I entered into our second viable pregnancy on the cusp of a miscarriage. I had miscarried before, so I was not new to the feelings. However, this pregnancy I felt relaxed. Maybe that was because I was already 7 weeks along. Yep, I had gone through two full periods all while carrying this baby. Basically, by the time I found out I was pregnant, I was out of the “danger zone”. Or at least the danger zone as I had known it.
The news was shocking to say the least. I was at my OBGYN’s office for a birth control RX. The previous miscarry had been a lot on my husband and I. We had decided to take pre-cautions until we were sure we wanted to try for a second baby. Ironic that this was the day I saw the baby I absolutely couldn’t live without.
No symptoms, no signs of pregnancy. A different baby, a different pregnancy. It was then that I learned, sometimes when a woman miscarries, her body will begin to ovulate “twice a month”. Often your cycle will continue through the first couple months of pregnancy. Lots of surprises that day.
Fast forward a few months and I’m feeling great. I’ve been relaxed and traveling. Spending time with family out of state. I got to announce this baby in person to so many people that I loved. Something most “out of towners” don’t get to do. Thanks to a new blood panel test, we would even know the sex in a few weeks.
I had secretly been longing for another little girl. I felt like I knew her all along. We shot our “announcement photo’s” with a little pair of pink baby shoes along ours. Even a picture of my husband digging in his wallet, lol. I held off on telling distant friends and social media until exactly 15 weeks.
That’s when it happened.
There was blood everywhere, I ran to the bathroom only to confirm my worst nightmare. The vivid red against the white porcelain and tile sent my head spinning. I was screaming and crying but I have no recollection of that. My only reality was my toddler running to my side. I instantly silenced. Hitting my husband’s number 25 times with no answer to the endless ringing. Frantically, I cleaned myself up and ran upstairs for clothes.
My husband called me back within minutes that felt like hours. Breathlessly, I said ” take me to the E.R. I lost the baby”. My daughter and I were in the car by the time my husband pulled into the driveway. I sobbed for the entire 10-minute drive to the hospital.
They stuck my sweet family of 3 in a waiting room full of sick people. An old woman was vomiting beside me when I lost my shit. I went to the desk completely insane I’m sure, and the next thing I know we were shuffled into and office. I called my sitter to get my daughter and my OB nurse to let her know what happened. My husband left to drive our daughter home to meet the sitter. My sweet OB nurse tried to comfort me on the phone. She said optimistic things, but she and I both knew I had been down this road before. Her voice grieved with me.
When I was finally taken to a room, the on-call OB that visited me looked to be about 10 years my junior. He seemed very confused by the thought of a 2nd trimester miscarry, and let me know that an ultrasound tech would be in to get me.
The tired looking ultrasound tech retrieved me in a wheelchair. She solemnly informed me that no matter what she saw in this room she could not give me any results. She stated “only an OB could read the ultrasound results.” I felt totally numb by now.
As I watched the black and white images on the screen my mind raced. Since this wasn’t my first rodeo, I was able to see my baby’s heart beat right away. And there it was, as strong as ever. The tears silently streamed down my face. In just 2 minutes my hair was soaking wet from tears of joy. I knew my baby was alive.
Back in the examining room, my husband and I sat silently. My teenage OB informed us that yes, our baby was alive. However, there was no sign or reason to explain the bleeding. He did not want to perform a vaginal examination because it may “make things worse”. I’m telling you, he had to be the stupidest man in medicine! He handed me my discharge paperwork with an order to follow up with my regular OB asap. UH DUH! Then he handed me a cold dose of reality saying “at this point in your pregnancy, there is nothing we can do, even if you are having a miscarriage”. As true as that may have been, it was definitely the worst thing to say out loud.
At my follow-up appointment, the next day, my OB, who is usually a real cool customer, seemed to be alarmed that the bleeding was not superficial. Meaning not on the outside of my uterus. She gave me a hug, a blood test, and another ultrasound. My sweet baby girl looked perfectly fine and the placenta seemed to be intact. All good news! After I dressed my OB gave me “light duty” and a set of rules. No lifting, not sex, no exercise. Basically, do nothing. She pulled a few strings to get me into a “high risk” appointment right away.
Right away was still a week for the imaging center I needed. The bleeding continued. Every night I would dream of my baby, every day I would cry not knowing if she was alive or dead. One evening I explained to my husband that I knew our baby wouldn’t make it. This wasn’t normal, and I was trying to come to terms with losing her. As the tears streamed down my face, I asked him why he wasn’t upset. He said ” you are asking me to mourn something that hasn’t happened yet.” That might be the most profound thing he has ever said to me. It was true. To everyone who loved me and this unborn baby, she was an “idea”. To me, she was my second daughter. She lived in my body, it was MY job to take care of her. I was already a mother of two. How would I keep myself together if I lost her? How would I be a happy mommy for my toddler? Would my marriage make it? Could I ever try again? I begged God, over and over again. Please, please, please make this all a bad dream.
On the day of our appointment with the specialist, my husband had to be at work early, so we drove separately. Since I had been lying awake most nights, I had been hearing an owl. Not sure if a real owl resided outside of my house, or the sleepless delusion and crazy dreams had gotten to me, I thought little of it. When I was stopped in traffic that morning, I looked up at a barren light post. A white owl starring back at me. Somehow, I found comfort in the weird sight of a beautiful white owl in complete daylight.
My lucky charm maybe? At my first high risk 3D, ultra sound, the unidentifiable bleeding was solved. It goes by several ” technical” terms, but basically, my placenta tore away from my uterus. Which can result in a miscarry. Good news, my body was working double time to fix it and our baby was unaffected. No real rhyme or reason. My ultrasound tech was seasoned and gave me lots of reassurance before the high-risk doctor came to give us the same news. We scheduled our follow up appointments because I would be considered high risk for the rest of the trimester, even on best case scenario.
I felt like God had heard me that day, maybe knowing I could not take much more, and it was over. The bleeding slowed significantly over the next few weeks and then it stopped all together. My fear eased a little, but never really disappeared. The nightmares did not stop. I dreamt of waking up in a pool of blood at least twice a week. Waking in the middle of the night and running to the bathroom to verify, yes, it was just a dream. I had been too nervous to start a nursery, I was too skeptical to allow a ” sprinkle” or shower to be thrown. We didn’t buy clothes. We didn’t pick a name. We were in the third inning here, and it was game time. The weeks began to fly by because we were busy doing everything we had procrastinated.
Everything came together quickly, and on February 9th our family became complete. Our miracle baby was born. My sweet OB handed me a bloody, screaming, blue eye babe, that I held in my arms for almost two hours before she was ever cleaned up. I was not letting go. I needed every minute of that time with her, I believe that she did too. After all of the fear, and tears, and grief, I had never felt so grateful in my entire life.
So, the world will never be the same. With all of her drama entering this world she maintains seamlessly the same. Just the epitome of a blonde haired, blue eyed beauty queen. She commands a room, all of my attention, and six meals a day. She is loving and stubborn, obsessed with her big sister, and everything I could have ever asked for. We just celebrated Eva’s second birthday. It’s taken two years for me to write this story, but I’m glad I did. Just in case I ever forget to be so grateful for this sweet girl. Happy 2nd Birthday my love.