When I found out I was expecting in July of 2010, I sent my husband a media text with a picture of the test stick shortly after the results appeared in the little window. He had just pulled out of the driveway and was on his way to work. Instead of replying to the text he drove directly back to our house. We met each other on the landing of our staircase where we stood in each others arms silent, still, barely breathing and then I could feel his chest beneath mine and knew he too was crying. We kissed and quietly celebrated with reserve. It would be hard not to, but we knew we wanted to wait before we told anyone. We would do it right this time and wait until the first trimester was over before we shared the news. As if keeping it a secret would alter the outcome this time.
Four months prior on March 4 , 2010, we had our first visit with our mid-wife. I was so excited to be using a birthing center and midwives because my sons were born in the hospital and this time I wanted a natural child-birth with a more intimate setting. I was almost 15 weeks pregnant and this was to be our first appointment since I was transferring from my previous doctor. While my husband and I waited for the mid-wife I visited the bathroom several times once to puke and twice to pee.
After the grueling task of filling out paperwork and getting my medical history all out-of-the-way we were ready to hear that precious sound once again. I had just heard the baby’s heart beat a week before at my regular gynecologist visit and was filled with anticipation because hearing that reassuring sound never gets old.
Our mid-wife laid me down on the exam table and pulled out a fetal doppler I looked at my husband who was wearing a pink shirt in honor of the occasion. We desperately wanted a girl and figured this shirt was all the luck we needed to make that happen. I looked at him and was lost in his crystal blue eyes and handsome smile. I am so in love with this man and now we were going to have a baby. How did I get so lucky coming from where I’ve been to now? I’m lost for a moment in my daydream.
When I snapped out of it I could see my husband mouthing the words repeatedly its okay its okay like a mantra.
I looked at the mid-wife who reassured me that babies hide all the time and this is normal for almost 15 weeks. I chuckled and sarcastically make a comment thinking to myself so our baby is playing hide-and-seek? I don’t recall coming across this in any section of any maternity book I’ve read. And just where in the hell do babies hide while in utero behind a vital organ like the bladder or colon? Is that even possible? Joking at inappropriate times has always been my coping mechanism. Although I was making light of the situation it was far from how I was truly feeling and when my eyes looked again to my husband I plastered a brave smile on my face. She scrambled to leave the room without ever making eye contact with me declaring that many of their dopplers are ‘tricky’ and says she will be back with another one.
When she returned she is not alone. She was with another mid-wife and in her hands are 3 more dopplers. My husband, who was then by my side, was still telling me to remain calm and that everything would turn out fine. I had long since tuned him out and realized I must have been holding my breath because I had a pounding headache and felt nauseated. All I wanted to do was escape the room which had seemed to grow 2 sizes smaller then when we first walked in. I snap at Florence Nightingale and told her I did not want her to try another doppler because after several failed attempts with the first 2 the room was still silent. I wanted to scream come out come out wherever you are, but remained in a fog.
Then the words ultrasound & don’t worry everything is going to be fine.
Disbelief washed over me as I tried to process all of what had just happened. I began the nervous talking thing I do and babbled while my husband drove to the imaging center. I rattled on & on about feeling movement and the strong fast heartbeat I had just heard the week before. Hell the week prior to this one I even posted the words lub-dub lub-dub in the status section of my facebook to declare the glorious news about our baby.
Entering that building for our ultrasound was like walking the green mile. I feverishly asked the tech a million questions all of which she kindly ignored because ‘she was not qualified to give me any medical information.’ As she scanned my abdomen I searched her eyes for the slightest bit of expression. Once she left the room I waited for my husband to return. For whatever asinine reason he was unable to be with me while they took the pictures.
Within a few moments the tech returned picked up the phone from the wall and handed it to me. I lifted it to my ear and squeaked out a hello as I heard a woman say my name. She began to speak very slowly and I felt as if someone had just punched me in the stomach and sucked all the air out of the room because I could no longer breathe. I dropped the receiver only to have my husband pick it up to get the news. The news I already knew, but didn’t allow to fill my ears.
Our baby wasn’t hiding anywhere. It was right there in my womb. Only it no longer had a heartbeat.
Although that little being did not come to be with us here on earth I do believe everything happens for a reason. Despite the statistics of miscarriages how often they can occur we knew it would take some time for us to heal.
We trust and believe we were not meant to know that child or who they would’ve become. It is because of this experience that we now have our sweet little flower, the newest addition to our family and we thank God everyday for the blessing that birthed her into life.