by Molly Broughton
I never knew I wanted more children. I have two lovely boys from a previous marriage who are 7 and 10 years old and I thought I'd be perfectly happy if I never had more. Besides, trying for the boys was emotionally exhausting as I have PCOS and rarely having periods. Trying to conceive the boys basically took over my life and it was extremely painful watching friends get pregnant so easily, and by surprise sometimes. I really didn't want to go back there.
I was enjoying my life. When I wasn't with my children I'd be going to gigs and out with friends. Eventually I met a wonderful and perfect man. He met the boys and everyone got along brilliantly. In January this year, I decided to do a pregnancy test. We had been careful so I didn't think I could be pregnant and having PCOS and past struggles - how could I be, but wanted to just rule it out, I can't even remember why. I just felt compelled to do it.
Low and behold those two pink lines appeared. We were both in complete shock. We didn't know what to do at first as we'd only been together six months, my partner didn't want children, and our lives were so perfect, what would we do? We lived separately and my flat was way too small for another adult and a baby. However, we very quickly fell in love with the idea. We loved each other immensely and we had created a little life together. It was the most amazing feeling. This was our miracle baby and they were clearly meant to be here given my PCOS and how out of the blue it happened.
We started making plans. We would put our flats on the market and buy a house together. We started creating lists of things we needed for our new arrival and had even started a names list , chosen the pram, looked at suitable cars. You name it, we had started listing it. I had started to develop a lovely little bump too and started taking photos for a diary I was going to put together. I was so desperate to start telling people but we kept those who knew to a minimum. I still don't know why expectant parents feel the need to keep it a secret.
One evening I went to the loo and there was a bit of very pale pink blood.I had never experienced bleeding in pregnancy (except implantation), but I knew it was very common so wasn't hugely worried.
It didn't happen again until the morning so I called the EPU and they told me to come in for a reassurance scan. So I grabbed the boys and took them up to the hospital (it was half term) and my partner met us there.
I was genuinely not that worried, I was excited to be seeing our baby on the screen, actually.
After a bit of poking around, I looked up at my partner starting to feel worried as it seemed to be taking a while. We then heard the most painful words I've ever heard in my life. "Your baby's heart has stopped beating".
I don't remember much afterwards. I was in a tunnel and everything sounded like white noise. I could see the nurse talking to us but I couldn't hear her. She was showing me leaflets and said something about surgery. My world stopped. I couldn't cry, I couldn't speak, I couldn't scream. All I could do was nod my head. At 9 weeks our baby was gone. It seems so early, but the truth is it doesn't matter. We had planned our future with our child. I had imagined the birth and their first steps and their first day at school.
I don't even know how we got home or what the boys were doing or what they'd heard or understood. I didn't cry until we got home and I collapsed on my bed and sobbed for about two weeks. My partner did everything for me, sorted the children out, cooked, cleaned, carried on with dealing with the move all by himself. All the time he was grieving himself and I couldn't help him as I was too inconsolable all the time.
I decided to have surgical management of miscarriage 4 days after we found out. Physically it was easy. In and out in a day. But I'll never forget the words from the nurse trying to comfort me as I sobbed on the operating table. "Awww it's not the end of the world". But it was. It was the end of my lovely bubble. My world in my bubble had collapsed. I woke up from the operation feeling cold, alone, and empty. My sweet little baby had been taken away from me and I wasn't able to see and hold my partner until I had recovered from the anaesthetic. The next week or so were a blur.
One day partner looked me in the eyes and said 'We'll just try again'. This helped me hugely. Coming from someone who never even wanted children in the first place, this filled me with hope. We would meet our baby eventually, they're just waiting in some kind of cosmic waiting room. A couple of months later we went on a little weekend break to Florence, just the two of us. Then the following two weeks I was experiencing strong pregnancy symptoms again. I tried not to get excited but recorded everything. Then I eventually tested one Saturday morning and my dream came true. We were expecting a baby again! A Florence baby! We had a lovely morning together just cuddling and talking and feeling so lucky to have been given a second chance, and so easily. Needless to say we were over the moon. It wasn't to last though. I began bleeding only 5 hours later. We were losing our second baby.
We wanted to try again, but the strain and pressure on my partner has become too much recently and he understandably does not want to keep trying.
I am devastated and hurt everyday that we'll never have our rainbow baby. I guess the hope of trying again kept the grieving at bay, but I am grieving all over again. I don't blame my partner for feeling that way. It's hard for the man but in a very different way. I had that bond and could almost smell the sweet smell of our future baby's skin and feel their little cheeks on my lips when I kiss them goodnight. It's going to be a long painful journey to get through the realisation that this just will not happen, but I think about it all day everyday, and dream about it at night so there's not much escape right now.
I have been fortunate that I have got my partner and friends to talk to throughout all of this pain. It is so helpful to talk about it and I am incredibly open. I even posted on Facebook to tell people we were moving and the reason behind it, and that we'd lost our babies. The response was amazing. I had so much support and private messages from friends who I knew had lost their babies and also from those who I didn't know about. They thanked me for raising awareness. I continue to do so and share various articles regarding the devastation miscarriage causes.
The 24th September is the due date of our first baby. We intend to plant a flowering cherry tree with a plaque in our new garden.
Although my story does not end with a healthy baby in my arms, I can say that one day things will feel normal again. There was a time only a few months ago when more children had not even entered my mind. I will get back to that state of mind with the support of my wonderful partner and my children. I am very lucky to have that. It just might take a bit of time.
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