Then Everything Changed
I've been putting this post off for sometime now. But I feel I can't get onto writing other things until I express what happened. Three weeks ago everything changed so fast with the dreaded words uttered, “I’m having a hard time picking up a heartbeat, let’s do an ultrasound.”
I took a deep breath, my face growing concerned and I held her hand praying this was just a fluke, that a heartbeat would soon be detected.
“This feels all too familiar,” Kassie replied as our fears began to emerge. This same scenario had played out only a year and a half ago.
We were almost 17 weeks pregnant and It was our first appointment with a new midwife at a birthing center we had chosen. So far the pregnancy had been been fine and our previous ultrasounds were without any cause for alarm. We had just taken a tour imagining our special day to come in August. Our daughter Astraea was with us as she wanted to be there when mom delivered. We had all arrived cheerful and excited for the appointment.
But then it felt as if our world began to crumble. The heartbeat wasn’t detected and we were sent to another imaging center to confirm what we already knew. Yet, we held on to any tiny bit of hope we could muster that this was still somehow a mistake, that maybe the ultrasound wasn’t working right. But deep down inside, I think we knew.
And then it was confirmed that there was no heartbeat and everything really began to feel heavy.
“It’s not fair,” were the only words I could come up with. Having gone through this the year before we thought this was going to be our rainbow baby. I didn’t think it would happened to us again. Our daughter was so excited to be a big sister and expressed her gratitude for baby every night. Kassie was glowing everyday with this light inside her, so excited to be carrying new life. But then that light got taken away and I watched as she began to breakdown.
It’s not fair. It was hard to imagine a child being more wanted than this one. I felt angry but had no idea who or what I was angry at. Astraea hadn’t quite processed what was going on but let out a cry, “I’m not going to be a big sister!” when she realized what we were upset about.
We sat in our car in the parking lot not sure where to go or what to do. We needed to go somewhere to try and process what was happening but we didn’t get a chance. By the time we got home the physical process of miscarriage had begun. We had expected some time to pass before we had to deal with labor. Everything was happening so fast.
We rushed to the hospital. Astraea couldn’t be there and we had to arrange for someone to pick her up. The next 24 hours were intense and we had to put our emotions aside to get through it. Kassie lost 1.7 liters of blood and they were ready to do a blood transfusion. There were times when I felt like my deepest fears were emerging when her blood pressure dropped so low that the nurses looked nervous and I felt helpless fearing that I would lose her too.
But she pulled though and delivered. The bleeding slowed down and it looked like she wouldn't need a blood transfusion thought they kept a very close watch on her blood markers. We held our tiny angel and wept together.
We barely had a chance to process everything. It felt like we got a hit by an ontological semi truck and were trying to pick up the pieces of our shattered reality. It was not only the year we had planned out in anticipation of this baby but a whole lifetime.
We are now getting back on our feet and counting our blessings. The process of recovery has not been easy. We've had to return to the emergency room when Kassie began having heavy bleeding again nearly three weeks after delivery. We have a long road ahead of us to emotionally recover. It’s easy to want to give up and not try again. The first time this happened to us was just as intense of an experience and its hard to face the prospect of going through it again. Each time I’ve feared for Kassie’s life and that fear will be there again in the background should we try again.
For now we are giving our selves a chance to heal. Our connection is strengthened and we feel even more grateful for everyone and everything in our life. We are picking up the pieces and trying to get back to our life. Thank you all for the prayers and support that truly helped us get through this.