March 12th-March 28th 2010 (17 weeks + 5 days to 20 weeks)
Brian and I spent these two weeks sliding in and out of hope. We knew what they had found on the ultrasound was bad...really bad...like probably not going to make it bad. But, how could we give up all hope when my belly kept getting bigger, and our baby still had a heartbeat (I checked every 2 days with the doppler)? We googled endlessly. Trying to find ANYONE else with the diagnosis that we had received regarding my placenta (Breus mole...look it up, I dare you). I remember at one point saying "I'm going to hold this baby in until 37 weeks, Doctors be damned!" Ha. If only.
March 29th 2010 (20 weeks + 1 day)
I started to have that crampy, irritated feeling in my uterus that I hadn't had in awhile...but I knew what was coming. Another big bleed. So I called the nurse at my OB's office and her response was that I should go to L&D triage since I was 'over 20 weeks' (hard not to snort at that one...hello...I'm 20 weeks and ONE FREAKIN' DAY...there isn't much they are going to be able to do for me or my little baby). But off we went. It's not that I thought there was anything they could do for me (or Aidan) per say, but I was afraid of going into labour and delivering my baby on my bathroom floor (which I've since learned is other people's reality...seriously, that must suck). As we drove there, I remember looking out at the blue sky and thinking "this might be the last day I'm pregnant". It all felt very surreal. We arrived at L&D triage around 4pm-ish, and waited, and waited. I ended up getting blood work and an internal exam (fun!) while continuing to pass large amounts of blood. They said I should stick around for an ultrasound. All this waiting time allowed me to sit and watch all the other pregnant ladies. There were some who were obviously ready to pop and were breathing through contractions holding on to their partners hands. There was a woman who was 23 weeks and feeling 'crampy'. She and her husband looked like they were dressed for a night out at the theatre, not an evening sitting in the hospital (perhaps they dressed up for the occasion?) There was a young woman (teenager?) who looked to be about 28-30 weeks who had to be told by a bunch of nurses and doctors that she needed to take it easy and give up working. She was upset because if she didn't work, she wouldn't make any money. Her mother kept reassuring her that things would be fine and that she wouldn't starve. I wished it was a restaurant and I could say "I'll have what she's having".
I sat there and silently cried. I kept getting pitying looks from the other mommies. One woman even said as she was leaving "I hope things work out for you". That was nice, but made me cry more.
I felt so out of place being there. I didn't know any of these women's health histories or pregnancy stories, but they sure as hell were likely in better straights then me and Aidan were. It also became clear to us after many, many hours of (stressful!) waiting that we were being passed over. Now, in medical terms this is called 'triaging' and as a nurse, I understand this reasoning. All of the other mommies there had babies that could be potentially saved, if they were indeed in labour or were having pregnancy problems. My little 20 week (PLUS ONE DAY...DON'T FORGET THE ONE DAY!!!) pregnancy would not be saved if something were to happen right that very second. But it hurt SO much to feel left behind. Like no one cared. Like no one understood that I was very very worried, very very scared, and very very attached to this little person. Like it was just their job.
Finally around MIDNIGHT, 8 hours after we arrived, once the waiting room had cleared out and all the 'real' mommies had been dealt with, we got sent down for our ultrasound. My bleeding had slowed somewhat by this point. However, once the ultrasound was fired up it was immediately clear that our poor baby was dealing with lack of fluid and space issues and that nothing had improved from our last ultrasound. They couldn't get a good picture of his head or torso, but he "appeared to be measuring on track". The same doctor who had done our disastrous ultrasound at 17 weeks was on call that night and came in to see me. He warned me again that things didn't look good and that "this might not end well" because these bleeding episodes are a "powerful uterine irritant". Translation: he expected me to go into labour at any time and that they would likely not be able to save my baby. On the up side my hemoglobin levels were just fine (no anemia for me...my body must be keeping up with my losses), but he suggested that I start taking iron pills in preparation for further bleeding episodes. All in all, not very reassuring.
We left the hospital again, with Aidan still in my belly, and went home to cry ourselves to sleep.