Naive

Naive

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So I thought I.V.F would be simple – I mean; I guess I kind of knew it was a long, hard process but I think I chose to overlook that part just so I could revel in the excitement for a while. 

But now that it’s approaching, I’m starting to worry a little. 

I worry about how I’m going to manage college and studying full-time, working 12 hour shifts in a care home, look for a new house, look after Kian 3 days a week and manage to attend all my I.VF. appointments. I worry I’ll miss college work, or will have to cancel shifts. Will be able to pay the bills if I can’t go to work? I worry about injecting myself. I worry about how I’ll deal with the side effects of  the treatment. I worry about the in-between stages – the waiting. Most of all I worry about how the hell I’ll cope if I do all of this and it still fails. 

Someone please sprinkle some positivity on me. I need it. Damnit. I was doing so well.  

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Misconceptions

Misconceptions

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I unfollowed someone on Instagram yesterday because of her pregnancy announcement. 

In my defense, I never blocked her so you know – progress. 

We used to work together and it’s not that I’m unhappy for her – I just don’t want to see the picture updates. I don’t want to see the scans, the bumps, the pram, the clothes she’s buying. I don’t want to see them. Not yet. 

I felt kind of down for a few minutes – Ok 10 maybe – and then do you know what? 

I was okay.  

Totally fine actually (I still didn’t follow her again, but that’s neither here nor there). But I think that’s okay, I think that’s normal. I won’t sit here and lie to you that it’s easy to hear of pregnancies, or to look at people’s social media photos because it’s not easy. I don’t think it ever will be. But it also doesn’t make me feel the way it used to, and that has to be a good thing doesn’t it? 

It’s okay to be a little selfish at times, and it’s ok to not always be nice to everyone. You need to do what makes you feel good. Or what makes you feel even just a little bit better. 

I know I’ve earned the right to be a little selfish sometimes. Fuck it. Fuck everyone else’s opinions. Do what you want to do. 

 

28..01.2018 

Over the past few years I’ve encountered a fair amount of misconceptions, or judgments relating to my miscarriages and I thought I’d share some. My top 5:  

  1. I hate being around children 
  1. I hate pregnant people 
  1. I’m too fragile to hear about your own pregnancy 
  1. There must be something wrong with me – I probably just can’t carry boys. 
  1. I’m not upset anymore. It was ages ago, and it wasn’t even a baby. 

So these things come up a lot. A lot. It’s hard to break the stigma around miscarriage and I know not everyone means to be nasty or hurtful. A lot of people just don’t know what to say, or are too scared to ask so they make their own judgements. But if you’re curious – here’s my answers: 

 

  1. No, I happen to love children. I’m studying childcare, and more often than not, I find them more fun than adults. Yes babies are hard, of course they are – but that doesn’t mean I hate being around them. 
  1. I do not hate pregnant people.  But imagine you losing your wife or husband or you recently went through a horrendous break up – seeing other people happy and in love would have an affect on you for a little while – you’d be a little upset. It’s normal. Same with me and pregnant people. After a loss it’s a little difficult. I’m not the devil. I’m human and I’m flawed. Just like you. 
  1. I am not an idiot. I’m more than aware that people get pregnant. I’ve been dealing with it for a long time – you can tell me. I might not be 100% happy all the time, and I may even ignore your social media pages for a little while but, I’m  more than capable of hearing about it and I’ll deal with it in my own way. And I can be happy for you. 
  1. Please do not try guess what is wrong with me. Nurses don’t know. Doctors don’t know. Teams of specialists don’t know. You certainly don’t know. Yes maybe your auntie “couldn’t carry boys ” (although how they ever found that is beyond me) but I’m not your auntie. I’ve had miscarriages. I’m now struggling to fall pregnant. There is nothing wrong with me. I am like millions of other women around the world. I’m  normal.  
  1. Ok so just don’t. Don’t ever tell me it wasn’t a baby. Don’t tell me how to feel. Don’t tell me how long I can feel sad. Don’t assume anything. I lost my children and I can never change that. But your assumptions and your judgments don’t help anything. If you want to know anything – just ask me. 

Anyone else deal with something similar? I know I’m not the only one!

 

 

Waiting

Waiting

Merry Christmas/Happy New year/Hannukah/Kwanzaa/Other religious holidays I don’t really know much about. Hope everyone’s well. 

Baby-wise we never tried much over Christmas – Nikki was pretty sick for a few weeks so it was off the table – and I really didn’t mind. We had our THIRD appointment at the RMC (Recurrent Miscarriage Clinic) a few days ago and I finally feel we’re getting somewhere. Third time lucky I guess.. Except that really doesn’t mean anything to me. 

My specialist agrees that it isn’t “normal” to have this many losses for no reason, so she’s recommended I start progesterone as soon as I fall pregnant. She’s also sending me for an MRI to see if I have any abnormalities in my uterus. Well I can think of one straightaway love – it won’t keep a bloody baby in it!  

Maybe we’re getting somewhere now. Only time will tell.  

My present

My present

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This time two years ago I was putting last minute touches to my wedding plans. I wasn’t pregnant and didn’t know the pain of recurrent miscarriage. I had no idea that I was about to spend the next two years trying for a baby only to lose it every time. I had no idea I would have a frequent flyer card at my local hospital, no idea that I would spend hours researching acupuncture and tips on how to get pregnant (and stay that way). In fact, “full term pregnancy” wasn’t even in my vocabulary – it was just pregnancy. A simple straightforward word. It stood alone. The only thing that followed ‘pregnancy’ was ‘baby’. 

I sometimes imagine myself in 5, 10 years – in a detached house with 2 or 3 kids (including Kian), we’re financially secure and of course ecstatically happy and then I realise I have to stop myself. I have no idea what the future holds for me – that’s more obvious to me now than it’s ever been.  

I need to stop imagining and fantasizing. I need to live my life. I need to forget about my past, I need to stop picturing my future and I really need to try enjoy  just living in my present. 

“Try” – optimal word. 

Miscarriage & Media

Miscarriage & Media

I can’t remember if I’ve already mentioned that I’m a media volunteer for The Miscarriage Association. It basically means if any journalist wants to do a story or something, they’ll contact MA who will then contact me if I’m suitable for it. I’ve only done 2 newspaper interviews – one small piece for the Scottish Sun, and one for the Saturday Herald (out this Saturday if there’s any local folks reading!)

(if it appears online I’ll pop a link on this weekend)

Anyway, the journalist doing the interview asked me what difference – if any – the miscarriages have made to my life. I’d never really thought about that before…Sure, I’m more aware of miscarriages and the struggles of trying to conceive. I know all the statistics, and about all the delightful stages of our cervical mucus, but I didn’t think she wanted to stick that in her article!

I told her that it had made my marriage stronger – in our 2 years of marriage we’ve went through more shit than most do in a lifetime and we’re still here making each other laugh and pulling through it all together.

Later on I thought some more about it.

I  sat on the train home and thought about the past few years, and thought about the people on here that I’ve spoke to and read about, and do you know what I realised? How bloody strong are we all? How resilient are we? I’ve became a much stronger person since my losses – I seem to be able to bounce back more than I ever thought possible. We’ve been knocked down so many times and we keep getting back up. We’ve got that end goal in sight and we’re all fighting so hard to get it. I know it’s maybe cheesy but we should all be proud of ourselves. I never thought I would be able to get through all these losses.. I never thought I would be able to keep going, but yeah you know what? I bloody can. And I bloody will!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No Tea for Me.

No Tea for Me.

I’ve been absent from WordPress again the past few weeks. I’m the worst blogger, I really am.

I took on board everyone’s advice last post and purchased raspberry leaf tea capsules. I had to do the capsule thing; I’m really not a huge tea drinker. Believe it or not, not everyone in the UK loves a cuppa!

I also tried the “conceive plus” fertility gel, but I have to admit I wasn’t a huge fan. It wasn’t particularly messy or icky like I feared.. it just kind of made it.. I don’t know; different. We ended up just using it after I *cough* finished * which worked out best for us. Maybe I’m just not a lube-y kinda girl.

Anyone experience side effects from the supplements? Just curious.

I’m now on day 30, of a normal 32 day cycle. (Last month was 33) and feeling pretty normal. I’ve been crazy gassy (TMI) much to my husband’s delight and I’ve been a little emotional – but I’m always pretty emotional to be honest.

Anyway. I’ll update you all with any phantom symptoms/late periods/eventual menstruation.

Appointment with the NHS

Appointment with the NHS

I’ve spoken briefly about my frustration with the NHS in relation to my miscarriages and I think I should be more specific. Its mainly at my local GP’S attitude and staff than aren’t directly involved with my history. And I tend to be constantly angry at the R.A.H hospital by how I was treated by them during my 1st miscarriage at 21. (See my post ‘guilt’ for more detail on that one)

I had my appointment at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital  (Southern general – it’ll always be southern general to me)

Anyway.. the doctor and sister that seen me today were fantastic. I’d already met the sister when I was in for tests around 9months ago (9months,  how horrendously ironic). They were both so understanding and sympathetic.  I wasnt patronised or made to feel like it wasnt a big deal. They were genuine.  And while I cried at least 4 times, I left feeling better… feeling listened to.

I never had further tests done as everything that could be tested already has been. Everything is negative. Or positive. I dunno.. it’s a good result. I’m basically a picture of health. I’ve just been unlucky. Three times.
Part of me hoped there was something – at least that way it could be treated. But I was assured that medically speaking its better this way.

The advice was just to keep trying. Stay positive. Do everything I’m already doing. It’s hard to see the light sometimes but I am going to keep going. I’ve only been fighting for a year and I know some of you have been fighting much longer. Your strength helps me keep going.

If anyone is delaying the tests, or scared to go for fear of discovering something they didn’t want to know – just go. The worst is fear of the unknown. Once you have some kind of answer, you can start to move on. I’m still going to feel like shit every now and then, I’m still going to be angry and frustrated. I’ll 100% still cry. But I’ll know that there’s nothing more I can or could ever have done. I know that when it’s my time.. I’ll have my baby.

(At least that’s the positivity I’m trying to lead with today!)

Guilt

Guilt

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I don’t talk about my first miscarriage a lot, and there’s reasons for that. But I feel if I’m going to tell my story properly, then maybe I should.  

I was about 19 and hadn’t long discovered my boyfriend at the time had been cheating on me. I took the cheating how most 19 year old girls would – horribly. I coped by going out with the girls and getting drunk. When I was with him I was on the pill kind of intermittently which is horrendous I know. 

A few weeks passed and it occured to me that I hadn’t had a period in a while. I wasn’t sure how long, but I’d guessed around 6 weeks. I calmly took a test not really expecting much and froze when it came back positive. What. The. Fuck? How did this happen? As a now 29 year old I despise myself for how easily I fell pregnant… so feel free to do the same. 

Here’s where the biggest guilt bit comes in. I knew straight away that I wanted to terminate the pregnancy. There wasn’t a shred of doubt in my mind. I had zero finances, I was a student working part time in a night club and I had next to no contact with my ex – the dad. I didn’t want to see him again, never mind have a child with him. Even now, I don’t regret my decision – I planned to do what was right for myself at the time. 

I went to the doctors, booked an appointment and that was pretty much all I had to do until I returned to take the pills. They didn’t try deter me or convince me to tell the dad (I chose never to tell him). They said ‘OK’ and gave me a follow up appointment. 

About a week later, I woke up cramping in agony with blood covering my bedsheets. I stupidly went for a bath and the water turned bright red. I genuinely had no clue what was happening. I barely even knew of miscarriages. I phoned my doctor and she told me to get to the hospital immediately. I phoned a taxi and tried to put a couple of pads in to hold the bleeding. 

I sat in the hospital waiting room for about an hour before anyone seen me. I remember everything being cold, clinical and immensely unsympathetic. But that was expected right? After all I didn’t even want the baby anyway. 

Without going in to too much detail, I had to get a D&C about 6 hours later as it didn’t pass naturally. They kept telling me I was wrong and the pain would go but it never did. They finally agreed to another scan and seen that the baby was still inside me. 

As a result, I lost more blood than usual and I was kept in overnight. I was completely alone. None of my family knew and the one friend that did couldn’t be bothered coming with me. The entire time I was there I was sore, terrified and ashamed. I felt guilty for expecting sympathy. This was what I wanted wasn’t it? 

The main reason I don’t talk a lot about this loss is because, for me – I never had to get over the emotional loss. For me, it was more of a physical loss and I don’t like to compare it to my more recent miscarriages. 

I wrote this to try explain that a miscarriage is traumatic no matter what. There’s different levels of trauma and no one should treat someone differently just because their loss was different. We as women should support each other and our decisions and we should fight to change the attitudes of those around us. No one should be treated the way I was treated. I was a 19 year old naive frightened young woman and they treated me like I was a disgrace to expectant mothers everywhere. 

I now know the true emotional pain of a miscarriage and I sometimes wonder if maybe that was my punishment. 

 

I’ll follow you down

I’ll follow you down

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I was happily walking to work on Sunday afternoon with my music on shuffle when my ‘first dance’ song came on. It immediately took me back to the wedding. 25th January last year. The happiest day of my life.  

I could picture me walking down the aisle.  A string quartet version of Eric Claptons Wonderful Tonight was playing as I made my way down to meet Nikki. Seeing him at the end of the aisle, just waiting for me to arrive. Only a handful of people knowing I was pregnant. Being so excited thinking that Kian was going to announce it after our vows. But only a few weeks later everything had fell apart. 

Although I’m in a far better place now – even after yet another miscarriage – there’s still a part of me that’s broken.  I hope one day I’ll be able to think back to my wedding and not feel that tinge of sadness. It shouldn’t be like that.  My wedding and my honeymoon both sometimes remind me of a shitty time and it’s so frustrating. I mean, my wedding was PERFECT. It could not have went any better, yet there’s still that bit of negativity surrounding the memories.  

I just want to be able to listen to our song and smile again. 

 

My not so positive positive

My not so positive positive

I had my appointment at the doctors yesterday.  

I gave her the bottle and she looked at what she so lovingly referred to as ‘my specimen’. She didn’t look at me or feel my stomach or take a blood test. She didn’t take my blood pressure or even a bloody pregnancy test. She said it was most likely another miscarriage and the best thing would be to take a test when I got home. She said she would refer me to a specialist. I told her I’ve already been to a specialist (this was after my honeymoon loss). She either never heard me or chose to disregard what I said as she went ahead and referred me anyway, then sent me on my merry way. 

When I got home, I took a pregnancy test like she suggested.  

It was positive.  

I’d spent the best part of a year waiting to see those two lines, and now in some horrible twist of fate – it was the worst thing I could’ve seen.