Six days ago, I peed on a First Response pregnancy test. My period was 5 days late. When I was 3 days late, I knew something was up. At that point, I tested with a Clear Blue Digital. Negative. I had tested again and again in the next 48 hours with those little Easy @ Home strip tests. They were all negative. I thought I must be skipping a period because of how busy my mind and body were with moving into our new home. I came out of a state of sedentary and my body was physically working hard to de-popcorn our family room ceiling. It had to be a missed period. Or was I…? Could I be? I couldn’t… Or could I?
Six days ago, I got a positive pregnancy test. Then another one. And then for the next six days, more and more and more. But six days ago, with my positive test, I also started spotting. I sent a message to my doctor in the patient portal, despite my weariness, proclaiming “I’m Pregnant!” I came to find out that was a true statement.
Hindsight is 20:20. I can see clearly looking back that there was no way I should have gotten my hopes so far up in the first place. The spotting should have been the brick to keep me on planet earth and off could nine. We had been trying for around 8 months and I just couldn’t help myself. I thought of all the reasons why it made sense. I let my husband tell me it was real and tried to trust his ‘good feeling’. My heart was telling me I was pregnant even though my head knew I should breathe and pause.
“Of course, I am pregnant,” I thought. “I must be. We just closed on our forever home. We are really, truly ready now. My cousin just passed away and my spirituality tells me that this is a sign from him that he is with me. He wants me to have this new life.”
It all clicked. Despite the spotting, it took so very little to convince myself. “Of course, I’m pregnant now. It happened when I least expected it. Like everyone said. When I dropped the ball on trying. This was meant to be.”
If I backtrack just a little in this story, this was also the cycle right after my husband and I had testing done to determine our preliminary fertility prognosis. I had been getting itchy about not conceiving and my gut told me there must be a reason why. Results came back that my beloved has lower sperm counts than desired for baby-making. When we got that information, we proactively set up an appointment with the UCONN Center for Advanced Reproductive Services. Once that appointment was established, we simply went about our business the way we had in months passed. I felt a lot less pressure knowing that help was on the way.
I didn’t think there was a chance that this could happen on our own. I thought with low sperm count on the table, we could ‘baby-dance’ until the cows came home, but we would not be making a baby without science on our side.
Then six days ago, those two little lines appeared on a stick and then a “Yes +” on a digital version. My whole life changed in that exact moment. It’s something I could have never understood without it happening to me. I yearned for that moment for so long that I didn’t even think about what I might feel when it happened. It was magic. I fell in love with what I learned was the size of a poppy seed and didn’t even have a heartbeat yet.
Tom and I looked at each other, then the two positive tests, then at each other again and we cried. We did it! We were victorious against the low sperm counts and we beat the odds to create a miracle.
Looking back on that moment, it’s one I will never forget. Unfortunately, the magic of it will be forever tainted with this morning’s phone call from the doctor’s office. My eyes filled with tears and my heart full of break as I was informed that my second panel of blood work had lower levels of HCG than my first. I lost our baby. I had a miscarriage. I don’t know when and I’m not sure how. I will probably never have anything better than hypothetical answers for those inquiries.
I have so much on my mind right now. It’s just after 3pm. I got the call this morning. I am unsure about so many things. I can’t even really put the feelings into descriptors. My eyes hurt and my body aches. When will we be able to try again? I want to know, what’s the bottom line? When will we have what will now be our rainbow baby?
The thoughts are racing but the one thing that’s not taunting me is that I did something to cause this. I know this is not my fault and there is absolutely nothing I could have done to prevent our little poppy seed from leaving us. I think that in this exact moment, that’s what is most important. That, and knowing that we will be parents. It’s not our turn right now. I am thankful I didn’t cancel our consult with The Center and I look forward to sharing how this sad story will eventually turn happy. I know it will.
I am not burdened with negative thoughts about myself, and for that I am thankful. I can feel how easy it would be to fall down that rabbit hole. It’s tempting. If I was going through what I am now, even a couple years ago, I have no doubt I would be processing it differently. In this moment, I am grateful for all the women out there who have shared their stories, their journeys and their truths about trying to make a baby. It is because of those stories that bravely and honestly depict the real experience of miscarriage that I am not sitting here feeling like there must be something wrong with me.
The whole thing happened in the blink of an eye. Miscarriage has happened all around me to couples I know and love dearly. I am not the first or the last woman who will go through this. Today, I will choose to accept what I can’t change. I can’t change that I am no longer pregnant and I also can’t change that it makes me overbearingly sad. What I can do is write about it and share my story from a place of bravery as a form of therapy for me, and maybe to help you.
If you’re waiting for your turn to become a Mama, if you’ve struggled with infertility, if my experience stirs up any type of feelings for you, I see you. I love you. My heart is with your heart. Thank you for reading this and being with me.