Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Crashing down

By the time we went into our appointment with the obstetrician I think my hope was outweighed by my doubts. When the ob asked "how are you going?" I was very quick to reply that we weren't so great. I quickly explained the result of the ultrasound from the week before. The ob said it was probably best we get straight to having a look, rather than spend half an hour talking about pregnancy management, just to find out things aren't looking good. He also told us a story about a woman he'd seen whose first scan didn't look good, with the baby having a heartbeat of 78. He said when she came back he felt nervous about what the scan would show, but that everything was great, the baby had a heartbeat over 160 and had really grown.

A glimmer of hope just as we get on the bed for the scan. 

He starts with an external scan. By this time, 8 and a half weeks, the baby should be clearly visible from an external scan. By how hard the ultrasound thing was pushing on me I could tell it was hard for the ob to see the baby, and from what I could see on screen it didn't look good. He switched to an internal scan where he confirmed that things didn't look good. He said he was sorry, but from what he could see the baby didn't have a heartbeat and the size hadn't changed from our last scan. 

Procedure from this point is to have a high resolution/diagnostic scan. The portable scanners the obs have apparently can miss stuff, so they are reluctant to recommend the curette without the diagnostic scan. Our ob rings the women's diagnostic centre and gets us an appointment in a couple of hours. He asks if the result is as expected if we'd like to have the curette that night if they can get a theatre booking.

We head home for a couple of hours. Given we have the chance of having the operation in the evening I've got to eat something now, and then I'm on nil by mouth, just in case we can secure the evening theatre time. An hour before our appointment I drink the obligatory pre ultrasound water, knowing no matter how full my bladder is they will still need to do the internal scan. 

It's funny that it doesn't really matter that we already know that it is pretty much over, when the sonographer sympathetically tells us she can't find a heartbeat I still can't help but cry. She confirms the baby is still the same size it was a week and a half ago. She looks around to make sure the other embryo isn't tucked away somewhere it shouldn't be, but there is nothing else, just the one that is no longer a viable pregnancy. 

With our results in hand we head back over to the obstetrician's office where he quickly sees us between patients. He asks if we'd like to have the curette that night or tomorrow morning. I opt to have it done that night, so that way only one day revolves around the whole ordeal. 

We head home to pack 'a just in case' overnight bag and by 5pm we are back at the hospital being admitted. By 6.30pm I am wheeled down to pre-op and by 8pm I'm back in my room texting home. They keep me in for a few hours and then we are allowed to go home.

Despite having a body full of sleepy drugs I didn't sleep well. I couldn't get into a deep sleep. I don't cry, just toss and turn. 

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


Well, I've been on holidays at the beach for the past 12 days. We holiday in a small beach side town each year. It is an incredibly beautiful part of the world. I had decided to take the risk and book in our first viability scan for the day we were leaving for holidays. I thought this showed great faith in that the pregnancy would be okay. If it wasn't okay, I planned to head to the beach anyway and drink myself into oblivion.

The scan was with our fertility specialist - the first viability scan. I've actually never managed to have a viability scan with him due to bad holiday timing over the past year. As it turned out, this time he was going on holidays for the same days as us, so we managed to squeeze the scan in.

I was a little disappointed with the scan. He showed us one baby, with a heart beat, right at the top of the uterus. He was pretty happy about it. He said "I'm not hearing any oohhhs and aaahhhhs". So he tried to hear the heartbeat. I tried explaining, it wasn't that we weren't pleased, it's just that we've seen a lot of tiny babies, that don't even look like babies, with heartbeats. He printed a picture for us.

I have grown to hate ultrasound images. I hate everybody's ultrasound images, not just my own. If a see a friend post their ultrasound image to facebook, I have to delete/hide the post. To me they just look freaky. So Matt took the picture. He thought his family might like to see it, I said "really, why would they want to see that?"

Due to my specialist usually being on holidays, our first scans have generally been with ultrasound clinics. These scans give you sooooooo much information. You get the crown to rump length, the heartbeat rate, the size of the gestational sack, the gestational age. So when the fertility specialist showed us a blob with a heartbeat and said it looked about the right size, I was underwhelmed.

As we were both about to head off on holidays the fertility specialist gave us a referal to get a diagnostic scan done, just in case anything went a miss during the week of holidays.

We packed the ultrasound referal in our gear and headed off on holidays hoping we wouldn't need it, but that wasn't to be the case. The very next day I had a pretty heavy bleed, dark red with little clots in it. I lost it. I was crying and crying. I just hate it. One day everything is 'fine' the next day, it seems like we are about to have another miscarriage.

The worst part is, there is nothing to do about it. You just have to go to sleep, get up the next day and somehow try to enjoy your holiday at the beach. The bleed was on a Saturday so we couldn't even go for the scan until Monday at the earliest.

So we soldier on. Force yourself to get outside and enjoy the beautiful place you are in. Try not to think about it all the time. Try not to let your bad mood spoil it for everyone else who is there.

On Monday we get the diagnostic scan. The baby is still there, but we are told it is only measuring 5 weeks and 6 days and the heartbeat is 96 beats per minute. Basically, the baby is more than a week smaller than it should be. The sonographer also told us that the heartbeat would preferably be over than 100. In closing, he said the pregnancy was viable at this time, but given the result no doubt another ultrasound will be needed in another week or two.

So the baby is small, with a slow heartbeat. The same sonographer gave us similar news last year with our heterotopic pregnancy, and that baby miscarried soon after. We don't leave with smiles on our faces. My husband says on the way to the car "We know how this played out last time, but I guess we just need to give the little trooper a chance."

We had a little more spotting over the next day, but for a week now I've had nothing. I've had not bleeding. I've also had no morning sickness or other symptoms that wouldn't be caused by the progesterone pessaries I have to use morning and night.

Our first appointment with the ob/gyn I chose for this pregnancy is coming up, so I haven't bothered following up with our fertility specialist about getting another scan. I have some hope - hey, maybe it will be fine - I really hope that it is. I also have some doubts.