This series of posts all about my first pregnancy and birth is very much like my first pregnancy. Long. A lot happened!
This is my story.
Having a baby wasn’t even on our radar. I was 22 years old, yes, I had a full-time job, but it was nothing special. Mr.S was 24 and a 2nd year University student.
Valentines Day, 2010. I woke up that morning, and I just didn’t feel right. I got up and showered and dropped Mr.S off at work. At the time he was a part-time chef and also a full-time Uni student.
I got home and decided and lay on the sofa for a while and just watch tv, and I couldn’t work out what was up with me. Then it dawned on me, whilst looking at the calendar on my phone, I was late about a week late, and I hadn’t even realised until that very moment! I felt a sense of panic set in, and suddenly it was all I could think about.
Just two years beforehand, Mr. S was having chemo for Stage 3 testicular cancer. He was told that there was pretty much zero chance of him remaining fertile after having the chemotherapy and only having one testicle. We took it on the chin and got on with our lives.
So with that in my mind, I got in my car and drove to the next town on from me (to lessen the chances of seeing people I knew when I was trying to buy a pregnancy test, I didn’t want any tongues wagging)
I went home and took the test. Less than 2 minutes later those two red lines appeared. I thought I was going to be sick. I burst into tears. What the hell were we going to do?
The next few hours were a blur. What was Mr. S going to say?
I didn’t ring or text Mr. S at work. I needed to tell him face-to-face. So when I came to collect him from work, I just blurted it out. We both fell silent. I think he would have settled with just a Valentines card. What a shock.
After a few weeks, it did start to sink in. We started to tell those close to us. Everyone was surprisingly supportive, and happy for us. We knew it was not the ideal time for this to happen, but with the stress and worry of Mr. S being seriously unwell a couple of years before, we figured, that this was meant to be. Sure, we might struggle but we could see it through. If we could see cancer through, we could see anything through.
Things were going just fine, I felt fine in myself and started to look forward to the prospect of becoming a mum.
Then, without warning at approximately 9 weeks in, all the fun and games of this hellish pregnancy began.
I was at work, I stood up I felt a sharp, stabbing pain in my side, kind of like a period pain, but much worse. I was worried, so I scooted along to the ladies. As I sat down on the toilet, I looked down and all I could see was red. Fresh red blood, running down the sides of the toilet pan and into the water.
When I came out of the toilets, I rushed to find a manager. I just blurted it out. “I’m pregnant, and I’m bleeding, help me!” The poor bloke literally didn’t know what to say. (Not really an office managers job to deal with that kind of scenario is it?) He just ran over to my desk, picked up my bag and walked me down to the reception area of the office. Mr. S was at uni that day and got there on the train, so there was nothing he could do.
Luckily, my Mum worked close by to where I worked. I phoned her and she dropped everything and collected me from work and drove me to the hospital.
After a few hours, a few blood tests and an examination, I was advised to go home and rest. It was a threatened miscarriage.
I was devastated. Mr. S was devastated too. It would be a waiting game from then on.
The bleeding didn’t stop, and about 3 days later it got much, much worse and the cramps got unbearable. Mr. S drove me to A&E where I was transferred up to the gynae ward. I had blood tests taken yet again and I was also given pain relief. It was agony.
A few hours after being admitted, two doctors came and talked me. The looks on their faces said it all. They told me I was going to miscarry, my HCG levels have more than halved over the past 3 days, therefore that meant the pregnancy would not continue.
My dating scan was set for a week from that point. I asked them how I would go about cancelling it. They said they wanted me to still attend the appointment to ensure all traces of “the product” had gone, as I may need a D & C procedure. The thought of having to sit in a waiting room full of excited mums-to-be waiting to see their baby doing somersaults in their tummy on the screen, whilst we waited to see if all of “the product” had gone, tore me apart.
I nearly didn’t even go to the appointment, I was still losing so much blood that I thought to myself that it must have all ended on its own by now.
Mr. S convinced me to go though, just to be on the safe side.
Good job we did.
The sonographer was already aware of the situation, and was very sympathetic. I just got onto the examination bed, ready for the ultrasound and stared upwards at the ceiling. I didn’t want to be there. I just wanted to move on with my life and forget that any of this ever happened. I was beyond being upset about the situation anymore.
The sonagrapher started the scan and I turned to look at Mr. S. He was looking at the screen, all of a sudden he told me to look at the screen and I did.
I could not believe my eyes. This pregnancy which I was told would not continue was very much continuing. I saw our baby moving around, doing somersaults in my tummy on the screen, with a very strong heartbeat. We could not believe it. We were going to have a baby after all.
We don’t really know what caused the bleeding. It was suggested by my obstetrician that I miscarried a twin, hence the significant drop in my HCG levels.
Bizarrely, a day after the scan the bleeding simply ground to a halt. I suddenly felt a million times better and things were good again.
At our 20 week scan, we were told everything was looking really good, and that the baby was a boy. We were over the moon and beyond excited! I had a gut feeling it would be a boy – I love it when I’m right!
Things were going great. But then at 32 weeks, that changed…
Like I said at the beginning of this post, this pregnancy was a long and complicated one. I will continue this story in another post shortly.