So this Christmas we were all set to be a family of 4. It had sunk in. We were having another baby!!!
I proceeded to throw up many times a day and feel like all I could do was sleep. I looked pregnant. It was crazy but my belly instantly took on a bump shape. There was nothing about the pregnancy that made me think I would miscarry. I expected hyperemesis gravidarum and ICP. But I never even considered miscarriage. It was not on my radar.
Then for a couple of days I didn’t throw up. And I could open the cupboard with coffee in it and not gag. I told myself it was because I was carrying a boy so maybe I wouldn’t have full blown HG this time. I told myself I was just lucky.
Even though miscarriage wasn’t on my radar, I still checked for blood every time I wiped. Habit I guess. I had been cramping a lot and it felt like my period starting so I guess subconsciously I just checked. Of course I told myself the cramping was normal. I’d been pregnant before so I knew that cramping was normal. I was cramping more and the cramps were quite painful but I knew that was normal! I was fine. We were having a baby!
Then it happened. I looked down and the tissue was pink. Really faint pink but pink nonetheless. I still didn’t panic. I had a bleed at 15 weeks with Boo and it turned out fine. It’s normal. It was early so I called 111. I knew it was best to check but I was sure everything would be fine. I explained the bleeding and the cramping and they told me they would call back. I went to the toilet again and this time there was a rush of blood.
In that moment, everything changed. I knew. I knew that we were going to lose the baby. The sickness. The smells. The tiredness. The cramps. And now the blood. I knew. I felt like an empty shell.
My husband came home from work and 111 called back saying they were sending an ambulance. I told them to cancel the ambulance and we drove to hospital. If 111 were worried too, I knew my feelings were going to be confirmed.
But then something unexpected happened. We had a scan and saw our baby, George (Boo had also decided the baby was a boy and had named him George). We had a baby with a heartbeat! Our baby was alive! The technician was kind and M was overjoyed. I was happy but, being me, needed facts to reassure me. So I asked for measurements. We were told that George was measuring 6 weeks and 3 days. The technician explained that our dates could be out. But I knew that there was no way they were 2 weeks out. The moment of hope was gone. I snapped at M for being happy. I told him we were losing the baby. The doctor who discharged us said it was all very positive and it was likely just a threatened miscarriage and everything would now be fine. I knew otherwise. George was too small. His heart was beating but something was stopping from developing properly. We were told to go home and rest. I was instructed to avoid stress and rest up in bed until the bleeding stopped.
That was on a Monday. On Friday at 4am, I woke up. I knew it was time.
My bleeding had increased over the week and I’d failed to convince myself that the baby was OK. I knew what was coming. I felt distraught knowing that George was alive and his heart was beating even though he was dying. I didn’t want him to suffer. I wanted it to be over for him. So when I woke up at 4am on May 12th, I was relieved and at peace. I felt my uterus contracting and the familiar sensation of pushing contractions moving a baby down the birth canal. There was no pain. My baby was tiny. But the sensation was the same. It lasted for 5 minutes. I was so grateful to be awake and present at George’s birth. I had been told that I wouldn’t know the exact moment it was happening and that George would be too small or would have broken up. But when I felt the pushing cease, I put my hand down, as I had with Boo, and there he was. My tiny baby was in the palm of my hand. Smaller than the tip of my finger. So small but so precious.