This post was originally written back in November, but I have decided to wait until now to share it. You will see an update at the end.
November 10, 2010
It has been pretty crazy around here over the course of the last week and I want to make sure I get all that’s happened down while the memory is fresh.
Many of you know that we miscarried back in August. Well, on our anniversary, October 6th, we found out that we were pregnant again. We were excited but a little apprehensive.
According to labs things seemed to be going well–until last Thursday (November 4th). I started spotting, which turned into more heavy bleeding. It seemed that we were headed in the direction of another miscarriage, especially when we got another lab report back which said my progesterone was quite low and my HCG was nothing to write home about. One of our midwives said there was probably no need to do an ultrasound, since most evidence pointed in a discouraging direction.
I felt all kinds of things. Sometimes I felt I was accepting what seemed like the inevitable, other times I had hope that the baby was okay. The truth is, it’s never actually over until you either miscarry or get an ultrasound and you see no heartbeat. On top of that there was anger, impatience, numbness, exhaustion, embarrassment, confusion, and frustration.
You can imagine, for Jason, I was a gem to be around. But despite my moodiness, he took care of Ian & I so well–making us meals, cleaning up, listening to me talk and cry, playing with Ian. He did all these things despite the fact that he was going through his own personal version of life anticipating a probable miscarriage.
Yesterday (November 9th) I woke up and decided I was tired of living with the unknown. If we went in for an ultrasound and there was no heartbeat at least we could know and move on with whatever was ahead for us. If the baby was living (highly unlikely) then that would be amazing and we could do whatever was in our control to set this little one up for a continued successful life in utero and out.
I himmed and hawed through the morning about it. I talked with a friend who listened well and added her encouragement, and then finally scheduled an appointment.
In the hour and a half in between scheduling and walking into the doctor’s office I felt a bit of relief, coupled with dread and nervousness. And I prayed that we would get a really nice ultrasound tech. They don’t all have the greatest bedside manner or are very clear about what they are seeing. I know this by experience.
Getting to the office went smoothly. When we got into the exam room, the tech told us she was the mom of two boys. She was super nice to Ian. She knew we were doing a viability check (which indicates there’s a good chance the findings won’t be positive) and she responded with warmth and helpfulness. She was very clear and informative.
At 4:15pm I was laying there with Jason & Ian next to me and the screen popped up and we saw our little one. And very nonchalantly the tech said “Your baby looks like a little gummy bear, that’s exactly how it should look. And there’s the heartbeat.”
I saw it for myself. I looked at Jason. And then I said to the tech “Wait, there’s a heartbeat?” She told me several more times and reassured me that the beats-per-minute were very good, she didn’t see any bleeding that was concerning, and that yes, our baby looked like a gummy bear.
I was dumbfounded. And then the doctor came in and said all the same things but added “This is very good news. We like giving this kind of news to people.” And he left. And I was still dumbfounded.
The tech handed me four photos of our little one (the most I’ve ever gotten from an appointment), I got dressed, and we walked out.
I was thinking a million things at that point, but here are some of them:
- What does the road (aka drama) ahead look like now? Will the baby be okay? What about my low progesterone levels?
- God, why are you so good to me?
- What will our midwives say?!
- This is very weird, but good, of course!
- Why am I bleeding?
- I HAVE to trust God with this.
- Thank you for that ultrasound tech!
- I’m scared.
- I have to tell all the people who were praying for us! They prayed for us and look what happened!
The last thought was very encouraging to my faith, which to be honest over the last week has been one of numbness and distance from God. Quite a few people have told me that they had been thinking of me/us recently and were praying (whether they knew I was pregnant or not).
Of those who knew what was going on, I had several people say “I am going to pray that the baby lives.” I appreciated their prayers, but I myself didn’t have much hope.
And there have been people praying for us that we don’t even know. Friends have told me their extended family members have been praying and my mom’s bible study group is, too.
If you know us, please pray for us. If you don’t know us, please pray, too. Pray that the baby would live!
I am still bleeding and sometimes it’s pretty heavy, which concerns me. It doesn’t take long after seeing God’s faithfulness to forget and start to worry about the future.
I’m now supplementing with progesterone. I’ve also been told to cut down on my activity level, a sort of partial bed rest. My hope is that these things will help, the baby will be just fine, and the bleeding will stop.
Jason reminds me that God has sustained this little one so far, He can continue to do it, and He will do exactly what is best.
To be honest, sometimes I feel peace when he says that and sometimes I don’t. But I can’t deny that God has done a miracle for us!
An update: After partial bed rest at the end of October, my bleeding stopped. No one was able to identify why it occurred, but after talking to several other women and doing a little internet research, I found that quite a few others have had a similar experience.
Besides this troubling symptom, I felt pretty good in the first trimester–not nearly as nauseous as I did with Ian or as tired as I did with the last one. Our due date is June 17th.
At 12 weeks we heard a very reassuring heartbeat. At 14 weeks I stopped taking progesterone, as our midwife said she didn’t think I needed to anymore. I’m now at 19 weeks and in the last couple weeks we’ve been able to feel the baby kicking.
In about a week we go in for our 20-week ultrasound. We’ve decided we’re going to find out the sex.
I am being asked to trust God in a new way with this pregnancy. With Ian I remember worrying about if Jason & I could handle parenthood and all that came with it. I worried how our marriage would do with the change. But I felt confident that my body could grow a healthy baby and that the birth would turn out positively.
This time around, I am finding that I am more worried about the baby’s health and my body’s ability to carry him or her. I think more about the “what-ifs” of potential medical complications. I guess that is to be expected considering our past experiences.
Life continues on and with that, the pregnancy is going by much faster than with Ian. And Ian is getting excited, too. He understands more and more that there’s a baby in Mommy’s tummy (and not in his tummy or Daddy’s).
Please continue to pray for this little one and for us. I am looking forward to seeing him or her again in the upcoming ultrasound, and will be relieved if all looks well with this second look. I also have had the flu for the last week and would appreciate a quick recovery and health for our whole family.
Thank you God for what you have done done in our family–not just this miracle, though we are especially excited about it, but everything You have done.