If you’ve never been there…

Today, I came across  this article . I was horrified.

How dare someone (and someone who has never experienced baby loss, I’d guess) tell baby loss mothers that we shouldn’t be sharing our losses! Shame on them.

People share when they lose their parents, their spouses, even their dogs, but I shouldn’t share the loss of my son, because it makes other’s “uncomfortable?”

I share because I’m proud, he is my child, my only child, my first born. I love him and I’m proud of him. I am proud to share him with the world. We loss mothers, have to run into endless photos of everyone else’s children, of babies laughing and cooing, and yes we wish that we could have that with our children. But we can’t. So, why shouldn’t we share our photos, our children’s lives, no matter how short? If others are uncomfortable they can leave, they can choose not to look, I don’t care. If you don’t want to share my son with me that’s fine. But I wont hide away.

There is nothing shameful in pregnancy loss, the mother did nothing wrong, she shouldn’t have to hide in shame or pretend she isn’t grieving, she should be able to openly grieve for her child, her baby.

It was this part which really rubbed me the wrong way,

“Yoffe advised against it: though the couple had “suffered a crushing loss,” she wrote, it would be wiser to circulate the image among intimates only; a “birth” notice would be “confusing and disturbing” since an actual birth hadn’t occurred.” in reference to a stillbirth.

A stillbirth isn’t an actual birth? The woman goes through labour, pushes out her baby, but there is no birth? She should just be told she has gone through nothing, her child never existed, forget it, be ashamed?

That is an awful message to tell a grieving mother. People forget that I went through labour, I had to give birth, I screamed in pain, physical and emotional, because I knew when he was born, he might die, but I had no choice but to push him out.

I will not be ashamed of my son. He is amazing, he is fantastic, and yes my life may be hard to hear, his picture may be difficult to look at, but look past the machines and the tubes and the wires, look past how tiny he was, and you’ll see my baby boy.  My sweet, amazing baby boy. A baby. Just a baby like any other, except he couldn’t stay. And he was truly amazing.

Femara

I received my femara today, it came in 2 days! I was very surprised but happy to see it. I have 15 tablets of 2.5mg, I think I’ll start with 5mg days 3-7, next cycle, because I need 100mg of clomid, so I assume I’ll need two tablets of femara too.

I am very eager to start them. Please, please, please be my ticket to a take home baby. I’m ready, I have my plan, I have the cause of my pPROM,

I have coped through a year of grieving and pain, and loneliness and faced all the challenges along the way.

I have kept my kindness, my love, my gentle nature through the worst of times.

I have faltered and fallen, but always climbed back up again.

I have refused to be bitter or cruel.

I have supported others through the same pain.

And I am so HAPPY that I didn’t get pregnant before this. It’s so hard to admit, but I am. I am happy that I didn’t get pregnant months and months ago, otherwise I’d have lost another child. That is too heartbreaking to imagine.

I am so grateful to my little Gideon for looking out for us, for protecting us from living that pain again.

I am so grateful that he came to us, to let us know that my cervix would never hold a pregnancy without help. In doing so, he protected all his siblings. He is my angel.

And now I am ready to face the challenges of pregnancy and what follows, in light of what I know.

I am ready. The time is right.

The rainbow is fighting it’s way through the dark storm. My rainbow, from my little boy.

An answer at last

The appointment went well today.

Dr F is going to do a vaginal cerclage at 10-12 weeks. He feels my cervix is incompetent because it was already open before he even did the hysteroscopy. He doesn’t want to do the TAC because of my weight. Which I understand, but I really wanted that TAC. But instead I’ll do bedrest.

But aside from that, which I already suspected, I also have BV, bacteria vaginosis. This is a bacteria that lives in the vagina in some women. Mostly, it doesn’t cause any issues, unless you also have an incompetent cervix. Because my cervix opened prematurely, the bacteria (entrococcus) was able to bypass the cervix, and infiltrate the amniotic sac, and weakening it. The sac then burst, either because it was funnelling through the cervix, or because of the infection, probably a combination of both.

He said only 1 in 10 women have TWO causes of their pPROM, and I was unfortunate to have both.

Had I not pursued this appointment…had I listened to Dr Clarke who told me to “wait and see”….had I not listened to my intuition that my cervix opened, I would almost certainly have lost another baby. It IS a good thing I haven’t got pregnant yet, or I wouldn’t know all this, and I would be visiting two babies in the cemetery. There are reasons for everything, and I think my Gideon was making sure we didn’t conceive until we were sorted with these plans.

My lupus test was negative BUT my ANA was positive. Dr F said this wasn’t a big deal, and it can positive in women with no issues, BUT I DO have issues, I have an unexplained chronic illness, and a positive ANA with my symptoms sounds like a certain autoimmune in my view. So I want that looked into further.

My progesterone at 8dpo, and on 100mg of clomid (of course Dr F did not know this) was 53!! Without clomid it was 11, so a HUGE improvement. But because I couldn’t tell Dr F this, he assumes I’m ovulating well.

My hormone tests were all fine, even testosterone, which should be raised with PCOS. These were taken on cycle day 3, like the hormone panel normally, is but they were all normal and low.

I still have a yeast infection, still from the pregnancy and nothing will get rid of it. But all my liver, thyroid and full blood panels were just fine.

I wasn’t able to get the clotting factors done as I didn’t give them enough blood, so they re-did it today. It took them 4 attempts, but they got it.

I will get scans every month (ish) from 16 weeks, and cream for my BV every month for 1 week from 12 weeks. I will also visit Dr F every 1-2 weeks during pregnant. It is a long way to Liverpool 2-3 hours one way, I am very concerned that doing this in later pregnancy, with my TVC could cause issues. I don’t know if it’s safe, but I’m telling myself he wouldn’t suggest it if he didn’t think it was. I might have to lay down in the back of the car instead of sitting during that journey.

I’ll be honest, it wasn’t all I’d hoped it would be. Of course I hoped he would give me the TAC, which as a 95% success rate. He offered me 70% success with the TVC. Not the odds I wanted,  but better odds than doing nothing. And he seems confident we will have a successful pregnancy next time.

He is very insistent about my weight, but he doesn’t seem to understand that this is the LOWEST weight I’ve been in years, it’s been a long, tough road, and I’m not giving up, but it isn’t easy.

Emotions wise, initially I only felt relief. Then crept in the sadness. Likely it was the BV which caused Gideon’s delivery in the end. The doctors had stopped the antibiotics a week before we went into labour, if I’d known I had BV I would never have stopped them, he could have had a week, two weeks, 10 weeks longer. And it’s all me, it’s no just a random event, it’s my body, my crappy cervix, my BV. All me. It gives me a feeling in the pit of my stomach, grief, and anger and guilt.

But mostly, I am very excited and happy to have answers. This was a long time coming and I knew that I probably wouldn’t get the TAC. I also knew, in my heart, that I had an incompetent cervix, I knew that it funnelled, just as Dr F confirmed. The TVC wont stop the funnelling, but it will stop it opening from the outside, so no infection should pass.

It will mean bedrest, at least I am doing bedrest. From after my TVC until around 32 weeks, I’m am on  bedrest, not as strictly as I would have been had I not had the cerclage, but around all my appointments and scans, I do intend on resting, just relaxing in bed, and not climbing too many stairs,  which is hard as my toilet is halfway upstairs and halfway downstairs. So, I’ll need to go up there.

But all in all, it’s good. And after the appointment we went out to a museum in Livepool (well, they’re FREE) and then went out to lunch to celebrate.

And all I can think, is that Gideon saved all my future babies lives – all his brothers and sisters. I would never have known I had these issues without him.

He is my wonderful angel. And I miss him so much. But I know he really is watching out for us.

Ahhh the big day

I have my follow up at the miscarriage clinic tomorrow. He’ll have all my results, and hopefully a plan. I’m pretty nervous. I’m afraid they will tell me nothing is wrong, there is no reason for my pPROM and they can’t prevent it next time.

I’m terrified that I went through all this for nothing.

But I trust him, so if he says there is nothing obvious, I’ll deal and just go on bed rest next time. I know he can’t promise me a good outcome, even if we go ahead with the TAC – there is no guarantees. But, oh I so want answers.

I must write down some questions I have, just in case I forgot, which I do tend to do.

Watch this space for an update

Back on the clomid

I decided to go back on the clomid for this cycle. It was a hard decision, because I don’t want to end up feeling very depressed or very angry, especially as it isn’t a very easy couple of months coming up. But I felt like if I didn’t take clomid, then this would be another cycle written off, I just don’t ovulate well by myself. So, back on 100mg of clomid this month. But definitely not next month.

Next month, hopefully, I’ll have femara! I actually think I managed to find it and it’s not that expensive either. It’s supposed to have less side effects than clomid, so hopefully I’ll feel OK. I find it hard to even imagine that it could lead to a pregnancy though.

Another Cycle Down

A very bad ovulation this month. I knew it wouldn’t be great without my clomid, but I had hoped for a reasonable ovulation, but my unmedicated ovulations are getting weaker. One day they will just stop completely.

I’m fighting to just make some headway on my pcos. I know I need to lose the weight, if only it wasn’t so hard to just lose a single pound!!

Well onto cycle 11.

Valentines Day

I don’t really remember last Valentines day that well. But I do remember saying to John that “next year we will be doing all this with a baby attached to us.

Despite that, the day was fine. We’re both still recovering from a cold. A cold that John brought in I want to add, I seem to be having trouble getting rid of it, but it isn’t causing me much trouble.

We had ribeye steak, with homemade wedges, seasoned with tex mex flavouring, and peas and sweetcorn to counteract the fat fest. And for pudding a delicious tia maria brownie, with vanilla frosting, as seen here, but we had Kahlua, only tia maria and that seemed to work well. It was very fudgy and chocolatey and of course completely dairy free. Unforunately I over whisked my rice milk frosting and it turned into (slightly curdled) liquid. But very tasty all the same.

And to add to this feast of calories, I also added the best dairy free ice cream in the world – booja booja hunky punky chocolate, it is the ONLY ice cream that doesn’t taste funny. Yum.

On the trying to get pregnant front, a month without temping has done me good, I don’t feel obsessive right now. I’m about 4 days past ovulation.  I have just started my antihistamine protocol.

I read about this on a few sites, and some women mentioned it to me. It’s a protocol for those with immune or inflammation issues that could be preventing implantation. As many of my flare symptoms do seem to be inflammation or immune related, I thought it couldn’t hurt to try.

So from 3dpo until I get my positive pregnancy test, or my period, I am taking Clarityn in the morning and Benedryl in the evening. The downside to this is that it doesn’t work well with a cold, the antihistamine dries out mucus, so I can’t breathe at all (and yes it dries out mucus down there too!).

I thought, considering I am unmedicated this cycle, it was worth trying something new, as I have no idea what my real issue is, something tells me it isn’t just my PCOS, it it was, I imagine I would have had at least one pregnancy by now.  Even if it resulted in a chemical pregnancy, I should have had some sort of result by now if it was just my PCOS and bad eggs, because I am ovulating, which for pcos’ers, is a great thing. No, I  can’t be sure what’s going on, but I suspect there is something. I hope to have a test to determine if my tubes are open in a couple of months – a hycosy. Once I know they are, then I can try another clomid cycle and start looking at other options, I’m wondering if triggering ovulation with a HCG shot might be a good step for me next, but it’s going to cost.

Anyway, to finish off today’s post, because we didn’t have a picture of John and I today, here’s a cute picture of a little panda bear, that John left for me on my seat last time we went to the zoo. We made our escape with him.