I never knew that I had so many friends who have been through a miscarriage until I had my own. I guess it's comforting on some level. It cushions the blow a little to know you're not alone.....like a really long line in an incredibly fucked up all-female game of Red Rover. Everyone was standing there, clasping hands with the broken person next to them screaming "Red Rover, Red Rover, send Mel right over". And I didn't want to. I wanted to stay on my team....but I ran. Okay, more like I was pushed....and they caught me. I fell backwards, stood up, and joined hands. Some days I have to grasp those hands a little tighter to keep from falling over but they're always there.
I wanted to write about the whole experience right away, while it was still fresh in my mind. Unfortunately, I'm a procrastinator and that didn't happen. I'll give the brief details: Spotting for a couple weeks during early pregnancy. A little worried but it was off and on. One day it got heavier. I went to the ER, had blood work and an ultrasound, and found out I was probably miscarrying but they wanted me to come back in 48 hours for follow up tests. I went back and the loss was confirmed. I was told to wait and see if I passed it on my own. Over the next few days my bleeding got worse.....much worse. Finally, on what I refer to as "Sunday, Bloody Sunday", I couldn't leave the toilet for 3 hours while I bled uncontrollably. My clotting was bad enough to back up the plumbing in my entire house (quite literally....it wasn't pretty at all). So I went to the ER where they brought me in for an emergency D&C. I was released a few hours later, early in the morning on the 4th of July. Here's a post I wrote to a group of friends when I got home from the hospital:
So there you have the shitty details. The more I read posts about miscarriages, the more I see this same stuff happening and I gotta say.....IT'S BULLSHIT! And I still haven't been able to bring myself to go get my insurance crap worked out (because doing so would make me relive it...again) and if I don't get to it in time I'll be in debt for $23,000 for this excellent care that I received. It's not okay to hurt women who are already hurting. I don't get why the hell some people choose their profession.....we're not just a paycheck, there's a human being on the other side of that diagnosis.
Now to explain the title of this entry. I read a post today from one of my favorite bloggers that referenced my favorite blog post ever from ANOTHER favorite blogger. The line she quoted was "Perspective. Now you have it." Well, something happened to me in between my first and second ER visit. I went back to have my hCG levels checked to confirm that I was, in fact, miscarrying and the front desk told me it would be a 4 hour wait and it would be better to come back around 4 or 5 in the morning. My mom had gone with me since Robb was at work and as we went to leave there was a woman being escorted out the front doors of the hospital by 2 police officers. She was young (about my age), crying and holding a stuffed bunny rabbit. They walked out the door about 10 seconds before us and as we walked past we heard one of the officers tell the woman that her son had died. She let out the most blood curdling scream I have ever heard in my life and fell to her knees sobbing, screaming, yelling at them to take her to her baby. My mom and I both stopped dead in our tracks, watching, crying, our hearts breaking for this woman. We stood there for a couple minutes until the woman's friend/family member took her away to see her baby. We finally composed ourselves enough to walk to our cars where we stood crying embraced in the longest hug we've probably ever had. In that moment, I gained my perspective. Yes, I lost a baby. A baby I wanted more than anything. I'm not discounting that fact and it still hurt like hell......but I had a son at home that was happy and healthy and I would take pain and suffering any day to keep him from hurting. I can try to make another baby....I can never make another Jake.
A friend called when she found out about the miscarriage and I told her that it seems like I was meant to experience every single possible reproductive scenario so that I'm the best midwife EVER. I really think it's true. As hard as this experience has been, I know that one day it will help me say or do the exact thing that someone needs during her miscarriage. I'll be able to cry with her, comfort her, and get her through it in a loving way so that she NEVER has to be treated like I was....and if I can make that possible for ONE woman, then I know that my baby's short life served a purpose. I can catch her, help her stand when she falls, and welcome her into The Sisterhood Nobody Wants to be a Part of.
"Red Rover, Red Rover, send another sister over....."