Connect the Dots Ginger | Becky Allen: March 2015

Monday, March 30, 2015

Make You Or Break You: Emotions Of A Miscarriage

I really didn't think I would be able to talk about my emotional feeling this soon but I need to get them out there before I forget. This is my 3rd miscarriage (MC for ease with typing). I have now had more MC than live children and this one has by far been the worst of the 3. And not just with the actual MC (which that was the worst) but I have all these hidden feelings.

My first miscarriage I was at 6 weeks along. About 14 months after Mason had been born. I had only been pregnant for about a week. And I knew the reason why I had a MC. It was to show me that I could actually get pregnant again and that my system had been restarted. We were told with our fertility treatment that that often happens. Couples who had been trying for years (9 years in our case) suddenly became very fertile after they have a successful pregnancy. Yeah, it hurt that I had a MC but was so excited with the fact that I was "fixed" and we didn't have to pay thousands of dollars to get pregnant again that I was fine after that one.

My second MC was 6 months later. We found out April 1 and my hubs thought I was joking with him of course and he had just left to AZ for military training for 6 weeks. Of course I called the doc the day that we found out I was pregnant I was 5 weeks along. I had been taking tests all the week before because I was sure I was pregnant. I was but my levels were so low it wasn't registering I guess. I went into the doc and he had me do the blood test. And I came back 3 days later to do another blood test, then 3 days later after that and so forth. It was a month of testing just waiting for my levels to get to 1200. It was a month of good news, bad news and a roller coaster of emotions. Matt wasn't here. I ate my emotions through ice cream. I celebrated and drowned my sadness in ice cream that month. It was awful. Then I finally had my ultrasound. It was the 9th of May. There was no baby in there. Just the sac. I was so sad. I was devastated. Doc said that the sac was already elongating and that it was only a matter of days before it would have happened anyways. I reached a low point. I was so mad. Pissed. Hurt. Confused. Lost. I lost all faith in God. how could he do this to me? We were given a chance to have more kids, why was this taken away from us?  Mason napped so long that day and I just cried on the couch. I was alone. I felt alone for the first time in a very long time. I didn't feel like God had my back anymore and that I had done something wrong to be punished. I talked to my parents and they tried to reassure me. I was reminded of a talk from our semiannual  conference for my church. To re-read it. Which I did. (you can read it here too if you want) It made me stop in my tracks. It hit such a profound nerve in me that I realized that the one thing I could not do was to ever lose my faith. I called a church friend and they came and helped me through this day. My lowest day. I will never forget that talk. That is why you see the Hope on. Journey on. Picture. That is in reference to that talk that forever changed the way I see faith and a reminder again to never, ever, forget that I am never alone. 2 days later I had my MC. The day before Mother's Day.

I moved on. It took me a few months to actually forgive myself for what happened. Yep I still blamed myself for what happened. And seriously the day I asked for forgiveness is like the day we got pregnant with Collin. No joke. And he was born 8 days after Mother's day. A new happy memory to replace the sad one.

Now on to the 3rd MC. Right after I felt the pop, the doc came in and said that the amniotic sac was already protruding through the cervix, per the ultrasound and that a MC was imminent. I was devastated. We had known, even before getting pregnant, that this was going to be our little girl. And it was confirmed (with an 80% chance) the day before that this was our little girl. I had just accepted the fact that I was going to have 3 kids under 4 and I was so excited to meet our little girl. Now this was happening.

I started asking how could this happen. I even turned to Matt and said "we just saw her heartbeat. I am killing her. I murdered her." Yep that awful thought popped into my head and out of my mouth. I kept saying I was killing her. That she was just alive and now she isn't. I did this. I started weeping. Seriously weeping is the description I can best use because it was so sorrow filled and agonizing that I had to go through another MC again but the fact that she was alive and then she wasn't. I couldn't get past it.

Throughout the MC I just kept crying. I begged for drugs because I just didn't want to feel anything anymore. Including my feelings. They were heavy on me. But they kept denying me drugs. Saying I wasn't stable enough to have them. I didn't care. I just wanted to stop feeling. I stopped saying aloud how much I was hurting that I killed our little girl. Everyone kept telling me that I didn't kill her. But I wasn't listening. My rational side was gone. I was hurt. Confused. Angry. Scared. I finally got transferred and at the other ER I ask for drugs again, and was actually excited when they told me that I will be asleep for the surgery. I won't feel anything. When I woke up I cried with a nurse there about what happened. That it really had happened. I lost my baby. My baby girl. That I killed. It was my fault. I was then transferred down to my room.

When the night nurse came in. He asked my pain levels and such and asked if I wanted any pain relievers. Now I have done natural labor, no drugs twice now. I apparently can handle pain, but I was tired of feeling anything and I didn't want to hurt anymore. Especially emotionally. I asked for the good stuff because I knew it would knock me out. And it did.

That next morning I decided to "turn it off." To turn off my emotions. I couldn't handle them anymore. All I kept hearing was the fact that I killed her over and over again. So just like in Vampire Diaries I flipped off my emotions. (for them it is their humanity switch but it kind of was like the same thing. I just flipped a switch in my head and off went the emotions.) I couldn't talk about the fact that I killed her out loud. I told a couple of people over the phone about it and every time my feelings came rushing in. And freaking out my close friends and family that I told this to. One even said that it was Satin that was saying this to me. And that it was a lie. Part of me understood that but I didn't believe her deep down. I knew it was my fault. So I stopped talking about it. It was weird, I could talk about the MC without even shedding a tear. It was not natural. Odd. I spent all Sunday like this. Asking for more pain meds and my emotions turned off.

Monday morning came around and that is when my doc told me about the possible infection. Immediately I felt a weight had been lifted from my body. My whole body. It wasn't my fault. IT WASN'T MY FAULT! I just wanted to shout if from the top of my lungs. I didn't kill her. I still kept my emotions in check but it was a feeling of relief that I never thought that I would have. I almost instantly felt better. I had an understanding that this MC needed to happen to save my life. And that one day again I will have another baby girl and that we would both be healthy. What a blessing it was. I was okay with the MC. I wished that I didn't have to go through it, because there are things that happened during the MC I will never forget. And it was scary of course. But I accepted that this had to happen. It was God's plan and I needed to be at peace with it. I did feel at peace.

The next few days I was at peace. I know that only a couple of times I would start to blame myself again but I was able to stamp that down pretty quickly. I let my body heal. I needed to let my body heal. Then Friday night I realized that a week prior I had seen how healthy she looked. We found out that she was a SHE. I started balling. I cried myself to sleep that night. Saturday night. I realized that a week ago I was having the MC. I relived the entire experience in my head again and again. I balled my eyes out and cried myself asleep again. I didn't even know why I started crying I just did. Those hot and heavy tears.

I obviously still have some mourning to go through, because I was an emotional wreck on Sunday after writing this and here I thought I had accepted it. But I haven't. I am sure I will be crying for awhile because I lost a baby. Our baby girl. I am comforted by the fact that we can have more children. But not yet. Not for awhile. And that is okay. This loss is going to take me awhile to process and learn to live with. And that is okay.

I just have to keep letting my body heal. And maybe talk to a counselor or friends to process my feeling correctly for this one. And someday, when the time is right, we can and will welcome our little girl into our family.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Blessing In Disguise...

We have received more information about why this happened and how much of a blessing in disguise this actually was. If you missed what happen you can read my experiences with my 3rd miscarriage here. Crazy to think that it was a blessing but you will see...

Monday before discharge my doc came in to talk to us. Matt was there this time to hear all the lovely details. My doc repeated a lot of the same info he had told me, and I seemed better able to understand what he was saying and not so "out of it."

He told us how the placenta did detach from the uterus but not all the way. I passed the baby but not the placenta. I probably passed the baby around 11:30pm or so and continued to bleed until surgery which wasn't until after 1am. I started to hemorrhage because my body was trying to get the placenta out but it wouldn't release like it should have and I just had a gaping open wound that wasn't being able to close up. Thankfully I am a good blood clotter because I could have bleed out a lot sooner than I did. (I really think I was being watched over. It wasn't my time to go.) By the time I was in surgery I had lost 4 units of blood and it was still just coming out.

My doc said most people don't realize how lifesaving a D&E surgery can be. He stating again that I would have died before passing the placenta naturally, which is really freaky to think about for me and for my family.

My doc also mentioned that during the surgery that he noticed a funny smell to my placenta. I know that sound weird but that is often how an infection is found during surgery. My BFF K used to be an OR nurse and we were talking about it and it is a very pronounce smell that just isn't quite right. With the room as sterile as it is smells stand out. Doc is pretty sure that the reason why my placenta detached is because it was dying. It was infected. Therefore it was infecting the baby. Because it was so early in the pregnancy had I remained pregnant she wouldn't have survived, or would have had birth defects. And in regards to me the infection could have been a silent killer to me. I would have gotten really sick and they wouldn't have know to test my placenta for an infection. I could have gone septic and then also again, died from that. Or the infection could have infected my uterus and I could have lost it and lost the chance to have any more children. See what I mean. This miscarriage was a blessing in disguise. The placenta was sent to the pathology lab for testing and to confirm the infection but my doc is so awesome and knows what he is doing that we are pretty sure this is what it was. But we have not received the pathology report back yet.

What a strange turn of events. Obviously I have a guardian angel looking out for me and it certainly isn't my time to go just yet.

Oh and one more piece to the puzzle. Remember how I was spotting 2 weeks ago and that put me on bed rest so that I couldn't do the 10 miler. Doc said that had I had done the 10 miler, the placenta more than likely would have ripped more forcefully away causing a bigger hole. Mine ripped but not too much (remember the pop I felt). But had I been running I would have probably died on the course from blood loss right there. So HELLO, so glad I didn't do the race.

I have felt a weight lifted from me knowing this. And I feel ready to talk about my emotions I think. Give me another day or two to put it down but I certainly feel more at peace with what happened.

I have received an overwhelming response to Monday's post. I guess there just isn't a lot of miscarriage material out there. I have been thanked for sharing my story and for the strength that I have to relive it through writing it. But it needs to be done. I am so glad to share what I can. There is more to the miscarriage than I wrote but I wanted to spare people with the graphic details of the more unpleasant things I experienced. I pray I never have to go through anything like that again. But I am at peace now. I know that this was God's will and plan for me. This has helped strengthen me in ways I never knew could. And most of the strength I have felt have been from each of you. From the prayers to thoughts, it has truly been an amazing experience. Thank you friends for all of your support.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Our Loss

I am so sad to share with you that Saturday night I lost the baby. This is a very detailed account so if you don't want to continue reading stop here! You have been warned.

I have a lead in to it. As you know about 2 weeks ago I had some spotting. Baby was fine. No worries. We heard the heartbeat and it was fine. I asked the doctor. What do I do if the bleeding gets worse. He said that if something bad is going to happen that it is going to happen really quick. And we will know it.

I had my 13 weeks ultrasound NT scan to check for chromosomal deficiencies on Friday afternoon. SHE was just fine. That is right, the doc gave us an 80% chance that it was our little girl. We never saw anything out of the ordinary. I even asked him to look for why I was spotting the other week. Nothing. So I was clear to do a little exercise, or walking again.

Saturday, I volunteered at the Charlottesville 10 miler. If you can't join them, cheer them on! And then came home, rested and then started making a nice dinner for some friends who were coming over for dinner. Matt and I put the kids down for bed, they seemed extra tired a little earlier than normal, a blessing in disguise. And Matt and I went back downstairs to start cleaning up the mess from dinner.

That is when I felt it. Too much stuff down there. I ran to the bathroom and the bleeding wouldn't stop. I called a church friend and neighbor and before I finished saying, "C I need you to come over and help." She was already running out of her house to come over. She stayed the whole night with 2 kids who knew that something wasn't right.

Matt sped to the ER close to our home and we were admitted. The bleeding stopped for a little while. We waited for the nurse to come in a take my vitals and they tried to listen to the heartbeat and they couldn't find it, but I was feeling her kicking at me. So I knew she was ok. I got an ultrasound and the tech showed me right away her heartbeat and bouncing up and down. She was ok. Just fine. Then the tech did her job trying to find out what was going on. She kept commenting on how active the baby was.

We got sent back to our room and waited and waited. About 30 min later. I felt this POP! in my lower abdomen and I just started gushing liquid. I cried out because I couldn't control it and it frankly it scared the crap out of me! The entire ER staff came rushing in. The doc said that in the ultrasound they saw that the amniotic sac was already protruding down through the cervix and a miscarriage was imminent. And was starting. I started crying. FREAKING OUT is more like it. I continued to have these surges of gushes over the next few hours.

Before some of the gushes I would get a severe cramp and my ears would clog up. I started to feel dizzy and became delirious. My blood pressure dropped significantly and the docs started to pump me full of fluids to get my BP up and stabilized. I was begging for some drugs and they wouldn't give me any. I also was begging for water. I was so thirsty and I was refused that too. They said that they didn't want me to get sick.

I had 4 rounds of my BP dropping quite a bit and lots of blood. At some point I passed the baby, but they never told me when. But I was still bleeding quite a bit even after the baby. By the 4th BP drop they were getting concerned. They took my blood levels again to compare my beginning levels. I had lost 3 units of blood. That is a lot in their speak. They called my OB who they had been talking to and told him my blood levels. He requested that I be transferred to the main hospital to be examined by him, and possible surgery. Things were getting serious at this point. They did another blood pull before I left. Just as I was strapped up in the gurney for the ambulance.

I rode with lights and sirens to the hospital about 2o min away, it is faster when all the lights are green for you! Got to the ER at the hospital and was told I was scheduled for surgery for a D&E. Where they go in and scrape out anything that won't come out on their own. I got admitted by the OR people and went back. Got oxygen and don't even remember falling asleep. Next thing I knew I was in recovery. They told me that the surgery lasted 30 min, 15 min longer than I was originally told. And that I did very well.

My doc came in and said that I had a placenta abruption and that it is a very serious thing. Basically the placenta detached from the uterus. That is the cause of the gushing of blood. But not all of the placenta had detached. and that was very serious. When that happens, the uterus can not clamp down all the way and a large gaping hole is exposed and pumping blood out and won't close like it is supposed to. My doc said that by the time I got to surgery I had lost over 4 units of blood. (I later learned that is equal to 1/4 of all my blood in my body and is quite a bit!) And had I not had the surgery when I did, I might not have made it. He saved my life.

Fast forward to after. I was admitted as a patient to the hospital. When my doc came in the next morning. I had been having more dizzy spells every time I went to the bathroom and just felt weak and just out of it. I signed blood transfusion paperwork just in case I would need it. Never did. My blood work came back as severely anemic but not as bad as I was just a few hours prior. My body was building it back up on it's own. All day Sunday I was still dizzy if I sat up too long, or got up to go to the bathroom. I had a lovely extended stay at the hospital for another night for monitoring and getting released this morning to go home.

It was a very traumatic experience to go through. I left out some details about the miscarriage on purpose. If you are ever curious about that let me know and we can talk but it was so hard to go through that.

How am I doing? I am an emotional wreck. I actually found a way to cope with my emotions by avoiding one topic about the miscarriage of how I am feeling and basically flipped my emotion switch to off until I am ready to deal with what happened emotionally. I need to let my body heal. It is kind of a weird feeling being emotionally separated. Not to say I am not sad but I have had some pretty awful feelings that I just can't handle right now.

I have been grieving in my own way. My family has been grieving. My boys have been with church family all day Sunday and Sunday night. They will go with another family Monday as well. my church is really taking care of me. My sis in law arrives tomorrow morning after a red eye train ride. She will leave on Wednesday evening and that is when my mother arrives to help out for the next week. Including the church I am feeling very blessed and loved with all of the support we have received in this very difficult time in our lives.

I will miss being pregnant. I already feel hollow and empty. I had been feeling her kick for the last 2.5 weeks and now nothing. Just a flabby tummy where my belly had already started to expand. I will miss not having my little girl join our family in September as I was so excited for her to do. But someday we will have another child and hopefully it will be our little girl. Please forgive my lack of posts lately as I am deal with this. I thank you for sticking around and for your support. You love is felt 10 fold and it gives me strength that I didn't know I had. Thank you my friends.

**Update: We have received some new information on how this miscarriage might actually have been a blessing in disguise. Read about it out here.

Want more daily motivation and inspiration? Click here get free advice, support and encouragement + a free copy of my Clean Eating guide to help you get started on your health and fitness journey! 

Monday, March 16, 2015

Wake-Up Workout

I love my bed in the morning, and on cool mornings like this I just don't want to get out of bed. So why not start your morning with a little workout right in your bed! Check out below to start your day right! Happy morning! 

Friday, March 13, 2015

The "NO" Syndrome

Why is it that when you are told "NO" in doing something that it is the only time that you want to actually do what you are told not to do?

I feel like a kid. "Don't push that red button!" "Don't jump on your bed?" Seriously, my legs were burning all day yesterday to go running. It is so weird. Have I had this insane desire to go running the past week or so while my kids have been sick and I have been exhausted from taking care of a sick family? A little, but not like this. My legs last night were seriously on FIRE wanting to go running. And I can't.

I am ok with that because I want to do what is best for the baby. But I guess that my legs didn't get the memo.

So right now, running and exercise in general is on hold until the 20th until I have my ultrasound. It is going to be a long 8 days. At least I know that I still want to keep exercising. Maybe this is the turning point in my pregnancy where I will get some of my energy back and will be able to make it to the gym on a regular basis. This modified bed rest momma can only hope!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Just Roll With It

This pregnancy has been HARD! I have suffered from massive migraines, morning sickness, motion sickness while on exercise machines and just overall exhaustion. No wonder, I am making a baby, nursing another baby and trying to train for my 10 miler which is only 10 days away.

Sadly today, I was told that one of those things has to go.

I had some spontaneous spotting today. I was doing nothing. Just relaxing, as I had just told Matt. Needless to say it ended up with me going to my doc 2 days earlier than my regularly scheduled appointment for the week. I was freaking out. A crying mess. I can't go through another miscarriage. Is all I kept saying in my mind.

Thankfully my doc's office got me in right away. I didn't even have to sit out in the waiting room. I was sent right back. Doc did an exam. Noticed the bleeding. Then he said that my uterus is growing and has already popped out of my pelvis (I'm just shy of 12 weeks and that happens at 12 weeks).

Next came the doppler. We needed to hear the heart beat. Doc was listening. I reminded him about my tilted backwards uterus. So he did some pushing on my belly and then we heard this thump. Thump, thump. Like his hand knocking the doppler, but it wasn't. He said, "I think that is the baby kicking." Then a few more thumps. "Yep, that's the baby. Now where is your heartbeat little feisty baby!" Then within just a few seconds he found the solid strong heartbeat.

Doc said that I had a ruptured blood vessel and that since we heard the baby's heartbeat, and it was kicking that everything is fine. HOWEVER, I am on a modified bed rest. UGH! First thing I asked, making sure that the baby was fine, then I asked, "so no 10 miler this year." NOPE. And guess what. I am a little sad about it because I have been training my butt off for that run and have already run most of the course but for the safety of the baby and for me, it is just going to have to give.

10 days away from my big race I have been planning and prepping for since, what? Last summer. Is now not happening. I will be volunteering though. Helping out in anyway I can. Here is the thing, there are other 10 milers. I know I can do it now and I am kind of strangely excited to run the race, next year, or when it is right for me. But for now. Time to take it easy. Take care of my baby growing inside me and enjoy the fact that my baby is fine.

I am excited though, because in 9 days, I will get to see this feisty little one again with my next ultrasound. I will keep you all posted and can't wait to share the pictures then!

Thanks for reading along and following along in this crazy adventure of my life!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Spring Race Season IS HERE!

It's time to lace up your running shoes! IT IS RACE SEASON! I don't know about you but my Facebook feed and Twitter are exploding with more and more of my friends participating in a spring race this season! I LOVE IT! What a great goal for everyone to have.

Let me tell you that if you want to start running or maybe change your lifestyle to be more active, participating in a local race is the WAY TO START! I know that the thought of running in a 5k is scary and it just might not be you. But what I have seen is that more and more races are walk friendly or a slower run/walk pace friendly. Race coordinators are noticing that walkers are taking the race circuit by storm now! AND GUESS WHAT? It doesn't matter if you walk a race or run it. The mileage is still the same for everyone. If a race is not walking friendly the race page will say, "run only" or it will give a time limit for the race or pace per mile required. A walking pace per mile is a 15 min per mile and slower.

Don't let the time limits hinder you from registering either because some of the races will say that roads are closed for X amount of time and you may continue, but you must move to the sidewalk and obey traffic signals. 

Why look into a local race? So you don't have to travel very far and hopefully the cost will be a little less than a "bigger" race. There are tons of St. Patricks Day race themes right now. But because the weather is AMAZING in most of the country this is the race season. Go ahead and try.

Need to find a race in your neck of the woods? Go here! Runners World Race Finder

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Snow Day...AGAIN!

Here we are on the 5th day of March and it is another snow day. What is cool about it is that Daddy even has to stay home from work. We might live across the street from his work but work said, "Nope! Stay home!" It is really nice because it gives him a day off since he won't have one this week due to military training. So we get a whole day to be together... The whole family! Stuck inside... THE WHOLE DAY!

Our snow days consist of a yummy breakfast, today we opted for Starbucks. And I usually try to make something homemade. Usually the yummy variety. And watching the snow fall outside. Mason loves to sit around and read books on my table from the Reading Rainbow App. Collin is just crawling around the house, exploring and babbling and standing up next to anything he can get stand up against. (Poor kid has a runny nose this morning thanks to his shots he got yesterday at his check up.)

That also means no gym for Matt, his work gym is closed. And you do not want me on the roads in snow to go to my gym, which is also closed. I am the driver that you should be scared of. I hate driving in snow. Scares me to death so I don't do it. EVER! Thankfully everything shuts down in this town when it snows!
(2 days ago before the new snow!)

Time to just relax, put on a good movie and chill with my family on this wonderful snowy day. So thankful for these days in my life. Later if we get enough snow Mason will go out sledding. Burn off some of his energy. One can only hope though.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Morning Sickness and Exercise DON'T MIX!

Here is what I am dealing with right now. Getting motion sickness on the treadmill or elliptical from my morning sickness. UGH! How awful is that. This past Saturday I was supposed to do 8.5 miles. Things didn't quite go as planned.

Matt was being super awesome this past Saturday and let me sleep in. And then he kicked me out of the house around 10 to go to the gym, since I hadn't made it there all week since Mason had pink eye. I ate a good typical breakfast before heading to the gym, and that was probably why I got sick. I normally don't eat eggs and toast before I go on a long run or before races. I eat a banana and cereal bar and drink a ton of water. That is my Saturday morning regime. I then eat a bigger breakfast after my run.

I headed off to the gym and found a treadmill. The place was packed. Around mile 2.5 I started to feel a little off I wanted to get off the machine. But I kept going. By 3.5 miles I knew I was toast and forced myself to make it to an even 4 miles. I puked in my mouth a couple of times during that last .5 miles but I did it. Sadly, I didn't get my long run in, and it was supposed to be my last BIG long run before my 10 miler in 3 weeks. So this Saturday I have to do at least 8 miles to make up for my lack of milage from this past Sat.

I even came home and rested for a little while then decided to try an in home walking DVD I have. I couldn't even make it .5 miles without getting sick. My body just said NO WAY to me doing anything. I went upstairs and took a nap and felt better when I woke up.

I am 10 weeks pregnant now and I am looking forward to my morning sickness going AWAY! And hopefully it won't be that bad for the 10 miler where I will be 13 weeks.

Moral of the story. Don't eat a regular sized breakfast before a long run. And to listen to your body. There are going to be days where your body says NO! And you just have to listen to it. And it is ok! I still have 1 Saturday left to do 8 miles and still feel prepared to run in the 10 miler. I know I will do the 10 miler and be fine. I might not do it in the time I want to but darn it I will do it!
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