Cancer Ever After

Musings on Infertility, Adoption, Parenthood and Cancer

On Miscarriage – Part Two.

on 01/13/2015

No two miscarriages are alike. Some happen at four weeks, some at 20. Sometimes you bleed every day, and sometimes you don’t know anything is wrong until the doctor tells you.

No matter how far along you are, it hurts. It’s not just losing a baby, it’s losing a chance to have that baby and all of the hopes and dreams you hugged close to yourself. You may go on to have another child, but it’s a different child. A miscarriage is a loss.

It may surprise you, but people often say, “Oh, you weren’t that far along,” to people who have an early miscarriage, instead of “I’m sorry for your loss.”

Having a miscarriage changes you on a very fundamental level. You no longer have the same optimism and elation if and when you do get pregnant again.

The joy at finding out I was pregnant for the second time was unbelievable. We had tried for another year and eventually sought medical help. And then we went through another year of pills, potions, shots and more. It was as if someone had handed me the greatest gift in the world when the doctor confirmed I was pregnant.

But my joy was tinged with a shadow of fear. It’s one thing to know that 25% of pregnancies end in miscarriage–it’s another to have it happen to you.

We had our first ultrasound and found out it was not one baby, but TWO! I had morning sickness and pregnancy rage (it’s real, just google it and then avoid any pregnant woman with it). This pregnancy was so different from our first. We had another ultrasound and everything looked fine.

And then one day, it suddenly wasn’t.

I can’t remember what drove me to call the doctor–something was just off–and they told me to come in. They weren’t worried, we weren’t worried. Tim had gone to work that day.

But I knew as soon as they began the ultrasound. There was no flutter where there should have been two. The tech quietly left to get the doctor, and the doctor looked, too.

Hearing her say it out loud was the worst. And not only do they break the news, they have to give you your options. You see, since it was twins and I was far enough along, I would have to go to the hospital and have a D & C. It was recommended that we not let it happen naturally, because at this point it might not be safe.

That D & C was one of the worst experiences of my life. To give you a perspective, I’m going to share a list I posted on Facebook shortly after the miscarriage. We had told friends and family about this pregnancy, so I was more open about the loss. This post is from when the miscarriage was still raw and fresh:

Ten things I hope you never have to hear firsthand:

10. “threatened abortion/miscarriage”

9. “It was God’s plan.”

8. “fetal death”

7. “If you just stopped trying and/or stressing it would happen.”

6. “recurrent miscarriage”

5. “What was your estimated due date/date of last miscarriage?”

4. “We’ll send the products of life out for testing.”

3. (at check-in to lose babies): “Your total for the procedure today is $1,832.14. Please have the courtesy of paying before you leave.

2. “Monozygotic twins have a higher rate of birth defects. This really isn’t a surprise.”

1. “Both of the babies’ hearts have stopped beating.”

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