Last week was another very confusing and very frustrating week. On Wednesday after E woke up from her nap I was having alot of pain on my right lower abdomen. Like -I can’t stand, I can’t walk, why can’t you get your own damn milk by now E- type of pain. Since I had been worried about an ectopic pregnancy (where the embryo grows outside your uterus) I knew that this was a symptom. After deliberating as to whether I could suck it up until J got home or until the next day when I was having a follow-up ultrasound anyways, I decided to head to the ER. My worst fear was something rupturing in the middle of the night or while I was alone with E. And the pain was just unbelievable. I felt like someone was stabbing me in my ovary. Or twisting it. Nice.
Luckily my good friend L arrived to our new duty station and lives *kind of* close. She insisted on meeting me at the hospital so she could watch E until J got there. I gave a call to J at work and left a message, and off the hospital I went.
If you’ve ever been to an ER you know things can take FOR.EV.ER. And they did. Roughly 5 hours later I was finally walking out of there with a hell of a lot more questions than answers.
After some poking and prodding, blood drawing, and an ultrasound I found out that the pain was from a super cyst on my ovary. Good news was that it was not because some organ was rupturing. Confusing news was that I had a gestational sac measuring 7 weeks and 4 days in my uterus and my HCG level had jumped almost 5,000 points to over 20,000.
Now, if you’ve been reading you know that a week and a half before that my doctor had told me that my uterus was as blank as a kindergartener in geometry class. Literally nothing in my uterus. At first J and I thought this was good news. But in the back of my mind I knew something wasn’t right because they should have seen something inside the sac, but they didn’t- just an empty sac.
So of course I was sent home to Google my ass off. I found out that what I probably have is a blighted ovum- where the gestational sac and placenta continue to grow even though no embryo/baby grows. That’s why my numbers are increasing. Of course we still held out some hope that for some reason the ultrasound tech measured the sac wrong, or that things were taking a turn for the better and that’s why my numbers jumped up all of a sudden.
The next day I had my scheduled follow-up ultrasound so I figured I’d get some more answers then. Right off the bat my doctor and I weren’t getting along. She questioned why I felt the need to go to the ER because I knew I had a cyst. Then she didn’t want to do my ultrasound because “the ER obviously answered your questions, so have you thought about a D&C?” (D&C is a surgery to remove any tissue resulting from the pregnancy). We had some…choice words to one another and she finally did the ultrasound.
Guess what she saw? NOTHING. Not even a sac.
Again, some choice words were said- basically me telling her that I didn’t understand how she ever can detect a pregnancy with that machine if she literally can’t see anything inside my uterus when I had just been told the night before that there was a large sac in there- so I asked for a second opinion at the sister hospital. She got me one for that day, so off I went.
I loved the doctor I saw at the hospital. She was young, nice, understanding, and talked me through everything. Well, push comes to shove she also found an empty sac. It was heart-breaking news but it wasn’t totally unexpected. I knew something had to be wrong, but I wanted confirmation before J and I decide how to proceed with everything. I walked out of there with two new official diagnoses: a blighted ovum and secondary infertility. Awesome.
So now we are still in the waiting game until we get the test results from our RPL (recurrent pregnancy loss) testing. I don’t know what it will find, if anything. Part of me wants an answer, but part of me is afraid that the answer may be something that we can’t fix. I’ve already started looking into IUI’s and IVF, and what Tricare covers (or doesn’t cover is more like it) only to educate myself. I want to get an appointment with an RE (reproductive endocrinologist), who is a fertility specialist, but I guess I’ll see what happens with the results of the testing.
As for my emotions- they are all over the place. Sometimes I have pity parties for one where I seriously can’t believe we are in this position. Other times I feel ok and I feel like we can move on. Pregnant women make me sad and sometimes angry (sorry, but true) but seeing little babies makes me think that maybe those women have stories I don’t know about and that will be me one day *cue tears*
I think this whole process is harder for J than me. Part of him still feels hopeful for this current pregnancy but he didn’t see that sac o’ emptiness last week. I also know that he doesn’t feel totally comfortable with me writing about this stuff, but he also understands why I do it- its an outlet for me AND I feel like its important to get women’s stories out there so that we can share experiences. After all, all my Google searching these past couple weeks (ok, always) are for other people’s stories like mine. If they didn’t share their stories I think I’d still be lost.
This post is seriously getting to be a novel, so I’m going to shut it down like the latest season of RHNJ.
If there are any women that read or follow my blog that want to share their stories of miscarriage/pregnancy loss but don’t have the forum to do so, please email me at barefootandboots at gmail dot com. I would love to share your story so that others may have answers and hope