Wednesday, August 1, 2012

our miracle.

    A couple of months into our marriage Jake and I realized that our 2-3 year waiting period for kids just wasn't going to cut it. We wanted babies and we wanted them soon. We quickly decided that simply a year would do. We began trying to conceive in May, and on June 23rd I found out I was pregnant.
We were ecstatic. My memories of that morning consist of a beautiful haze of shaking, and staring, and rechecking the test, and hugging, and crying, and kissing, and rechecking the test. We couldn't wait to share the news with our parents and siblings, but decided it would be wise to attend a doctor's appointment first, just in case both tests I took were false negatives. :) The 23rd was a Sunday, so by the time I could call on Monday, the soonest I could get in was Wednesday. We went to the appointment, got the pregnancy confirmed, and based off of my last missed period (sorry boys) I was 8 weeks along.
     Now, just as a disclaimer, I didn't feel 8 weeks pregnant, and repeatedly stated that. I had obviously never been pregnant before, but I think I have a good sense of my body, and that just didn't seem to be true. Regardless, we told our immediate family. It was such an exciting and emotional moment to see such great excitement and emotion in our parent's and sibling's faces.
     That Friday, five days after we found out we were pregnant, we went to the OB. After providing the nurses with pages and pages of our medical history, I got my first ultrasound. Immediately, the nurse practitioner looked concerned. As sweetly as possible, she let us know that what we were looking at was nothing more than an empty sac. No baby. She explained that there were two possible cases; either my dates were off or this wasn't a viable pregnancy. While I was obviously nervous, we both had faith that I was simply 5 weeks along, like the sac was measuring. I was instructed to get two sets of blood tests, one that day and one on Sunday. The NP explained that if the pregnancy was good, my hormone levels should be doubling.Again, I was a bit anxious, but I had never felt 8 weeks to begin with.
       On Monday morning I got call from the NP. I answered eagerly, but the moment I heard her voice, I knew. She apologized and informed me that based on the blood tests, this wasn't a viable pregnancy. While my hormone levels were increasing, they weren't doubling like they should be, and they were at a high enough level that we should have been able to see a baby. The sun was too bright, I couldn't breathe, and my stomach turned all at once. I just sobbed. This wasn't supposed to happen. The NP tried to comfort me as best as she could, providing statistics and assuring me that we could try again soon. She explained that because the following day was my Dr.'s surgery day, I would be able to get a D&C quickly if that's what I wanted. I didn't fully know what that meant, and to be honest, I couldn't deal with any decisions, so I told her I would call back in a while.
      Having to face Jake was torturous. Even though I obviously knew he would not cease to provide comfort and strength for me, I still felt guilty, burdened, and ashamed. After some tears and anger and feelings of hopelessness, I decided to collect my thoughts and attempt to make a decision. After doing more research on D & C's I quickly decided I didn't want one. The procedure requires anesthesia, and consists of the doctor going up and cleaning out the contents of your uterus. First of all, I had never been put under for ANYTHING, and was terrified that I would be that one person who is allergic to the medication and would die suddenly. Secondly, it seemed a little too much like an abortion to me. Even though I had been told there was no hope for this baby, I was afraid they were wrong. I tend to be a what-ifer, and I didn't want to live with the burden of wondering if I should have given the baby another chance. I called the doctor's office and asked if we could come in and have another ultra sound, just to make sure. They sweetly agreed.
       I had so much anger sitting in the waiting room that day. Jake and I were joined by another couple that consisted of a 7+ month pregnant woman. She sat and complained about every single thing she could have possibly complained about. She was thirsty, hot, tired, cold, hungry, and ready to be seen. I remember wondering if she could even see outside of her own petty problems. We sat there in front of them, looking like complete hell. I hadn't showered, and my face was obviously swollen from tears. When we got called back before her, and I heard her huff and complain some more, it took everything in me not to turn around and yell, "AT LEAST YOUR BABY IS ALIVE!" Definitely a reminder to be sensitive to those around you.
      Anyways, we made it to the room, and as I settled onto the bed, I had such a strange combination of hopelessness and wondering, "What if they were wrong? What if our baby's there." The little hope I had soon dissolved as the ultrasound showed the sac that remained empty. The NP explained that I had a blighted ovum. The egg and sperm had fertilized, but an embryo never developed. I remember not knowing whether this made me feel better or worse. It seemed like it should have made it feel better, but to Jake and I, that "blighted ovum" was so much more than even just an embryo. That was our baby. In the five days that we knew about his/her existence, the dreams had already been dreamt, the names began being thrown around, and the love had grown immensely.
      While she assured me that there was no rush, and that it was ultimately my decision, the NP explained my two options. If I wanted to get the D & C, it would be painless, quick, and easy. I would have about 5 days of light bleeding and mild cramping, and then after a couple of months, when my body got on the right track again, we would be able to try to conceive. If I chose to miscarry naturally, I wouldn't know when it would happen, the pain could be similar to medium contractions, and if there was too much blood, I might have to have emergency surgery anyways. I was still undecided, so they offered to schedule the surgery for me, and have me call in the morning with the final answer.
      I'm positively sure that I would have decided to stick with having the miscarriage naturally, but I realized that in a week we would be in San Diego and Malibu for eight days. Our best friend was getting married, and a week after that we would be at Shaver Lake for family vacation. I definitely did not want to be losing the baby on Coronado Beach, the dance floor, or some crazy tube ride. We were both already so exhausted, and just decided it would be best to get the surgery and move on as soon as possible.
     The next morning on July 3rd, I was admitted into the hospital and received a D & C. Of course, I don't remember much, except for the fact that anesthesia isn't so bad after all. However, after the surgery my doctor went out into the waiting room and informed my mom and Jake that while I was fine, something was very different. She told them that my uterus seemed small, and that she felt like she couldn't get anything out. While the procedure is usually a blind one, it was so confusing to her that she decided to go up with a camera to look around. When she did she couldn't find anything. She even gave us a copy of the pictures of my empty uterus. When Jake and my mom told me about this, it worried me a little. It mostly worried me because I figure I was deformed somehow, but I forgot about it soon after. 
     I spent that next week full of emotions. I was devastated, obviously, but also angry, bitter, confused, and shocked. My mind flashed to all of the women who had abused their bodies and babies, but still got healthy, full term pregnancies. I had never been a smoker, drinker, drug user, or done anything else that should ever make this happen. I felt betrayed by my body. I felt so sad to have disappointed my husband and family, even though I knew they would never place the blame on me. Even though I read all of the statistics and research showing that miscarriage is common and usually natures way of taking care of something that would not been healthy to begin with, it didn't seem right. I wanted a baby, but I wanted that baby. 
     Fast forward a week later. Jake and I were in San Diego, and I received a phone call from my doctor. She explained that she got my pathology reports back from the surgery, and that no fetal tissue was detected in what she pulled out. While she didn't want me to panic, she was afraid the pregnancy might be ectopic, and that the baby might be somewhere dangerous like my abdomen or tubes. I obviously panicked. That night Jake and I googled the nearest Quest Diagnostics, and went to get blood work done to see if my hormone levels were reading pregnant. I was terrified, exhausted, and just wanted to be home. That night I had visions of a ruptured tube, emergency surgery, and being trapped in San Diego. 
     The next day my doctor called back with the lab results. My hormone levels were sky high and I was definitely still pregnant... somewhere. She instructed me to go to UCSD Medical Center where they would do an ultra sound and try to find out what exactly was going on. Jake and I sat in the ER for a few hours, in between an inmate and a woman coughing up her lungs. I can remember very few other times in my life that I had felt that miserable. I wanted to be home. I wanted everything to be over. 
      Soon enough, the very sweet staff was ushering me to an ultra sound room. After the ultra sound, they took me into my own room, and soon after that a doctor and nurse came in and asked what had happened up until this point. I explained exactly what I explained here, except far less emotional and in much less detail. The doctor took notes and the nurse avoided eye contact. After I finished, the doctor said, "Ok, it's just very strange because we found your baby, perfectly healthy, in your uterus where it belongs."
       We were in complete shock. There were no tears or words. I could barely breathe. The doctor explained that my uterus was completely normal, and that there was no medical explanation on why my doctor wouldn't have been able to get the baby out. Oh, and sidenote: My doctor has been doing this for 20 years. This wasn't her first rodeo, it is a very common procedure, and she is a highly respectable doctor. Doctors and nurses began pouring in, congratulating us, listening to the story, and letting us know that they had never heard of anything like this before. It is the most unreal feeling to have so many educated and scientific individuals come in flabbergasted and tell you that your baby is nothing short of a legitimate medical miracle. 
     We have had three ultrasounds since San Diego. Our precious baby is growing and developing just like he/she should, and has every sign of being perfectly healthy so far. We have had the blessing of hearing the sweet heartbeat, and seeing the little ham wiggle around in there. 
      As you can imagine, it's been quite an emotional ride. From joy to fear to sorrow to even more fear to shock to joy more joyous than we have ever dreamed of. So now I am ten weeks pregnant. Not quite to the 12 week "safe zone" but with a story like this (and all the people who already knew because of all the craziness that took place) we decided now was as good a time than ever to share God's miracle. 
    To me personally, this has been a MAJOR reminder of how powerful, loving, and awesome God is. While I felt broken and bitter, I always knew I was in His hands. I just had no comprehension of how powerful He really is, and how much love  He really has for me. We had an unfathomable amount of prayers being prayed for us during that terrible time, and I am so humbled that God would listen. I know without hesitation that whatever happens from here on out, good, bad, or indifferent, God loves me, cares about me, and is powerful enough to take care of me. I am more at peace now than I've ever been before. 
"Finally, be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might." Ephesians 6:10

Ok, now you can all make a joke about how this baby is already acting like the legend that is Jake Yeager :) 
      

2 comments:

  1. That's so beautiful/wonderful/frightening/fantastic! I had a similar issue with Sophia, so I know how scary it is... Dreading what the doctor
    or nurse will say next, and then the wonderful shock of finding out that your baby is there and thriving... You two are truly blessed and you deserve every bit of this precious miracle. I am absolutely thrilled for the both of you. Congratulations Yeagers!

    Kimberly Phillips

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  2. Amazing. Truly. This baby was meant to be. Thank you for sharing.

    xo,
    Katie
    hellolittlebean.com

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