Mom to Baby P
August, 27th, 2010
Washington Township, Michigan
I found out we were pregnant three weeks before my husband and I were to be married. It was such an exciting time – the start our lives together as husband and wife as well as mom and dad.
Around 8 weeks, we had our first ultrasound. After a few minutes, the tech turned up the volume and we heard the most glorious sound I’ve ever heard – a strong, wonderful heartbeat. I thought I knew what love was…that moment was when I truly learned the meaning.
At exactly 12 weeks, I went in for my monthly check-up. I was alone at the appointment because my husband works nights and I didn’t want to have him get up early for a simple check up. Our NT scan was set for a week later, so we knew that was the more important appointment – especially since we were going to see our baby again!
At the end of my appointment, my doctor was going to check for the baby’s heartbeat with the fetal monitor. She couldn’t find one. I started to panic, but she told me that she thought everything was fine and that we would just do a quick ultrasound to be sure. I naively believed her and even got excited that I was going to be able to see and hear the baby all by myself- a private moment with my little one, some mommy and baby time.
After minutes of quiet, I couldn’t take it any longer and asked if my baby was okay. I will never forget the doctor’s words: “I’m sorry. There is no heartbeat.”
As quickly as I learned the definition of love when hearing my baby’s heartbeat for the first time weeks earlier, I just as quickly learned what it’s like have my heart shattered. I may have been sad in the past, but nothing compared to the instantaneous feeling of grief, sadness and anger.
The doctor explained that she felt I had a partial molar pregnancy because the placenta appeared on the screen to have a swiss cheese/snowstorm effect. I was then told that not only did my baby die and that I would need a D&C, but that we were also not allowed to get pregnant again for one year. I completely lost it. I don’t recall a time ever crying so hard (little did I know, those tears would keep coming and still do).
I had to call my husband to come get me so we could go to the hospital for a follow up ultrasound. I don’t know how he understood what I was saying through my sobbing. I still haven’t asked him what he felt at that moment, what his first thoughts were; I’m too scared to hear how emotional he may have been.
The morning of the D&C I was trying to get through it by blocking out why I was there and pretending it was just a dream. Once my doctor walked in though, I started screaming and crying. It was like something clicked in my head and the moment suddenly became real and I was instantly aware of what this procedure was meant to do to the baby I still loved with all my heart.
With a partial molar and/or complete molar pregnancy, HCG levels have to be monitored weekly to ensure that they drop to 0 in a timely manner. If not, there is the chance of Gestational Trophoblastic Disease, a type of cancer. So with this type loss, you don’t just grieve for the baby that passed, but there is also the fear that cancer may develop and that there may be a year wait to even try to have another baby. In addition, there are the weekly blood tests to remind you of the situation. It was so completely overwhelming at the time.
Thankfully, my levels dropped to zero within 3 weeks, 5 days. Because of my quick drop, we are now allowed to start trying again after 3 months of negative tests instead of 1 year. I now consider myself sad, but hopeful.
After our loss, I have been an emotional wreck. I’m finally feeling like the cloud that seemed to surround my head has lifted. The anger has subsided. The questioning of “why me, why us” has subsided. The sadness remains. I still cry every day. Every. Single. Day. It’s been 48 days since learning of our loss and there has not been a day without tears. My husband said recently that he was so scared for me in the early days because when he would look at me, there was nothing looking back at him; it was as if I were empty. That’s exactly how I felt. While I still feel empty and lost at times, I mostly feel sad. I just feel sad.
Our Baby P grew wings on August 27, 2010.
You can contact Natalie at NDJPwedding@yahoo.com