Uncertain

I’m 13dpo and I did another test. But the line is not looking too good.

This is a Superdrug 10miu test. A super-sensitive, test 4 days early jobbie.

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I would have expected it to be darker than that, given the test I did 3 days ago was a 25miu one.

I’ll test again tomorrow, but I am calmly open to the possibility that this one might just disappear over the next few days.

Thinking About Doctors, Scans, and Midwives

Back in March this year, while I was waiting for a “confirmation” scan that my baby’s heart had indeed stopped beating, I wrote this in my journal:

If i ever get pregnant again, i’m not doing any of this. No scans, no nothing, no midwives. Sitting here waiting for scans is just stressful and time consuming. I end up shaking and that can’t be good for me or a pregnancy.

I was physically trembling at that point, even though I already knew the worst. I hate going to see any kind of doctor. I have always felt like that. Dentists? No problem. Doctors? Bah!

Maybe I’ve just had more than my fair share of bad doctors over the years, but even from childhood I remember them being disinterested and unhelpful, only wanting to prescribe something and get on with their day. One consultant I saw, long ago, actually gave me the once over as I walked out of his office to get changed for a smear test. Disgusting. Seriously.

And doctors have been so little help to me on this journey. My husband’s doctor said that there is nothing more they can do for us in “our situation”.

Meh.

Anyway, the issue I have is that even thinking about making an appointment for anything just gets my adrenaline pumping around and I can feel my hands getting cold and shaky…

I’ve booked in with the midwife system six times in total, and four of those times I’ve had a miscarriage within a few days of first seeing them. Last time I waited until I was 10 weeks, thinking it would be ok, and they chastised me for not coming sooner, and then a few days later my baby was dead!!

And then, just as you’re feeling a little more human, you get the NHS maternity card in the post. Which you have to return. Because you don’t need it any more.

Four times I’ve done that. I’m starting to get a bit superstitious about it.

So.

Wondering what I’m going to do this time.

The Early Pregnancy Unit said to contact them by phone as soon as I was pregnant and they wouldn’t need a referral, they’d just take me straight on as a patient. But what will they do? Scan me. Prescribe progesterone and aspirin without even bothering to take my progesterone levels. Send me away.

As for the midwife unit. They have been so unhelpful and bloody rude over the last couple of years. I’m not asking for special treatment, but the last time I miscarried I found out at a private scan, and when I went back to the NHS midwife team they just spent ages moaning about how private scans shouldn’t just “turf” patients out after bad news and expect them to fend for themselves.  I was only phoning to tell them I wouldn’t be making my check-up appointment and they basically had a go at me on the phone about the state of the medical system, while I sat there with tears running down my face over my lost child. It’s not my bloody fault! I was only trying to make sure an overworked midwife knew I wouldn’t be attending.

I have a whole series of horrible stories from my midwife encounters over the years (including the one who told me with a cold stare, when I asked about a medicine I’d been given, that one mother who didn’t take it was found lying on the floor dead, next to her newborn baby – who SAYS that kind of thing to someone?), but this isn’t the time.

SIGH.

Anyway.

I still had a BFP this morning (yay!), so what am I gonna do?

I just feel like I never want to see a midwife, ever again.

And the Early Pregnancy Unit is just such a shit place to spend your time.

And all the stress that I feel in these appointments… I get so worked up before a scan I actually feel like I’m going to be sick.

It isn’t good for me (or the baby!).

And I feel particularly protective of this one already, my little gluten-free miracle.

Did you know that a gluten free diet in coeliacs reduces the risk of miscarriage by 9.18 times?

15% of coeliac pregnancies end in miscarriage. Terrifying.

I don’t know what I’m going to do. I don’t want to be prodded, talked down to, patronised, made to wait for hours on end, ignored, dismissed, pitied or freaked out by anything.

I want to be looked after, with kindness.

But it seems, that might just be too much to ask.

 

And Then This Happened

SMU

I don’t even really know what to say about this.

Pffffff.

Crazy.

Last month, as I said in my previous post, I had a breezy two week wait and apart from a bit of mourning on the day AF arrived I was doing really well.

Actually, let’s go back a bit further.

A few months ago, with my 40th birthday looming on the horizon (it’s now in 2.5 weeks), I took a look in the mirror and decided I needed to focus on my health – properly. Not because of TTC, but because I just needed to look after myself.

So, I started green smoothies yet again after a long break, and I bought some anti-aging supplements (chlorella, spirulina, and coQ10 (ubiquinol)). I also bought a multivitamin and started upping the amount of veg we were all eating. We’d slipped into bad habits over the summer where the boys had been home. Also, for a while now I’ve been taking a very low dose of DHEA (IVF clinics often prescribe this to improve egg quality, but it takes several months to take effect). The recommended dose is 75mg, but it’s a hormone and requires monitoring, so I have been taking only 25mg a day – in fact, I was basically finishing the pot I had left in the cupboard, just because it was there.

I’ve been exercising at least once a week since early August.

I don’t know if these changes made a difference or not (I have also been caffeine and gluten free since the end of April), but I thought it was worth mentioning.

Anyway, back to this month. It started out well, and in fact, we almost missed my ovulation I was so laid back about it (can you believe that? That never would have happened six months ago).

And that was that.

But on Tuesday I was just so tearful. I spent the whole day catching up on blogs and reading about what everyone else is up to (so many pregnancies out there right now!), and then reading about egg quality and catching up on forums and all the shit that I really shouldn’t be doing.

And then… I can’t even explain it. I just had this feeling I was pregnant. I thought maybe it was psychosomatic and caused just by reading about pregnancy.

I turned the house upside down looking for a leftover pregnancy test. Not a single one in the house.

I went online and put some pregnancy tests into a basket – the 10miu ones I prefer to use – but then when I went downstairs to get my purse I decided I was being an idiot, so I didn’t buy them.

Yesterday I spent the whole day trying not to think that I was pregnant.

Symptoms?

Sore boobs. Which I get most months.

Nothing else. No cramps, no aching, no spotting, no cm even.

But this feeling…

So this morning after dropping DS1 off at school, I took DS2 to the supermarket and we picked up the cheapest £1 test I could find.

25miu sensitivity.

And I’m 10 days past ovulation today, so still too early really, for a shop test.

But I did it.

And with second morning urine.

And that’s what came up, straight away.

I kept picking it up, looking at it, putting it down, and walking back across the room saying to myself I’m seeing things.

But that line is there – on a regular old test.

So, as you can imagine, it doesn’t seem very real at the moment.

And as you know, there are a million and one things that can go wrong at this early stage (and I’m right up there with things going wrong!).

Another miscarriage could easily be on the cards, given my “advanced” age, and my history. Plus a whole host of other bad things I don’t even want to think about.

So, I’ll wait a while.

And we’ll see where we are in a few weeks time.

In the meantime, I shall be shovelling as much organic fruit and veg into my body as I can manage, because this is my first pregnancy since my coeliac diagnosis that looks like it stands a chance of getting off the ground, and my immune system is much better behaved these days!

Reintegration

I just wanted to post a quick update on how we’re doing, documenting this journey for what it is, or is not.

So: firstly I’ve had a complete ban on anything related to pregnancy and babies, as far as possible. I have been super-strict with not ruminating on it, I’ve avoided conversations about it, and stayed away from blogs and forums about it. So – my apologies for any of you (still reading) that I haven’t visited.

Has it worked?

Actually, it’s made a world of a difference. It was pretty hard at first, and after a couple of weeks I had a bit of a slip and found myself googling recurrent miscarriage (like anything new is going to have appeared that I haven’t read in the last 2.5 years). But I gave myself a talking to, and moved on.

I’ve been more involved in my professional life, doing some technical writing and getting back out there and seeing what’s going on in the world.

And – big one for me – I have re-joined Facebook. Since I now only have a handful of friends, I’m not inundated with pregnancy announcements and cute baby pics all the time and actually I’ve really enjoyed reconnecting with people, so, if you know my real life persona I’d love to see you on there!

Last bit of news is I’ve been working on dealing with a lot of my emotional baggage with meditation, and actually this has been something that has really made a difference to my outlook and even my way of interacting with others. I’m pursuing internal peace and the ability to see my life as a whole, rather than as fragmented and separate traumas. I am who I am, after all. And since I have to live with myself for the rest of my life, I might as well work on all that self-love that so many gurus talk about. And you know what? The lonely, ignored inner child in me loves that – and it’s made me happier overall as a result.

And as for the nitty, gritty details:

I don’t know how it is for others, but the decision to move on and the decision to NOT have sex around your fertile time are two different things, and both of us found it impossible to let that time slip by without at least paying it due.

So, I can lay my cards on the table and say that we’ve tried at the right time, and nothing has happened. BUT – I haven’t bothered with testing, or even given it that much thought in the two weeks after ovulation.

I believe the chances of it happening for me are slim to none, and I’ve felt mournful on the day of the arrival of my period, but that is about it. A big improvement on the obsessive waiting I am used to.

So, that’s where we’re at.

I hope all is well in all your worlds, and may we all continue to grow, and never forget how to love, no matter how old or tired we get.

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