Monday, July 17, 2006

Why is it so easy to imagine the worst?

On Saturday morning I woke up, went to the bathroom and ended up staring at a dime or nickel sized blood clot in the toilet. When I wiped there was definite brown blood. I went back to bed for half an hour. Got up again, went to the bathroom again, and found more brown blood. I went to tell D that I was bleeding and started sobbing.

I called the doctor’s office, which of course was closed at 8am on a Saturday morning, and left a message with the service. Within 5 minutes the doctor on call phoned me back, listened to what I had to say, and said I should come to the hospital for an ultrasound and exam.

When I told D that I wanted him to come with me, he called his office and let them know he was going to be late. We then proceeded downtown and the entire trip I could only imagine the worst: how unfair this was; how ironic that it should be happening 2 days before I hit 12 weeks; all the people I was going to have to notify.

But once I got to the hospital, and the nurses were actually treating me nicely, and D was making me laugh, I calmed down some. I actually could plead to whomever was out there to let it all be okay.

And it was.

I had the ultrasound and it showed the baby actively moving, with a nice strong heartbeat. They did an internal exam and said my cervix was closed and that the blood didn’t seem to be coming from my uterus. My cervix was red and inflamed – but nothing bad. I was told to take it easy, avoid strenuous activity, and to not have sex. And I went home feeling happy and relieved.

The bleeding seemed to have subsided yesterday. But it appears to have returned this morning. It’s still not bright red (or really, any shade of red) and I’m not cramping (although I do feel an isolated cramp or abdominal tug periodically). By chance, my First Screen Test (that makes me sound like a wanna-be actor, but really it’s the nuchal translucency ultrasound and a blood draw to determine one’s individual odds for giving birth to a baby with specific chromosomal birth defects) was today, so I was headed to the hospital for an ultrasound anyway.

Again, it showed the fetus moving around inside me, with a heartbeat of 155bpm and no sign of where the blood is coming from. The nuchal translucency measurements showed everything as good, but I was told by the doctor that I shouldn’t bother with the blood draw part of the First Screen, as since I was bleeding and because there was a twin at one point (the empty gestational sac is still there), any results I got wouldn’t be accurate. I don’t understand why this is the case, nor do I understand why my doctor sent me to have the test if it wasn’t going to give us an indication one way or another. But I’m trying to cope with the fact that there aren’t answers to everything.

So, the NT exam showed everything was good – and by now the bleeding seems to have stopped. It’s just upsetting that even though I’ve now reached 12 weeks, I still don’t feel like I’m in the “safety zone” because of the bleeding. I guess the question really is: will I ever feel like I’m in that safety zone?

26 Comments:

Anonymous Wavery said...

I'm sorry you had such a scare, how awful for you both.

As for feeling better, I'm sure it's an individual thing, but I didn't begin to relax until after I cleared five months. I wish it could have been different for me. I wish I would have been able to embrace it and get more preparatory things done before I hit 30 weeks and was slapped with bedrest, but that's the way it was for me.

I am pretty happy now, mood swings and all, I'm looking forward to a real live baby without looking over my shoulder. Most of the time.

July 17, 2006 6:01 PM  
Blogger Susie said...

Congratulations on 12 weeks! Wow. I'm sorry about the scare.

I had a similar experience at 16 weeks and the doctor had me go to the hospital for an ultrasound. That was the day we found out we were having a boy. I was petrified. It was my first spotting of the whole pregnancy.

I didn't feel like I was safe until much closer to the end, I'm sorry to say. And even then, I never really did (as I realized once I was in the hospital, in labor, scared out of my mind).

Hang in there. You are doing great.

July 17, 2006 7:33 PM  
Blogger Hopeful Mother said...

I'm so relieved that you're OK, and sorry about the scare. Hang in there!

Congratulations on the 12 weeks!

July 17, 2006 7:57 PM  
Blogger Krista said...

Mellie I can only imagine how terrifying that must have been and probably still is. The problem with being pregnant after infertility is that we know how tenous our position is and it makes it much, much harder to feel safe. I am praying that you not only have a safe pregnancy but that you are also able to enjoy it.

July 17, 2006 8:47 PM  
Blogger Donna said...

You know all the things that can go wrong, and of course you are going to be hyper-sensitive to them all now that this is REALLY HAPPENING to you. I hope you can feel better about things, but even if you don't, that's no reason to beat yourself up later. You get through it the best way you can. Thinking of you.

July 17, 2006 10:18 PM  
Blogger Kellie said...

I'm glad that the ultrasound and exam looked good. I also had vanishing twin and spotting at around 10 weeks. It was scary as hell.

I think IF takes so much of the joy out of pregnancy. I am starting now to enjoy it and I'm at 28 (29 weeks tomorrow).

Good luck and there is a good chance the bleeding could be from the vanishing twin. ALso, the vanishing twin could very well give you elevated levels on the blood work making the results incorrect and give you even more scares.

July 17, 2006 10:38 PM  
Anonymous HeavenLeigh said...

So glad everything is ok with you and your bean <3

July 17, 2006 11:24 PM  
Blogger the waiting line said...

that is scary and confusing. sorry you're going through this.

congratulations on reaching the 12 week point! that's awesome, it truly is!

July 18, 2006 12:22 AM  
Anonymous Mollywogger said...

It feels like (for infertiles, at least) there is, unforunately, no safety zone for quite a long time. But you're doing great and your babe is healthy. Well done, Mellie.

July 18, 2006 10:19 AM  
Blogger electriclady said...

Oh no, how scary. But I'm so glad everything looks okay. (And glad that both of our experiences confirm how responsive our doc's practice is. Hopefully neither of us will need such quick emergency response again!)

July 18, 2006 11:18 AM  
Blogger P. said...

Thinking of you and hoping that the bleeding goes away!

July 18, 2006 1:51 PM  
Blogger Fertility Faux Pas said...

I'm so sorry you had such a scare, but so relieved to find out that everything is okay. The safety zone still hasn't really appeared for me, and I'm not sure that it will til I'm holding her in my arms and the doctors tell me that she's healthy. Thankfully, there are milestones that do help, and passing the 12 week point is certainly one of them. You are doing great...Hang in there!

July 18, 2006 1:51 PM  
Anonymous Z said...

first, congrats on getting to week 12. i know it feels like the time is going by so slowly so hang in there. i didn't start to "relax" until the day before my c-section. of course, the day of the c-section i began to freak out all over again. so i'm not so sure there is that magical time where you can just "relax". {HUGS} i wish this was easier...hang in there!

July 18, 2006 3:32 PM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

Mellie-UGH! I can only imagine how upsetting it is to bleed at 12 weeks. it is great that everything looks good in there though. hang in there.

as for the NT bloods. Just guessing here, but the extra sac might be making some of the hormones that are measured in the screen and therefore throw off the results.

July 18, 2006 4:36 PM  
Anonymous jill said...

Sorry for your scare, glad you are okay. I know it's all never wracking, but we are all here to listen. I agree with Kellie, that IF takes the joy out of pgcy...I am always nervous, always worrying and always marking my calendar by the next appointment. I am glad that wavery said it gets better. thinking of you, take care.

July 18, 2006 6:24 PM  
Blogger Kary said...

I got to your blog via several links and keep coming back. I am 14 weeks with twins (had an ectopic previously), so I've been more worried with this pg than I was with the first. I had the brown blood quite a bit and it was disconcerting, but everything is OK. I don't think it ever gets to where you ever feel totally at ease.

you can be 6 months along, your baby can be born and be 6 months old. You are a parent and I think at least a small part of you will worry about your baby forever. That is also what makes the bond so special. I do think you'll feel more assured when you feel movement, get past certain milestones. Hang in there! You are doing the right things--take it easy!

July 18, 2006 6:42 PM  
Blogger Dramalish said...

Grrrr... annoying bleeding go away from our Mellie!!!

Safety comes in little waves, ebbing and flowing gradually until you're on dry land and there's a baby in your arms.

Try to enjoy what you can. Every day can be a blessing. Before you know it, you'll wonder: Where did the last 9 mo. go??

:)
-D.

July 19, 2006 2:33 AM  
Blogger k #2 said...

bleeding is SO very scary. Glad the dr's seemed to understand your need to check on it!

Congrats on leaving the first trimester! That is such a GREAT milestone. I must admit, I am not sure that I ever relaxed. Maybe after the 28 week mark, I relaxed knowing the baby could survive at that point, but it was short lived! Hang in there...things are looking good for you right now!

July 19, 2006 10:58 AM  
Anonymous Beth said...

What a scare, but I am so glad things are okay. My dr is also sending me for the First Screen - maybe I need to talk with Dr. Google to see if it makes sense, but I'll take a scan anyday. So far, I'm going to have to vote for a no safe zone until I am holding a real, live baby. Congrats on the 12 weeks!

July 19, 2006 2:34 PM  
Blogger fisher queen said...

Yeah I think the answer to your last question is no, but like someone said above, you do pass milestones, and I have felt better after every one. I don't think I'll ever feel 100% confident though.

I am so glad this turned out to be nothing and that the scan looked good. Hang in there!

July 19, 2006 4:34 PM  
Blogger Sheryl said...

Oh Mellie, I'm sorry for the scare. But YAY for reaching 12 weeks and I'm glad that everything is ok!!

July 19, 2006 7:46 PM  
Blogger Lut C. said...

I'm so glad to hear you're doing well.

July 20, 2006 2:17 PM  
Blogger Janice said...

Congratulations on reaching 12 weeks.

I also had a bleeding scare during my pregnancy. I am not sure exactly how far along I was..maybe 16 weeks. However, it happened the morning of the day I was supposed to fly to Florida. Hubby and I went in for an ultrasound and everything looked okay. The nurses had asked me if I could put off the trip. But I was going to be the godmother in a christening...I needed to go. Anyway, luckily the doctor okay'd the trip. She said that the change in pressure wouldn't have any effect. Poor hubby, hadn't even packed yet and had to throw whatever he needed into his bag so we could catch the plane on time. As you know, everything went fine. But I can't tell you how stressed I was on the plane and for the first part of the trip.

Sorry, that you had the scare but I'm so glad that it all turned out okay!

July 21, 2006 3:47 PM  
Blogger Thalia said...

It sounds absolutely terrifying mellie, I'm glad that things look like they're ok, but it must be awful to go through. The reason the blood test won't work is that it looks at proteins that the fetus is producing and their concentration in your bloodstream. Given you had a vanishing twin that will have some effect onthe concentration, and it's hard to quantify how much.

Hoping things look better from here on out.

July 23, 2006 5:32 AM  
Blogger Em said...

I never really felt in the safety zone because once I was past the first trimester I was stressed untill the 20 week scan and then I was worried about all other things. I didn't have any tests for Down's syndrome etc. so right at the end I was stressed about that.

Glad everything is looking good. I had a bit of bleeding at 20 weeks but that was from having sex and irritating the cervix!

July 31, 2006 8:46 AM  
Blogger sube said...

Checking in on you after being away for a bit. So sorry you had such a scare. Glad to hear things turned out okay.

August 02, 2006 12:42 AM  

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