I knew something was wrong.
Call it woman's intuition. Call it mother's intuition. Call it whatever you want.
Nothing was wrong physically. I just had a feeling.
The minute the sonogram image came on the screen I said, "Where's the heart beat?"
I stopped looking at the screen.
The doctor had a strange look on her face.
She said "I'm 99% sure there's no heart beat, but I want to send you upstairs for a more comprehensive ultrasound to confirm it"
The doctor left the room and my husband and I collapsed into a pile of tears.
We did the best we could to pull ourselves together and we walked liked zombies out of the doctor's office and through the waiting room filled with pregnant women in various sizes.
I don't remember the walking through the hospital or riding upstairs in the elevator, but I do remember arriving in the ultrasound waiting area surrounded by more happy pregnant women.
I wasn't mad at them for being pregnant, but I wondered if they realized how lucky they were.
My husband and I sat in that waiting room for over an hour with intermittent tars streaming down our faces.
Finally someone called us.
She performed a very thorough ultrasound. I starred at the ceiling. She excused herself and came back into the room with another woman. The other woman started ultrasounding me.
They kept asking me to hold my breath.
Then they started having a conversation in front of us.
"Do you see that there?"
I'm getting 107"
"Wait was that 120?"
"That can't be right"
My husband asked what was going on
"We're picking up a heart beat"
I turned to my husband and said "107 is too low, don't get your hopes up"
The women finished with me and told us that the doctor (not my OB, but the head radiologist) was at lunch and could we please go back to the waiting room. And wait.
We waited 45 minutes and finally another woman came and got us.
She brought us into another ultrasound room and put a gown on the table.
"Yes. Boy, you guys must be having a rough day"
The woman performed a FOURTH ultrasound. Unlike the two women before her she didn't say anything.
She left the room and came back with the doctor who had been at lunch.
He said, "What I'm seeing here is not a viable pregnancy."
We told him that the other women had seen a heart beat of 107.
"I'm getting about 50, and it's mostly just leftover electrical activity.
We went back down to my OB's office. She told us that the baby was measuring the right size so something must have gone wrong in the last 24 hours. She said if we had come in for an ultrasound a day or two before she would have told us everything is fine and that we had a less than 2% chance of losing the baby.
Basically, we were watching the baby die.
She told me she would remove the baby on Monday.
For those of you who have never been through this, you can't imagine the range of emotions you go through.
Guilt. Did I do something to hurt the baby? Did I eat the wrong thing? Was that shower I took yesterday too hot?
Anger. Why is this happening to us? Haven't we been through enough? I wanted to scream at the universe "I'VE LEARNED ENOUGH LESSONS!
Sadness. I won't be pregnant in a few days.
I guess I understand why most people wait until they are out of their first trimester to tell people.
My husband and I had to call our family and friends and give them the bad news.
I hate ruining people's days. I hate making people sad. And over the past three years we have made far too many phone calls giving people bad news.
"The cancer has spread"
"He's in congestive heart failure"
"She has to have surgery"
"I have to have surgery"
When something like this happens, it doesn't just happen to you, it happens to everyone who cares about you too.
It was my oldest friends 30th birthday on Saturday. We were supposed to go on a ski trip with her. We were supposed to leave right after our OB appointment on Friday.
Instead, I had to call her and give her the bad news and cancel our trip.
She will forever associate her 30th birthday with us losing a baby.
I hate that.
Another close friend is going through a horrible ordeal. Her father fell down a flight of stairs two weeks ago, and has since developed an infection. His kidneys have shut down and he spiked a 108 fever.
He is on his deathbed.
The last thing my friend needed this week was more bad news.
It was very hard to walk around this weekend feeling pregnant, but knowing that the baby was dead.
It wasn't fair that I was nauseous. Or that the area right below my belly button had just started to protrude.
I still maintain that I was not in need of any lessons from the universe, but this situation did remind me who my real friends are, both real life and internet.
Everyone has rallied around us.
Two friends trekked through the blizzard to visit us. One brought chocolate. A third tried to get to us during the blizzard, but couldn't. He tried for SEVEN hours to get to us, but he got stuck on a train and had to go back home.
Yesterday, the day of the surgery, the friend whose 30th birthday was Saturday drove through the snow to the hospital to comfort me. Last night two more friends, who had just been with our friend whose father is dying, came to visit.
One friend who couldn't be with us sent beautiful flowers.
Others called or emailed repeatedly.
I don't know how we would have made it through this weekend with out everyone's support.
I made it through the surgery fine.
I am still coming to terms with a lot of things.
I was pregnant yesterday morning, then I wasn't last night. For lack of a better term, that's weird.
My doctor said to us that the hardest part for most couples is actually getting pregnant and we obviously can do that, so we're lucky. And, although I know that losing a baby in the first trimester is quite common, it will basically make me a nervous wreck during any future pregnancy and I hate that. This has affectively taken the fun out of being pregnant.
When is it OK to start laughing and having fun again?
I'm going to be OK, but it may take a little while.
Please bear with me.