It was a totally normal pregnancy- we saw the heartbeat at 7, 9, and 12 weeks. I saw her wiggle on the monitor. I heard the baby’s heartbeat at home two days before her heart suddenly stopped. At 11 weeks, we had a special blood test to screen for chromosomal problems which also told us the gender. We were SO excited to learn we were expecting a girl! Our immediately family and a few friends knew, but we didn’t tell anyone else, we were just so nervous. All was fine, until it wasn’t. Saturday I couldn’t find the heartbeat on my home doppler, so I went to the ER on Sunday where they confirmed our worst fears. It happened again.
I had no symptoms of miscarriage at all except no heartbeat. Obviously SOMETHING is up with my body, something is different than before. I’ve had three healthy pregnancies (Max had a heart defect, but my pregnancy was totally healthy with him.) This is my second 2nd trimester loss in a row which is just really rare. There has to be an explanation. Only 1-3 % of pregnancies end like this. Two in a row? Not a coincidence.
Telling the kids was so hard. We just barely told them about the baby on my birthday, so they had only known for about ten days. We thought we were in the clear! Poor Isabelle, she has been through so much for a little five year old. She wonders why all of our babies go back to heaven. She really wants a sister.
So it’s not a question of WHEN, it’s more a question of IF. If we can have more. We feel so blessed to have Izzie and Linc here with us and Max on the other side, but I really don’t feel like our family is complete.
I love my doctor. I feel like she is part of my family. I know she wants to figure it out as much as we do. She sent off a special test for dna mutations, chromosome problems, deletions etc to see if there is anything genetic that we are missing. As far as we know, congenital heart problems don’t run in our family and there is no reason to think all of our babies have heart problems. It would be weird after three successful pregnancies to suddenly have chromosomal problems. That test just barely came back normal across the board. Normal for me, normal for my blood, and for the tissue sample that was sent off. Chromosomes and dna are fine.
A possible culprit could be a blood clotting disorder, which we can test for in six weeks and again in three months. Also weird, but it can develop after you already have children. It causes clotting in the placenta, cutting off the blood and oxygen supply to the baby. This is sort of treatable with blood thinner injections during pregnancy, but no guarantee. (Is it ever guaranteed? No.) It seems to be the best explanation for our situation.
Mostly I am just SAD. Just sad and feeling so behind, this was certainly not in our plans. Isabelle is almost six, Lincoln is 3 1/2. After Max we thought we would have another baby right away and it would help heal us. But loss after loss after loss and I don’t feel very healed! And I hate that we are “that family” that has hard things and people know us as the people that keep losing babies. This is not my life! I never imagined this would be our struggle. I still don’t feel like it’s our struggle, just a hitch in the plan. Like, once we figure this out we will be good to go. But I’m not sure.
Last week I packed away the softie pink things that I had happily bought in anticipation for January. Moved my regular clothes back to the front of my closet and folded the few maternity shirts in my rotation. Took the ultrasounds off of my fridge. Opened the door for meals and flowers and cards and cookies from our friends who love us. Cried a lot. I really can’t believe we are here again. And we have to start over. 1/3rd of the way through a full term pregnancy, and back to the beginning.
That first week was rough, honestly, but we are doing better. I took the kids to Phoenix for almost a full week, we just got back and it was good for my soul. Now I feel like we can take a deep breath and keep going.