Oct 30, 2009
20th of October 2009
Hello to everybody. I will introduce myself first. My name is Susi and I have decided to write my story here with the hope that it could inspire or help some people the same way some stories I've read here have helped me in my most difficult moments in life.
I've lived in an English speaking country for a few years now but my mother tongue is Spanish so I apologize in advance for any mistakes. Also I apologize for the length of the story but I wanted to write down everything that seemed important.
My boyfriend and I have been together for nearly 7 years now and more than two years ago we started to talk about having children (although I felt ready before that). I don’t know how it happened. When I think about four or five years ago I didn’t feel a need to have children but I always knew that at some stage I wanted to have a family.
We started trying to conceive on March 2008 and to my surprise I became pregnant one month later. We were really happy and I was so free of worry and so sure that everything would be okay. I wasn’t even familiar with the word miscarriage. On the 5th of July we took holidays together and a few hours after landing I started to bleed. I knew in that moment that something was wrong, even though the bleeding was very light and eventually stopped during the night. My boyfriend told me that bleeding during pregnancy is normal sometimes but I had the feeling that in this case it wasn’t. I know that many women know this feeling that I am talking about...it’s just like a 6th sense. The next day we went to the doctor and he did an ultrasound. I was supposed to be 10 or 11 weeks but the baby was 7 and a half weeks and there was no heartbeat. The next day I had a D&C. Being away from my family, and in a foreign country, the experience was really difficult, but everybody, including the doctors and nurses, were really nice to me, like they understood the pain of a miscarriage, even when it is early. That made a difference. One of my concerns was if a miscarriage would happen again. The doctor told me that unfortunately miscarriages are very common but the chances of it happening again were small.
I was told to wait at least three cycles for my body to heal. I didn’t want to wait but my boyfriend thought it was for the best. Anyway we tried after my first period and I became pregnant straight away. I couldn’t believe it. But I didn’t have time to get overexcited. I started to bleed 4 days later. I went to the hospital and they did an ultrasound. The doctor could see a sac but no baby. My period was missing only 5 days. The date was the 30th of October.
At this point I started to panic. One miscarriage was bad but with a second one my fears of having chromosomal problems or another disorder started to rise. Once more I was told to wait so this time we decided to follow the advice. But sometimes things happen in a different way than we plan.
At the beginning of January 2009 I took a pregnancy test and it showed positive. Between the miscarriage and then, I didn’t have a proper period. Many of you know how miscarriages can mess up our bodies. I decided to test because I found one test but I thought it was impossible to be pregnant because we were not trying. Once more the test was positive. I went to the doctor and the ultrasound showed I was 5 weeks. They asked me to come back for another ultrasound a few weeks later. Of course I was happy and scared at the same time. Unfortunately this time wasn’t supposed to happen for me either. I started to bleed a few days before the 8 weeks appointment. The ultrasound showed no growth. I miscarried naturally on the 10th of February.
To add to my pain, one of the girls I work with became pregnant. It was really difficult for me to deal with this. I was happy for her but at the same time, every time she talked about anything to do with her pregnancy I tried to change the subject. I am sure many women understand this. Many times I've thought how many other women who didn't go through this difficult experience are able to enjoy the pregnancy from day 1 and I really envy that. I suppose it’s the same with people who suffer some illness and they don’t understand how the rest of the people don’t appreciate their health. It's human nature.
With three consecutive miscarriages, I asked for an appointment with the recurrent miscarriage clinic. They were really nice in there. I have to say I feel really sorry and frustrated when I read stories in this forum about women that have to suffer not only a huge lost but also the incompetent doctors without a soul that treat miscarriages like a common flu. They ran many tests on my boyfriend and me, and after weeks and weeks of waiting finally we were told that there was nothing wrong with us. I was given baby aspirin to take once daily even when trying to conceive.
I was relieved but also worried. If they didn’t find the problem, how can they find the solution? I was told to wait a few months more and this time we made sure to follow the instructions.
We decided to try again. On the second month I took a test on the day that my period was due and yes, it was positive again. I felt so worried that I don’t remember even feeling happy. I didn’t even tell my boyfriend after another week and three more tests. I should also mention that I didn’t have any strong symptoms. I scheduled an appointment with the doctor two times, and two times I cancelled. I was too scared to have an ultrasound. On the third appointment I finally had my ultrasound. I closed my eyes and waited for the doctor to tell me that she didn’t see anything but … “there is your baby, look how big..” she said. The first thing I asked her was if she could see the heartbeat and she showed me. I started to cry and even now I can feel those emotions as I write this. I went home and I showed the picture to my boyfriend and we cried together. We told only our families and nobody else. I was given progesterone and I was told to keep taking aspirin until the end of the pregnancy.
I had my second appointment 2 weeks later so I was supposed to be 10 weeks.
In that month I worried everyday but I tried to relax. Of course I looked after myself like never before. I wouldn't even carry more than one kilo in one go during that time. (I know it sounds paranoid but I blame myself so many times for what happened… maybe it was the flight, or that I took a pain killer before knowing I was pregnant, maybe I was exercising too much….)
The day of the second scan arrived. My heart was beating so quickly waiting outside the doctor’s room that I thought I would have a heart attack. My boyfriend was there with me this time. When I had my scan and I saw my baby I couldn’t believe it. There he was, so big and looking like a tiny baby. The doctor was very nice. She knew my past and explained to me every part of the baby, she even showed me the flow of the blood. When I left the room I showed the picture to my boyfriend and we started to cry again.
Once more I had a third ultrasound appointment 2 weeks later. Baby was 5 and a half cm and he was moving his tiny arms and legs. I was worried once more. I told the doctor that I didn’t have any belly yet and I didn’t have any symptoms. She told me every pregnancy is different. She told me to enjoy it and that I could tell the news to everybody if I wanted because at this point it was quite safe.
I hadn’t told anybody yet. Everyday I checked to see if my belly had grown and also checked my breasts. I didn’t feel like I had a bump but my trousers were definitely much tighter. For some reason I expected to feel the baby at 14-15 weeks. Sometimes I am positive, sometimes I am more worried.
My next appointment is at the end of October and if everything goes well, we will share the news. I am really looking forward to that day. I will write an update as soon as I know my fate….
I would like to help other people and give you some advice:
-Don't exercise if you have a history of miscarriages. The first time I got pregnant, I was exercising everyday and I even went jogging at the beginning when I didn’t know I was pregnant yet.
-Look after yourself as much as you can. I was taking pain killers for a very big infection in one tooth and I had a very bad flu. This was before knowing I was pregnant as well.
-During this pregnancy, I took baby aspirin everyday and I was on progesterone during the first trimester. Also folic acid and prenatal vitamins.
-No flying or travelling during the first trimester. During my first two pregnancies I travelled by plane.
-My doctor told me to avoid sex during the first trimester if you have a history of miscarriage.
-I also regret that I didn’t wait long enough after my miscarriages before trying again. I think it is important to be as strong physically as possible before you become pregnant again.
*All of the above is based on my personal experience and my beliefs. Always check with your doctor of course.
I would recommend any woman with a history of a few miscarriages to ask your doctor for advice in taking baby aspirin. I have read so many stories, and together with my experience, that I think it's worth it to give it a try. Please, also do not give up. I was so sad sometimes that I didn’t know how I would make it to the next day but I believe that all the fight is worth it. I still don’t feel safe in my pregnancy but we all don’t stop worrying even when the baby is out in this world. Maybe this is a mother’s nature.
Anyway this is my story. I really hope it gives you hope. I would be happy if you want to write your comments or if you want to get in contact with me.
I would like to thank you for taking the time to read it. It means a lot to me.
The best of luck to all from my heart.
UPDATE 30th October 2009
Today it was my 15th week scan. I saw my baby today and he/she has grown so much. Everything looks good so far and this is the only thing I can ask for. Now I have my next scan on the 7th of December. This one will be the most detailed scan of the pregnancy and they may even be able to tell me the gender. But to be honest I really don’t care. I only wish that my baby will be healthy.