This is Part II in a series of posts covering the story of our second miscarriage. I call the series “Quiet Hand” as I am often reserved to share pieces of my life story. However, beneath an often perceived shy girl there’s a deep well of words which given the opportunity, bubble to the surface.
We all face loss in our lives — loss of a loved one, a job, a life dream, a relationship. Through sharing, I’m giving a voice to the often silent grief of infertility and pregnancy loss. Sure, our loss may pale in comparison to what others have lost but it’s the road God’s asked me to walk and I’m happy to share it with the hope that these words and this one woman’s journey through the fire will bring an ounce of comfort to anyone suffering. Read Part I here.}
QUIET HAND, PART 2 — KITE FLYING
I wish I could say that I offered up a couple prayers and snap! crackle! pop! all of the worry and anxiety disappeared.
Leaving the ER bathed in ultrasound gel and with unexplained abdominal pain — other than pregnancy side effects — was disconcerting to say the least. I arrived home to an empty house; my husband still in New York, my son at his aunt’s house. Sleep finally called and the diagnosis of a small bacterial infection came the next morning.
Normally, a small infection is no big deal but when you’re pregnant and all too familar with miscarriage you can’t help but escape an itching case of the “what ifs?” Even the most Postive Prayerful Petunia, whom I strive to be in most situations, is simply Petunia in her most human state.
A litany of Bible verses crossed my mind. “Cast all your anxieties on Him…be anxious for nothing…” Good scriptures that bring comfort and peace in times of pleading with an often anxious heart. Yet the fight was fierce. Negative Nancy, in all her doubting glory, danced on my other shoulder.
Trust is a little (or a lotta) bit like kite-flying. All I could do was unwind the kite string and submit my beautiful diamond to the windy bright blue sky. Just run with it and enjoy the course of exhilirating dips here and there, trying to swallow the underlying fear of a plumetting nose dive that you can do nothing to stop.
Early the next week another ultrasound declared our young pregnancy as “viable.” The handy dandy pregnancy fruit comparison told us he or she was about the size of an appleseed. We walked out with a due date in the early fall and a request to come back in a week for one more “good” ultrasound.
So we waited some more.
“Cautiously optimistic,” Peter D. would say.
Almost instaneously, fatigue and all-day sickness washed over like waves with both an undertow and riptide. Although not obvious to the naked eye I felt like the ugliest color of green in the crayon box. I took these as signs that all was progressing normally, ate crackers and sour candy, took prenatal vitamins, and drank fizzy soda water and Coke. I even purchased some maternity clothes for good measure.
You bet I was going to allow that kite to flap in the wind.
Nervous butterflies followed me everywhere including the dark room of the following ultrasound. About a minute after inserting the probe, a blinking white ball of a heart appeared on the grainy screen.
A heartbeat! I’m not sure when you believe life begins but I can tell you that seeing your pea-sized little guy or gal and hearing his or her beating heart, well, there’s not much else in this world that can take your breath away. We loved that white ball of a baby from first sight. Our Sweet Pea.
. . .
“It may be that the heart is kickstarting,” the doctor shared several minutes later, slightly concerned with the slow, erratic heartbeat the tech recorded — the first in the 50s and the second in the 120s. “It’s still early. These cases are 50/50 and can go either way. I’d like to see you in another week.”
So began another week of waiting, releasing yet again our baby up to the Heavenly Father. Let your will be done is a scary, vulnerable thing to pray yet equally freeing as I cast off the weight of blaming myself for any possible future outcome. People say not to Google medical issues but I found myself burning the midnight oil researching outcomes of low heartbeats and success stories on various pregnancy forums and medical journal articles. Two words kept creeping up on the glaring white screen: embryonic demise.
C’mon little kite, stay a flyin’.
Glimpses of Grace
- Several opportunities to see our little Sweet Pea “on screen.”
- Our 5-year old son did not know anything but somehow was in tune asking about all things baby-related.
- Reminders of God’s sovereignty