Saturday, September 22, 2012

Wearing My Babylost On My Sleeve

I have one of those Facebook friends--well, actually, not anymore--who makes ambiguous posts about strong emotions. The somewhat overly dramatic I'm sad or I'm angry or I'm very hurt but I am not going to tell you why kind of posts. Some girl I knew from the track team in high school was making posts about how she just received the worst news possible. How no one can make her feel better. How if you can't take her sad posts then don't read them. How every time she sees a pregnant woman or baby she just cries. At this point I finally felt like I could help. So I wrote her a message, saying I'm so sorry for her loss, sharing my story, offering to write her baby's name in the sand, to call or email or just be there for her. I cried writing that message, thinking there was another BLM added to our ranks.

Then her posts started reflecting happier things. Carefree things. Her older kids going back to school. And I'm thinking...well that was a quick recovery. Clearly your baby didn't just die. Then like a week later comes the post: "I told all my family so I may as well tell you all too. I'm pregnant!" I am not a huge fan of early pregnancy announcements. But that is not for me to say. I am not a fan of waiting until the end of the first trimester either, so that in the event you miscarry it remains a dark, dirty secret. So good for her, right? I guess her older kids have a different dad, and she and her new husband really did get news that they could not conceive together.

I wrote her another message that said, "Congratulations. I'm so so glad it's not what I thought. Best wishes." And then I hit unfriend.

I felt so...taken advantage of! I know that's not true, she didn't do any such thing intentionally. But there I was, pouring my heart out, crying for her, trying to make her feel better. Wearing my babylost on my sleeve. And there was nothing wrong.

I know. There wasn't "nothing wrong." Just because my baby died doesn't mean someone else doesn't have pain. Even if I think it's nothing like the pain that comes when your baby dies. That's not for me to say. And I wouldn't hesitate to reach out to someone else whose baby died. Even, again, if I just THOUGHT her baby died. But now I might be a little more cautious about making assumptions.

(And yeah, I'm sorry, but I do feel a little like, that's so great for you, you can have your third kid now. And I can have my one dead one. GFY.)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Decreased Fetal Movement

So, SOMEBODY had a little freak out and called the doctor this morning to come in a day early for a regular check up. I mean, that's what I am telling myself. I just came in a day early. No big whoop. I wasn't like, up half the night, waiting and waiting and waiting to get kicked or kneaded in the belly. I wasn't miserable and brittle and a moment away from tears when I called the doctor's office this morning. They could take me in 40 minutes.

I got myself worked up when he didn't move while I was lying down and on the phone after work about 7:00, a normally active time. Mr. E and I went out for a walk and of course I didn't feel anything then, but when we got home I started making dinner and maybe, did I feel a kick? I sat down, drank some cold water, and got one weak response. I tied an elastic band tightly around my belly. Nothing. A few weak prods before bed. Lying down in bed...left side...right side...on my back...nothing.

On the 6-minute drive to the OB I think Sprout punched me 11 or 12 times. So I was already feeling relief when I sat down for a quick ultrasound. I could then be disappointed that at this stage you don't get to see that much on the ultrasound anymore! He moved in little motions, mainly with his hands, things I couldn't feel. It was reassuring to know that I don't feel his every move. His little body rose and fell slightly, practice breathing. I forgot to ask how much he weighs.

Then 15 minutes on the fetal monitor. The tech put the kick counter thingy in my hand and I sat there feeling nothing for what seemed like a long time. A few times there were sounds of his movement but I didn't feel it. Even so after 15 minutes I counted at least 25 kicks and wiggles. So. That is why I am a spazz.

But of course they are all so nice and say they'd rather see me 100 times than not see me the one time when they need to. And I would like to point out that he is back to very active tonight, just confirming that last night maybe I WAS experiencing the dreaded and not necessarily discernible "Decreased. [ecreased, ecreased]. Fetal. [etal, etal]. Movement. [ovement, ovement, ovement]."

I wondered out loud to one of the nurses: How much of this focus on kick counts is solely anxiety-provoking, and how much is useful in getting an expectant mom to intervene at the right time? I am going to guess a 90-10 ratio at best. Not that I'm going to stop counting kicks and spazzing out.

But I sort of wonder that maybe if I never heard the term "decreased fetal movement," I just might sleep through the night. As long as my husband stays the fuck away from me. (Just kidding. He's great, we're doing great. It's just that he's 6-2 and I'm pregnant and a double bed is VERY SMALL.)

Here's a 34-week pic for your consumption.