Don’t miscarry in a pandemic…

I mean, I say that like you have a choice, or like miscarrying any other time in history is a walk in the park. It’s not, I know it’s not. Although I’ve got to be honest and didn’t realise how fucking horrific it would be. And I don’t want to play Top Trumps when it comes to miscarriages, but doing it in a pandemic is really, really shit. How is it shit? Well let me count the ways…

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The worst clubs in the world…

You know that plan to wait until 10 weeks for a scan? Yeah well on the day I woke up and my boobs didn’t hurt like they did before, I caved. Despite finding forums full of women saying the exact same thing had happened to them and they’d had healthy babies, I became utterly convinced that I had had a silent, or missed, miscarriage, where the foetus stops growing but you don’t bleed. I spent the morning in tears, suddenly realising quite how much I wanted everything to be ok. Knowing B was right when he told me that getting upset when we didn’t know if there was anything to get upset about was counterproductive. Knowing he was also right when he said that if this doesn’t work out we’re not in any different place than we were in before, and yet still knowing that for all our backup plans, this was the plan I wanted to work.

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The hierarchy of shitness…

While I’m obviously writing and posting these posts many months on, at the time, I scribbled notes on my phone about my feelings. At night when I couldn’t sleep and B was asleep beside me, I typed my hopes, fears and dreams into that little illuminated screen. Some of those notes have made it into these posts. Here are two, in their unedited entirety…

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Secrets and lies…

I once wrote during my first ever two week wait that “nothing means anything” – it was basically about the idea that you couldn’t deduce anything from a single symptom, that a headache, no headache, bleeding, absence of bleeding, cramps, absence of cramps — all of it seemed as likely to be an indicator that you were pregnant as you weren’t. Never had that felt more true.

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What do I do now…?

Working women often talk about how they feel that whatever they’re doing is wrong. They feel permanently guilty that they’re not doing “enough” for either their children or their careers. Finding out that I was pregnant catapulted me into a host of similar dilemmas. Did I carry on exercising as I had been? Or stop entirely? Should I contact my old clinic and ask them to prescribe more of the progesterone injections, the clexane blood thinners, the whatever the fuck else they throw at the women who manage to get pregnant on a wing and a prayer and want to stay pregnant? Or just carry on taking the Pregnacare Max that I’ve been taking for years as if it were a multivitamin?

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When you’re making other plans…

It was John Lennon who apparently said that “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans” and Woody Allen’s credited with saying “If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans” — even though my suspicion is that Jewish grandmothers have been saying it for millennia. Undoubtedly there’s a bunch of other quotes from various wise civilisations that say pretty much the same thing. The bottom line is that you can do everything in your power to create a certain outcome, but it turns out that “everything in your power” is pretty much the square root of fuck all.

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So about that donor…

I know these things aren’t karmic. I know this by now. I know that when it comes to fertility, you don’t somehow suddenly get a smooth ride because it’s been bumpy so far. I know all this. But finding this Mary Poppins of a donor (she was practically perfect in every way) felt like we’d turned a corner, like it was the start of something brand new and positive. Like I said, I knew there were a load of hoops we still had to jump through, if this were a game of snakes and ladders, we had a lot more ladders to climb before we won that baby. But this was a pretty long ladder.

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It’s not ideal…

Don’t panic, nothing’s gone wrong (that I know of anyway), there’s been no major setback or anything (as far as I’m aware) but do read on and the subject of this post will explain itself…

So I had the biopsy and now everything is just on hold while I wait for the results. I’m sure when we first discussed it the consultant told me that it was “like a smear test”. But then just as we were about to go in to theatre, she told me “it is quite painful” — I just laughed and said “well I’ll look forward to that.” And she quite rightly looked at me like I was mental.

I suppose what I meant was Continue reading

A quick tot up…

I started writing about the biopsy that’s part of The Plan but then someone asked recently if I was going to give costs for all this and so I thought I’d do a quick one on that. If I’m honest, this was a post I’d been intending to do, but I think I’d rather put it off, not just because I didn’t want to horrify myself, but also because in my heart of hearts I wanted to do it at a point that seemed to mark a final point, like, I dunno, when I had a baby in my hands (mine rather than just anyone else’s) but it probably makes sense to give you an idea of what I’ve spent so far. Continue reading

The Plan…

I rather feel like I’ve bigged up this Plan so I hope you’re not disappointed by it. Basically, The Plan came about when I went to see my consultant to have the post-unsuccessful IVF debrief — or the “what the fuck went wrong chat” as I’m pretty sure I’ve seen it called on other blogs.

Anyway, I sat in front of my consultant and said, “So, we had one grade 1 embryo and it failed to implant. And I understand that there may be many reasons for this, but what can we do minimise the likelihood of these being reasons why the same thing doesn’t happen again?”

And that was when she told me about Continue reading