Mom to Gabriel Christian
December 11th – 12th, 2011
I married my husband on August 14, 2010. One year later we took an anniversary trip to New Braunfels, TX. Although it may seem like an odd choice, we decided it would be fun to spend out first anniversary at Schlitterbahn. The water park was my idea, and we both thought it would be fun to have a carefree trip with just the two of us before we started trying to have children. The trip was fantastic. We knew it was the kind of thing we could do with kids, it would just be more stressful and more about them than us.
So we had our fun and the next month I stopped taking my birth control pill and started taking prenatal vitamins and folic acid. I wanted to do everything right, so I scheduled a pre-conception visit with my primary doctor, something not too common where I live. But, I wanted to make sure my body was in baby-making shape before we actively started trying to get pregnant. A few months later, I finally saw what I wanted when I took an at-home pregnancy test. The second pink line was so faint, I first thought the test might be faulty, so I took another one. The line was also faint on the second test, but I thought it was highly unlikely that I got two faulty tests. The next day I called my doctor and scheduled an appointment to get a blood test done. I had my blood drawn the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. After I had my blood drawn, I met one of my sisters, her husband and son, my parents, and my niece and nephew for lunch. My sister and her husband just happened to be there when I called my doctor to get the results. It was positive. I was so excited, and I couldn’t wait to tell my husband the news.
I went all over town and found a baby names book which I wrapped and gave him when he got off work. That night we went to dinner at my favorite restaurant to celebrate. We decided we would tell our families the good news at Thanksgiving. We did the same thing with my family and my husband’s; although, we told mine on Thursday and his on Friday. My husband said the prayer before the meal, in which he said, “And thank you for the new life we will be welcoming into the family next year.” Our announcement and the way we made the announcement took everyone by surprise, but everyone seemed happy.
Fast forward just a few short weeks. The night of December 11, my husband and I went with a couple of friends of ours to something called “The Living Nativity” in a small town close to where we live. After that, we went back to our friends’ place and played a few games before calling it a night and heading home. When we got home around midnight, I went to the bathroom to find that I was bleeding. I called my sister, the same one who was there when I found out I was pregnant and asked her and her husband, who is a firefighter, what I should do. I wasn’t too worried until he said to go to the emergency room. I had always heard that some women had bleeding during pregnancy, so I didn’t know at first how alarmed I should be. That night I had my blood drawn and was told my blood type is A negative, so I was given a shot of RHOgam which I prayed would allow me to keep the baby. The doctor also did an ultrasound, and said he could see the gestational sack. He did not, however, bother to show me the ultrasound. He said he couldn’t tell me whether or not the bleeding would result in a miscarriage or not. I was told to go home and rest until my first OBGYN appointment which was scheduled for the upcoming Tuesday.
Sunday through Monday, the bleeding got worse, and I spent most of those two days on the phone with different people trying to find out if I should go back to the ER. I didn’t know how much bleeding was too much and whether or not my health was in danger. Many of the people I talked to were cold and uncaring and one woman, a receptionist at my OBGYN’s office, was so hateful that my husband called to complain. Eventually I called my primary doctor, and her nurse told me to go back to the ER. There, I had my blood drawn again (only after the nurse dug around in my vein for a good minute though) and was told that my quant had gone from 680 something to 230 something over the course of a day. I realize now that the doctor I had the first night in the ER probably should have told me what my quant was then and what it should have been for how far along I was supposed to be. I also believe he should have at least offered to show me the ultrasound because I knew then that I would never again have the chance.
The following day, I had an ultrasound and an OBGYN appointment. The ultrasound was scheduled specifically because of the previous two days’ events. The OBGYN appointment was especially difficult because just a week before I had been so looking forward to it. That’s when my doctor told me what I already knew. The ultrasound showed an empty womb. I have to go back in a few weeks to make sure my hcg levels continuing to fall. When I go to that I appointment, if I’m feeling brazen, I might calmly ask to speak to the receptionist who was so hateful to me and tell her that she has no right to make any woman feel the way she made me feel that day. I already felt alone enough as it was, and this woman interrupted me every time I tried to ask her a question or tried to get her to clarify what she was saying.
Now, a week later, I’m struggling with the decision of whether or not to name my baby. My husband was initially against the idea because he thought naming the baby would make the loss that much more difficult to deal with. I, however, am struggling with the fact that I have very little show to the world to prove that this baby was ever here. No ultrasound picture, no pictures of me pregnant, no knowledge of the baby’s gender, no first kick, absolutely no milestones reached that I can cherish. I don’t even have a picture of the positive pregnancy test. I never understood why women took pictures of the pregnancy tests, and now I wish I had. I know we will try again for another baby, but a new baby will not replace the one I lost. A new baby will not change the fact that I must wait until Heaven to hold this one in my arms even though he or she will always be in my heart. It’s difficult to explain how much I miss someone I never knew as a living, breathing being outside myself.
You can contact Kayla at firstname.lastname@example.org.