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One in Four: Our Story One Year On
It is amazing how much things can change in the space of just 1 year.
This time last year, we had just experienced our fourth miscarriage. I was beginning to wonder whether I could keep persisting with the pregnancy / miscarriage / D & C / pregnant again and repeat roller coaster and was feeling pretty defeated about the prospect of trying again.
If you followed along our “One in Four” series last year you may recall that I shared our experience in my post “Our Story: Four for Four” and although I finished the post by saying:
“We start feeling fairly down and defeated.
But that doesn't stop us.
Because this isn't the end of our story.”
I was finding it increasingly difficult to believe in the words I was writing.
People were urging us to “take a break” and saying that I would enjoy the end of the year and Christmas season so much more if I wasn’t thinking about impending pregnancies… I considered whether taking a break would be worthwhile and decided that as I was nearing 32 years of age and expecting another 3 miscarriages, at least, on average due to the balanced translocation that I really didn’t have any time to waste…
…and it was lucky we decided to keep persisting.
Because on the morning of Christmas Eve, 2017 we found out we were pregnant again for the fifth time.
On the one hand I was a little disappointed about missing out on Christmas cocktails and general new year celebratory drinks (knowing that I wouldn’t be able to get any kind of tests done until well into the New Year) and on the other hand I had a sliver of hope that this would be “the one”.
I found the first 3 months of the pregnancy extremely stressful. There were scans and blood tests and decisions to be made about whether to have invasive testing and I felt on edge pretty much every day.
With each passing test I felt a little more confident, and when I finally felt little G5 move for the first time at 17.5 weeks (earlier than I was expecting due to low lying placenta) I was overjoyed and slightly in disbelief.
At the time, I wondered whether he was moving or I was imagining it, but his little movements become more obvious with each passing week and I ended up spending the majority of my days monitoring fetal movements almost obsessively.
I got so crazy about it, I would even deliberately press on different parts of my belly just to wake him in the night to reassure myself he was still OK.
Even though all the tests and movements were reassuring, I still constantly worried about whether he would be born healthy…
…and finally, the day arrived when we got to meet our little guy.
He was born on the 3rd of September, 2018 and was perfectly healthy. He passed all his tests with flying colours and we were overjoyed to see his gorgeous little face.
It didn’t take away from all the heartache we had experienced over the 2 and a half years prior, but it did make me feel as though our persistence was worth it.
If you are experiencing recurrent loss or infertility I can completely understand all the questions you ask yourself about whether it is worth it and whether you should keep going… and after all of this, I can honestly say that the sheer intensity of happy emotions when you finally have the baby in your arms far outweighs all of the stress, anxiety, fear and devastation associated with setbacks and losses.
The two states are almost not comparable in that they are so vastly different, but I do think it has made the tricky parts of learning how to parent a newborn so much easier than it would have been otherwise.
Dealing with a screaming baby in the middle of the night (or the middle of the day), recovering from birth, changing what feels like 1000 nappies a day, constant sleep deprivation and managing the extreme challenges that come with early breastfeeding just does not seem that bad after the difficult times we have been through and certainly helps to give some perspective.
If you are going through your own challenge with loss or infertility I hope our story (and the other stories you will see throughout this month) will help give you some hope that things can get better and miracles happen every day.
Even on the days when you feel like your turn is never coming, remember that things can start looking up when you least expect it.
I hope you enjoy reading the stories that will be shared in honour of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day this October. If you would like to help raise awareness and reduce the stigma associated with talking about infertility and pregnancy loss by sharing your story this October 2018, please send your story to firstname.lastname@example.org or if you would like to share your story anonymously please fill out the form on our get in touch page.
All submissions received will be shared on our blog "One in Four" throughout the month of October.
Photo Credit: Ammon Creative
Make Up: Risca Tanning, Beauty, Nails
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