Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The Rest of the Story

I heard that yesterday, October 15th, was Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day.  So, I find it appropriate to share the rest of my story.  It might be too graphic for some and it’s very long.  I apologize I’m detail oriented and I’m sure I still left some stuff out.

Up until October 2010 Gary and I were using contraceptives, not birth control I don't like that stuff, to prevent getting pregnant.  We had been married a year and half at that point and thought  it was a good time to stop preventing and see if we could get pregnant.  We were living in Malaysia at the time and we thought it would be really fun to get pregnant there before we came home in February.  Well, it didn’t happen.  When we returned home in February 2011 we still stuck with the same attitude of we aren’t necessarily trying, but we aren’t preventing either.

I’m not exactly sure when it hit us (maybe it was just me) that we were done waiting, but I think it was around the 1 year mark.  I went to the gyno in October 2011 for a yearly check-up and told her that we were trying to get pregnant.  She told me that I needed to lose weight and that was probably why we were having trouble.  I’ve never been very large and I’ve known people larger than me to get pregnant with no problem, so that kind of rubbed me the wrong way.  She also said to be sure we were waiting at least 24 hours between each time we had sex because it takes that long for sperm to fully re-populate.  She suggested that between day 12- 16 of my cycle we have sex every other day.  It was at this point I really started paying attention to my body.  I never really wanted to be the couple who had to try to get pregnant, I just wanted it to happen.  It makes intimate moments not as fun because you have other intentions besides just the intimacy, but it was something that I had to do if I wanted to have a baby.

There were several other couples around us that were also trying and having a hard time getting pregnant, so it was nice to have the support.  However, starting in January it seemed like they all started getting pregnant and we were the only ones left.  In January 2012, my friend Martha and my sister told us they were pregnant.  In February, we found out our good friends Lee and Rachel Evans were expecting.  In March, over a skype chat, I was told my roommate Rachel Kyle, who lives in New Zealand, was going to become a stay-at-home mom the following November.  Then the gender reveal parties started at the end of March.  Even though I was sooooo excited for all of my friends and my sister it was HARD!

On April 19, 2012 (day 36 of my cycle) I came home from work and took a pregnancy test.  I had taken several tests before, but this felt different.  I walked back in the bathroom after a few minutes to find the word pregnant!!!  OH MY STARS was I soooooo excited!!!  I ran and grabbed Gary and we immediately taped ourselves telling ‘the story.’  The next morning when I got to work I went to the store and bought another pregnancy test and took it because I wanted to be sure there wasn’t something wrong with the one the night before.  It also said pregnant!!  I went ahead and told my manager at work because she knew we had been trying as well.

It was still VERY early, but I figured since I got 2 positives that was good enough for me to start telling my close friends and family.  My sister and friend, Rachel Evans, were coming to my house that night, remember they were both pregnant :).  I wrapped the pregnancy test up and gave it to my sister as a ‘gift for her baby.’  I pulled out my video camera and told her I had to capture every moment of my niece/nephew’s life.  She didn’t ask any questions and just continued to open the present.  She saw the pregnancy test in there, but was really confused at first.  Once they figured it out they jumped up and down and we all laughed and giggled like little school girls.  We talked about how I was going to tell the rest of the family and how exciting it all was that the 3 of us were going to be pregnant together!!  Shelley was having her gender reveal party 2 weeks later and so I thought that would be a fun time to tell people.  Yes, that’s still early, but I felt like it was a super fun time for people to find out.  On Sunday, my friend Alison asked Rachel how we were doing because she knew we were trying.  Rachel couldn’t hold it back and told her, which I was totally ok with.  I’m not sure why, but for some reason, I had a strange feeling about it the whole time.  I can’t explain it, but I just felt like something was going to happen.  I remember mentioning a pain in my side to Rachel at church that morning and her saying that it probably wasn’t a big deal (I’m not saying this had anything to do with what happened, it’s just something I remember).

On Sunday night I went to sleep and around 3 am I woke up and had to use the bathroom.  I groggily walked towards the bathroom in our room, turned on the light and sat on the toilet.  I peed and then wiped and when I looked at the toilet paper it was FULL OF BLOOD!


Gary ran in there and rubbed my head while I cried and cried.  I didn’t realize how much this story still affected me until I was telling a girl at work about it the other day and my eyes started tearing up, just like they’re doing right now as I type this out.  I stayed home from work that day and Gary took me to the doctor.  They took my blood and confirmed I was miscarrying.  I had to go to the doc a few more times after that.  I have negative blood and Gary has positive blood, which isn’t compatible.  So, I had to have the rhogam shot.  I later found out that my mom also had to have this, but I had never heard of it before.   The doctor I met with a few days later was so nice and supportive.  Like I said, I had this miscarriage very early, but that doesn’t make it any easier.

That weekend I was going to my parent’s house so I figured that was a good time to let them know about the miscarriage and that we have been trying for a while.  Even though my parents weren’t over the top about pressuring us to have kids it did bother me when they would say things about it, so I thought it best to let them know what we were going through.  At some point, not sure when, Gary told his family as well, but told them I didn’t really want to talk about it and they respected that.  The one thing I remember his mom saying was , “Kimberly, you know I love you very much.”  I knew exactly what she was eluding to and it was the perfect way for her to tell me that she knew what happened and that she was respecting my wishes.

It seemed that every baby event I went to for a while was very emotional.  People might not have noticed and I honestly hope they didn’t because I would never want to ruin their joy.  Plus the majority of the people I was celebrating with had their own struggles to deal with whether it be they had miscarried, they were waiting for a spouse to be sober for a year or it was just taking them a while to get pregnant.  However, my cards at baby showers were much more sentimental during this time :).

When I would see or hear people complaining about their kids it tore me up (and honestly it still kind of does).  I would think, “You have kids.  Be happy!”  Of course, more and more people were announcing their pregnancies and the more it happened the worse I felt.  The doctor had told us not to try again for a month to let my body fully recuperate.  So, when June came around I was ready to try again.  I kept up with what was going on with my body.  Counted days, had sex on the suggested days and PRAYED PRAYED PRAYED!!  I decided I was not going to take another pregnancy test until I was at least 2 weeks late because I was notorious for taking them early and being disappointed.  I had taken the other one when I was only a week late.  The doctor had told me that you are very fertile after a miscarriage, so it will probably happen fast.  There were 2 other friends of mine that had miscarriages before me and they said they both got pregnant the month they started trying again.  So, I was overly hopeful.  The day I was supposed to start came and went, but I stuck to it and didn’t take a pregnancy test.  Then on day 40, the same day of my cycle in April, the exact same thing happened.  I can’t fully support that it was another miscarriage because I didn’t take a pregnancy test and I didn’t go to the doctor, but it felt EXACTLY the same!  They call these chemical pregnancies.  Had I not been so in tune with my body I probably wouldn’t have even noticed it.  I might have thought I was cramping more and bigger clots were passing, but definitely the first thing on my mind wouldn’t be miscarriage.  However, at this point in my life it was.  It wasn’t necessarily as devastating because, like I said, I didn’t have the support to back up the fact I thought I was having a miscarriage, but it still proved that I was not pregnant for another month.

I finally broke down and bought some ovulation sticks that Rachel Evans had been trying to tell me to get and on August 14th I got that smiley face!!  I also decided that this go ‘round I was going to take my test early and try to get into the doctor before I miscarried.  So, on August 28th I took a pregnancy test (day 30 of my cycle) and it was POSITIVE!!!  I remember being so excited, but so scared at the same time because I knew that it could all end up the exact same way it did the times before.  I called the doctor immediately (btw I had changed docs at this point) and made my first appointment.  It was still too early for them to see anything on the ultrasound, but they guessed my due date would be May 6th.  I requested to go ahead and get the rhogam shot and I also mentioned progesterone because I had heard that helped, but the nurse practitioner I met with said they would only give me the rhogam if I was bleeding and didn’t think I needed progesterone since I was already pregnant.

I did start telling my close friends and family so they could begin praying for us and the baby.  I was so nervous for day 40 to come.  I just kept saying, “I just have to make it past that day.”  On day 40 I went to the bathroom at work and I was dripping blood.  I didn’t necessarily freak out because that was already different from gushing blood, but I did call my doctor and they wanted me to come in.  I went in later that afternoon and they gave me the rhogam shot and put me on some progesterone that I inserted in the morning and in the evening.  They should have just listened to me and it might have saved me that trip, don’t ya think?  I had to revisit the doctor more frequently in the beginning because of my history and everything, but on September 20th we got to see our sweet baby’s heartbeat on the ultrasound and my due date was changed to May 14th.  They told me that the risk of miscarriage lowered significantly when you saw the heartbeat and then even more when you could hear it on the external monitor.

I remember when we finally decided to put the word out on social media.  I was well past my first trimester and all of my close friends and family knew, but I was sooooo worried about certain people’s feelings.  I still had some friends or acquaintances that were still struggling with getting pregnant and I did not want to be one of those people that rubbed it in.  I reached out to one person in particular and she made me feel so much better!  She told me that it meant a lot to her that I thought of her, but she was honestly overjoyed for us. Her and her husband are still trying, to this day, and I pray for them often and I would like to request that you do the same.  God will know who she is.

The rest of my pregnancy seemed to be flawless and I am soooo thankful and overjoyed that we were able to welcome our sweet baby girl into the world on May 11th.  We did have a few issues towards the end as well, but Wren was born safely and healthy!  Thank you Lord!

I pray that I enjoy EVERY. SINGLE. MINUTE. of Wren’s life.  She is such a blessing and honestly a GREAT baby!!  I know things can change daily with babies, but I do believe that what we went through has allowed us to enjoy her more and not really notice if we’re having a “bad day.”  I’m just so thankful I have her!

I’ve been watching Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix and there’s an episode when Derek and Meredith are trying to get pregnant and out of nowhere Callie does.  Callie isn’t married, she really wasn’t trying, but she’s the one who gets to have a baby.  There’s a scene when Derek and Meredith are in the elevator and she is having an emotional break-down about how Callie wasn’t even trying and she is doing ‘all the right things’ and can’t get pregnant and how it’s not fair.  I’ll be honest it’s how I felt during our hard times and I’m still slowly working through thoughts that I have concerning other people.  It can sometimes be a daily struggle, especially with social media and ‘keeping up with the Jones’s.’  I have been having some break-through moments lately and I’ve noticed that my view of other people and their lives has completely changed and I thank my sweet precious husband for that because he helps me with how to word my prayers in a certain way that gives my worry over to God.

I pray that this post helps people understand where I’ve come from and where I’ve been and that if I have ever snapped at you for something, especially concerning your kids, that this helps explain it.  I also pray for those people who are still trying to get pregnant and those who are about to welcome a baby into their lives.  I pray for new mom’s and mom’s of teenagers.  I pray that we can all be respectful of what others are going through as well as keep in mind that people don’t mean certain things that they say to be taken personally.  I just pray!!



nat said...

Very brave of you to share your story and glad God blessed you with your sweet baby girl!

He Sings Over Me! said...

You guys will continue to be in our prayers.