Saturday, November 20, 2010

Give Thanks in All Things

I've debated whether or not to post this, and how much to say. But I feel that part of the grieving process is me sorting through my thoughts and feelings and getting them written down. Skip the details if it's too much. And know that this is more for me than anything.

It's been quite the whirlwind of a week. Probably the scariest experience of my life. I miscarried on Wednesday morning. I was 14 weeks. It was my first miscarriage and has obviously been rough. I didn't have much time to prepare, even though I spotted early on in this pregnancy for several weeks. Once I stopped (it's been over a month of no signs of problems) and hearing and seeing the baby's heartbeat, and moving into the 2nd trimester, I figured I was out of danger.

I was getting ready to go to yoga on Tuesday night and discovered some brown spotting around 8pm. I was concerned, but not too worried. But as the evening went on I realized I'd been cramping that evening. Went to bed and woke up at 1am because the cramping was painful. Really worried as it seemed to come in intervals too. Didn't see any blood, in fact I'd stopped spotting. Went back to sleep until 2am when it was so painful I couldn't sleep. Still no more bleeding. But called the midwife on call and as I was talking to her, I started bleeding. Rushed to the bathroom and miscarried right away. It came so fast, I really didn't feel prepared.
After about 1/2 hour I realized it wasn't stopping. I fell on the floor close to passing out, and called to Vince to get my mom here fast. They helped me to the car and I spent the next 20 minutes with the A/C blowing on me trying not to black out.

I about passed out again in the ER. They pumped me full of fluids and I stabilized. They tried to see how much placenta was still in, did an ultrasound, and found some left. The bleeding had slowed down at that point, but then around 4:30 I started cramping a LOT. More painful than before even. Over the next hour to 90 minutes I began bleeding again. The DR suggested a D&C, but then came back upset. Because of hospital policy, I wasn't an emergency case so they had to wait for the OR staff to come in at 7 to do the procedure. But by 7:00 I was crashing again. Willed myself to not go unconscious. I think my BP was around 40/19 at this point. They again pumped me with fluids and put me on oxygen till I could stabilize. But because they'd had to wait to get me to the OR for the procedure, I lost a lot of blood. My hemocrit levels went from 36 when I came in to 18.5 when I came out of surgery. I'd lost 1/2 my blood. They ended up doing a transfusion, and I had to be admitted for several hours. Levels looked better by later in the afternoon and I went home around 3:00.

I've been trying to process the fact that I could have bled to death, and that I lost my sweet baby. Experiencing the miscarriage at home was enough of a trauma. But I spent several days not being able to sleep well because of worry. I didn't want to have that scary experience again. And part of me had fought so hard to stay conscious that it was difficult to let it go and sleep. But the trauma of it has slowed way down, though now the grieving part has hit.

But through all of this I have come to be so thankful. I am so very grateful to be alive. I am grateful for modern medicine. I know without medical and divine intervention, I would have bled to death. So many things could have gone much worse. I'm so glad Vince was here, as he was 5 hours away all the week before. And I was grateful this didn't happen in MT for Thanksgiving next week.

Another great blessing I've come to appreciate is the amazing outpouring of love. I am so overwhelmed. I have loved the sweet notes, phone calls, hugs, tears, babysitting, clean bathrooms, chocolates, cupcakes, LOTS of cookies, and SO much food that has been given to us. (We really have no more room in our fridge!) I have been so amazed at all the love and concern I have felt from so many. I have seen so many other women and families who have experienced similar or worse tragedies, and have come to mourn with me as I mourn. These are examples of true Christians--true disciples of Christ. And most of all I have felt literally strengthened by many, many prayers offered in behalf of me and my family. I know that we are an eternal family. I know that the Lord feels my sorrow and I have felt the Comforter lift and sustain me through all my grief. I have been amazed also to feel such grief and such gratitude in the same moment. I am so blessed. There is much to be Thankful for.