Monday, June 4, 2012

Not So Great News

Ironically, I waited until 12 weeks to even announce that I was pregnant.

Unfortunately, sometimes the big guy upstairs has other plans.

This post won’t be a happy one, I’m afraid, and it’s taken me awhile to figure out the words that I want to convey.

What happened is, that I lost the baby. It’s a funny phrase, really. It’s not like I misplaced the fetus or anything.

I had gone to the ER because I had started bleeding and obviously bleeding and being pregnant is not a good combination. I sat 3 hours in the waiting room and another two in an actual room for an ultrasound. When I finally got one, the woman doing it said nothing, which is never a good sign. She simply pressed buttons on her machine, her lips set in a grim line.

“Is everything okay?” I feebly asked, because the silence was driving me insane.

“I can’t discuss results. The doctor will do that,” she answered, her tone clipped.

Something was wrong. I knew it. Had everything been okay, surely she would have flipped her screen around and pointed out the tiny flutter of a heartbeat. “See?” I imagined her saying. “Your baby is okay.”

But she didn’t.

It was silence and clicking, silence and typing. Then she was gone.

I had to do a pelvic exam after that.

“What’s going on?” I tried again as the doctor walked in.

“We’ll discuss everything after this,” he assured me.
Look, I get that it’s an ER and that things are done differently. But it seems cruel to keep people waiting like that. He did the pelvic exam and then promised to be back in the room with information.

The information was this: I had something called a blighted ovum, meaning the baby had never really formed. The fetus was only measuring at eight weeks, no heartbeat.

I was supposed to be almost 13 weeks.

He also said I was bleeding because I’d probably be passing the fetus within the next few days.

The doctor said this quickly, with barely any emotion. Again, I get it’s an ER. But you don’t say something like that with no emotion. Maybe he has to harden his heart because of all the bad news he has to tell families. Still.

After he left, I was numb. I didn’t cry. I was just…numb. Tom seemed to be too. He sat there, stoically, not saying a word.

“Well,” I finally said. “That’s that.”

I mean, I didn’t know what else to say. I didn’t want to break down. I just wanted to get out of there. Go home. I pulled up my pants and realized I had them on backwards.

“Are you okay?” Tom’s voice came out foreign. It was all cracked.

“Yeah,” I muttered, pulling my pants on correctly. Buttoning them was still tight. I had just made the comment the other day that my stomach was getting larger and that I might have to switch to maternity pants soon. Now, I suppose I wouldn’t need them.

We left soon after and honestly, I don’t think Tom and I got much sleep.

The next day Natalie had her princess camp. I drove her to it, no problems. I was still in disbelief but I knew I didn’t want to lie around and wait for something to happen. I was going to go about my day as usual. I did call my OB/GYN and had an appointment scheduled for the next day.

Tom and I even took Tommy to see Men In Black 3. We had promised him that we’d do something special, just the three of us, and Tommy was thrilled. Everything felt almost normal, as though we hadn’t even been to the ER the previous night.

Back at home, Tom and I lazed on the couch and then I felt it. A gush of blood. I rushed upstairs to get a pad, but really, it wasn’t horrible. I thought that was it. I mean, I had never had a miscarriage before, I didn’t know what to expect. The robot ER doctor didn’t really explain.

We had to go pick up Natalie from her camp, and I was still feeling okay. When we got there, I got out of the truck to retrieve her and that’s when it felt like my insides all came out. I apologize for being gruesome, but it was awful. Blood was dripping everywhere and I immediately felt dizzy. I rushed back to Tom.

“I….help…” I muttered.

He jumped out of his seat and carried me over to the passenger side. He could see the blood dripping down my leg.

“Do you need me to call 911?” he asked.

I shook my head. I don’t like attention on me. “I’ll be…fine.” I shut my eyes for a moment. Goodbye, baby.. I knew it was leaving my body.

Tom grabbed Natalie and we drove home. That’s when another gush happened and I almost passed out.

“I’m calling 911,” Tom said, and dialed.

We didn’t know what was normal. All I knew was that I was losing a lot of blood and that I felt faint. I could hear the sound of the sirens as we pulled up in our driveway.

“Don’t move,” Tom said.

I have never been in an ambulance before. They pulled up, and it wasn’t just them. When you call 911 on base, police cars show up, along with the fire truck. So our house was surrounded by all sorts of vehicles. I could see the neighbors around us peeking their heads out windows. I didn’t blame them. I’d have done the same. I was loaded onto a stretcher and as soon as I shifted, another gush came out of me.

It was scary, I’m not going to lie. I got an IV put in, as well as an oxygen mask.

Tom called one of our friends to pick up the kids, who thankfully didn’t seem scared. Tom was distracting them, as well as the people in the police vehicles.

I didn’t pass out on the drive to the hospital. I sort of wanted to so I could block out everything, but the EMTs kept talking to me.

Tom followed behind in his truck so he was there when we got to the hospital. I was wheeled into a room and they lifted me from one stretcher to the other.

The rest is really all a blur. I know at one point they wanted me to have another pelvic exam and a nurse lifted me from the stretcher to a wheelchair because the exam is usually held in a separate room. This was when everything went black. Tom says what happened was that I suddenly turned pale, that I looked like death, and the nurse was just staring at me in horror saying, “Are you okay?” Tom basically had to push her out of the way. He lifted me up and placed me back on the stretcher. When he did this, we think the fetus came out of me because suddenly tissue was all over the floor. All over Tom’s shorts and shoes.

I came to when an older, more competent nurse came in to check on me.

“Are you with us?” she asked, hovering over me. I could see the young nurse work hard to clear away the tissue that I had just expelled, maybe so I wouldn’t have to see it.

“Yeah,” I muttered.

She increased my oxygen and gave Tom some towels to clean up with. His shoes were completely ruined so she handed him some socks to put on.

“I’m sorry,” I said to Tom, even though it wasn’t my fault.

“Who cares about my shoes?” he said. “I’m glad you’re okay. You seriously looked like death. It scared me.”

The doctor came in and chastised the nurse for throwing away all the tissue.

“We need to send that to the lab to see if it was the…” he lowered his voice. “Fetus.”

I had another ultrasound after that which showed that yes, the fetus was gone. All that was left was blood clots so I had a pelvic exam to try and remove those. It hurt. The doctor basically had to scrape inside me and even then he couldn’t get it all.

I was able to go home soon after since my bleeding wasn’t as intense as before. I was told that it would be like I was having a period for about a week and that I needed to take it easy. I was told that it wasn’t my fault that I had the miscarriage, that these things happen, and of course I knew this. Still, I couldn’t help but be annoyed with Tricare, our health insurance, because it was them who said I couldn’t have an early ultrasound since my previous two pregnancies had been normal. Had I got one early on, we would have seen that something was wrong.

I’m getting better every day. I’m choosing to look on the bright side of things. I have two healthy children. Some women can’t even have one. Some have endured countless miscarriages and if you are one of those women, I am so sorry. I can’t even imagine going through this more than once. I know that it wasn’t my fault that I lost the baby, but I did whisper to Tom, “What if it thought we didn’t want it?” because admittedly, we all freaked out a bit when we found out I was pregnant.

“It wasn’t that,” Tom promised.

The truth is, we had all gotten used to the idea of another baby. Natalie would kiss my stomach and call it her baby brother. She would tell strangers, “Mommy is having my baby brother!” as though I were doing it as a personal favor to her. Tommy was still not as happy, but he was dealing.

I’ll be taking a few days off from the blog so I can gather my thoughts. I know I’ll be okay in the end. I have the support of my family. My Mom is here to help out as well. I know I’ll always remember the surprise gift we got.

Once upon a time, we thought we were having another baby.




And we will never forget.

109 comments:

  1. Do me a small favor. Go to http://marriageconfessions.com and look up the posts from last week under the "confessions" page. (I'm sorry I don't have a direct link.)

    Ginny, this bloggers sister, went through this recently and she did a 6 part video series to share what happened to her, etc ...and I think it might help.

    I don't have words that will fix it or make you feel better, because the reality is no one can truly understand the loss your entire family just experienced. I will pray for you and your family.

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  2. Oh, Amber. My heart is breaking. I cannot even imagine what this all must be like for you ... this whole ordeal. Sometimes life is just so cruel and unfair ...

    Big, huge hugs to you and the family.

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  3. Amber, I am so, so sorry. I am thinking about you and your family and sending love your way.

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  4. I am so sorry. This happened to my niece twice. I hope that you will get the peace you need. I am sending you a big hug. Take care of yourself. My thoughts are with you.

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  5. I'm not going to lie...I have tears running down my cheeks. Know that you and your family are close in my thoughts and prayers.

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  6. Amber, I am so, so sorry. I can't find words to express any more, but know that I'll be thinking about your family and praying for you. I'm incredibly sad for you :-(

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  7. I'm so sorry. You are in my prayers.

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  8. I'm so sorry. I have no words...

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  9. I'm so sorry Amber. I'll remember you and your family in my prayers and hope you find peace and comfort during this uncertain time.

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  10. I'm sorry for your loss. I had a miscarriage a few months ago, and it was frightening and upsetting...I understand what you're going through. Hang in there, it gets better.

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  11. I am SO sorry for your loss. I can't imagine getting the news that you're expecting and then loosing it. I know you'll recover with the love of your family.

    Your blog family will be here when you're ready. HUGS

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  12. I am so sorry for your loss, Amber! I experienced a miscarriage last October, and back in 2005 I had a prematurely stillborn baby at 27 weeks, named Abram. I know how devistating the loss of a baby is. I'll be praying for you and your family.

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  13. I'm so sorry. I've never been through anything like that so I have no idea how you feel. But know that there are many people thinking about you. My eyes are full of tears reading your post... :-(

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  14. I'm so sorry for your loss. I'll pray for you and your family.

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  15. I am so sorry. I can't imagine what it must be like to go through this. You are in my prayers!

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  16. Amber...sending my thoughts and prayers to you and Tom and the kids.

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  17. I have no words, and can't fathom what you've gone through (and will continue to go through)

    {hugs}

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  18. Oh sweetie... I am so sorry for your loss. You have my thoughts and prayers.

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  19. I feel you pain! It took us seven pregnancies to have our three children and you never forget! My children each consider themselves one of four because one of my miscarriages was late (22 weeks) and we knew it was a girl. You will heal but you are right when you say you will never forget.

    (((hugs))) to you!

    Marge

    Visiting from SITS
    http://www.mommasweighloss.com

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  20. I'm so sorry. Losing a baby is so very sad. xoxo

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  21. I am so sorry. Wish I could give you a hug. Praying for you guys.

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  22. Take care, Amber. This totally sucks, but you're right... it is in God's hands. And it really wasn't your fault at all, as hard as that is to believe for mothers. Genetics just didn't work out this time, God decided it wasn't the right timie or whatever it was. Hang in there! I am so glad your mother is there with you.

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  23. I am just so very sorry for your loss. The picture at the end brought me to tears. Get some rest and know we are all sending positive thoughts your way!

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  24. So, so sorry for your loss.

    {{ hugs }}

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  25. I'm so sorry. That's a tough thing to go through, I can only imagine.

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  26. I am so sorry. Hugs...hugs for days.

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  27. Oh, honey. I'm so sorry you had to go through this. Huge hugs and sympathy tears.

    ♥Spot

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  28. Amber I have been in your shoes and it is not a good place to be. I pray that as you grieve you will be able to find peace and calm in the midst of chaos. I pray that you will know that there is a bigger plan and God loves you. Know that we are all sending you hugs and prayers!

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  29. So sorry! I will be sending lots of thoughts and prayers to you and your family.

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  30. Oh, Amber. I'm so sorry. I will be thinking and praying for you and your family. Good thoughts sending your way. I know it may be a strange offer, but email me at any time, if you feel like writing - or talking. I'm great at listening.

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  31. I'm so sorry. Your experience made me cry out of sadness as well out of anger. I'm glad that you are ok and that you have an awesome family to support you.

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  32. I am so sorry!! So so sorry! I have never had a miscarriage so can only imagine how difficult this is. I'm praying for you and your family!

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  33. I am so sorry for your loss. My heart aches for you all.

    I know how hard this time is for you. I will be praying for your entire family.

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  34. I'm sorry.

    The ER doc was/is a pig. Nurse was probably acting as she was told. Still doesn't make it right.

    I hope at some point you will share with the Director of Nursing and the Chief of Staff at the hospital your experience and your feelings. If nothing else, send them a print out of your blog - in this case I think a letter would have more impact than an email.

    Be well.

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  35. Miscarriages are painful, physically and emotionally. I remember laying in bed crying after my second one, then holding back the tears the next day as I did my hospice rotation.
    No one is to blame, and things happen for a reason.
    I pray you find solace in the following weeks and know you have a sisterhood out there that knows your pain & loves you!

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  36. I am so sorry. I am aching for you right now. Even though you were thrown for a loop when you first found out, I can tell you loved your babay. That is what counts. Rest, pray, meditate, whatever you do to get through this. You will be fine in the end.

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  37. Amber, I'm so sorry. I will hold you in my thoughts and pray you get through this okay. Great big warm caring hugs for you my dear.

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  38. I am so sorry for your loss! Your experience sounded scary, and I am sorry you had to go through it.

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  39. I cannot even fathom what you have gone through. I think it best you hear from others who have experienced this.
    I care.

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  40. What a horrible experience. I am so sorry for your loss. I am sorry the people in the ER weren't more kind to you. I am sorry for the sadness and pain you and your family have experienced.

    Thank you for sharing your story. It must have been so difficult. But it's an important story to tell.

    I'm so glad you have support to help you while you heal. Best wishes.

    Stopping by from SITS.

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  41. I'm so sorry that this had to happen to you. I hear it's terrible, and I'll definitely be keeping you all in my prayers. Take all the time you need...

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  42. I'm so sorry. You are in my thoughts.

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  43. My heart is with you and your family. I'm so glad you have such a fantastic support network around you - not only physically, but also here on your blog. Please take all the time you need to heal, and know that we are all behind you. <3

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  44. Amber, I'm so sorry for your loss. You did a wonderful job of writing about your experience; I'm sure that will turn out to be helpful for you and for others who read your words. All the best to your sweet family as you proceed to heal from this loss.

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  45. I'm so sorry. I've been there...we were actually overseas at a conference. I wasn't suppose to be able to have kids, and we were so excited. We were devastated after. There are no words to describe what your heart goes through, but try not to blame yourself. We won't know why these things happen in this lifetime, but it isn't our fault. Rest and grieve, and know that we're thinking of you all.

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  46. Oh wow. I am so sorry.

    I haven't experienced a miscarriage but know many women that have and it sounds like yours was very rough. You did an amazing job relaying this extemely difficult news.

    I'll be thinking about you as you rest and recover. I am so glad you have some help around to allow you some time to just be and sort through the change in how you thought things were going to turn out.

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  47. Oh Amber, I'm so sorry. Know that we're all here for you. Just know that you have a little one in heaven who gets to watch over you now. Hugs.

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  48. Amber, I'm so sorry that this has happened to you and your family.

    Thinking of you all.

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  49. I'm so so sorry. Take care of yourself and your family.

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  50. For those of us who experience miscarriage, there is a special bond. No one can really know what it is like unless it has happened to them.

    I hope you are able to take care of yourself, stay in your pjs for a few days and eat lots of sweets and horrible for you food while you watch awful reality TV.

    I'm so sad that you had to go through this. I really am.

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  51. Amber I am so sorry. I have read your blog since Tommy was a baby and we even chatted on AOL a few times (I was Queen Faux Pas on ITW, you probably dont remember) and I was so excited to read about your suprise. Im so glad you have your family with you.

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  52. I am so so so sorry. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

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  53. Oh Amber! I'm in tears. I am so, so, sorry.

    I am keeping you all in my thoughts. xo

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  54. Oh Amber! I'm in tears. I am so, so, sorry.

    I am keeping you all in my thoughts. xo

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  55. I am so, SO sorry you had to endure anything like this. Can't imagine how terrifying that all was. Grateful that you are ok, and hopeful that you really will feel better soon.
    Hugs sent your way.

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  56. Oh, that was me Allyson from MVP's of Mesa town that just commented. Apparently i'm logged in under my husband. Oopsy!

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  57. Oh Amber, I'm so sorry. I know how bad it hurts. Now you and your family have a special angel looking over you.

    Thinking of you...

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  58. I am so sorry for your loss. I too had lost a baby once. I had just came to terms with having two more babies (twins) after thinking how upset I was for getting pregnant. On my next ultrasound I found out that I lost one of the babies (miscarriages are weird when there are multiples). For the longest time I thought that G-d was punishing me for saying I didn't want to be pregnant. I hope it does not take you as long to really see that it is not because of anything you did, and your baby knows that you wanted it.

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  59. Amber, the truth is...it doesn't matter how many miscarriages a person has or how many times a person has tried to have a baby, no comparison can be made to your experience. Your loss belongs to you. Do not feel guilty for mourning. This baby was lost to you and to your family, no matter how many or how few children other people have. This was your baby that you were preparing to have join your family. Your candid writing about your experience lets us all know that miscarriages don't happen in a dark room in controlled circumstances. Right now, I pray for you to be healed physically and for you to be able to deal with your loss because this is your life experience. I will be reading again, as soon as you feel like writing. Take your time to take care of yourself, even if you are resistant to feeling as if you need much help. Take the help, love and support. Praying for you. You always show such courage.

    Lana

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  60. I check your blog every few days...it's a habit I've gotten into, but to be honest today I was ready to click off because I suffered a miscarriage about 9 weeks ago and am so jealous of anyone having a baby.

    Now I feel worse. My miscarriage was the worst feeling I've experienced. It isn't just the fetus, it's the loss of a promise of a new person. I'm so sorry you've lost your baby. I hope you can get through this.

    There is a great group on cafemom for miscarriage and pregnancy losses.

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  61. Oh Amber, I am so very sorry. I've been there and it is so hard. Take the time you need to gather your thoughts and be with your family. My thoughts are with you guys as you walk through this.

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  62. I'm so sorry Amber. My heart goes out to you and your family. And you're right, it's not your fault. These things happen and no one knows why. You are strong and you have a wonderful support system.

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  63. I am so sorry for your loss. Miscarriage is such a sad and frightening thing. No one wants to talk about it, and they just want to say "comforting" things. Truth is it sucks and you need time to grieve. My thoughts are with you and your precious family. Get well soon.

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  64. I found your blog from SITS and I wanted to just let you know how sorry I am. I recently just lost a baby at 9 weeks. The pregnancy was ectopic and it was the single worst experience of my life. It gets easier, but you will never forget that sweet life, as short as it was.

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  65. Oh honey.... I'm so so sorry. Sending you all of my love. I'm so sorry...

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  66. My heart is aching for you. You and your family will be in my prayers.

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  67. So sorry to hear about what happened. Your experience was identical to my own, but at 14 weeks I had to go in for a DNC because there was no indication that the little monkey was going to make its way out. Be assured that you will get pregnant again if that is what you desire even though that doesn't make it any easier take right now.

    Your story really hit home with me. I remember the ultrasound technician not talking to me and they called up a doctor to consult with me afterwards. I was so freaked out. My BP normally runs about 110/65 but when I finally got in to the doctors office it was around 180/95. I knew something was not right and I hated all the waiting to find out what the heck was going on. I still wonder if that pregnancy would have resulted in a girl or boy.

    Sorry for your loss, this is a tough one....I know.

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  68. This is one of my greatest fears in life. I am so sorry your pain wasn't met with compassion from the healthcare professionals--that just seems to add insult to injury. I pray for your healing & peace.

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  69. I have been out of computer world for almost two weeks so I was shocked when I read your blog today. I am so very sorry about your loss. Many hugs and prayers going to you and your family!

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  70. I am SO sorry for your loss. I had tears while reading this. It was like living my own many years ago all over again, and mine was almost exactly like yours. Love and hugs heading your way for you and your family <3<3

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  71. I cannot even fathom what you must be feeling. Take care of yourself.

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  72. I am so so sorry for your loss xox

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  73. Hugs, Amber. I'm so glad you have the support of your family right now, and that Tom is home with you. Take your time, grieve, and let your body heal.

    Your heart will take longer. But you won't ever be alone!!!

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  74. So sorry for your loss. Hopefully, your heart and body will heal soon. Can help but be angry that the doctors did not prepare you for what happened. It seems that you went through so much physically that maybe could have been avoided. Will look forward to seeing your blog again when you are ready again.

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  75. I'm so sorry for what you have to go through. You are an awesome mom. Prayers for you, Tom, and your family.

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  76. Thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.


    God Bless

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  77. I am so sorry for your loss, I couldn't fully imagine what you and your family are going through. My thoughts and prayers are with you guys.

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  78. I'm sorry, Amber. Take care, rest well and speedy recovery.

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  79. Thinking of you and your family.

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  80. I am so, so sorry for your loss. Your family is in my thoughts and prayers, Amber. I hope you stay well.

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  81. I'm so sorry for you and your family.

    Thank you for writing this post though, it will most certainly, help so many.

    Hugs, Amber.

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  82. I'm so sorry sweetie. ((Hugs))

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  83. By the time I finished reading this post, I was crying. I hope there was something I could do/say to make you feel better.

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  84. There's not much one can say except I'm so sorry that you had to go through this! :( I suffered a miscarriage last year (blighted ovum as well), and it was the hardest experience of my life. I won't give you empty platitudes because nothing will make this better but some time and maybe some chocolate therapy, but know you are in my thoughts. The one thing that really helped me get through it was throwing myself into a different activity--for me, it was P90x. My hubby deployed 2 weeks after the miscarriage, and I needed something to keep my mind off the pain of both losses.

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  85. Oh, Amber, I am so, so sorry! Please take care and extend my sympathies to Tom, too.

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  86. All I can really do is say that I am so sorry for your loss. I'll be praying for you and the family.

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  87. I am so sorry you and your family had to go through this!

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  88. I am so very sorry! I had a miscarriage before I had my oldest daughter. And you don't forget. I still think about what might have been each February.

    I'll keep you and your family in my prayers.

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  89. Ive been through this twice, and I wouldnt wish it on anyone!!

    Im sorry this happened to you and your family.

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  90. Oh Amber, I am terribly sorry. I too have been through this a number of times, and know that nothing anyone says will ease the pain.

    Thinking of you all

    xoxo

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  91. I can't even imagine how scary that must have been. So sorry you are going through this.

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  92. Amber, my heart breaks for you. I am sorry that you and your family are going through this. I can't imagine having to cope with this. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

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  93. i missed this post the other day. i'm so sorry. i've had three miscarriages and it's horrible.
    there's no way to prepare or process what's happening until you're in it.
    goodbye, belly baby. you're loved, even if you never got to breathe air.

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  94. I didn't read all the comments so if I reiterate I apologize.

    I cried...and hard. But I needed to so thank you so very much for sharing your story. When I was pregnant with Lil Duck I was actually pregnant with twins. I lost baby B about 13 weeks. It wasn't nearly as traumatic as what you described. I am so incredibly sorry. I am so thankful you have such an amazing Tom!

    You are such a beautiful woman. <3 I love the way your heart shines when you write.

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  95. I am so sorry you had to go through this. I took my job as an ER nurse very seriously, but never without empathy. They should have treated you with tenderness and explained what to look for in the days ahead. I apologize for them. It is hard to know what to say when something like this happens. Sorry doesn't seem like much, but it helps to know that others offer it. God bless.

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  96. I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. I've had 3 miscarriages myself and know exactly how you felt. It's horrible but you will feel better eventually. Hug your husband often and tell your kids you love them even more.

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  97. I am so sorry to hear about this. I hope you take time to relax and recuperate. It's physically and mentally draining, I hope you never have to go through it again. I had one in college, and although it wasn't a planned baby, I was devastated to find myself in the ER having a miscarriage :( Praying for you and your family!

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  98. I know this too well, and I have no words. I will be thinking of you and praying for you.

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  99. I don't know what, if anything, can be said to help in this situation. But your family will be in my prayers.

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  100. I'm so sorry, there's nothing else to say.

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  101. I'm a bit behind in my blog reading so I apologize that I just read about this now. I'm so sorry that you had to go through that.

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  102. Just catching up here Amber... I'm so sorry about your miscarriage, and the callous treatment you received at the ER. Also, I think you're really brave to put your experience and feelings out there - you never know who it may help. Thinking of you and your family, and sending tons of good vibes your way...

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