That’s a lot of miscarriages. Bellow is the second of a 4-part-series I wrote about the early miscarriage I experienced last month. One of the main reasons I wrote this series was to help relieve some of the stigma surrounding miscarriage. So many couples go through this in one way or another, but it is so rarely spoken about. Most women I have spoken to about their experiences with miscarriages say that they had no idea what to expect once they realized they were going to have a miscarriage. Some were also not well informed about their options and later regretted the choice they made. I hope that this series will help women know some of the possible outcomes they can expect, as well as realize that they are not alone.
I decided to wait for things to happen on their own, being fully aware of the risks, and the warning signs to watch out for in case I would need to go to the emergency room. I knew that 1 in 3 women who choose to go this route end up needing a D&C anyway. With the pill only 1 in 6 women end up needing to have a D&C. It was certainly an uneasy place to be, just waiting for something to happen, but I was so buys, with my children all taking their turns being sick with a nasty stomach bug, and their winter break coming up in a few days time.
I consulted with my naturopath and bought a homeopathic remedy, which would theoretically help my body do what it needs to do. My spotting increased from brown to red and continued like this for a week. I began to experience slight contractions on a Thursday before winter break. I told my husband it felt like early labor, or the week before labor when my contractions build up slowly. On Friday evening the contractions continued to intensify. As we were having Friday night dinner, thankfully without any guests, they were picking up. I tried to ignore them, as we still had to do the bedtime routine. By the time we were tucking our kids into bed I couldn’t stand still, or sit at all as the contractions were too intense. I was having a hard time listening to my kids, talking to them with patience, or meeting their needs. My husband was trying to take over, but they’re so used to me putting them to bed that it wasn’t easy. As soon as they were in bed I found a comfortable way to lean on the couch and moan through the contractions. I had to vocalize through the pain. This was real labor and I did not expect it to be like that!
WARNING: This next section has graphic details you may want to skip. If you are sensitive to pain and blood please do not read.
I continued like this for three hours. I had read that the contractions usually last between 2-3 hours. But I still could not believe I would feel this bad. I took the full dosage of Advil and Tylenol. Since I almost never take any pain medication I felt really strange in my head and body from all the medicine. This feeling scared me as well as the strong contractions in my body, and all the bleeding. I had a thick pad on but I tried to run to the bathroom whenever I felt a gush or big blood clot coming. I found myself laboring on the toilet for some contractions, and alternately on the couch for other contractions. Just like with real childbirth, changing my positions and locations was helping me cope with the pain.
As time progressed I got more scared. This was not like the other births. I did not know what to expect. As we passed the two-hour mark I had my husband call the midwife and ask her if this was normal. Unlike a regular birth, it was not the midwife’s job to come to our house, or even be available by phone. But she was very kind and helpful. She told us what to watch out for and reassured us that I was not bleeding too much yet, and that the intense contractions were normal.
To my shock, soon after talking to her, the contractions began to calm down. I still did not release the sack, so I knew things were not over, but I was happy to have a break. I even gave my husband permission to go to sleep and told him I’d get him if I needed to. After he fell asleep I realized that my contractions had stopped almost completely. I could not believe it. “ALL THAT PAIN AND IT’S OVER?!!! But where is the sack? Is it still in me? Will I need to go to the hospital to get it taken out? What do I do now?”
All those questions ran through my mind. But I decided to accept things for now and get the sleep I can get. I was able to clean up from the labor, put away the medications, pick up pillows, brush and floss my teeth, etc. The miracle was that both my husband and I had a full night of sleep. All of our kids slept through the night, and slept late in the morning.