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Introduction…

So, I am totally new to this and I have no idea if I am even doing this right. Lets hope this works this time.

I recently gave birth to my beautiful sleeping boy Nathan 13/01/19 . In the past five weeks since this happened I have been searching online for blogs of other women who have also experienced stillbirth. Reading their honest and emotional stories have helped me realise that I am not alone. There is strangely some comfort in reading how other people have dealt with their grief and that there is no right or wrong way to act. This has given me the drive to (try) create my own blog and share my experiences. Even if it only helps one person then I have achieved something.

My blog will be focused on my pregnancy with Nathan and my stillbirth experience. At the 12 week scan we were given a diagnosis, so since then I started writing down what was happening and how I was feeling.

Thank you for reading as far as this and I hope I can help you in a small way.

Sam xox

The day after the diagnosis

Saturday 25th august.

Yesterday Marc and I both took the day off work. We took Isabella to the sea life centre in Loch Lomond. It was what we needed it was a distraction for a few hours. As soon as I was back in the car it’s all I could then think about. I feel empty. We have all these decisions which we need to make. Marc is going to the pub so I had planned to see louisa (my best friend). I didn’t fancy sitting in myself. I was not looking forward to seeing her at all!! I just couldn’t switch my mind off from thinking about everything so seeing louisa was good. It was tearful as expected but after explaining everything we then just had our usual chat. I then went to the pub to see if Marc was ready to go home but he was wanting to stay longer which was totally fine with me. As I was leaving I said hi to Sandy’s (one of Marc’s oldest friends) parents. And his mum was like aww that’s great news (about the pregnancy as sandy knew so must have told his parents) I couldn’t just pretend everything was normal so I told them. Also knowing Martin was a doctor and jess was a nurse I thought they might have been able to give a tiny bit more info. Or just even speaking to someone within that profession was almost reassuring. Her advice was to take it in baby steps. Don’t think of further down the road take each day as it is, which is true. She even said aw I was looking at you and marc and thinking how happy yous looked. Haha we put on a good front. I told her that was pretend haha I can’t believe she said that.

So driving home I was thinking about what test to take. I started favouring the first test. I know there is a higher risk of miscarriage but I can’t go on like this for another 3 weeks. I’m constantly thinking about it constantly teary and I just feel empty. I also feel like I’m not giving Isabella as much attention as I should be. Also should I still be trying to bond with my bump or will it just be harder?? Marc got home about an hour or so later and we got talking. He was agreeing with me about the first test. We still have some questions on Monday which might change our minds but for just now we are decided on the first test. It’s also down to the doctors success rates. So that is one of the questions we need to ask.

I woke up today and it was the first thing on my mind. I feel like a slight weight has been lifted as we have made one tiny decision in this huge complex situation. Marc is working tomorrow so I think I might message my manager and say to her I will be in tomorrow too. I think I just need to keep busy. I would rather listen to the customers complain about something so insignificant than think of my little bubba and the possible events that could happen in the near future.

I also meant to say that on Thursday we asked the doctor what the chances of this happening are and she said about 1 or 2 in 1000. The figures could be higher but the woman has a miscarriage before 12 weeks scan so they can’t determine the cause. She said she sees it every couple of months. Also she said it is just one of these things that happen. 1 or 2 in 1000 and it has happened to us jeezo!

I wasn’t sure what to wear yesterday. do I show my bump or hide it. But I feel if I hide it I am ashamed of it which I definitely am not. But then will someone ask me are you pregnant when you due? What would I say yes but it’s complicated?? On that note on Thursday I wasn’t given a due date I don’t know if they didn’t on purpose. But it doesn’t take a genius to work it out. 1st March 2019 is my baby’s due date ❤️

12 week scan

Thursday 23rd august 2018

I woke up excited but more nervous. Marc had a work meeting so I was meeting him there. I could barely even eat a slice of toast as I was so nervous. I don’t remember being that nervous going for the first scan for Isabella. I got a few wee messages from friends to say they were excited for me. Amanda (my sister) came as she was watching Isabella. She gave me a cuddle as she could see how nervous I was. So with a full bladder I go. I arrived at the hospital and within seconds Marc is there too. Just my luck the sonoprahper is stuck in traffic so was running late. By this point I am bursting for the loo. She arrives about 15 minutes later and takes us straight though. We also have a medical student in with us. So the first thing the sonographer asks is if we want to Down’s syndrome test we say no straight away as we have already discussed this – what’s the point as it’s a risk of miscarriage and it will make no difference to us. So she then told me to lie up on the bed I am now getting very excited. She explains that she will have the screen turned away from us first and she may be quiet but that is because she will be concentrating. So she puts the gel on me and I grab Marc’s hand. As soon as she put the doppler on me she finds our beautiful baby and turns the screen to us. She points out its wee heart and it is flickering away. It’s moving about and kicking its feet and moving its wee hands. Our baby is right there and soon I have tears of joy. I think she even used the word perfect. Tears of joy soon swapped to tears of concern. She told us she was doing some measurement which I remember from Isabella’s scan. However she then said ‘I know you didn’t want the Down’s syndrome screening but…’ and with that I knew there was something wrong. She was calm and explained that there was extra fluid around our perfect baby that shouldn’t be. This is a sign of DS so although we opted out of the test there is now a medical reason we need it. She told us that she wanted a doctor to look over the scan and that we might need another scan which could be next week. With that tears of panic and worry started. She told us she would get us a wee room to wait in for the doctor rather than go back to the waiting room. So she went to see if there was a room available. While she was gone Marc and I were just shocked. Does our baby have DS? Could it be something else? When she came back to get us I asked if it was possible to be something other than DS and she said yes but the doctor will explain that. She checked to make sure the corridor was empty and took us to the room. We were left alone and all these thoughts were going through our head. What else could it be? Is DS going to be the best result of this? Our heads were all over the place. We had already planned the nice way to tell everyone and now I felt so obnoxious for just assuming that things would be ok. We took for granted that Isabella was healthy and perfect. Our 2nd baby isn’t ok. We both broke down. The wait for the doctor to give us more answers seemed for ever. We had seen our community midwife Lesley while we were waiting for the scan and she came into the room we were in and said I am so sorry and placed her arm on me. With that I thought sh!t his is worse than we think. When she was asking us how much we knew the doctor came in and Lesley left. The doctor was lovely so calming and described everything simple enough for us to understand. So bascially this extra fluid around our baby is called something (cystic hydr… something I now can’t remember) this means our baby could be born with a genetic disorder or a structural disorder. The genetic disorder could range from DS to something more severe which means our baby would be on life support for its short life. So Marc and I must decide which test to get. We could get the CV test next week which takes some of the placenta for testing but that has a higher risk of miscarriage 1 in 50. Or we could get a test in about 2 and a half weeks called an amniocentesis which takes some of the fluid. The risk of miscarriage for that is 1 in 100. Both test give the same results. There is nothing we can do when we get the results. So do we get the earlier test so we get answers quicker or wait till the second test as there is a lower chance of miscarriage. This is what we now have to decide. This is only if our baby makes it as just now it has a 50% of passing away as our perfect baby has to work its heart extra because of the fluid. I might not have any symptoms if this does happen. So we have choices to make. 1 – which test to get and then 2 – if we are going to continue with the pregnancy. Who are we to determine whether someone should live or not especially our own tiny baby. How are we going to possibly make this decision. I suppose first we need to see what the problem is. The best outcome is DS. Many people live with DS and go to mainstream schools. We could totally live with that, it will need extra support and more taking care of but we are parents we would do this and love our baby unconditionally. My head is fried. I don’t think I have ever cried as much as I have done today. I might go 10 minutes without crying but as soon as I think about it I start again. Also telling our family and friends that knew was hard. I also had to make the decision whether to phone my dad as he is on holiday. But they were expecting a photo of the scan and I didn’t want to send it pretending everything was ok. So I phoned him and it’s probably one of the hardest phone calls I have had with him. I could tell he was crying and I have only ever seen my dad cry when my mum passed away. Marc’s dad also took it hard. He had to go back to work a few hours later and he just broke down at work and had to go home. Marc and I have kinda got our head around it. We don’t want our family walking on egg shells around us or giving us the sympathy look. We will get through this. Yes it’s going to be tough but we are strong. We have another scan with the same doctor on Monday. This will tell us if the pregnancy is still developing and we will get to ask lots more questions we have now thought of which will help us make our choice on which test to get. For now we have to be strong and get on with things. We have both taken Friday (and my manager has given me the weekend) off work. So we are taking beautiful Isabella out. She has helped cheer us up and out a smile on our faces.