Everything started in January 2016. I was beyond excited I called my two best friends and spilled the beans "I AM PREGNANT!" From there the plan was hatched, I was FINALLY going to surprise Blake. Let me tell you this was the hardest secret and I still don't know how I was able to keep it from him for so long, but I made our youngest her "Not the Baby" shirt and made a onesie for our newest Futchling that said "I"m the Baby" (a play on the Not the Momma from the TV show Dinosaurs). It finally came time to surprise him, and it was the best.
With all my other pregnancies I lost weight, but this little nugget was by far the worst when it came to morning sickness. It was more like all day couldn't even stand for long periods of time sickness. Looking back it should have been a sign. We had a couple doctor's appointments and an early sonogram, we got to see and hear the baby's heartbeat. When we had the sonogram done we loved seeing the little peanut but unfortunately they also found a tear, so I was on restriction.
The next couple of weeks were beyond tough, I was so sick. So sick that I laid either on the couch or in bed, I couldn't stand for more than a couple of minutes without getting really dizzy and nauseated. It was the absolute worst morning sickness that I had ever had. My poor kids and husband had to take care of me, the house was a disaster and I couldn't cook anything because everything made me nauseous. One day something sounded and smelled delicious and a couple hours later the thought of it would make me sick. Being on restriction and being so sick put a huge strain on Blake and I, it was a bad time for us.
We hit the 12-week mark! That meant we got to see the baby again and hope the tear healed itself. I was so excited to see the little one that was causing me so much grief. I REALLY needed to see him/her to help remind me why I was going through everything. Blake took off work for his lunch and met the kids and I at the doctor’s office, I remember sitting in the parking lot listening to N'SYNC on XM's 90's channel while waiting for Blake. We all walked in together ready to see the baby.
We set up the boys in the waiting room with school work and took the girls into the room, Blake and I took the girls into the room with us. The technician was doing all her normal things and I remember telling Lizzie, who was getting antsy, "just a second honey, when she's all done you can see the BABY!" But instead of letting us see the baby our technician told us we needed to head over to the doctor and she would go over the results. "CRAP!" I thought, I just knew my tear had gotten worse and they were going to have to admit me or put me on bed rest. So I called my friend and asked her to come get the kids and called my mom and told her something was wrong and she needed to come to the doctor’s office.
Our nurse called us back, so while the boys stayed in the waiting room again Blake the girls and I went into the room. The nurse came in and explained that our doctor was not there today and that would could come back tomorrow or she could tell us what was going on. Blake and I looked at each other, there was no way we would be able to wait till tomorrow. So we told her to go ahead and just tell us.
Then it happened. My whole world broke. I completely shut down.
The nurse said "I'm very sorry but we couldn't find the baby’s heartbeat."
I vaguely remember my mom coming in what felt like moments after the nurse told us, Blake had to tell my mom why I was a sobbing mess in the chair. My mom though. The rock that she is, she took the girls and the boys downstairs to meet Jamie. She told Jamie what happened and Jamie went into damage control, she took all four of my kids to her house where she had her six kids. While my mom was taking care of the kids my doctor who wasn't "there" but was coming in to be on call for the night came in to talk to us. I don't remember much of what was said during this time, I do remember asking if we could know if the baby was a boy or a girl. We had done the blood test but opted to not know the gender, our plan was to have a gender reveal or to find out when they baby was born. The nurse told us we lost our little boy. Our little Joseph passed away the week before, the sonogram tech measured him at eleven weeks and two days. Our doctor gave us our options and said we could come back the next day to have another sonogram to see for ourselves, which we did and confirmed what we rationally already knew. He was gone. We scheduled the D&C for the following Monday.
Sunday we went to the Dix's house for a birthday party, the kids played with their "cousins" while Blake and I just sat and talked with our family, I still to this day don't think that Jamie, Harvey, Ashley and John know how much we appreciated the normalcy before the chaos, the support, the everything they did. After the party all the kids went back to Jamie and Harvey's to spend the night. Blake and I went home where I just cried all night curled up in his arms. We watched Food Network until I finally passed out, early Monday morning.
I wrote the following in 2017:
It's been a year. A whole year since waking up after getting maybe 2 hours of sleep and going into the hospital. Blake and I got there and checked in and waited for mom while we waited to be called back. After getting situated and mom braiding my hair my doctor came in to see me moments (or what felt like moments) before going into surgery. I remember mom knitting while Blake played on his phone and making jokes with me. I remember that but I don't remember much after being taken. It's been a year and I can still smell the OR and feel how cold it is in there. And then they put me to sleep. It felt like moments later to me but the nurse was calling my name telling me to wake up. I remember throwing up and the nurse being caught off guard, then I was asleep again because next I was being woken up by my doctor to telling me everything went well, well in her professional stance, but it meant he was really and truly gone forever. I think I was able to hold back my sobs until she left but I cried so hard I threw up again, and then I was asleep again, only to be awoken because they were taking me out of recovery. I remember being put in bed as Mom and Blake came back into my room, where I remember saying “he’s gone, he’s really gone” and then breaking down again before falling back to sleep. I don't know how long we were there but long enough for me to ask for my Dad who wasn't there and I was okay with that as long as he brought me Five Guys. I do not remember saying bye to my mom, I don't really remember the drive home or Blake walking me into our house. I do remember trying to go to the bathroom by myself and that being a mistake, and then getting into bed where I slept for even more. When I woke up my kids were home and being so quiet and wanting to check on me. I remember wanting nothing to do with anyone and just wanting to lay in bed with Blake wrapped around me, we joked that if I could have I would have been inside his skin. Wanting to be held by him this way would go on for months. I really thought that we'd be able to start healing and moving on after this day last year, boy was I wrong. Little did I know that just a couple more days and my life would be turned upside down again. I got the call from my nurse saying they had gotten the pathology back from my D&C, we had lost Joseph because my pregnancy was a partial molar pregnancy. This meant that for the next two months I would have to have weekly blood tests to make sure my HGC levels were going down and once they hit "negative" I would move to monthly blood tests for the six months after that. Because with a molar or partial molar pregnancy the “baby” can come back as cancer and they needed to monitor me to make sure I was in the clear. Meaning to me there wouldn't be much moving on, I'd have to relive what happened every time I went into the office to have labs done, my arms would start bruising from the labs being done. Okay I can do this I sort of told myself. But then over the next several weeks, starting with that Friday I started passing blood clots and had to go to the er, solo because Blake had to be home with the kids. Luckily after sitting there freezing and red splotchy faced for a couple hours Liz came to my rescue and sat with me for several more hours. They sent me home after a sono and being monitored and told I was okay and to take it easy. Sure take it easy until my next ER visit, which came two weeks later. I was in so much pain I couldn't move so we shipped the kids to parents house and Blake and I headed into the ER. We got checked in and let them know I had just had a miscarriage and a D&C done (at that hospital!) but I was in considerable pain. Once we finally got to a room a nurse walked in and said "abdominal pain is common in pregnancy, did you know you were pregnant?" I started crying because in my irrational emotional state I thought somehow I had gotten pregnant again, but I could not be pregnant if I was it would be really really bad. Blake luckily was there and on top of things and calmly explained things to her, the nurse learned something new that night. Then after settling down we were greeted by the doctor who was nice enough to walk in and say "congratulations did you know you were pregnant?" Again I lost it, I wanted nothing more than to be pregnant but no no sir I am not. At that point Blake was not happy, he let the doctor who also had no idea what a molar pregnancy was know what was going on. Well because he had no idea what was going on he ordered all the tests, I had a sono, X-ray, a chest test (I had heartburn but because I said my chest hurt they had to check me for heart problems) and a whole slew of labs. As it turned out I had several infections in my abdominal region and I would need several medications. On top of the maalox with numbing drink for my heartburn. When we finally got home in the early hours of the morning I threw up all over the driveway and I think Blake, but he took me to bed while he washed the driveway and did a couple other things before going to bed himself. Again I thought okay we are done now, that is until we got the call ON Mother's Day from another nurse who was calling to tell me I need more medicine and when asked why she told me because I was pregnant and needed it. I dropped the phone and hysterically told Blake what she said, Blake took the phone from me and very angrily let the nurse know what was going on and then hung up on her. Luckily my OB was on call that weekend so we called her and told her what happened and she told me to relax and she would look into it and then she'd have Gina call me in the am. Then again I foolishly thought we were done. Until my follow up appointment from my D&C when my Dr said they had found something during the sonograms from the ER visits after my D&C, and because of it if need to have another D&C done. Unfortunately Mom was flying out a couple days before I was scheduled to go back in, so Blake and I went alone while Dad took the kids. Luckily that was the end of my ER visits, my numerous sonos, and I was finally down to my blood tests. From here I became a shell of a person for the next several months, I say that now because I had no idea then but I do not remember much of last year.
July started my monthly blood tests that would last till December. 2016 was a very trying year for me and my family. I remember skipping one or two of my blood tests because I just couldn't deal with going in again to be poked and dredge it up again. I remember thinking "if I have cancer I have cancer the blood test isn't going to change anything". When I got the call from the nurse after my final blood draw in December it was a huge relief. But still even now, in 2019, I fear the day will come and I will get a call saying my bloodwork came back and I have cancer.
I did not share my experiences with many, I felt like I didn't have a leg to stand on. There are women out there that have several miscarriages, women who can't get pregnant so who am I to complain, to hurt, to want help with my miscarriage? I already have four kids, maybe I was just being greedy. Even now I catch myself apologizing when talking about my story and hearing about someone else’s loss, because in my mind my loss was not as significant as theirs. The only people who knew about everything that was happening were my husband and parents, I even hid things from Ashley and Jamie as they were happening. I just couldn't deal enough with it myself and I couldn't share with others.