Well, on July 4, 2010, at about 5:20pm, I peed on a stick. And much to our surprise and delight, a little positive sign showed up. I immediately freaked and thought, "what have we done?". Dan was much more calm and excited and said there was no going back now. I quickly googled when our due date would be. March 14, 2011. It was exciting because our dreams were finally coming true, we'd gotten pregnant the first cycle trying, and we were due on my sister's birthday! How could it get any better? We were thrilled with our little secret and told a few close friends and my sister. The days then dragged by. I had never realized how slowly time went when you wanted it to go fast. I immediately started pouring over every pregnancy book and website I could get my hands on. I would do this right. I would be the healthiest I could be and do everything to guarantee a healthy baby. The world was good.
We had our first ultrasound on July 26th and the tech showed us the beautiful little flicker of a heartbeat. Who knew that at only 7 weeks, such a small baby could already have a heartbeat. We were ecstatic. I had read in multiple places that once you see a heartbeat, the chances of miscarriage go down to 2%. We figured we were safe. My mom and sister had both never had a miscarriage. Why should I?
On August 3rd, I had my first prenatal appointment. It was pretty dull with many questions about my family history and medical background. The nurse tried using the doppler to find a heartbeat and said that she heard it when she first started but then couldn't find it again. Not to worry, it was still early. They didn't have the ultrasound results back yet but would call me if there was anything wrong. But according to her, everything looked right on track.
After this successful appointment, we sent out little care packages to our parents. Two small baby booties with March 14, 2011 and Shh... it's still a secret attached to them. We were on top of the world. Nothing could bring us down. When we arrived home after work that day, there was a message from the doctors office saying that she wanted to discuss my ultrasound results with me and to call back when I could. Of course we didn't get the message until after they were closed for the day. So I had to worry and stress all that evening about what was wrong. When I called the next day, she told me she had good news and bad news. I was pregnant with twins. Twins??? I was blown away. How could I be pregnant with twins? There was no way! Well, she told me that Baby A had a good strong heartbeat and was measuring right on time at 7w but Baby B was measuring smaller at 6w2d and didn't have a heartbeat. I was told that I would most likely miscarry Baby B and to expect some minor brown spotting. I was scheduled for a follow up ultrasound the next Monday to see the progress.
The next five days were the longest of my life. I kept researching twins and the "vanishing twin syndrome" which is most likely what I had. They said that you had a 50% chance of carrying the second baby to term. I was optimistic. I thought that of course Baby A would be fine, it already had a heartbeat. What I prayed for that weekend was that a miracle would happen and Baby B's heart would start beating. I was in no way prepared for the outcome that I got.
Monday finally arrived and I went to my ultrasound appointment. The tech was quiet and just measured and clicked and did who knows what on the machine. She finally told me I was done and free to go. So I left. And I was so naive that I didn't even think to worry at the fact that she showed me nothing. She didn't show me Baby A's heartbeat or anything. Just sent me on my way. I then had to wait a whole day before getting results. I called the office multiple times trying to see if they had received them yet as we were leaving for Alberta that night and wanted to know what was going on before we left.
On Tuesday, August 10th, at 4:00pm, my world came crashing down. The long awaited phone call finally came. But the nurse sounded sad. She told me she had bad news for me. The ultrasound showed that Baby B had already disappeared and Baby A's heart had stopped beating somewhere in the 8th week. She then went on to tell me my options but I wasn't really listening. I just wanted to get off the phone. I have never cried so hard in my life as I cried that day. I couldn't believe that this was happening to us. Why us? What had I done wrong? Why?
We went to Alberta. I was in a bit of a daze but still somewhat enjoyed the trip. Coming home was the hardest part. Seeing all the pregnancy books, the weekly belly pics we had taken, my pregnancy journal, my prenatal vitamins, everything. Everything was a reminder of what we had lost. Little did I know that this journey of miscarriage was far from being over...
I was diagnosed with a missed miscarriage. My baby had died but my body didn't recognize it. I had the option of waiting for a natural miscarriage, taking medication to induce miscarriage, or get a D&C. I figured I would go the natural way and just wait. I waited for three weeks. Three long weeks of knowing that I had a dead baby inside of me, waiting for the bleeding to start. And it finally did on August 29th. And continued to bleed for four weeks. I knew that something was wrong. Everything I had read said the bleeding could last up to two weeks and should then taper off. Mine was getting worse, not better. I finally called my doctor and they got me in for an ultrasound. Sure enough, there was remaining tissue. I had no signs of an infection but they recommended getting a D&C. I went for it. Anything to get this painful ordeal over with. I was then sent to the hospital to confirm and had yet another ultrasound. Yes, still tissue. I had an appointment with the best OB/GYN in the city who would be performing the surgery. He did yet another ultrasound. And it showed the same thing. Remaining tissue. We were sent home and told to return to the hospital on Sunday, September 26th to wait for an opening in the operating room.
Sunday came and went and included us waiting in the surgery waiting room for 12 hours. Yes, 12 hours! Finally, at 8:30pm, they told us we wouldn't get in that day and to head home and return the next day. We came back the next day and after only 4 hours of waiting, the D&C was done. I bled for two more weeks and finally started down the road of physical recovery. The emotional part is still ongoing...
We named our babies Casey & Jaimie. Casey means "brave" and we chose this name because he/she held on longer and lived until 8 1/2 weeks. Jaimie means "I love" and was chosen because even though we only knew about him/her for a couple of days, he/she was still loved deeply.