Eight years ago this week I said goodbye to my third child. It was our second loss. My third pregnancy is a baby that I actually speak of , and think about, very rarely.
I found out that I was pregnant again when our daughter was several months old. I was surprised and pleased that it had happened that quickly. After our loss and after trying so hard to conceive our daughter I felt blessed to have another child. A pregnancy that came easily.
I pulled out the baby name books and started making name lists. I dreamed (and sometimes worried) about having another daughter or son 18 months younger than Aili. My baby would be due in February...my first winter baby. I marked each week of pregnancy on the calender all the way through my due date. I mentally checked off each week as the pregnancy progressed eager to get to the second trimester.
I bought a few winter maternity clothes and I pictured the big round belly I would have by Christmas time.
At 10 weeks into the pregnancy (about 5 weeks after I found out I was pregnant) I started spotting. I wasn't overly concerned because the same thing had happened while I was pregnant with Aili. With her pregnancy I started bleeding very early on and it continued through most of the first trimester. It was very touch and go and I worried constantly that we would loose our second baby. At one point , early on, my midwife told me that we were miscarrying her and sent me home to wait it out , with pamphlets on what to expect. A week later I had an ultrasound, assuming we had already lost the baby, and much to our surprise there was a tiny heart beat after all. I kept that pamphlet to remind me what a miracle she was. I think if she would have died, I might have too. I was in such a desperate place before and during that pregnancy.
Because we had a happy ending last time , I assumed that spotting is just one of the strange symptoms I have during pregnancy. I did schedule an ultrasound though , just to be sure. It was a horrible experience start to finish. The cold sterile ultrasound room was made even more unpleasant by the gruff, unfriendly male technician. I tried to ignore the stark contrast to other ultrasounds I had been in. The screen was facing away from the bed I was laying on. I complained and he assured me we would get a glimpse of our baby before it was over. As the cold gel was spread across my only slightly bloated belly I scrutinized the technicians face, then looked at my husband trying to decipher what only they could see. I could see the serious scowl that replaced what should have been the usual look of excitement at seeing his child. My heart rate sped up and I stared back at the stony faced technician.
He excused himself and left the room with a crass "your Dr. will be getting a hold of you". By that time worry and fear were rising through my stomach and threatened to choke me. I asked the question I hated to verbalize. My husband just shook his head. I managed to contain the torrent of emotion until I had wiped the clear gel off of the stomach that carried a precious life. Inside of me lay a tiny baby. A baby that no longer had a heart beat. A baby that I would never hold in my arms.
As I prepared to leave the clinic the dam holding back the emotion of the last couple years broke and I hid in one of the changing closets until I could control the silent sobs. I walked out with tear stained cheeks and a red face as I glanced at the bulging bellies waiting for their turn.
We had lost another child. It was a completely different kind of loss but it was a loss just the same. It was the death of a dream. The loss of what was supposed to be.
I felt like a walking tomb as we finished up some errands. We then drove back the hour and half to our small town hospital where my Dr was waiting to scrape out what was left of my dreams. I wanted it to be over with. The thought of waiting for weeks was terrifying to me. As they put the mask over my face I welcomed the oblivion I slipped into.
I awoke to the prompting and prodding of the nurses. As I tried to make sense of my surroundings I heard the beeping of the monitors and talk about blood pressure. It had dropped shockingly low and they were scrambling to get it back up where it belonged.
I left the hospital feeling empty, tired and sad.
Over the next couple weeks the physical pain and constant bleeding took its toll. I had assumed because I opted for the surgery that I would avoid much of that but for some reason I didn't. It was several weeks before I was back to myself and the cramping and bleeding stopped.
The emotional toll it took was manageable. The grief was smaller than past grief but it did come and go for a while.
I found the difficult part of my miscarriage was all the unknowns involved. What happened? Was it something I did? Was I exposed to something? Could I have prevented this from happening? Would it happen again?
All those things weighed on my mind.
I also wondered who this child was. Who exactly was I grieving? Who would be missing in our family picture? It's hard to grieve when you don't really know who your grieving for. Was my baby a boy or a girl? The baby didn't even have a name.
It is hard for me sometimes to picture or remember this child is in Heaven. I know our son Samuel is there but I also have another child who I won't meet until eternity. That child went straight from the warmth of my womb to the arms of our Heavenly Father. My Glory Baby.
God had a little surprise waiting for us only a couple months later.
Roman blessed our family 11 months after my miscarriage.