After a divorce from a cheating husband, I was lucky enough to meet an incredible man who made me trust and love again. He is also divorced with a child from his previous marriage.
Being a stepmum is amazing, hard and rewarding. I am very lucky - but she is not mine.
After much debate as to whether I wanted to be a mum because I am older, selfishly like my life, have trust issues after my failed marriage and am enjoying an incredibly loving relationship full of adventures and new experiences, I investigated whether a baby was even possible.
Sadly the news was not good - my AMH levels were very low and conceiving without intervention was highly unlikely.
We decided to give it a shot and I fell pregnant unexpectedly quickly. We were both in complete shock and struggled to accept the news. However, once the initial shock subsided, we were delighted and started planning, thinking of baby names.
We told my parents at a family BBQ - my dad was over the moon.
Unfortunately, I started spotting the next morning. I left work immediately and headed for the EPU. It was closed. I was sent to acute gynae where I had to wait until the routine operations were over. The urine sample showed a faint line and blood was taken. I was told to come back in 48 hours. That was that.
I went home to wait. It got worse - much worse until I could barely stand due to the pain in my left side.
I knew it - I was losing our baby.
However life goes on and the school run still needed to happen as my boyfriend had been away with work. He was on his way back. I collected my stepdaughter and headed to the hospital. They were amazing.
We didn't want my stepdaughter to know as it was so early so the hospital staff respected that wish and everything was done in code around her.
I cannot fault the treatment I received nor the care. After many hours of waiting on a trolley, I was stable enough to go home. They didn't think it was an ectopic pregnancy but couldn't rule it out completely. A scan was arranged for the next morning.
It was a sleepless night full of tears with still hope in our hearts all would be ok.
It wasn't. We arrived at the hospital to be told that I had an early miscarriage.
He burst into tears at that. Our baby had gone. The thought of what might have been - gone. I think that has been the hardest part for me to cope with.
I had already signed up to lots of 'having a baby' emails, telling me how many weeks pregnant I was. They were swiftly deleted. Or so I thought until we came back from our holiday (fortuitous timing as it turned out) and there was the inevitable one email I had missed! Tears on the tube ensued.
I couldn't help counting the weeks as they passed, working out that on my stepdaughter's return from her extended summer holiday we would have been telling her that she was going to have been a big sister. That hit me hard.
He has been amazing yet practical quoting facts at me and that this is nature's way. I know that but it was going to be our baby, our family. Something I had not shared with anyone else.
It is not the same for him which he admits. He has a child already; it's not his body or hormones going through it yet in his own way he is struggling with it. We recently did an run and bike event in honour of the baby and donated money to Tommy's. It has helped.
I have blamed myself for it - my eggs were rubbish quality, I am too old, did I want it enough? I know it was nothing I did but that doesn't stop the guilt.
We have gone round and round about trying again, while being equally scared of trying and of not. We have given it a period but after one go am already freaking out that I might be pregnant- highly unlikely in reality. But you can't help what goes on inside your head. I just don't want regrets but I may have to face facts that my miscarriage was my only chance of a baby.
I have been very open about the miscarriage - no one knows what to say except the classic 'well, at least you can get pregnant'. That is no consolation.
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