uncharted territory

When I started blogging, I didn’t quite understand the obsession with dates and particularly due dates – although I had read enough about the issue before we started trying to conceive that I purposefully don’t know the exact date when we started (and it very intentionally wasn’t our wedding). Perhaps it was because I had never been pregnant. Now, there were not only a due date, but also the 20w and 20w3d milestones etched into my heart. What I hadn’t counted on, though, was the fact that this was the ultrasound-adjusted counting from my OB that I eventually went with, not the original from my IVF, which is one day behind. Just one day shouldn’t make much of a difference, one might think. For the 20w date it kind of worked in my favor – I spent Saturday being very nervous, and then on Sunday, which actually marks 20w in this pregnancy, I felt sort of ok as the “real milestone” was already past.

On Monday, which in neither counting system falls on any anniversary, I had my anatomy scan. Strawberry is growing appropriately and has long limbs – her dad immediately claimed his influence, and that she’d be thankful for this later. Her* estimated weight was 3.5 bars of chocolate, plus/minus half a bar**. Only 27 bars to go. My cervix was measuring 3.4cm, well in the comfortable zone.

But then on Tuesday, I found myself a bit surprised to be sobbing on my yoga mat. I thought a lot about my dear little A & C. Whether they suffered. It’s hard to imagine they didn’t, with C hanging in there without fluid for three days, and A trying to breathe after she was born, both trying so hard to stay with us. It is a heartbreaking thought. I hope E will never have to suffer like this.

Wednesday, which I had expected to be the hardest day, was easier again.

On Thursday I went to a memorial event from my hospital. When I got the invitation, my main hope was to go there grieving two children, but with hope for their sibling, particularly as it was so close to our anniversaries. It’s actually organized by the children’s hospital, so I knew there would be parents that lost infants or older children, but it was sad and shocking to see pictures of happy healthy children, presumably taken before they got sick. There were even a few teenagers – I distinctly remember being this age. It’s usually not thought of as one’s last years. I think that, in addition to the collective sadness for all these losses, it hit me that 24w, while considered “viability”, isn’t “safe”. That there is no “safe”.

Then I got a cold, and we had self-inviting relatives over for a visit, and between those two I was too exhausted to post. I’ve even had another ultrasound now, with the lovely tech that enjoys making 3D pictures. Strawberry Baby was willing to show her girly bits again, and we saw a cute little nose much like her sisters’. Cervix still good. Exhaling, and waiting for that milestone that’s coming up in 1.5 weeks. It may not be “safe”, but I still like to think of our chances getting better every day.

* actually she had her legs crossed…
** proper 100g bars, of course


12 thoughts on “uncharted territory

  1. Oh man, how awesome to get through those tough milestones/anniversaries. And GREAT news on your cervix. I agree with you on the 24 week thing feeling safer even though life never promises safe forever at any age. I hate thinking about the pain my babies felt too. Brinly lived an entire week without water before the cord collapsed on her and Jude was 100% good as I was forced to labor him out. I remember asking the doctor-will this hurt him? I too hope Strawberry baby and my future kid/s never have to suffer either :( I’m watching your story so close and you give me hope. You are so brave and I am so happy you are on the path to holding A and C’s little sis. <3

  2. Every day certainly matters and 24 weeks is definitely a big milestone, even if our children are never safe! You’re doing a GREAT job of holding it all together during these really tough weeks! Glad to hear that Strawberry baby is still doing well and growing strong!

  3. I am glad to hear that baby E is doing well. I had to hold back tears when I read about your twins. I lost my twins as well and often wonder if they suffered – they were both born just 10 days short of viability, and struggled to breathe. They made noises. They moved. And my nurses and doctors told me they were not suffering, but I wonder if that was true. I really think that your little ones in heaven are watching over their little sister now.

    1. Thanks Krystal! Honestly, I’m not even sure how much is known about pain perception in such tiny beings, but in this particular situation I wouldn’t even mind if they lied – there was nothing either of us could have done. Wishing you peace.
      I do think that all our little ones are watching over us and their siblings.

  4. Glad to hear that Baby E is doing well and that your cervix is cooperating! That is one of the things with pregnancy after loss…when you get slammed with the “there is no safe point”. Though, I do have to say that celebrating any milestone you can may help bring more “normal” feelings into this pregnancy. I will always be scared that Gus or Lucy could die, but I try to keep that to myself (well I share those fears about Lucy with Jon because she’s not born yet), so that they can still be happy kids who are allowed to have fun. And yes, for many milestones that E reaches, you will cry for A&C, at least I still do. I remember crying over potty-training, because the other kids never got to experience it. Sending you hugs and peace.

  5. Your chances ARE getting better every day. I can’t imagine how hard it must be to be reaching that milestone for a second time. You’ve been so very strong.

  6. It is hard to think that there is no safe point. In pregnancy or beyond. One of my loss groups, a majority of the parents have lost teens or older. But I still look forward to the milestone of having this one out. I can’t explain why it’s different, but to me it is. I want whatever time I can get. The longer the better.

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