Category: Sarah

Universal Misdirection (by )

This morning is the first morning alone since the miscarriage as Alaric has had to go to work in Cheltenham, I did last night with just me and Mary but mainly she went to bed and I made Christmas cards until Al and Jean came in.

This is a whole day of empty house - so I decided to make more cards - I like making cards. I made it up to my attic, rested, looked through things until I found my crate of card making things... I bought it down stairs - my stomach is now unsurprisingly hurting and cramping up again. I'm not quiet sure what I was thinking, but in my defence it wasn't a heavy crate.

Anyway - I have made lit. hundreds of cards - no idea what I am going to do with them - I want to make more as well. I think I'll just put them out as "pay what you want" at the 2 craft fairs I am doing. And of course we wont have to buy any cards...

Mainly this is a distraction - I am trying not to think too hard whilst on my own. I've finally started my NaNoWriMo and got to 1000 words last night - again I was on my own with Mary in bed and I needed to blot my own thoughts out or rather have them on the perifery where I can think about them but not always feel them.

I still have a living room full of Christmas Craft stuff I'd gotten ready to run workshops with when it all went wrong. The kids and their friends keep randomly making things out of them.

Tuesday I went for my physio/neurology appointment for treatment to do with the head injury. The universe being the universe decided to kick me or attempt to a healiness or something and my physio had chosen that day to announce she was pregnant and going off on maternity leave - not that she needed to announce it what with her little belly.

Then I had to tell her what was wrong and why I hadn't been doing my exercises and why I was having a huge flare up of concussion symptoms. I am not sure who the appointment was harder for but she handled it well and head injury stuff is on a break for a month until I recover from this.

And also it might be aneamia causing alot of the problems so I need to go to my GP and have a review with the head injury team to try and sort things out. I am mucking up numbers again - I ordered the wrong knitting needles that I needed to finish a project off and I order twice as much mega chunky huge wool/yarn to do make Jean's rug with than I need.

But I managed to go for a short walk around the block and to make some food yesterday which is a huge inprovement. This was increadibly important yesterday as they day started pretty roughly with another kick in the teeth from the universe - we have a letter from the hospital for the Dr surgery but I've needed a lot of looking after and there have been alot of things to cancel/book etc... for Alaric to sort out and the up shot is the Dr surgery didn't yet know about me loosing the baby so I get a phone call from a super chirpy midwife congratulating me.

I said. "oh... no"

And obviously they were startled by this - I then explained with my voice getting quieter and higher in pitch. The phone call had woken me up, I had not slept well due to stabbing pains shooting through me. I'd only answered because I thought it would be the person saying the combined ashes had been scattered.

I should have tried to book more bloods then like the physio had told me too but before I could the midwife said she was sorry and didn't know what to say and then said goodbye. I cried. It would have been the day we had the next scan to see if the baby was still growing or was dead so it wouldn't have been a good timing for the phone call what ever.

I'd cried once we left the physio appointment too - I just can't help but think "thank Universe" over this at the moment.

On top of that I am angry at the universe - this means I end up in internet arguments with 50 yr old men who think they know more about the second world war than me. Or that women just plan can't understand strategy etc... Thank goodness my dad doesn't think like this and as he says he's 70!

He's a star and spent an hour on the phone talking to me about military history snippets he'd picked up he thought I might not have heard yet - he is a good distraction - knitting is a good distraction - shame the project is a breast feeding shawl but it was started for this pregnancy or even for me so I think I'm ok with it.

I realise that the two books I was supposed to have out before Christmas are not going to really happen but I have started to prod them a little further towards the finishing line - they were going to be tight anyway and with everything that's happened and me not even really sure of day/week I think it's best to just let the projects complete when they complete.

My inlaws have been wonderful - phoning up from South Africa and Brighton and offering support etc... and friends too - from all the different stages and parts of our lives.

Physically I am getting there (as long as I don't try to do stuff) and emotionally - well I'm a mess but I think that is the healthy thing at this stage - only time will tell on that one.

Can I have Christmas now?

Miscarriage (from the father’s eyes) (by )

My family is the single most important thing in my life. I grew up lonely - it was just my mother and I, and I always found portrayals of "typical family life" in popular media slightly painful to watch; I wanted that bustling house, full of children, with grandparents and aunts and uncles visiting. Sure, I'm mad about creating things; I love tinkering with computers and electronics and metalwork and DIY, and designing things around a table with my friends, but my biggest and best creation is my family.

So, I was delighted when, a couple of weeks ago, Sarah decided to do a pregnancy test; and it came out positive. We'd put if off for a while; we had some false starts when conceiving Mary, so we didn't dare get our hopes up too soon. We waited until it looked like the periods were definitely staying away, when it started to feel like if Sarah was pregnant we'd best be getting set up with a midwife and all that. I'd already been rather hopefully resting my hand on Sarah's belly on the sofa; but once the test came back positive, it was time to start snuggling down and talking to her baby. Partly soppiness on my part, and partly because I'm told that even after the first few weeks, babies start to learn their parents' voices (and it's never too early to start learning Lojban).

However, we only had a few days of that before things started to look a little wrong. I kept talking, telling the little grain of rice that there was lots to live for; it would have two siblings, three cats, two chickens, a mummy, a daddy, and a lovely house to live in, and I had so many wonderful things to show it. But the poor thing was probably already dead by then; a few days passed before everything got a bit medical, and I was carrying a bowl full of chunks of womb lining while a nurse wheeled Sarah through a hospital in a wheelchair, wondering if I was (in some grisly sense) at least getting to carry my child in my arms, for a while.

As is usual when things go wrong, Sarah was too ill to do anything, so I went into Caring Husband mode; looking after Jean and Mary, organising meals, cancelling things, supporting Sarah. I'm not shy about my emotions, as many male people are; but while there were things that needed doing and nobody else to do them, I didn't have the mental energy to feel them, so I just got on with it all. But once Sarah was home again and I didn't need to worry about her health all the time and things had settled down a bit and I had time to think about it (thanks to my lovely colleagues at both jobs, who covered for me), I finally had my chance to cry; Sarah was working on her picture, and wanted me to choose some colours for the rainbows in the lettering. I put together a spectrum (my choices are at the top of the first L, by the way), and I remembered being a little child, choosing that my favourite colour was blue; I went for sky blue and sunrise yellow at the time (although I've since moved towards darker, purplier, blues), and I wondered what this child's favourite colour would have been, and then all the pain came up and I cried on Sarah's shoulder. I still feel a lot of pain, but a good long sob helped me to heal a lot.

Now, I just want to find ways to record the existence of the little thing. When we had the initial scan, I wrote down the dimensions they told me on the appointment letter, because I feared that and the memory of seeing it, fleetingly, on a screen might be all we got to keep. When the ashes have been scattered, I'll try to find the memorial garden in Cheltenham, and go and visit.

I wrote a poem, in Lojban of course. I could translate it to English, but I'd have to either drop all the rich attitudinal indicators (which would make it rather boring) or try and explain them in English (which would make it long and convoluted), so I'll just leave it as-is.

.i .u'anaisai mi ba'ozi te tarbi
.i .uinai mi na ba pamjai le .iu tarbi
.i .uinai mi na ba tavla le .iu tarbi
.i .uinai mi na ba bevri le .iu tarbi
.i .a'onai mi na ba zgana lo nu le .iu tarbi cu ke banro
   joi cisma
   joi klaku
   joi cadzu
   joi tavla
   joi prami
   joi jmive

.i le .iu tarbi na ba djuno fi mi

.i co'o tarbi

Blood Stains and Pin Pricks (by )

Trigger warning: miscarriage.

I didn't even get to make the announcement that I was pregnant - social media has picked up the pregnant thing but not the miscarriage bit and is sending me targeted adverts. I am having nightmares about babies being the on the other sides of mirrors, windows, veils and not being able to reach them. I am managing maybe one meal a day.

I want the painful cramps to go away but feel guilty as they are the last part of that little life that I failed. All I have left is blood stains, pin pricks and bruises and they are all disappearing but I'm not sure that I am healing. Several people have told me not to think on it too much and to just be grateful for my girls but I hadn't even gotten my head around having another baby before it was taken away and worse because of the complications I have suffered in the past I was terrified of being made to go through labour and things and was scared of having the baby but then I started to get excited and now... now there is just a hole.

Alaric says, that his little rice grain deserves being cried over. Initially he didn't cry and Mary asked why I told her Daddy is like Apple Jack (a My Little Pony character) and does his crying on the inside but that he was crying none the less we just couldn't see it. She pointed out that Jean tends to cry on the inside too - and this certainly is true. When he broke later that night she came down because she heard him and tried to get him a cat but ended up patting him and hugging him.

I managed to get in the bath last night - I am still in waves of pain but am ok physically in between. The support have been overwhelming and important especially for Alaric who almost drowned in silence when I was ill with having Jeany and the aftermath.

It was a lot of pain and medical stuff for no baby.

The honest way I feel?

I am in pain, I am falling apart, I don't fit into any of my clothes, I am letting people down, I've given up some fantastic opportunities - to try and save the pregnancy and now they are lost to me along with potential future projects from the same people, worrying about that makes me feel selfish but I am angry and hurt and bewildered too and disappointed that I can't do the epic things. I can't physically help with the housework and so everything is on Alaric who is also still trying to work - his colleagues have been fantastic - the school noticed he was suffering. I'm a mess if I'm honest I didn't want to wash the blood stains off even though it is my blood but somehow I am thinking of it as the baby's blood.

I feel I am over reacting and under reacting and I can hardly walk. I need to cancel the midwife appointments and ultra sound and so on. I don't really want to talk to people/strangers.

Kids make me smile, I am missing Jean because she is on a sleep over and I am making a visual poem to remember the baby by. This was worse than the suspected ectopic and that wasn't particularly brilliant. I need to do something. I feel like I've had my insides washed with a brillo pad - I am not actually quite sure exactly what they did.

I'm scared people wont want to see me that they will hide themselves away from me. I am worried about how I will react to certain things.

Most of all though I feel like I've gone through labour and don't have a baby to hold and I know the baby wasn't even really a baby though as Al said he was more worried about this one because it did have a developing nervous system and really hope it wasn't in pain. Again if we find anyone using this as anti abortion stuff we will go spare: pregnancy is a potentially life threatening thing no one should be made to go through that if they don't want to.

Still I wish it could have lived, we love it - we already love it. After I had the bleeding/threatened miscarriage with Jean's pregnancy we agreed to love the little pregnancies because that might be the only time we had with them. But I didn't really know for long enough with this one - it's been such a fast chain of intense emotions.

And the picture is not the little book of poetry I'd planned but it is all I really have to offer.

I think miscarriage is unique in that the thing you are trying to get better from is the last remnant of the thing you longed for and the grief is mixed with the physical healing in complex and varied ways.

One of the nurses told me it is really very common but no one talks about it so every woman thinks she is on her own.

This thought chills me.

Empty Handed (by )

TMI and Miscarraige trigger warning.

Note: post was written over several days and is not completely chronological in order - started on Thursday 9th Nov.

Yesterday Morning the NHS gynae team at Gloucester Royal Hospital saved my life - it was impossible to save my kinder surprise, though the sorrow of which is I hadn't known I was pregnant for very long before the problems started. It's amazing how joy can evaporate leaving a pit of despair that seems bottomless.

We already knew the baby was probably dead but there was still some hope and we were awaiting the scan. I don't know if I had a temperature with the cough or whether the damage was actually done at the end of September when I did have a fevery chest infection but did not know I was pregnant. That in same ways would fit too but then it could be my irregular periods or the endometriosis or maybe incompitable blood groups. Or maybe there was just something wrong with it in the first place. We can't really know.

Everything I can control and do right I do do right - no smoking, no drinking, eating healthily and exercise. And though I know people stressed that I was continuing to run workshops and act and go on field trips and hike even after knowing I was pregnant - the Drs assure me that a healthy pregnancy would be fine with those things - something else was wrong - something out of my control.

This leaves me with a hatred; I kind of had this hate anyway - I know they are suffering in their own ways but the rage I had with mothers who smoke and drink during known pregnancies has intensified. This has been there since I was being wheeled passed such a person whilst pregnant with Jean. To see them there on tottering heels with a cig in one hand and a bottle of booze in the other sporting the bump between boob tube and mini skirt whilst I had followed all the advice and was crippled and unsure whether I'd ever see my baby... after the scan on Sunday I found it hard to even look at one of my best friends because of this, she'd been unable to give up smoking and was in my house at my request and I found it so hard talking to her and I don't want to feel this rage.

I was continuing to do all the things because I thought remaining active was the best way to prevent the separated pelvis from becoming too bad. As soon as problems presented themselves I began to cancel the more physically demanding stuff. Ironically this means I have just stepped back from some amazing opportunities to try and save a baby that I have now lost.

Yesterday morning I was in a lot of pain, I'd started loosing clots but it wasn't bad enough to be seen again. I sat and did some colouring in and tried to sort out ballet classes for Mary and do adminy things. I had what I term a "period poo" and went and moaned about this to Al as that was all I needed on top of everything and I was worried I might have now picked up a stomach bug.

Then we had lunch and I sat and sorted the craft supplies for the workshop with the Scouts I was supposed to be running the next day - I was sorting stickers, pompoms and goggle eyes into various tubs. I wasn't lifting crates and wasn't even sure at this point whether I was physically going or sending Al with instruction sheets for the various things I'd gotten ready.

I felt sick and saw my bleeding had increased slightly so I went to see Al who said we'd phone the hospital again after his next meeting which was in 15 mins. I came back in and changed my pad but before I could sit down I felt a rush of blood. And went back to the bathroom - I'd drenched the pad and it was running down my legs. I phoned Al and said we need to phone now and go to the hospital.

I changed pad again and then again whilst he was phoning - the emergency number we'd been given told us it was daytime so to phone and leave a message with the early pregnancy unit and they would phone back. This is what we did but I'd had to change my pad again and knew this was bad from previous bleeding issues after having had Mary so we bundled me into the car and went to A&E. On the walk from the car park to the department I felt something come out of me, I felt like I'd given birth to something, I knew the pregnancy was smaller - much smaller than it should have been so I flipped out screaming "somethings come out" I thought my womb had prolapsed with the accompanying pain and the size of what came out.

At the desk whilst Al checked me in all I could do was cling to the side and whimper due to the contractions I was having - these were not full on all stomach like I had during Jean's birth but they were worse than the womb flush cramps I had after Mary. The whole thing was somewhere pain wise between the births of my two girls, except I knew there would be no little baby to take home.

They put me in a wheel chair and put me in the waiting area and we waited. At some point there was another pad change whilst being seen by a nurse - Al had to wheel me into the loos and help me. I was loosing handfuls of black/brown jelly clots like I did after I had Jean except these were much bigger.

Mainly with miscarriages nature knows how to take care of things, I could still feel the thing filling my vagina and I was still petrified about what it was. Selfishly I was now worried about whether this baby was going to take my womb with it, I didn't think my life was in danger at that point - I know my body can take far more of a beating than this before things got bad. The pain was different from the suspected ectopic I had which was a searing pain down my left hand side followed by cramps of a bad period variety (I have bad periods so probably a very bad period to others).

I was taken to a side room off of A&E which was busy with stressed looking Drs in it - I think the wait times and capacities are worse than when we first moved here - I believe there has been at least one A&E closed in the area in that time and this makes me furious as I watch the paramedics having to fill the gaps with patients whilst waiting for the Drs - everyone was maxed out.

By the time the Dr came to see me I had soaked through my pad, uber fluffy pyjamas and made a considerable mess of the wheel chair, my legs, socks, shoes and even the floor.

Up on the trolly the nurse helped me remove the sodden mess and something fell out, I freaked again trying to push myself away from the lump that to me did not look like a jelly clot - I had forgotten about placentas and things, I knew it was too big for the baby/fetus/blob and again that fear that it was my womb. I was in quite a lot of pain as well at the time. They assured me it was ok and placed it in a bowl for the Dr etc... to look at.

The Dr examined me, including speculums and dragging material out, he like every other Dr had trouble finding my pesky cervix; it likes to hide for my smear tests too and I have to do some fun gymnastics for them to get at it. It was decided I needed an injection to increase my blood pressure and help my body push it all through. Kind of inducing a micro labour from my understanding.

It made me feel sick but then I was feeling like I might vom anyway.

They informed me it was a miscarriage - I have a horrible feeling I actually said "duh yeah" to the Dr.

The nurse was literally scooping up handfuls of red/black gunk and shoving them into a bag, it was hanging down in boulbous strings like silly putty or play slime - a bit like some horrible monster from a horror movie. I found myself stressing out that they were going to put the baby in the bin even though I knew it was minute and possibly not there at all and already dead.

Alaric has been struggling to eat since.

He showed me stuff from his workshop book to help distract me and keep me conscious - a large old book with black binding and little embosses logo - the nurse thought he was reading the bible to me. I kept crying randomly.

I thought the Dr said his name was god - I think because I'd been reading up on Islamic stuff for my novel I heard him say Allah - I think he said Ali or something. Certainly someone was called Ali because Alaric responds to that name and kept turning around when it was called).

There was a lot of faff about chaperones and covering my dignity, which I just wanted to scream was unnecessary but understood was really there to protect the Drs as well as patients. Also I don't think I really had the energy to scream at all about anything.

The wheel chair was cleaned up (by Alaric who was in his stressed being uber helpful mode) and I was taken up to a ward to a room of my own with bathroom. As they wheeled my chair in I started to cry - it looked like the sort of room I'd had when I had Mary - the sort of room that should have one of those little hospital cots in - I was going through all this and there would be no baby to hold.

The poor girls who had to put up curtains in the room where trying to be sensitive and give me space or someone to talk to, in the end they only hung one curtain and came back later to do the bins.

I lost more clots and was wearing huge pads and hospital disposable bloomers (which are see through) by this point. No trousers, just blankets to cover me up - I told Alaric I thought it was the end of my Eeyore pyjamas.

I needed the loo - I made a huge mess and called the nurse as I physically couldn't clean it up and Alaric had had to leave to get the kids all sorted out - it was night time I'd got to the hospital at 2 pm. I don't remember all of it.

Nurse told me we had to keep all the clots and discharge etc... so put a stack of pans next to the toilet and I worried that I'd mucked things up by flushing the clots away.

Issue - I needed to pass all the bits of sac, baby etc... in order to stop bleeding and producing the clots of which there was a lot. And they needed to check all of it to see if I'd passed the "products".

Alaric thinks the actual baby bit would have been in the first chunk I lost - it looked more solid than anything else. He carried it up the stairs - this is important to him - since we'd found out I was pregnant he'd been talking to it, even when we weren't sure if it was alive or dead or a zombie baby he spoke to it and told it it was alive and to hold on and how much we loved it.

He told me and the Dr that he thought our little Rice Grain had other things to do and that he wished it well.

Up in the ward room they came to take blood and found my veins hiding due to fluid loss so then came the fun bit of finding a vein to put a cannula in - the first attempt at putting it in failed - I'd wanted it in my left hand so that I could still bend my arm (I've been cannula-ed up before, I know how it goes). It was a no go and has left a lovely bruise - it was a pink robot butterfly - for some reason I felt the need to explain to the Dr that cannulas were robot butterflies, something which harks back to me being in hospital as a four year old.

She said my right hand looked a no go too - apparently I'm too delicate ie my hands are too boney and it is painful if the vein is right up against a bone - also my veins kept running away from the needle - though I think that was later on. It ended up in the crook of my right arm. More bloods where taken and a fluid sack attached to a drip. I was damn thirsty but they were already considering giving me an op so I was Nil by Mouth.

I got pain killers and then morphine, I would try not to writhe on the bed or call out in pain. Everything I passed had to be kept so they could see what products I'd passed. I felt like I was leaving a horrible mess for them each time but none as bad as the first time and the amount of clots was reducing.

They asked me on a scale of 1 to 10 where I was with pain - I said initially 5, then it went up to 7 but my pain scale I think is a bit skewed - for me 8 is unable to talk, 9 is can't open eyes but can understand what is being said and 10 is there is nothing but the pain in my existence. When the Dr came to try and manually clear me out (this was another attempt after the initial one in A&E) I reached an 8 - my damn cervix, I felt like my entire insides where being pulled out when she grabbed it with the tong things. I thought I was going to pass out or throw up as well.

I got morphine to take at this stage.

I got more fluids, I got nurses popping in for chats - I cried every time I was on my own - I read my book on terrorism - it was a Thriller easy read with both Christian and Muslim extremists as the bad guys and a brit muslim as the hero along with a US author. It was a good plot line but read like a point horror - just what I needed.

Alaric came back at some point and gave me PJ and clean underwear and the dussy cuddly toy which I had been snugging at home when in pain. The nurses loved the dussy, so did the Drs.

He'd packed my pregnancy PJs; I couldn't help but point this out, i.e. the ones my mum made me when I was having Jean and that are really thin cotton so only tend to get worn when I go into hospital. They have paddington bear on them. He's tried to get me old pjs and bought me a pair of his and his pants to wear as well so I wouldn't ruin any of my wonder women or star wars knickers etc...

I slept a bit, the pains seemed to be easing off and the clots got less and less.

They let me sip water until midnight when I had to once more be nil by mouth just incase.

I was awoken for morning obs and it all seemed fine. I felt a lot better, the Dr was sorting out a scan for me and we were hopeful that I'd avoided needing an op. I felt well enough to attempt changing into non blood stained PJ bottoms... I did this and went a loo with the idea that I could perhaps wash myself a bit. But were as the clots had been getting smaller and smaller to just little flecks during the night I now "gave birth" to several fist sized clumps - and they were not my fist size, they were quite sizeable wrestler hand size clumps. I frowned at them and walked back to the bed having noticed that my canula was letting blood up my fluids tube and I was damn thirsty, so thirsty it was all that began to occupy my mind, I felt sick - I needed to drink.

I pressed the buzzer to get my fluid bag changed and to tell them about the clots. I sat on the edge of the bed unable to get back into it - I suddenly felt weird. When the nurse came I explained and mentioned the feeling weird and suddenly sweating hot as a little side thing.

I had ringing in my ears but I often have ringing tinnitus. The world was greying. She got me in bed laid it flat, grabbed the obs kit to check my blood pressure. It was low, she checked the other arm and it was even lower - I know the second reading had a 30 in it.

Suddenly the room was full of Drs and nurses, extra canulars where put in - these were green I think, they could take faster flows, nurses where literally squeezing bags of fluid into me, they made me feel cold. I told them I thought I was going into shock but I couldn't understand their reply, I started to shiver and cough. An oxygen mask appeared. and I noticed my nails were blue tinged. I thought "that's not good" I thought "I'm not going to get to write poetry stories for this baby," then I thought "stop that! little Mary needs you, you have stories to finish for her and Jeany," the world was a swirl.

They were trying to explain things, they looked inside again, I wasn't opening up properly to let everything out - just like with Jean's labour. I thought "this is a lot of medical stuff and pain for no baby" they kept trying to draw me out with conversation - the Dussy was important for this.

It was less painful than having Jean, more painful than having Mary. I kept apologising for everything - I'm not sure why I do this - there was a nasty philosopher who said that if you truly want to see who someone is then you hang them over a cliff or make them confront their death (or something like that) and only then do you truly see who they are. Every time I get close to that cliff I start worrying I'm being a nuisance and apologising and trying to clean things up and be helpful - I am not sure what that really says about who I really am.

Alaric uses this to gauge how ill I actually am - a gritted teeth fine is much better though still not good but a sorry is a bad sign and an Ok is probably the worst.

Once I was more with it I could see there were 2 drs and 4 nurses all in my little room, "nothing like a bit of excitement first thing in the morning!" was one phrase that made me smile.

But that was it I was going for the op. I was now being fed fluid through pressure cuffs?

I couldn't reach my next book to read - The Book of Dust and with the canulas and fatigue I couldn't have held it up even if someone had passed it to me so it sat there with the Dussy on it and I thought of going back to South Africa and seeing the whales properly, I saw a whale give birth but I still haven't seen an orca and Lynn had told me about them at sunset and how their white turns pink as they jump out of the waves - I want to see that.

I felt a pang of guilt as I lay waiting for the op. I wanted this to all be over, but for it to be over I had to get rid of the last remnant of my baby. It was like I was wishing it away.

A lovely nurse came and changed me, managing to thread my t-shirt around all the pipes and canulars - the blood pressure tube was on my leg - I'm not sure how it got there but she explained it was so it didn't hamper the fluids going into my arms. I think I panically told the Drs about my blood group - don't give me O positive it makes me ill, I know my blood looks like O positive but I'm allergic to it!

Apparently I was down as O negative anyway.

I'm not sure I was making a lot of sense - but I know it was potentially important.

I had to do swabs for various super bugs - I think I may have done this twice at various stages. I panicked that I hadn't told them I'd had contact with MSRA before they started doing stuff because I know it can be a problem.

I explained about my c-section scar and then about cleaning mum's cancer wounds - no idea if it was relevant. Again not sure really how coherent I was.

I got stressed that I was leaving blood all over the hospital and mucking up all the white sheets. I couldn't go to the loo myself but the amount of fluids they had pumped into me meant I needed the loo a lot - I had to call for bed pans. I don't like weeing in bedpans, I never thought I'd want a catheter fitted but I found myself wistfully thinking about them.

They couldn't get hold of Alaric to tell him I was having the op - it was school run time and he'd left his phone at home because he was stressed. The headmistress apparently stopped him to ask if he was ok which quite frankly he is not. For me I was losing/had lost the baby, for him it was the baby loss and a very ill wife.

I knew he should know I was going into theatre - I got the nurse to get my phone and texted him saying I was going to theatre - I wanted to text that I loved him but knew he'd panic so didn't. When none of us had heard back from him and I was being whisked away to theatre I regretted not sending the "I love you" and couldn't remember what the last things where I'd said to him or the kids and I just wanted to get home for snugs.

I had forms to sign and a million questions to answer and both ends of my bed being wheeled around the hospital. The anaesthetic drs where really nice and in the end the bit I'd most been dreading and didn't want to happen - the op. was the least traumatic bit of the whole experience. They injected stuff into my canula, explained I'd have a breathing tube put in and gave me oxygen and talked gently to me until I went to sleep.

Part of me always worries I won't wake up - I think that is because of the almost dying during the op. as a four year old and waking up days later - that missing time is always there when I have hospital stuff - I can't help it.

There was kites and clouds on the ceiling, I held onto the fact that I have a kite picture I need to ink and turn into a colouring sheet for the girls. And drifted off and woke up and it was done - I had a bit of a sore throat and a blocked nose.

I was allowed to drink again and when I got back to the ward I was even allowed food. I thought I'd wolf it down but I didn't - Alaric turned up as I was being settled back in the room with the food. He'd gotten the message and phoned the hospital and they'd told him he didn't have to wait until visiting time (3-4:30 or something like that).

I didn't have a clue what meal it was, as in was it lunch? Dinner? It turned out to be lunch, I barely managed a 3rd of it. But I did drink the soup and my cup of tea. I was still woozy so was still bed panning it. Alaric thought I was a def. staying in for another night so went off to get the kids for a visit.

But my bloods had come back fine and I was starting to feel a lot better the Dr asked me if I wanted to go home - I was now feeling narky and fed up with being in the room - I knew Al was getting pizza for dinner - I wanted pizza and a film with my family.

I was using the loo again and there was little blood and only minute specs of clots etc... I drank all the water, I wanted to rip the canulas out. They came and took them out for me and I got myself dressed though it was a confused getting dressed and I think I put back on dirty cloths - certainly Alaric helped me rechange when I got home.

Al turned up as they served me dinner - you could tell I was feeling better as I was cross and snappy. I struggled my way through most of the main course and left the soup, roll and stashed the pudding for Jeany, much to Alaric's bemusement.

We were waiting to be discharged, first clanger - the Dr who'd spoken with me earlier said I'd have pain relief to take home - by this point I hadn't had anything since the op. and was feeling it - I asked for pain relief but it didn't appear I might not have been allowed anymore and then the discharge nurse said that I couldn't take and pain relief home and that I should just take paracetamol.

"oh ok" I said whilst thinking "bloody hell paracetamol isn't going to touch this".

Second clanger which I found harder to deal with was to do with how the remains/gunk was going to be dealt with - at some point the previous day - I can't remember when exactly a nurse had sat down and gone through things with me so I'd signed a form saying I would like the remains to be cremated and scattered in the garden in Cheltenham but I knew there was a second form about being informed when it happens.

Now somehow I assumed this meant there was a little service we could go to. The poor nurse realised that this is what I thought and had to tell me that we couldn't attend it but that a chaplain would phone to say when it had happened. I was crushed by this - unbelievably crushed - more crushed than I would of thought possible.

Also I wanted to know what had caused it - the suspected ectopic between the girls had been so much easier (I was and am still really upset about it - there is a gap in my children that shouldn't be there) - but it had grown in the wrong place, end of story. But this one - this had felt like a nice pregnancy - the best and easiest I'd had, there wasn't much morning sickness, my breast hurt sure but that was nothing. It had suddenly all been blown out of the water.

The answer is they don't know - the risk factors I tick are illness - I was ill at the end of September, ill enough to not go to work I really wanted to go to. Had that done the damage? Was that why the baby was so small? Had it stopped growing properly at that point? Or was it the suddenly coming down hard with it again on the Thursday - I was ill enough that someone who knew me randomly stopped me in the street to ask if I wanted a lift home because I looked so sick. I just started sneezing and coughing hard, it was like a sledgehammer of flu. Alaric thinks this is what did it - he thinks that it must have been this because of how correlated it was with the bleeding. Cough/bleed/cough/bleed/cough/bleed. I'm sure which scenario is better. When I say cough I don't mean a little tickle - the cough was deep an hard and continuous - I could hardly talk to the Dr on Friday and there was nothing they could give me for it.

Or is it my shonky womb with it's erratic bleeding or my stupid weird can't make up it's mind blood group? I don't drink or smoke and I try and eat healthy and exercise and so on. What went wrong? They said it wont have been the work I was doing - that is fine for a healthy pregnancy - so am left wondering what happened.

Left feeling like my body just randomly poisoned our baby, or that I did something wrong but I can't really find what I should have done differently without it causing other problems like making the separated pelvis worse.

I cried in front of the girls when I got home - I couldn't help it, Jean had saved a Mrs Tiddiwinkles 50p for me and Mary dumped a confused looking cat into my lap but neither of them wanted to really look at me - they had Minecraft. Alaric got annoyed with them - they both sneaked in for cuddles a bit later on and then argued about who got to snug at me. I was still having regular waves of pain which I couldn't hide from them.

Alaric made me a bed up in the spare room so I'd be more comfy, he put the dussy and my crotchet octopus on the pillow and made sure there was a stack of books and things. The spare room has the cot in it - it is currently a children's sofa covered in cuddly toys. It burned me and I cried until I slept. When I woke up I had forgotten and then I saw the flapping dressing on my arm and the streak of blood, just one little line ending in a spot where a needle had gone in. Tears without sobs came and that was how Jean found me when she came to see me before school.

I feel I am failing them as well - our family almost grew but now I am just the cause of pain and extra work load for everyone.

This is the Facebook update I composed - I didn't really want to post anything on there are was actually more open on twitter but people were worried and needed to know - I tried to text or Al phoned and emailed people before hand but as always we missed people accidentaly.

I'm out of hospital - I once again have the NHS to thank for my life - emotionally I am not good and physically been through the mill and may not be over yet. I am hiding at home - for those who want to know more and don't already know I am writing something but it is mainly for me and will be shared when it is shared which might be never. But me and Alaric Blagrave Snell-Pym have had an emotional roller coaster the last few weeks going though surprise, fear, joy, horror, hope and now despair as we left hospital empty handed. I will be hiding for the next week recovering.

Grain of Rice (by )

Written Monday the 6th but was not put live because there were people we felt we should tell first before they saw it anyway else and because we weren't really sure we wanted people to know at this stage. I'd also been writing poetry since Friday 3rd which I will see about putting in a blog post.

Grain of Rice

So I found out I was pregnant and as also happens... I find out - I start bleeding. Really very lightly, so light I wasn't sure if I was seeing things.

But I was coughing... bark bark bark, coughing right down deep in the core of me so that my c-section scar hurt, so that I'd pee myself. I've had a cough all the way through since September but mostly it's just been an annoying tickle but it was a chest infection in September and it suddenly hit me hard whilst I was in town. Fortunately one of the people I'd been working with at Frightmare spotted me and thought I looked unwell and gave me a lift home.

I'd sneezed a couple of times and the coughing hadn't yet arisen to it's full intensity it was still just a cough - the main issue was that I felt suddenly like all the life had gone out of me and my pelvis had clicked and walking was once again damn painful. My separated pelvis had never fully gone away so a cracking pelvis wasn't that strange.

I got home and the cough got worse and worse and that night I was struggling, it hurt my pelvis and scar with it rattling lot of coughing fits. The chest infection seemed to be back I went to bed early but the blood appeared so so light - we phoned the Drs...

I could barely talk for coughing - I was steeped in misery at the thought of the cough I developed at the beginning of Jean's pregnancy and what that had meant for me. The nightmare of blood clots and oxygen monitors and samples of arterial blood being taken.

The blood quickly snatched my attention as the new fear was that I was losing the baby - but I had spotting with both Jean and Mary - I had full blown periods with Mary's pregnancy but I also had a suspected ectopic and years of delayed periods followed by bad periods where I dared not take a pregnancy test. There was supposed to be a two year gap between Jean and Mary - I think that says it all really.

So I found out I was pregnant and then there was blood - like every other time I've done a pregnancy test - seriously what is it with that?

Currently the Drs can't do anything for the cough - it has subsided a lot. Then it was the waiting game - I had to wait until Sunday morning to get my scan to check. The baby was smaller than expected, with no obvious heart beat. Saturday I lost gunk, slime and old blood.

I'd been feeling cold for days, so cold Jean had lent me her hoody - this was before the blood appeared - I wonder was I already bleeding inside.

I'd been having a bath Saturday evening when the gunk arrived, I had a slight cramp, Mary barged in to go to the toilet - she's six and always needs the loo if I want a nice relaxing bath. She said, "Mummy you've pooed in the bath" I looked and there was gunk and I swallowed the horror and coughed and thought "oh my god I've just miscarried in front of my six year old".

Sunday was the halloween and fireworks party I'd promised the girls; I didn't really want to cancel it - I thought I'd lost the baby I thought I might have to have the DnC thingy again where they wash your womb. My friend came over uber early with her little baby to baby sit the girls and let anyone in who arrived at 10 for the party if we weren't back.

I told people I wouldn't be making cakes and the floor would likely not be hoovered. Alaric's friend hoovered for me and he made us all nice nutritional food to sustain us and Alaric got to talk to them and remain sane.

Sunday morning was more wee testing and the scan - I'd already convinced myself that the baby wouldn't be there. Initially all they could see was the sac and the bleeding which was on another part of the womb. So I had to go and wee for an internal scan - on the loo I lost a solid lump about 2 cm with little white bumps on them.

So I was surprised when they said there was something in the sac... a very small pregnancy - the size of a grain of rice. But there was no heart beat but it is small it maybe a pregnancy that has stopped growing, it maybe just a younger pregnancy and it may or may not be still alive. It may just be too small for the heart beat to show.

I wonder about the bleeding spot and the gunk I've lost, Alaric is convinced it is the same as happened early on with Jean where it appears we lost a twin. He is hopeful - I am not - I have to wait 10 or so days to go back and see if the pregnancy is growing, whether the baby is still alive.

This means I am sitting here not knowing whether the cramps and bleeding are turning into a full miscarriage, or whether there is a little baby developing or whether I have a dead baby sitting there or worse combo a zombie baby that is neither properly dead or alive but has the potential to poison me with its decomposition.

Some of the gunk was stinky, mostly it's been fresh blood I've lost. I am in pain, physical pain. I keep swinging from desolation to little peeks of hopes and dreams about finishing my baby discworld toys I've been sewing. I am getting angry at friends who have babies but didn't give up smoking and stuff - I get like this - I feel a rage and hate and a ITS ALL UNFAIR as I watch others do things "wrong" whilst I do everything the Drs say and struggle so very much.

This is not fair on my friends who I know have their own struggles.

I opted to see this one even though it may well not be viable - as Al said the ones that are nebulous between Jean and Mary we struggle with because we don't know how to remember them or how many actuals there were but this one we can remember - he wrote all the stats down for it so we'd have at least that.

Miscarriage and still births are often not talked about or seen as a thing of shame and this is unhelpful in the healing and to be honest the medical research around it all. I am fortunate that mine have all been early on issues but it still hurts like hell and I just remember all that pain between Jean and Mary when I didn't even know how to talk about it or what I was supposed to feel and I don't think I'd actually processed all of that until now.

As you can imagine I am a bit of an emotional wreck, I keep apologising to Alaric which I think he's starting to find frustrating - he wont let me do any house work or anything which I'm finding frustrating but I understand - plus when I have sneaked in a bit I just end up coughing up my lungs again. And yes I fear blood clots like I had with Jean.

Again the issue that the records from Jean's pregnancy are all missing much to the Drs horror >:(

So yeah unhappy Snell-Pym's and yes the kids know - considering they knew/suspected I was pregnant before I did and they can see when I'm not well it isn't really fair to keep stuff from them. Death is part of life, grieving is something that kids are often denied and I don't think that is healthy - a new baby or the lack of affects them as well as us.

Just sitting here hoping it's not a zombie baby and fearing its a gone baby. Oh and one last thing - yes I am referring to it as a baby but in reality it is a bundle of cells at this stage and things around pregnancies are always hard times for the parents weather they are wanted, not wanted, surprises or forced -so if I catch anyone using this as an anti-abortion thing I will go spare - a woman's body is her own. Plus I'm sure that's the only way to safely deal with zombie babies :'(

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