How I Survived a Miscarriage

by on March 8th, 2015
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For some people, the news of a pregnancy is a time of joy, celebration and excitement. It’s also a time of feeling sick to your stomach and feeling strange from one day to the other. In the end if you’re expecting and anxious about having a child, this is a very thrilling time.

Unfortunately, we never want to think about the inevitable until you are faced with it smack on and with no warning. Sadly, I’m one of those people who thought, “I’m as healthy as a horse, this baby is going to be fine!”

I was right, though. For a little while. I went through the first trimester with the usual feelings. Nausea, sensitivity to different smells and all the other early signs of pregnancy. As the pregnancy crept towards the 12 week mark, I had an ultrasound to verify how far along I was and it was then I was introduced to the little person growing in me. Her heartbeat was a healthy 174 beats per minute, she had four stubs for arms and legs and a face that was starting to resemble a human one. I received my three pictures of the little one and went home excited.

I was also told to come back in a week for a basic checkup and I’d be able to listen to her heart again. I went through the work week dancing around, giggling and smiling at the two co-workers I had confided in so they could keep me from getting into troublesome areas at work. You can only imagine my excitement when I went to the appointment after the week was done.

Yet, I had a bad feeling the entire day. I was anxious to get it over so I could go home and enjoy my weekend. I went into the appointment relaxed and ready to get a good checkup and get home before dinner time.

When my name was called, I went inside and did the usual weight check and blood pressure check. We went over my blood tests and how far along I was in the pregnancy. Then my doctor had me get up on the exam table so I could hear the heartbeat before I disappeared for 4 more weeks.

He couldn’t detect it. I was nervous already as my heartbeat on the fetal monitor already began displaying, but, he reassured me that it’s normal for a little one to be stubborn and hard to hear. Instead, he sent me down to the ultrasound again and said see you in 4 weeks.

I was called in immediately for the monitor and I went with a joy still in my heart. I saw the head, the body and … the flat line heart rate. I immediately went into panic mode, but, I kept as calm as can be expected. Sadly, I was told to head back up to the doctor who had to break the news to me: fetal demise.

I had miscarried and hadn’t had the physical reactions to a fetal demise yet. The doctor treated me coldly, stating he wasn’t an abortionist and instead, sent me a referral to an abortion clinic two hours away to get the procedure done. Immediately my mind reeled around the fact of riding that long, getting a procedure i only heard about once before and the dread of protestors getting physically violent with me.

Luckily, the support I had from the staff there, my friends and my family carried me through the torture-filled four and a half hour process. I thought you’d go in, get the sonogram, blood work and be whisked away to perform the five minute D&C procedure. Well, you don’t. In between sonogram, blood work and counselors talking to you about your “decision” (which in my case they understood it wasn’t my choice), you wait. In a crowded room full of (in my case) angry women, devastated teenagers and cocky young men complaining about it “taking too long.”

To add insult to injury, when my escort excused herself briefly, I had a girl approach me asking why I was “getting rid of it” and proceeded to tell me how a pregnancy would “cramp” her partying. I looked at her dead in the eyes and responded back, “I went for a sonogram and the baby had died in me. Otherwise we would be planning our surprise to tell family about the baby.” She got red in the face and separated herself from me as far as possible.

My time eventually came to go into pre-op and before I knew it, I was in the room with the doctor and she was explaining to me the process they use in a D&C. She repeated several times that it was not an abortion and she was elated to learn that when I was given the OK I would be attempting to conceive again.

For those who may have to go through this process, I’m sorry I can’t give you much detail. I wish I could, but, it’s different for every person. I can only share mine which was a comfortable experience. I was given a shot of a sedative that kept me conscious, but, I honestly was so relaxed I barely recall anything after the shot being administered. However, when I became more aware, I was in recovery getting a snack and within 30 minutes, I was headed home. From what I was told before surgery, a hospital will give anesthesia where a clinic will only give sedatives because they generally lack anesthesiologists.

Regardless, I survived with minimal pain and bleeding. Going into it I was petrified, but, having dealt with the tragic experience, for any girl or woman having to go through a D&C, relax and know that you won’t even realize it happened.

Know that there are people out there who have been through it once or even multiple times who can be there for you even if you just want to cry. You are not alone and you may even come out of a bad situation with a positive experience. In the end, even with the sorrow and pain of losing a child, know that somewhere you will be all right.

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