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I am too afraid

by Melissa 

Friday 01/19/2001 6:43:30pm

I knew two days after my husband and I made love that I was pregnant. It was like nothing I had ever felt. I was nauseous all the time. My uterus felt like there was an Alka-Seltzer in it, fizzing and fluttery and like it was being knit together. There was no cramping, just a sense of tightness. It was still way too early for a test so I waited.

Eight days later, I had a little spotting and a slight twinge of pain, like someone took a needle and poked me in the stomach real quick. It was too soon for my period. Frantically, I searched the Internet, health books, anything I could get my hands on to find out what was going on. From everything I read, this was normal—implantation spotting.

We had been charting my cycle (Sympto-Thermal method) and noticed that between ovulation and my period was around 10-11 days. So I figured on day twelve, I would take a test (first day after a missed period). I knew that most women had 14 days between ovulation and their period, and that the test might come out negative. If that were the case, I would just re-test later.

During that time, the nausea got worse and my uterus got rock hard. I also had some more spotting, but so light it was barely noticeable. My husband started to put his ear to my belly and then talk to our baby. He even felt my stomach and how hard my uterus felt. He was absolutely amazed. He told me good things always seem to happen to him at Christmas time. He couldn’t wait to tell everyone the good news. I, on the other hand, am cautious to a fault and decided we shouldn’t tell anyone until we got a positive home pregnancy test.

That weekend, as I did my Christmas shopping, I felt so different, so apart from the world. I felt special, excited and nervous all at the same time. I passed by the baby clothes in the department store and wondered if we would have our baby on Labor Day. It struck me funny at the time, to labor on Labor Day. Anyway, I secret smile crossed my face. I was carrying around a new life inside of me and no one else knew but my husband and God.

On Christmas morning, I didn’t even take my basal temperature. I knew I was pregnant. Why bother? I took a home pregnancy test. Negative.

Well, I was expecting that too. I’ll just re-test in a couple days. I still had not gotten my period yet. I had no signs of PMS—the usual pimples on the chin, cramping around three days before and very tender breasts. All I had was this overwhelming sense of feeling full and complete.

I did notice, however, that the nausea was gone. I didn’t know whether I should be excited (I had barely been able to eat anything) or concerned. Also, my uterus did not seem as hard either. What did that mean? I decided not to worry about it right now. Later that morning, we made love and I noticed some light spotting and cramping afterwards. I read earlier that this was okay too. Normal.

We decided, what the heck, we would tell his parents at Christmas dinner instead of waiting to get a positive test. We got there and talked and laughed and enjoyed ourselves. My husband and I would soon tell them that they would be grandparents. I was so excited I could barely contain it.

And then I felt a cold wetness between my legs. I excused myself to the bathroom and noticed the bright red blood. I started to panic. I hadn’t brought my purse (with pads and tampons) to the bathroom with me (I was pregnant, why would I need that?) and I didn’t know what to do. I left the bathroom, got my purse and came back. I put on a pad and burst into tears. This can’t be happening. Maybe it will go away, I thought. I cleaned myself up, put on a brave face and went to find my husband. I told him not to tell his parents that I was pregnant, to wait. His whole face fell when he heard me say that I just started bleeding.

For the next two days, I was doubled over in pain and in denial. I was passing a lot of blood and clots. The cramping was unbearable and my lower back throbbed. I still wouldn’t take any Advil, fearing it would hurt the baby. But I knew in my heart, that if I was cramping, it was too late to help the baby and I had lost the pregnancy.

It has almost been a month now, and I am still coping with the grief. Most days I’m okay. Other days, it’s hard for me to function—like I’m going crazy. My husband says we lost an embryo. I feel like my baby died, like a part of me died. Because I miscarried so early, most people brush it off as a blessing in disguise and that it really wasn’t a baby yet, per se anyway, so I shouldn’t be upset. Just because I didn’t miscarry at 12, 20 or 30 weeks, doesn’t mean my pain is diminished, less severe or any less real.

Others think I am just hysterical and never was pregnant since I didn’t have an “official” positive pregnancy test. I really don’t care anymore what they think. I know I was.

The OB-GYN said that one-third of first pregnancies end in miscarriage and go on to have healthy, full-term babies. He said we should start trying again right away. My husband agrees. At times, I agree too. And then another part of me says if we don’t get pregnant for another year, it would be fine by me. I am too afraid of going through this again.

I am hoping one day, I will be ready again to try. Even now, as I am typing, I am crying. But it feels good to let it out.

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