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waiting to miscarry

Waiting to miscarry

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I’ve been keeping a secret, only this time I thought the ending would be a happy one. I was wrong, but I choose to believe the Universe has a better plan than the one I imagined.

This week I would be 9 weeks pregnant, but a couple days ago we discovered I’m going to miscarry due to a blighted ovum, otherwise known as ananembryonic pregnancy. According to the Mayo Clinic, this occurs when an early embryo never develops or stops developing, is resorbed and leaves an empty gestational sac.

The week leading up to our 8 week ultrasound I began to feel anxiety creep up, but I was certain we would hear the heart beat this time. I was wrong.

We even recorded a short video beforehand, thinking we would include it in our official announcement video. We were hopeful more than anything, and I’m happy we were.

positive pregnancy test before miscarriage

It’s been a rollercoaster of emotions as our ultrasound tech seemed overly optimistic. She told me what she saw was normal and that everything is probably fine and we may just be earlier in the pregnancy than we thought. She didn’t have a doctor or midwife come in to talk to us, so I thought maybe she was right, maybe everything was fine. We scheduled another ultrasound 2 weeks out, but I also had more blood work drawn over the course of a few days. Eric and I tried to stay positive (and busy) while we waited several days for an update. Unfortunately, the results on Tuesday and measurements taken during my ultrasound confirmed what I already knew, this pregnancy was going to end in heartbreak.

Waiting to miscarry

My doctor wanted to give my body some time to see if I would miscarry naturally before we discuss other options – basically taking a pill to speed the process along, or have another surgery. I should be getting a call later today, but I haven’t decided what to do. None are good, and to be honest, I’m scared as the experience and outcome is different for everyone. Some people take the pill and still have to have to go to the ER for surgery, though my doctor said it’s rare (last year my doctor made it seem extremely risky, hence my hesitation). I was really hoping my body would just do what it needs to do, but that hasn’t happened yet.

I was going to wait to share this until I had completely gone through the miscarriage, but today I’m struggling, even more so than yesterday. Not sharing is making it worse, making me feel more alone. And the waiting game isn’t making the process any easier. Every time I feel cramps I wonder, is this it? I’ve made peace with this pregnancy not ending the way I wanted it to, but it’s hard to move on, and downright frustrating when your body won’t let go. It’s even worse when you’re pregnancy symptoms linger, and you know it’s all for nothing. Talk about cruel.

It may be early but that doesn’t discount the excitement and plans we made for our future family. Productivity took a back seat within days of my positive pregnancy test, and survival mode took over while I battled extreme nausea and fatigue for the last month and a half. It’s been hard, y’all.

yellow flowers

As my priorities shifted to simply making it through the day (and my project timeline went out the window) all I could think about was how grateful I was to be pregnant, and how it would all be worth it in the end when our baby was finally here. I was slightly embarrassed that I had only made it halfway through the layout design of my book, but I thought if I could just make it to the second trimester, my days of feeling like a zombie would be over and I’d get back on track.

Keeping the news a secret was super challenging because I wanted to scream it from the rooftops, but we experienced a missed miscarriage at 8 weeks last August that resulted in surgery, so this time we decided to only tell our parents and siblings until we made it to 13 weeks. I focused on how this pregnancy was different and prayed daily for help and guidance to find peace in the process, regardless of the outcome.

I was honestly surprised with my how calm I felt, knowing it was out of my control. Instead of letting fear creep in, I allowed myself to get excited, make plans, and even created a Pinterest board for baby items and nursery ideas. I was choosing love over fear. On the chance this was a viable pregnancy, I wanted our baby to feel love and good energy, not my stress or worry. I wouldn’t change a thing about that either. I know it won’t be easy, but hope to approach our next pregnancy (I remain hopeful) with the same optimism and joy.

Of course I had also read it’s rare to have 2 back-to-back miscarriages and the odds were in our favor for a healthy pregnancy. Even so, I did go in for early blood work at just 4 weeks to check my HCG and progesterone levels, all of which looked great. My levels were checked again at 6 weeks, and were still looking good. I still knew there was a chance of something going wrong, but at least these appointments were giving me something to look forward to until our first ultrasound, which felt like a lifetime away. After more than 6 visits for blood work, I also seemed to be over my fear of needles.

The song, “Don’t worry, be happy”, by Bobby McFerrin has always been one of my favorites, and became my pregnancy theme song. Anytime I felt nervous I would listen to it or sing it to myself, and would instantly feel better. Now it makes me cry, yet how ironic that the words still resonate.

Sadly, I now know the statistics behind miscarriage, and how it’s much more common than most people realize, though most women go on to have beautiful, healthy babies. I have so much empathy and compassion for those who have or are currently going through this. It’s not easy on you emotionally, mentally, or physically, but I hope my story will help someone else feel less alone, just as other stories have helped me.

3 losses in 1 year

We lost our cat, Kobe, due to chronic kidney disease, a week before we found out we were pregnant. It was an extremely difficult time for us as he was with us for 13 years, and seeing him so sick broke my heart. He had been battling CKD for a year but was doing really well for the most part, until one day it took a major turn for the worst and unfortunately, fluid therapy didn’t help.

Kobe cat

He was such a funny cat, full of personality and quirks but we’re grateful for our time with him and that he was able to experience the adventure of RV life with us. He loved boxes, telling us what to do, and I’m pretty sure he thought he was a human. He could locate his treats with one sniff, and drove us crazy opening cabinet doors, knocking down canisters, and attempting to open the fridge. He was relentless, stubborn, and almost always got his way.

We could put a plate of food in front of McNally or leave it unattended, but he wouldn’t touch it unless we gave the go-ahead. Kobe, on the other hand, is the one that would steal Eric’s pizza, knock a wrapped sandwich off the counter then unwrap and eat it, and try to sneak his paw into your bowl of food or dip it into your ranch when he thought you weren’t looking. He was definitely the one in charge of Duckie and McNally, and helped keep the peace. He also enjoyed letting them feast on any food he was able to steal. It’s just not the same without him.

When we found out we were pregnant less than a week after his passing, it was a weird feeling. I was missing him so much (I still think of him every day), but also felt thankful for the blessing that showed up in his presence.

waiting to miscarry

“When you think you’ve surrendered, surrender more.”

While listening to Gabby Bernstein’s podcast earlier this week, she talked about surrendering, and while I’ve heard it before, it was exactly what I needed to hear when I needed to hear it. It was no accident that I waited until that moment to listen to it.

Looking back, it’s difficult to think about how we’ve experienced 2 losses in 2 months, let alone how there have been 3 in the past year. Yet, here I am, remaining optimistic as I learn to surrender some more to a plan and timeline greater than my own.

I’ve been asking for strength and courage to get me through this process, and not let myself get paralyzed by fear of what could happen, or what this miscarriage could mean. I don’t know what tomorrow, next week, or next month will look like, but as I sit here, waiting to miscarry, all I can do is take each day as it comes.

Eric has been amazing and I’m lucky to have him by my side. It hasn’t been easy on him either, but we still believe our rainbow baby will be here exactly when they are meant to.

Waiting to miscarry

Comments

  • Kimberly

    I am so very sorry for your incredible heartache. Thank you for being vulnerable and sharing your story. I know this will help others with their grief. May God bless you and your husband with surrounding peace during this time.

    July 15, 2021
    reply
  • Rosemary

    Thinking of you during this difficult time.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • DotD

    My heart goes out to you. I am now 70 years old, but the memories of repeated miscarriages last a lifetime. I am hoping for the best outcome for you.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Dan Hitchcock

    Perfect Katie!

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Dawn

    Oh sweetie, I really feel for you. I had 2 blighted ovums in 1 year back in 1996. My Dr automatically scheduled a D&C with both. I was able to have 2 healthy pregnancies after that, so we never know what the future holds. I’ll keep you in my prayers and just wanted you to know you are not alone.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Susan

    My heart goes out to the two of you. May your wishes for a healthy baby come true soon.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Dana

    Oh Katie & Eric – my heart is breaking for you both. I am glad you are finding strength and comfort with each other. And I am so sorry about Kobe, I lost a beloved cat to the same thing. SO hard. I did have a close vet friend tell me just recently that it is in fact not painful to them, just looks like it is. Hope that gives you some comfort like it did me. And I’ll share my pregnancy pain with you. We tried for 3 years to get pregnant. And it seemed to me like everyone around me was getting pregnant without even trying. Everywhere I looked I saw babies. I couldn’t even go to the mall anymore. Every month my period was a death and a loss. I never ever saw a positive pregnancy test. We spent a year on fertility treatments – and of course everything the female has to do is invasive and uncomfortable. The male is giving a cup – a magazine if needed – and a dark room. wink wink. Anyway – it was a very hard very emotional and painful time. We finally went on the IVF road after trying a few other options. I became an expert at needles and injecting myself as did my husband on me when I couldn’t. I am happy to say that today we have 16 year old boy/girl twins. And I value and appreciate – even in the tough parenting times – being a mom. I think that when we are given hard things to go through we become stronger in ourselves and our relationships. I don’t know you and Eric but I see that inner strength in your writing. Doesn’t mean you don’t have times of tears and screaming at the universe, just means you pick yourself up after and carry on. Be kind to yourselves – its a roller coaster. Sending you peace and love.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Brandi H Provias

    Katie,
    Bless your sweet soul! I am praying for God to reach down and hold you and Eric with His amazing strong arms! I know first hard the heart ache and struggle y’all are going through.

    I was on my third pregnancy and well into my second trimester, 18 weeks to be exact. I went in for my sonogram and found out he didn’t have a heartbeat. I had to wait a week for my body to recognize the sad news that I already knew. The waiting was painful and lonely. I had amazing family and support but nothing like the support and love of Jesus.

    I am praying for you both!

    Much love and support to you both!
    Brandi

    p.s. Please feel free to reach out to me privately if you would like.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Shanna

    I am so sorry to hear your news, which is tragically much more common than we think. So thank you for sharing your story. I have had three, but two back to back like you. I have birthed 4 happy, healthy babies, so I pray your rainbow baby comes in the perfect time. Hugs to you & your husband. Thank you for all you do!

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Mari

    I am so sorry that you and your husband are going through so much. My thoughts and prayers are with you both during this difficult time. Thank you for sharing your story and I know you will be helping so many who is going through what your going through. Sharing your story takes courage and strength. Your an amazing person! Love and prayers to you both

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • ROSE KNIGHT

    I can’t imagine your pain. My daughter just went through the same thing two weeks ago. No matter what, it is the loss of hope, possibilites, love and the future of that welcomed addition. Take time to focus on your pain and then let it go.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Cindy & Bill Carson

    Thank you for sharing. Praying for you and your husband during this difficult time.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Denise

    Dear Katie, I am now a 65 year old lady! When I was 28 my high school sweetheart and husband of 8 years was killed in an accident on his way to work. Leaving me with 2 babies. What does that have to do with you? Well I did meet someone else and I thought life could start again. We married and I became pregnant! I lost that baby at almost 5 months in my pregnancy I thought once again I was being punished by God for something I didn’t understand. I did get pregnant again and had 2 more daughters. I now realize God did have a plan and THOSE 2 girls were meant to be! I am not a religious nut but I do believe. The future is as bright as the promises of God. Don’t give up! Things have a way of working out even if you can’t see it now!

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • AD

    So sorry for your losses! Sending you peace & good vibes ~

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Wendy

    Wow! You are a truly beautiful and strong person. I wish you all the best.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Aften Lane

    Oh, my sweet friend. It’s very brave of you to put words to all these feelings of sadness and grief. I am so sorry for your loss and grievances. I pray you are comforted by God and trust he will fulfill the promises he has put on your heart.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Jenn Taylor

    I feel you. I’ve miscarried 3 times, and I’ve also been gifted with pregnancies that resulted in delivery. I’m certain that there are LOTS of moma’s out there who are supporting you silently. I hope many step forward to show support – we’re all women going through the same things, and we should talk about them, support each other and hug much more frequently.

    Sending you a virtual hug.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Kristy Darnell

    Thank you for sharing your story. The more we talk about what we all go through, the more women can feel empowered to speak up. I admire your positivity and I am sending positive and loving vibes your way.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Margaret

    I’m so very sorry for your loss and am praying for God to give you the comfort and peace only He can.

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Cheryl

    Hugs

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Ashley Mann

    I’m so sorry to hear this news. Sending love to you and Eric as you grieve and heal together. 🖤

    July 18, 2021
    reply
  • Belinda

    I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I also highly recommend no one get the covid shot. Miscarriages have increased to 400%. I will pray for you Katie. With deepest sympathy.

    July 19, 2021
    reply
  • Kristy

    Thank you for sharing your story. I also experiences a missed miscarriage, it is so difficult, and your story helped me feel not so alone. 💜

    July 19, 2021
    reply
  • Jill

    I am so very sorry honey!! Sending you big hugs!!

    July 19, 2021
    reply
  • CYNTHIA G GRIFFITH

    I’m so very sorry. I think I had a miscarriage before my son was born. I think about it now and think I was probably blessed to not have figured that out until a few years later. You are right to grieve at your own pace and you will be in my prayers. I’m just so sorry that you and your husband are going through this.

    July 19, 2021
    reply
  • Lenos

    sending healing, strength and peace to you both…

    July 22, 2021
    reply
  • Judi Witt

    I’ve been thinking about you and your vulnerability right now. No words that I can offer can take away your pain. All I can encourage you to do is take care of yourself. Let others take care of you too even if you aren’t used to doing that. And talk. Words matter at a time like this. You will find your way through this storm in your life. Hold onto your husband’s love. ❤️❤️

    July 24, 2021
    reply

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