Wednesday, 29 September 2010


It had been awhile since I had to worry about contraception.  My husband and I were trying for a baby, and then I was pregnant.  Suddenly, afterwards, we were stuck worrying about contraception again.

Has anyone else had to try to figure out which contraceptive is best after an ectopic pregnancy?  I didn't want an implant or anything like that for a lot of reasons.  I feel like my hormones have been through enough already this year, so I don't feel like going back on the pill (at least not yet).  In the end, we settled on the most basic method: condoms.

Maybe in the long term we'll switch, but I still don't know what the long term holds.  I think that, eventually, we'll probably try one more time for another baby.  I don't know when we'll be ready though.

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Follow Up Appointment

It's been about two months now since I lost my baby because it was an ectopic pregnancy.  I had a follow up appointment with the specialist at the hospital.  Tactfully, the appointment was not in the maternity ward.  In fact, I seemed to be surrounded in the waiting room mostly by old people waiting for blood tests.

I'm not sure what I expected from my follow up appointment, but this wasn't it.  First of all, it was extremely brief.  The doctor asked if my wounds were healed, and I said yes.  He didn't look at them at all.  He asked if I'd started my period again yet, and I answered no.  He said to expect them to be abnormal for a few months when I do restart and that it's normal for your cycle to take awhile to be regular again.  Then he asked if we were planning for another baby in the future, and advised us to wait at least three months (from the time of the surgery) and until I had had a normal period.  Then he said goodbye.  The whole appointment lasted about two minutes tops. 

I had expected to be given more long-term information and more discussion, but I'm not really sure what the purpose of the appointment was as the doctor didn't actually check anything or tell me anything that I hadn't been told in the hospital at the time.  Also, although he spoke about ectopic pregnancies in general, I felt like he wasn't very particular about my circumstances.  I got the impression that he hadn't bothered to read over my notes, and that he just wanted to get rid of me and my husband as quickly as possible so that he could go on with his day.

It was all completely medical.  I could have been recovering from any surgery (as far as the doctor's statements went).

I really wish medical care was more personal.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Finding Peace

It can be hard to make peace with an ectopic pregnancy.  For the few days, it was just panic and overwhelming and medical necessities.  There was too much urgency to really stop and think.  Once I got home from the hospital, grief moved in with us.  Grief is not polite.  It doesn't ask when would be convenient or offer to come back later.  Grief sneaks into bed with you, embraces you in your sleep, taps you shoulder when you're getting dressed, shadows you. 

Somehow we had to move on.  As much as I just wanted to curl up in a ball somewhere and give up, I still had two kids who needed me and didn't understand what was going on.

Here's how we made peace.  My husband and I felt that we needed some type of memorial, and my husband had the great idea to plant a tree.  We took our daughters out to nurseries and garden centers with us, and eventually we picked a beautiful little weeping willow. 

One day we sent the girls out with a relative so that we  could have a couple of hours without them.  My husband and I held our own little service.  We sang a couple of hymns, although saying we sung isn't really very accurate as we don't sound very good at the best of times and both of us were trying not to sob.  We prayed.  We read some religious quotes about the eternal nature of families and the hope of seeing our baby again.  We went outside and planted the tree, and then we planted flowers around it.  It's in a spot in the yard where we can see it easily from the biggest windows in the house.  We held onto each other and cried, but in a new, healing way.

We also picked a name for our baby.  It was too depressing for me to think that they never had a name.  So we picked a name with a beautiful and appropriate meaning.  

We concluded our little memorial service by praying together, and then we just sat and cried and hugged and looked out at our new little garden.

It seems like such a simple thing, but we've both felt so much better and more peaceful since then.  I still miss my baby and mourn for them, of course I do, but it is manageable. 

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Holding up

When I was pregnant, one of the very noticeable effects was that my breasts were fuller.  Also, the underwire in bras was really irritating.  Basically, even though I was still in the first trimester, I needed a maternity bra.  I special ordered one from a store that I usually buy my bras from. 

Today I managed to go into the store and explain that I no longer needed the maternity bra.  Without bursting into tears or even my voice cracking.  I even held it together in order to get refitted and get a normal bra instead.

Amazingly, I think I'm coping.