About six months into our marriage I went off the pill and began dreaming of a baby. The next month I was pregnant. Not being able to contain my excitement over our good fortune I very quickly told everyone I knew and many people that I didn't know that a baby was on the way! My due date was December 24. It would be a holiday baby. Nothing could have thrilled me more as I love the Christmas season and eagerly anticipate its arrival every year. About three months later I woke up in the small hours of the morning and went to the bathroom and there were a few spots of blood on my panties. I noticed briefly but recalled that a little spotting was not abnormal in the first trimester. I went back to sleep. When I again awoke in the morning, the few spots of blood had turned into a small trickle down my legs. I immediately called my midwife who told me to come right in. When I arrived at the office, she did an exam. She told me to be prepared for the worst, but that she couldn't tell how bad the situation was. An ultrasound was scheduled for that afternoon. I dutifully drank my water and waited anxiously for my turn in the waiting room. By this time I was in severe pain. I thought that it was largely because of my desperate need to pee. (What cruel person devised the plan to have pregnant women drink large quantities of water and then be forbidden to use the bathroom?) Finally the nurse called my name. I hobbled to the exam room accompanied by my very concerned and growing upset husband. The nurse tried to get a picture with the regular ultrasound device, but couldn't. She said that she would have to do a vaginal ultrasound. After a few minutes of pain and prodding and fumbling, she went and got another nurse. The two of them prodded and fumbled in unison, whispered back and forth, printed some stuff out and took it to show the doctor. My husband and I waited alone in the cold room. The doctor finally made his way into the exam room and introduced himself. He noted with great glee that he was the one who pulled my husband into the light of a marvelous world. Then held up the pictures and said "It's going to be fine". You can imagine our relief as we finally exhaled for the first time in hours. I eagerly asked, "The baby's ok then?" The dear kind doctor looked at me as though I had a hole in my head and informed me that "The baby is dead. You will be fine. No need to do a D and C. It should pass naturally".
Proceed to the following hours and days of blur. Heavy bleeding. Excrutiating pain. Tears without end. Everytime I changed my pad there were large fleshy chunks on it and I had to wonder- is this piece the head, the foot, or just a piece of membrane?
The midwife said a couple weeks later at the follow-up visit that their was no reason I couldn't start trying to get pregnant again. It might be the most therapeutic thing I could do. Thus followed months of marking the calender and heving sex at all the right times. Also followed months of white plastic sticks with only one line. Thank heavens the dollar tree has preggie tests for a buck. After an uncounted number of one-lined preggie tests I told my hisband I couldn't take it anymore. I was ready to stop trying before I lost the last remant of my sanity.
I applied for college and was accepted. Proceedings began to get financial aid. I registered for classes. Took a tour of the college. Stopped even paying attention to when I was supposed to start my period. One day I glanced at the calender and thought, when was my last period? Further investigation revealed that it had been about seven weeks. I am normally very regular, but after all the months of not getting pregnant I didn't even think that was a possibility. I had one preggie test left in the medicine cabinet and my husband said I should go ahead and check. I can't bear to sit their and watch, so I donated my urine and handed the strip to my husband then I left the room. Not more than twenty seconds after I walked away I heard an odd sound from my husband.
I unapplied for college. I thought, it probably won't make it anyway so there's no point in getting excited. I was actually a little angry. I had decided to move on. I was ready to advance my career. We had decided to wait until after I finished college to try again. How dare a baby come now. My midwife said that I should go in for an ultrasound at twelve weeks to check everything out. She thought it would help me accept my pregnancy if I could see something was there. Once more I find myself sitting in the waiting room with a very full bladder staring grumpily at the floor. If I had seen the retard doctor that told me my baby was dead I might heve been inclined to throw a punch or two. Lucky for him, he must have been off that day.
The nurse prefaced the ultrasound with "It might be to early to see anything, so don't get concerned if we don't". I already knew we wouldn't see anything so I found that comment quite silly. She positioned the thing over my tummy and hit the power button. I swear to God that as soon as she turned the machine on the first thing that showed up on that screen was my baby's heart beating away like a locomotive on steroids. She focused the machine and let us look at the most beautiful sight I have ever seen- a lima bean with a heart beating right out of it's shell. I cried for five hours. I called my mom and said "It's going to be fine".
Two weeks after my due date my midwife stuck a crotchet hook inside me and my contractions finally started. And stopped. And started. And pretty much stalled out. Next comes the pitocin. This is a wonderful drug to help your contractions feel six times worse than they already have. Following this is much screaming and puking and the repeated thought of death. And then the epidural. An even more wonderful drug to make you think you finally did die and woke up in heaven.
2:34 am- A.E. announces her entrance to the world with a hearty cry. A nine pound baby covered in mucous and blood is placed on my stomach and I can think of nothing that has ever looked so precious. She goes right to the breast, suckles for an hour, and hasn't stopped eating since.