A year ago today I attended a fireworks event with my family. In a few weeks my first ever round of IVF was due to start after suffering with secondary infertility for two years. As I watched the explosions light up in the sky and my little boy’s face gleam with amazement I caught myself wondering, “where will I be a year from here?” That memory has stuck with me throughout the trauma of my first round of IVF (resulting in OHSS and the failure of my embryos to thaw months later) and my second round.
Now I find myself at this year mark in a state of sadness I never thought I could feel. I thought I had already felt it all.
My second round of IVF was a success. It went extremely well. I set myself little goalposts, ‘if I can just avoid OHSS then at least I know that IVF is a possibility for us again’. I had a burselin trigger shot and avoided OHSS. ‘If I can get a fresh transfer it will give me a chance’. I got a fresh transfer and the news that the embryo was hatching and therefore the best quality. ‘If I could have some frozen embryos I will not put as much pressure on this’. I got five frozen embryos. ‘If I can just get pregnant at least it shows that my body can actually do it’ I got pregnant.
The following day I had some brown blood. The nurses assured me it was fine and booked me in for my seven week scan. The bargains continued. I made it to my seven week scan and there was a beautiful tiny little being in my womb with a heartbeat. The nurse said she could see no reasoning for any bleeding and I was discharged from the hospital clinic.
This week is week 9. I had been suffering from severe sickness which I took as a positive sign but one trip to the toilet I nearly fell over in shock when I saw a bright red bleed in my knickers with a clot. A visit to A&E that evening could only reassure me that my HCG levels were high and that I had not had enough blood for a miscarriage. I was to attend the EPU clinic the following day for a scan. Those 24 hours were torturous but when we visited the nurse showed us our babies’ heartbeat and reassured us all was fine. I had never felt relief like it and we told our tiny baby off for putting us through such a scare. There was a tiny pocket of blood which she said I may pass or my body will absorb.
Fast forward two more days, I felt a huge blood clot pass whilst getting my son ready for a trip to the doctor. Fortunately my parents were there. I ran to the bathroom and I just passed so much blood. It was on the floor, it was up my legs and all around the toilet. My mum who is usually the most level headed person, walked in and clasped a hand to her mouth. Yesterday we went back to the EPU unit.
The baby is still alive but my cervix is partially open and there are a lot of clots around my cervix. I was told the words “we can not predict what will happen but miscarriages are common and your body will either keep this pregnancy or it will fail”.
I wanted to scream at them. Did they not know how hard we had battled to get here? How can I just go home and just not know?! They told me to go to A&E if it gets worse and if I have severe cramps. I am passing old blood and it has calmed down but now I feel like I am in a special kind of hell where I am just waiting. Waiting for my body to kill my baby. My baby is alive in there and my body is forcing it out.
My husband seems cross at my inability to function much. I didn’t want to be back here but I am. He is cross that I am grieving something that has not happened yet. But I know it will. There can not be any hope here. I feel so angry at the world. Angry at my stupid sickness which has not gone away. Angry that life has been so cruel, why does it have to put this on us too? I feel like my husband is despairing of me whilst trying to deal with his own grief. We are in debt now and we can not afford anymore. So the end, whenever is comes, is the end.
Tonight I can not take my son to the fireworks as I have been ordered to take it easy. Instead I will just hear them outside and grieve for the year of sadness we have endured. I just hope that by next year we would have come to terms with this somehow.