1 in 4. I am 1 in 4. 1 in 4 women will miscarry their pregnancy. These odds are far too common, yet it’s something women rarely speak of. Sure, the odds are 25%, but you never expect that it will happen to YOU. The “standard” is to wait until the second trimester before you announce your pregnancy publicly, as that is when the odds of miscarrying become much lower. That is what we planned to do. It seemed like the safest option, and surely we didn’t want to jinx ourselves.
In just 31 days, my husband and I experienced some of our highest highs, and lowest lows. Pregnancy is a lot to process emotionally, and when you sprinkle crazy hormones on top, forget about it. We went through some scary stuff in the beginning, between spotting after CycleBar, an irregular ultrasound, and dates and measurements being off by 3 weeks. We were always waiting on pins and needles for the next appointment, when we would know more, we thought. When we would finally hear “everything looks great!”, and we were in the clear. We were carefully optimistic, until our last visit, when instead we heard, “I’m so sorry, but I don’t see a heartbeat this week.”
There was no fetal growth. No blood flow to the baby. No heartbeat. Our baby stopped growing at 6 weeks gestation, likely 4 weeks ago. They called it a “Missed Miscarriage.” Our hearts were instantly broken, and we sobbed in that cold exam room while the midwife explained our “options.” Option 1: We could wait until my body miscarried naturally. No telling how long this would take, or where I would be when this began, or IF it would happen at all. Option 2: She could prescribe Cytotec – a drug used to force the miscarriage. I could take it when I’m ready, and it would begin working in a matter of hours. Option 3: Schedule a D&C Surgery. It would be quickest, but there could still be weeks of bleeding afterward. I opted for Option 2, which seemed like the least invasive option, and would happen under my own control, without being put under anesthesia.
I took the medicine the following morning. These 6 pills are what stood between my status of “pregnant” and “not pregnant.” This medicine would forcefully expel the remnants of this pregnancy from my body. I cried and held Justin’s hand as I took the
first dose at 8 AM (I will spare you the disgusting details of the side effects that occurred after this), and later, the second dose at 11 AM. Each dose was 3 pills that had to dissolve under my tongue for 30 minutes, before I could swallow what was left. It tasted exactly like chalk, so as you can imagine, the texture is entirely unpleasant. Just as Justin was coming up the stairs to check on me at 11:30, I quickly took a swig of Powerade to swallow the medicine’s remains. Aaaand then threw up all over my own chest. Yep, right as my husband is walking in. So very cute. I stood up to change, and then I felt it, the very first rush of blood.
The next few hours were the worst. Uterine contractions every 10 minutes or so, constant nausea (Thinking: How is it that I had basically zero nausea while I was pregnant, but now that I’m miscarrying I have a ton?!) and bleeding. I imagined this is what the beginning stages of labor would feel like, except I would not be rewarded with a beautiful baby in the end. This isn’t fucking fair.
During these next few hours when I was basically immobile, we decided to send out a few texts to our friends, and call our family members. None of them even knew we were expecting, and this was not the news we planned to announce. Everyone expressed their deepest sympathy. Friends sent us an Edible Arrangement to our doorstep. Others offered to bring us dinner. We are so very thankful for the outpouring of love and support we received, but unfortunately, no amount of love can take away this deep hurt.