Friday, March 28, 2008

Breathing a Little Easier

I went to see the perinatalogist today for an in-depth ultrasound. To cut to the chase, everything looked perfect. As he said "Today your baby is as healthy as any baby could possibly be." I know only too well that good ultrasounds are not guarantees, but it was really nice to hear (and see some for myself.)

He also spent some time going over Owen's autopsy report and talking with me about what happened. It was the first time I had discussed everything in detail with someone not associated with the hospital where Owen was born and it was very interesting. Basically, the doctors from the hospital that delivered Owen all said that there was nothing out of the ordinary other than the abnormal bleeding in his brain. The new perinatalogist did not agree. He was concerned by Owen's size (he measured the size of a 32 weeker and had died in the 26th week of gestation.) He seemed to believe this indicated that something had already gone wrong in his development. Especially since I had an ultrasounnd about 4 weeks before he died in which he was reported to be measuring on track for my dates. This perinatalogist basically said, either they did the ultrasound poorly and those measurements were way off, or Owen grew at a decidedly abnormal rate following the ultrasound (he would have grown 10 weeks growth in 4 weeks which is well outside the realm of normal.) Unfortunately, my records being what they are, we will never know for sure. I am surprisingly okay with that right now. Do I wish things were different? Absolutely. But I'm not torturing myself with what ifs anymore. I guess that's progress, right?

Saturday, March 22, 2008

The Scene of the Crime

Last week, when it became obvious that K needed to be in the hospital, I was beside myself for more than the usual reasons. You see our pediatricians (who I just adore and therefore would not consider switching) admit at the same hospital where Owen was born. I had not been back. To add insult to injury, the pediatric ward is on the same floor as maternity. Just lovely. Fortunately, as we went in, I was so concerned for K that I was pretty much able to ignore my surroundings and rush by the "welcome baby" display that Owen was never a part of. Later in the day as we settled in, they came to take K for some tests. I went with her. As I rode in the wheelchair, K on my lap, I realized that they were taking us right through the maternity ward to get the other department. I held my breath as we rolled down the hallway towards the room where the doctors had told me that Owen had no heartbeat. When we got closer, I saw that they were doing construction in that area. It was all taped off with plastic tarps and yellow tape. It looked like a crime scene. It seemed fitting.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Quick Update

Sorry I disappeared. K has been the hospital all week with pneumonia. We were discharged this morning and I am exhausted. I have a lot to post about though. We were in the same hospital where Owen was born and I have some stuff I want to say about it. For now though, I want to shower, eat a real meal and sleep.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

It Happened

So the thing I've been dreading and hoping for since I found out I was pregnant has happened. Last night as I lay watching TV before bed, I felt the first little bumps from this new person. Right now no one knows. Its my secret...and now yours. It makes me smile, and cry, and miss Owen. The thumps are different this time, gentler, more tentative. It's as if this one wants me to know that he or she is a different person. I appreciate that. I think I'm falling in love. It's terrifying and wonderful.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Tie-Breaker

As most of you know, I have two living children and have had two losses. So this pregnancy, whichever way it goes, will be the tie-breaker.I spend a lot of time convincing myself that I will be okay either way. But honestly, I think the outcome of this pregnancy will be more far-reaching than I can imagine. Should this baby die, I will have had more unsuccessful pregnancies than successful ones and I think that will greatly affect the way I view my body. For a variety of reasons, I've struggled with accepting and loving my body since puberty. I spent many years wishing it was other than it was and working to change it. Then, after carrying and giving birth to J, my oldest, I was in awe of myself. I saw my body as strong and purposeful. I can truly say I was in love with my own body. That feeling only magnified after carrying and birthing K. Since then I have two losses, one very early and then Owen. I no longer view my body with awe. I struggle with feeling betrayed and let down my body. I no longer trust it to do the job I believe it is supposed to. There is a lot riding on this pregnancy- almost too much, and that is very scary.

Monday, March 10, 2008

My Truth

I realized recently that I've been thinking about posting way more than I have actually been posting. The reason for this is that since I've been pregnant I've felt a need to censor myself. I feel guilty (or something like guilty) because I realize that what I post here will likely be hurtful for some other loss mamas to read. I wish with all my heart that wasn't the case, but I know it is. So, the more I thought about it the less I've posted. I realized though that I need this outlet. I can't censor myself anymore. So from here on out I'm going to be honest about what is going with my life and that will likely include a lot of talk about my pregnancy. I'm very sorry to those of you who find it painful to read and I understand if you choose not to read anymore. I hope that you won't though. I hope that some of you will continue to walk this road with me.

So, hey you want to know what sucks about pregnancy after stillbirth? Everything.
There is no winning. If I feel bad (physically) I worry that something is wrong, if I feel good I worry that the baby is dead already. Instead of looking forward to feeling those first few flutters, I dread it because I know once they start I will constantly be waiting for that terrible moment when I realize that they've stopped. I have so much that I could be thankful for; I've found a wonderful new midwifery home with this amazing birth center that could potentially offer the birth of my dreams but I think I am too afraid to try it. They have been amazingly supportive and have consulted with experts to ensure I get the best monitoring etc. and I keep wondering if I had done all this last time would Owen be here?

This is my last pregnancy- no matter the outcome. I should be reveling in it. As it is, I am hiding.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Days and Dates

So something happened this last month that I hadn't really considered. February has less than 30 days, so this month there was no 30th. No anniversary of losing Owen. No seven months ago today I was holding him or kissing him or saying goodbye. While I realize that even though there was no actual date anniversary, the time has still passed, but it felt different. Maybe even...good? I don't know. I still miss my baby, but it did feel nice not to spend another day reliving that horrible, wonderful day.