August 26, 2006

The Saturday I Found God

The bleeding went away for most of the day yesterday, but came back last night with a vengeance.

It also went from brown to reddish-brown.

I went to bed knowing there was nothing I could do.

I rang our 24-hour emergency line for advice this morning, as the spotting continued (but it had gone back to brown). I rang because I had period-like cramps. Most of all I rang because there were tiny clots on the paper.

The doctor was kind-far kinder than my own fertility clinic and much more supportive. I was ordered to bed rest and told that as it's a 3-day weekend no one could do anything for me until Tuesday. I was told to keep my feet up and, if the spotting or pain got worse, to go to A&E. That I could be losing one or both embryos, that it could be nothing. The clots could simply be old blood trapped in mucus or it could be the last song on party night.

In the end, Aidan came through. He found a walk-in clinc in a city nearby. We went there, and while waiting in line I had to dash to the toilet to be sick. When I walked out all eyes were on me and Aidan explained that the NHS hospitals aren't always well-built, that the entire waiting room had just been treated to the sound of every retch I suffered. I didn't know if I was throwing up due to car sickness or morning sickness, but I hoped for the latter.

The clinic couldn't help us but referred us to a nearby A&E whose hospital is also one of the larger maternity hospitals in our area.

It happened fast-the triage nurse took pity on us and, despite the room full of lads with sprained ankles and cut thumbs, we were steered at once to a gynae room. Someone came in and took blood (which hurt more than any blood draw I've ever had, ever). The doctor came in-a very kind, very reassuring Indian man with an easy voice and calm eyes. We explained the problem-the spotting, the cramping, that this was IVF #4, that maybe it's nothing, maybe we're over-reacting, probably there's nothing they can do, but please-an answer would at least help me stop crying and start dealing. He asked me for a urine sample and said he'd ask the ultrasound unit to open up specially for us, to run a scan, to see if anything could be seen. He told me that it was possible I was miscarrying, that there are basically three types of miscarriage. He also told me it was possible it was nothing, that it was one embryo jumping ship, that it could be old blood from a period or the transfer procedure.

I went to do the urine sample.

When I wiped, the spotting was much heavier than it had been and back to reddish-brown in color.

I walked back into the exam room and fell apart. The nice doctor came back and walked us to the scanning area himself. He wished us luck. He told us that no matter what, we are to come back Tuesday morning for a follow-up scan and more bloodwork. He was the nicest doctor I have ever been to.

We thanked him repeatedly.

The scanning nurse came up to us and told me to empty my bladder again and she apologized, she was not an antenatal scanner, so if she was unable to see anything it might not mean it was all gone to hell, they'd have to see what the scan showed Tuesday. She apologized for not being an antenatal specialist, but hoped in some way that she could give us some kind of peace of mind. We thanked her for trying.

I went into the toilet, peed, and looked up at the skylights and the falling rain. I cried and shook and begged for anyone to listen, anywhere, and just make this ok. I made bargains. I pleaded. I found in that moment I would do anything to make this right, to keep this going, to never take for granted for one second the fact that this had finally worked.

We waited for a while for the scanner to be set up-the scanning was done on a gynae ward, which was only half-full of elderly women. When they called us in I was shaky and scared. Aidan (who has been my rock all morning-thank you, baby, I love you) looked worried. The technician told us she'd look around first and then tell us what she saw.

The good news is there was no obvious reason for bleeding-everything was inside of the uterus and she couldn't see any evidence of hemotoma inside or outside of the uterus or around the cervix. She did more scanning and took measurements, muttering to herself and making copious prints. We asked questions. I cried.

And in the end, I am still on bed rest until Tuesday. They can't tell us why I am spotting, but the spotting and the cramping is worrying so taking it easy and monitoring are on the cards. There were no heartbeats to measure because it's still too early based on the measurements she took. But everything looks ok in there, she said. If I were miscarrying, things would look differently. Currently, it all looks very good, very positive. It's still early days and I am still going to be watching TV for three days until we go back Tuesday morning, but we are still currently in the safe zone.

When she gave us the news, I cried even harder.

There, in the middle of the screen, was this perfect embryo, embedded into the uterus in a perfect sac, and measuring the perfect size for its age.

I am still pregnant.

And it is just the one.

Back to the couch for me now.

Posted by Vanessa at August 26, 2006 03:06 PM | TrackBack

I am so sorry to see this. You guys are in my prayers.

Posted by: Polichick at August 28, 2006 04:54 PM

The waiting is the worst. I'm so sorry. I'm glad Aidan is so good to you. Thanks Aidan.

Posted by: Heather at August 28, 2006 03:32 PM

Peace and Good on you and your loved ones. I'mm sending good thoughts out to the universe for you.

Posted by: Foggy at August 28, 2006 01:30 PM

I am so sorry you are dealing with this. I think it's a great idea to stay away from the computer and for now. I am glad that everything looked good on the scan and I hope that you get the same good answer tomorrow. Thinking of you.

Posted by: jenny at August 28, 2006 12:42 PM

Vanessa and Aidan I'm so sorry you're going through this - just saw the latest post. I do so hope that everything is going to be ok.

Posted by: thalia at August 28, 2006 10:29 AM

So glad things are okay, hats off to Aidan for being your rock. Will be thinking of you in the coming days. xo

Posted by: Lassie at August 27, 2006 12:51 PM

Thank god! Sending positive thoughts to you both this long weekend! xx

Posted by: Lee at August 27, 2006 10:25 AM

Sending you all of my love and care. xoxo

Posted by: Just Me at August 27, 2006 06:03 AM

You will be in my thoughts this weekend.

Posted by: Tiffanni at August 27, 2006 05:58 AM

I am sickened you are going through this. I am so glad everything looks good for now. I'm happy you're vomiting as I am taking this as a sign your hormones are normal. You are in my thoughts. And I wish good things for all those people who helped you today. May Karma be real and they have wonderful things bestowed upon them for helping you and your man.

Posted by: Bou at August 27, 2006 02:25 AM

I am so glad everything is going well. With your past experience, I can see why you'd be so quick to worry, but I am extremely happy that you have piece of mind now, and that you got that first glimpse at your little miracle. *HUGS*

Posted by: Amanda at August 27, 2006 12:48 AM

I am glad that everything turned out okay. Keep us posted and I will be praying for the best for you on Tuesday.

Posted by: Jamie at August 26, 2006 10:14 PM

You really had me scared there for a minute, I'm so glad this story had a happy ending. All things crossed for more good news on Tuesday.

Posted by: Donna at August 26, 2006 07:13 PM

Thank god for Aidan getting you in to that clinic. So so so so glad all is well. I'll be thinking of you all weekend.

Posted by: donna at August 26, 2006 06:11 PM

I am so happy. And how wonderful that the doctors and nurses were so kind to you. NHS doctors get a bad rap.

Posted by: caltechgirl at August 26, 2006 05:56 PM

Way to make me bawl....

I'm so glad the baby is okay.

Posted by: Jen at August 26, 2006 05:23 PM

Thank fucking God, Budda or whomever, I have been worried since your last post and have been checking your site obsessively for an update. I am so relieved, as I am sure you are, take it easy and watch re-runs and relax....we are all thinking about you.

Posted by: Cheryl at August 26, 2006 05:20 PM

Phew...I'm so glad they could do something for you at the hospital rather than making you wait until Tuesday. I know how easy it is to be completely panic-ridden at times like these.

Congratulations on the beautiful single embryo, and kudos to Aidan for being so supportive.

Posted by: MsPrufrock at August 26, 2006 04:34 PM

Thank goodness for compassionate medical people.

I hope things stay calm between now and Tuesday, and that the scan shows everything you could hope for.

Posted by: Lut C. at August 26, 2006 04:19 PM

Thank goodness. Now be careful and rest and let Aidan take care of you two!

Posted by: EJW at August 26, 2006 03:47 PM

Well done Sweetheart

Posted by: Mia at August 26, 2006 03:17 PM