Our second pregnancy.

Today makes 4 years since our miscarriage, losing our second little baby at 9 weeks.

We tried for around 14 months after our first miscarriage then found out we were expecting our second little jelly bean.

In honesty, I remember very little about finding out I was pregnant. I think we told our parents. There was some slight excitement but the dark cloud of fear still lingered over us.

I think we had one early scan, everything was fine. We had a little heartbeat. There was lots of positive words coming from the midwifes and nurses at the EGU, reassuring us that this time it would be different.

But you know, when you know, it isn’t. I couldn’t shake of the feeling that this pregnancy would also end in miscarriage.

I just knew. And then when it did happen, I blamed myself again for feeling like I had brought it on myself because I didn’t feel positive enough.

Again we were devastated. Then came the realisation that we would have to go through this again in order to find out why us. Why me. Why was this happening to me? Why was my body not capable of staying pregnant?

When I lost my much wanted pregnancies, our much loved babies, our little nuggets of love, I would repeatedly ask myself this. Why me? Why us?

I would say it in my head, out loud, to a quiet house while home alone and in heated arguments in frustration to my husband.

I searched for information on the internet. I wanted to find a reason. I needed to know why this had happened to me. I needed to know if I did something wrong.

Did I make this happen?

Did I eat/drink something that I wasn’t supossed to?

Maybe I didn’t eat enough fresh vegtables or fruit?

Or maybe I didnt drink enough water?

Was I too stressed at work? Did this happen because of that?

I went over every tiny detail in my head over the last weeks and months.

Did anything happen to me, that could have made me miscarry my baby?

Was it my genetic make up?

Was there something wrong with my body, did it just not work the way it was suppossed to?

Maybe it was because I had missed some folic acid tablets and prenatal vitamins?

Did I pass on something to my baby that made him or her unwell?

Or did my body not make a baby the way it intended too? maybe something was wrong with the development or growth, did my baby have an abnormality? and maybe that was my fault too, my genetics, my genes.

Could it be my age? At 33 years old, was I too old?

Maybe I am just not healthy enough.

I recall being deeply frustrated to find out that miscarriage is so common and most people will never know why.

I was angry too. I was angry that I was a woman, my body had a womb and I could get pregnant but my stupid body couldn’t stay pregnant. I felt a failure. I felt like my body had failed to do its job. I felt I was not women enough.

I know, I am not alone in these thoughts. Sadly.

Baby 2. Who ever you are. Who ever you would have been. We think of you still and love you.

Where our journey began.

Today marks the anniversary of our first miscarriage that happened in 2014.

I thought it was now time to share our story.

We started trying for a baby very soon after we got married in 2013. If my memory serves me correctly, I think we had a positive pregnancy test in late December. I remember taking the test in the morning and immediately showing my husband. We were still half asleep. He grabbed me for a cuddle and we couldn’t contain our excitement. We cried happy tears.

We chatted casually about future plans, as you do. Wondering if baby would be a boy or a girl, what they would look like, what names would suit them…the list goes on. We worked out that we thought our baby would be due around our first wedding anniversary. It really felt like it was fate or destiny. All very much meant to be. I was happy that I could share in my sister’s experiences and give my niece a baby cousin.

I did the usual, booked an appointment with my GP so she could refer me to maternity at our chosen hospital. We were counting down the weeks until we would have our first scan.

As I was so inpatient, I decided to book up a private scan. I was so eager to see our little baby on screen.

We went along to the ultrasound, one Saturday morning, and the synographer explained she could only see the sac. Baby was too small to be seen clearly. She asked if I was certain about my dates. I knew I was. She advised to have a further ultra sound two weeks later and gave me a print out of her findings.

Immediately, I was very worried, my husband took me to a coffee shop and I sobbed into his arms over a hot chocolate. He tried to reassure me, saying maybe we had mixed up our dates, trying to come up with an explanation of what was going on, but I knew something was not right. It just didn’t make sense. I knew baby should have been big enough by now to visible see on a scan.

I went back to my GP and they referred me to my local EGU for a scan, two weeks later.

Those two weeks felt like the longest wait ever. I was also suffering with morning sickness quite badly. I was basically sick all the time and struggled to keep food or drink down, I was told it was all a very good sign and should become less of a problem over the next few weeks.

We were very nervous and anxious whilst waiting for our scan. The midwife scanned me and looked on the screen first, before showing us our tiny baby and the heart beat. We heard the heart beat. She gave me a scan photo. We felt relief, knowing everything was ok, our little baby had a heartbeat and that was all the reassurance we needed.

I continued to be sick and trying everything to stop being sick so I could carry going to work. On one occasion it was just too horrendous and my husband had to scoop me up off of the bathroom floor and take me to A&E.

They gave me IV fluids as I was dehydrated. I was told I had hyperemesis gravidium. I was given some anti sickness tablets and some information to read with some advice on how to deal with it. Again I was constantly told the sickness was all very good. It mean’t the pregnancy was strong.

We carried on as normal. Excitedly waiting our 12 week scan and booking appointment. I was browsing pushchairs online making a mental note of the ones I loved. Then within weeks all that changed.

I had a very busy and stressful day at work covering our duty rota, I left later then usual and before going home went to the toilet. I noticed some dark coloured blood. I remember feeling dread and panic.

I called my husband and asked him to meet me at our local A&E. I was trying to stay calm on the journey.

Inside I was very stressed and worried, I was searching the internet ‘bleeding in pregnancy’ on my phone, whilst coming out of a tunnel on the tube. We got to A&E. Long story, short, they told us it was perfectly normal to experience some bleeding in pregnancy and to go home and rest. They were not concerned.

We went to bed. My parents and husband trying to keep me positive. I didn’t sleep for ages. When I did sleep, I woke up to cramping pain and more bleeding. This was around 3 or 4am. We went back to the A&E in desperation to try and make it stop.

Again we were just told to go home. A scan was booked for us a few hours later that morning at the EGU in the hope to reassure us.

We tried to get some sleep, but couldn’t really. I remember telling my husband I knew we had lost the baby. I just had this feeling. I knew. He kept telling me to just wait, not to worry. Stay positive.

At the scan my feelings were confirmed. We saw the same midwife and ward manager that we saw a few weeks earlier. The midwife broke the news that she was very sorry but there wasn’t a heartbeat. I should have been 14 weeks by now. The midwife explained that baby was showing up small on the scan and the pregnancy may have ended weeks ago although my body still thought I was pregnant. I didn’t know that was even possible.

She left us for a few moments whilst we sobbed, hugging each other. I got dressed and we were taken into a side room. I remember thinking this is the room of bad news, the room you see on tv programmes, where the doctors or nurses usher patients or relatives in to, to break bad news. There was a box of tissues on the coffee table and neutral art work on the walls.

We were given leaflets about what we could do next. I couldn’t bear to look at them through tears. I had a headache. I asked the midwife to tell me what we could do now.

She explained there were 3 options. One, go home, wait and let things happen naturally. Two, medical management although they didn’t have a bed at that moment but we could wait there for one to become available. Or three, a D&C but it would be days away. Maybe a week before that could happen.

I asked for time. I needed to just process what was happening to us.

Within the next half an hour I was having contractions and was bleeding pretty heavily. The midwife informed she couldn’t allow me to go home as I was losing too much blood. She found us a room. Gave me pain relief and we just waited.

Inbetween giving everyone our awful news, crying and trying to make sense of the situation, the contractions slowed down. I was seen by a doctor, their advice was to have the medical management, to help move things along and avoid any possible infection. So we went with it.

We stayed for 2 nights in total and I remember feeling so frightened. My husband was completely helpless and I cried for him everytime I went to the toilet afraid of what I might find. I didn’t know what I would see. I remember his facial expression, he looked totally sad. He was devastated.

In the fog of it, I remember feeling mortified at some of the language used to describe my baby by health professionals. ‘A foetus, tissue, aborted matter, debris’.

I was later given another scan. They said it was to be sure all the ’tissue had come away’.

We went home shortly afterwards. I don’t remember very much about what happened next except I was in total pain. Emotionally and mentally I struggled to cope. I was signed off work for 8 weeks. We were just told, it is very common and that next time things would work out for us. That we could keep trying. At least I could get pregnant.

I felt like a failure. I hated my body for failing me. I was so angry. I didn’t understand why me. Why us. I hated that everyone was talking about us. I was heartbroken. I would never get to take this baby home, never get to cuddle this baby. Never get to hear him or her cry. Never get to kiss them. Wash and bath them. Feed them. Watch them grow. Hear their laugh and meet all their mile stones. Our lives have never been the same again.

Some of the things people said to us were awful. ‘You can get pregnant though. Just try again. Move on now. Get over it. It wasn’t mean’t to be. Everything happens for a reason. Maybe you could adopt or just get a dog’.

I referred myself for grief counselling. In hindsight it might have been too soon. It did help to some degree.

This miscarriage had a big impact on my mental health. I sobbed to my GP and she prescribed me antidepressants as I was having panic attacks and suffering with anxiety, I also suffered with low mood and couldn’t shake it off. My confidence and self esteem took a battering. I went back to work, but hated it.

I also faced some discrimination from a manager at work for being off sick due to miscarriage, a woman who had never met me until my first day back. I knew I had to walk away from my job to try and save my self respect. I didn’t realise then that it would lead me to reeavaluate my entire career.

I feel a sadness every so often when I think about what might have been. Mostly, I’m just angry that miscarriage is actually quite common and most never find out a reason behind it. It upsets me that we weren’t offered very much support, in terms of managing anxiety when trying again for a baby.

I used to feel even more emotionally about my situation. Annoyed that women have to experience three consecutive miscarriages before any testing or investigations can take place. Frustrated and exhausted with having our dreams shattered, our hopes and futures now very different.

Whilst it is still very sad, I know that having those experiences have changed me. I am more anxious. I do worry more. My mental health suffers from time to time. I still get panic attacks. But on a positive note, I feel I am more empathetic, my heart aches each time someone opens up about losing their baby. I also know that I probably wouldn’t have my boys had my other pregnancy worked out.

I hope I am a better mother. I cherish more moments then before. I try not to let the less important things in life get to me. I hope I take less for granted.

Little Jelly bean whoever you are, you would be 4 years old now.

I hope by sharing our journey that others can know they are not alone.

#worldcancerday

So February is here. It’s World Cancer Day today.

We have close family living with cancer, we have lost family and friends over the years, some young. Too young.

My husband had cancer 7 years ago. We are very lucky. Incredibly lucky that he is fine and well.

Cancer can be devastating.

It never leaves you mentally. We still have the emotional baggage.

It’s made us anxious at times. It’s made us over-cautious when we get unwell.

It’s changed us.

It would be great to have a world where the is no more devastation caused by cancer.

#letskickcancersarse

 

Michelle Obama shares her secret heartache of miscarriage and struggle with fertility.


I suspect many people, would have seen the various articles today, or interview clips, of Former First Lady Michelle Obama, sharing her secret heartache of miscarriage and her struggle with fertility. She also talks about conceiving her daughters through IVF.

Whenever I read / hear that someone else has gone through this, I am crushed that another woman / couple has walked this path.

I am, however grateful that she has shared her personal story. She is willing to use her platform and influence to raise awareness. I am pleased it gets people talking. I had to highlight it!

If you haven’t seen the interview, please do an internet search and take a look, she’s a brilliant public speaker and inspiration.

About me

Hello,
I am Rob, I live in London with my husband and two little boys.
I have set up this blog for a few reasons. My main reason behind this is I want others who walk this journey, to know they aren’t alone. It also part therapy for me, there is something soothing in writing (typing) things down and getting them out there. I hope to share my journey and personal experiences of baby loss (recurrent miscarriage) and now what it is like to parent after loss. Hopefully it helps to break the silence.

I hope to talk about complicated pregnancies, birthing my babies, and also mental health and self care.

Whilst baby loss is incredibly heart wrenching, I do hope that my page can help spread some positivity to others.

Rob 🙂