Like needles

I haven’t had much to say. It seems it has all been said before or said better. I’m not the first woman to miscarry. It isn’t the third or fourth or 6th time, it’s the first. Actually the third, but the one when I was 20 –I didn’t know what that was until years later. The second, right before James and I married was over in a week. I tested positive, bled, then tested negative–all in a week’s time.

This was different. This I was aware of every small movement from tube to uterus. I knew when I got the three day headache 10 days after. I knew when I felt the burrowing cramps as it implanted. The nausea and the swelling gums and breasts told me days and days before any test could.

And just as soon as I knew, I knew something was wrong. This wasn’t going to work. But each test showed darker and darker, even when the bleeding started. That’s normal with some women, I was told, but come in anyway. And I did. I wish I’d stayed away, but that wasn’t the responsible thing to do. So when the bleeding started so did a three week climb and fall.

At first the numbers were low and not good. “This isn’t a viable pregnancy,” the doctor said and I went home to cry and stare at the wall. Now I had to tell the people I’d told before that I was pregnant, that soon, too soon I wouldn’t be.

I shouldn’t have talked so early and knew this. I was warned of this. But we want a second child. We weren’t sure we did until this pink line. And then we talked again. The ambivalence was gone. We have a good marriage, not without small problems and annoyances–but loving and respectful. We have a good home and a great daughter. We live in a place, finally, that we like. We have begun to have friends who are where we are in their lives. And somehow in my mind, in our minds, though we knew this didn’t feel like it would last, we thought surely that since so much is right, this would somehow come right too.

It’s terribly naive. It’s terribly romantic and an idea we won’t have again.

The next blood test showed much better numbers and I was given progesterone. Ah the evil hormone that I was grateful to take since it would make things better, wouldn’t it? The ultrasound showed nothing, of course it wouldn’t.

It did. Another blood test and we’d gone from “this is ending,” to “you can be happy.” That was three blood tests, two ultrasounds and two weeks.

Finally, finally we said, this is good, this will be ok now. Now we can begin to consider the transition from three to four.

And some I’d told that it was no more, I now told that it had turned around again. And I took my pills and I ate balanced meals and I ignored coffee and put away the essential oils I wear as perfume, because you just never know.

And I didn’t know.

The bleeding started again. Had it ever stopped? And I knew at the moment it started, as I crouched crying in the bathroom that it was over. All four of our cats heard me and came up the stairs to find me. Even our ancient old lady knew. It had barely begun, nothing visible on their ultrasounds until the day it ended. There was the sac but too low, not attached, leaving, holding nothing.

And I held nothing. A nothing so big it would take days to leave. A nothing that brings tears each time I see a fresh baby. A nothing that screams when I see a pregnant woman.

Nothing more than motrin for muscles and beer for the brain. Foolish phone calls and hiding in bed.

Finally feeling my husbands arms around me again and my daughter’s wiggling four year old body as she gives me her blanket to “snuggle, so you’ll feel better mommy.” And the feeling comes back in needles first, just like it left, then in simple knowledge that I am touching him, her, this cat, sleeping in this bed. And finally in small laughter and her voice saying “I missed you Mommy, you feel better now ok?”

Ok honey I will. I still have so much.