Friday, September 18, 2015

Nothing

Ashley sells Origami Owl Jewelry, and she made me a
beautiful piece to remember Abigail.  With a little girl, a pair
of angel wings, a ribbon for pregnancy loss awareness, an A for her
name, her birthstone, and a rose gold cross.  Ashley didn't know
but rose gold is something I've come to associate with Abigail.
Yesterday, I had my follow up with the doctor's office.  Now, I thought I had been keeping it together pretty well, since getting home.  I'm not crying every 15 seconds, I'm not even falling apart every day anymore.  I'm immeasurably sad, and if I am awake she is on my mind.  And despite being rather distracted, slow to focus, even slower to get things accomplished, I'm functioning.  Yesterday proved otherwise.

First I had to check-in, and apparently in the new system, they ask not for your name first but for your due date.  So I choked out that we had a stillbirth 3 weeks ago, and that I was here for my follow up.  For the next 20 minutes or so we sat in the waiting room.  Now seeing pregnant women or newborns hasn't bothered me so far.  After all I shouldn't have a newborn yet, and I hope no other pregnant woman goes through what I have.  I am a bit wistful when I see someone about half way along or so, where I should be.  I've even been able to listen to the pregnancy chit chat.  But, yesterday being in a room, where everyone had a baby but me, left me feeling like I had been gutted.  Like I am empty and defective somehow.  I sat in there with tears just streaming.  We finally went back, and the nurse had to ask a ton of questions, once again because of the new record keeping system.  When she laid out things for a physical exam, I just blurted out that I didn't want one, I needed some answers.  She went to get the doctor, and I just sat there crying hanging on to Gary's hand for dear life.

Even though they told me that half the time, there are no answers as to why a child dies in utero, I expected to get some answers.  I suppose on some level I was already telling myself that it was most likely a chromosomal issue (like the majority of first trimester losses are), that Abigail lived longer than most, that she couldn't have survived outside of me.  I could live with that, even if it hurt.  Instead I got to hear a list of what it wasn't.  There were no genetic anomalies.  There were no chromosomal defects.  There were no obvious cord problems.  The placenta had begun to break down after Abigail being gone for at least 2 weeks, but it was a good size and shape.  There were no signs of infection or anything else in my blood work.  Since I have had three textbook, boring pregnancies they could rule out any issues with my "hardware" (which accounts for most of second trimester losses).  Basically she was a perfectly healthy baby, who died for no apparent reason.  I just wanted to scream "THEN WHY did my baby die!" instead I just sat and cried and cried some more.

They could tell me nothing.

Oh she could speculate a bit.  She suggested that perhaps it was that the cord was pinched in some way, a freak accident that left no trace.  Maybe it was an infection that I contracted through something I ate or through my gums, something that didn't even give me the slightest cold, but crossed the placenta to her.  Neither of these help, they just make me feel more paranoid.  I wanted something I could fix, something I could prevent from happening next time. Not random guesses.

I asked about my hormone levels.  They never checked them, so they can't tell me anything about them.  But, they will monitor them next time, from the time we get a positive on an at home pregnancy test.  I asked if it could relate to my thyroid, but she felt it was a long shot since my TSH levels have been normal my entire pregnancy, however for my peace of mind, she ordered an autoimmune work up since sometimes that raises the risk of a miscarriage.  So after we finished the appointment with the physical exam, and after I apologized to the nurse for being so abrupt with her, we headed across the parking lot to the lab for some more specialized blood test.  After which I cried some more.

We will know more hopefully on Monday.

On the back she engraved something very special, a
reminder that I find myself in need of hourly.

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