10+4

The day of reckoning, ha ha.

Well, here’s my mc stats and where we are today:

  • 4 losses before the 5 week mark.
  • 2 losses at 6w5d with lots of spotting beforehand
  • 1 loss at 7w5d with lots of spotting beforehand
  • 1 loss estimated 8-9 weeks, discovered at 11.5 weeks, passed at 13.5 weeks
  • 1 loss at 10w4d, discovered at 11w, passed at 11.5 weeks.

And today, 10w4d, I am still, incredibly, pregnant. There was a heartbeat when I checked after I woke up, galloping away, steady as you like.

So, just like that (of course, when I say just like that I’m brushing aside the long, slow weeks of crippling nausea and anxiety, but whatever), I’m ahead of nine other pregnancies that were never meant to be.

For the first time today, I felt something when I heard the heart beating. It was  a sensation of … joy. Brief, but it was there.

Until this point, the only emotions I’ve had are relief that I’m not facing the physical trauma of a miscarriage (at my scans, generally), and genuine shock each time I hear the heartbeat on the doppler that it’s still going. My doppler checks have been perfunctory. I find the heartbeat, ensure I hear steady beating for the absolute minimum time necessary (a few seconds), and then I turn it off and do something else.

I haven’t really identified with this baby at all – partly because of how ill I’ve felt and partly because of my history. We still haven’t told a single person and have no plans to at the moment.

But this morning, it was there – the beginning of something else. The first positive emotion I think I’ve felt since I got that second line on my pregnancy test. I’m grateful for this – I have been (and continue to be) afraid that I might carry to term and have major problems bonding. I seem to be focusing on all the negatives all the time: how tired I’ll be, how traumatic the birth might be, why we even thought this was a good idea, how I’d reached a kind of acceptance that it wasn’t going to happen, so now my head is all messed up again having to backpedal and readjust my expectations for the remainder of our lives… big thoughts. Often in the middle of the night (as you can well imagine).

Somewhere along the line, I think after I lost the pregnancy last year – even though we carried on trying – I turned a corner and lost my faith that it really was going to happen. Until that point, I’d always thought it was just a matter of time. After the mc at 11.5 weeks last March, I realised that there was a very real possibility that it would never happen. That all the time in the world wouldn’t bring me another baby. And so we carried on trying out of habit really, because we literally didn’t know how to stop and say goodbye to something we’d tried so hard for, for so long.

I didn’t even recognise it for what it was at the time, I just found myself trying more and more to focus on what we would do when we got to the end of trying. IVF was our last shot, and I never had any expectation of it working. I think we both decided to do it because we wanted to know we had tried everything and we wouldn’t have any regrets. I didn’t want people asking us years down the line “Why didn’t you try IVF?“. It was a decision more to protect the future me, than to help us in the present.

And then to have our world turned upside down and discover I was pregnant literally on the day we were due to have our IVF set-up appointment… well. It was unbelievable.

And so, for the last 7 weeks, since the faint line appeared on a test on day 22 of my last cycle, I’ve been walking around in this state of denial. That there is no way any of this could possibly be true, and even if it was, there is no way any of this could possibly work out.

Hearing that heartbeat this morning – for the first time it wasn’t just an abstract sound that confirmed I wasn’t likely to need a hospital trip in the next 24 hours – it was, very briefly, a baby.

I don’t want to get too excited, because we’re far from out of the woods yet, but what else can I say? This one has never given me any cause for concern. Not a single occurrence of spotting (this is the only pregnancy I’ve had that hasn’t seen any bleeding). Not a single scary cramping episode. Horrendous morning sickness, both day and night. I want to believe that this one is coming out at the right time, bawling in the way only a newborn can and jerking little arms and legs around in anger at the rude entrance into the world, but I’m afraid I’ll cry three years worth of tears if I try to think of it like that, so for now, I’ll take a heartbeat, and carry on keeping my head down.

3 weeks and 3 days until the second trimester. By then we’ll have our scans done and genetic test results back. Not too much longer.

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