Last week I said that I'd been feeling ill and a lot of you, because you're all so lovely, commented hoping I was feeling better soon. I read those comments with a small smirk on my face knowing that it was unlikely I would stop being sick for another 5 weeks or so. For my friends, the sickness which was commanding my attention, draining me of energy and leaving my throat red raw was in fact morning sickness. Fortunately not in the Kate Middleton spectrum, but grotty all the same, and really rather horrid. If I wasn't being sick, I felt sick. Ginger, check, lemon, check, keeping tummy full even when feeling sick, check.
I found out I was pregnant the day before our wedding anniversary and joy and happiness abounded throughout the Hussey household despite our not telling anyone (except for my sisters) until we were in the 'safe zone'. Unexpected, but a pleasant surprise. Of course, knowing we would be moving around June was slightly concerning as I'd be 6 months pregnant but not un-doable.
Around here you don't go to your doctor to tell them you're pregnant, you call the midwives who book you into their system and then send you your 12 week scan date and info booklets in the post. So I did. I mentioned that I had been spotting and had some small discomfort in one side and they advised me to speak to my G.P. if if got any worse.
The dull throb escalated to some sharp stabbing pains in my side over the weekend so Monday I booked myself an appointment for Monday morning. NHS being what it is you can't book it in advance, you call up in the morning at 8.30am and take your chances on getting in that day. Phew, I did! I saw my GP who called the gynaes at the local (well, next town over) hospital who agreed I should go up for an early scan. She gave me a letter and told me to report to the A&E reception desk (accident and emergency, like the ER for anyone in the US). The letter said gynae expecting. I assumed I would be seen fairly promptly seeing as they were expecting me. Yeah. No.
We got there, waited an hour in A&E, were taken through for blood pressure and a sample to be given. Back to the waiting room to wait for the gynae Dr who would be half hour. An hour and a half I went back to reception and asked for an update. She came back and said, soon young pad'uan, your time will be soon. (Not a direct quote). Half hour later we went through to a cubicle and had internal and external exams, blood tests etc. We were left then for a while with no communication or anything and two hours later when I said I wanted to go home a senior Dr came to see me to check it was ok to go home. 6 hours we were there in total. As usual I just felt as though they were on skeleton staff with inefficiencies in the system that they were working within. I felt kinda bad for the doctors and nurses who obviously were over stretched and seemed to spend most of their time trying to find someone's file, piece of paper or even patient. They lost a 90 yr old for around 45 minutes if the overheard conversation was anything to go by!
My advice from Monday's experience is thus:
*When visiting an NHS hospital, expect your time there to take no less than 6 hours and if it does you'll be pleasantly surprised.
*Wear many layers, the waiting room is over heated and stuffy, the cubicle was too chilly
* Take some food and water, if you are allowed to eat you'll want to and find it hard to find something healthy, nutritious and not ridiculously priced.
*Let your husband sit on the wafer thin mattress and you sit on the chair else you'll have a two day numb bum!
So, today then, I had to go back for a scan. Afterall, they can't tell what's going on just from exam and blood tests. I had an appointment time of 11.30am. My friend Benny commented that it was very cute of me to think my appointment would be on time. Surprisingly though I was taken in for my scan at only 12pm! Amazing!!
As I'm only 7 weeks today they couldn't see much detail so decided to do an internal scan and following that confirmed what I'd had an inkling of a thought of. No heartbeat. The technician (nurse, doctor, sonographer?) called it a failed pregnancy. I felt like I was getting some test results that I'd done badly in when she said failed.
So from there we were sent back up to the Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit (EPAU) waiting room to see the doctor. I say waiting room. It was a regular ward room but with the bed removed and some chairs put in. It wasn't particularly pleasant waiting knowing what we did, trying to keep it together as there were so many other people there waiting. I guess we'd hit the lunch break as it was all so quiet and nothing appeared to be happening.
90 minutes later the doctor called us through and discussed our options. Options, ha! That's a joke. We have no options, it's over. The only options are how medically involved we want the end to be. We went for the 'go home and wait' option with a follow up scan in a week or two and a possible surgical intervention if it's not all over.
Of course I cried. Mostly because I'd been sat for 90 minutes holding my feelings in not wanting to lose it in 'public' in such a confined space. Must be my good old British stiff upper lip.
Total visit time today: 3.5 hours.
Sniffy chops is keeping me company on the sofa with my blankie this evening while I try not to think about the lingering nausea and what's still to come.
|Sniffy Chops & Blankie|
It's brought to my mind the age-old argument of when does life begin. There's no heartbeat, so did it ever live? Does it begin as soon as the cells start to form? When the brain functions? When it can move and wiggle? I don't know, I'm not sure I even want to get into that argument The truth is that I'd kinda gotten used to the thought of having a baby, being a mother and now I'm not. Knowing what I do about how I react with morning sickness is it something I want to go through again? I know it's a 'small' price to pay for a child but it's so horrid feeling so ill all the time and lurching from waking to bedtime stopping only at voms-ville on the way.
Anyway, enough soul searching and gloomsiness, I'm physically ok for the time being. I know there's some discomfort to come but for the minute Dusband and I are taking some time to care for each other. (Mostly him caring for me, he's very good at caring. I'm very good at laying on the settee)
To my testers: I'll try to stick to my Friday deadline, it might not be as polished as you're used to but if I struggle I'll let you know.