Thursday, August 2, 2012

So this is me, attempting to catch up. I haven't written in what we call in the South, "a month a Sundays."

Our first pregnancy (Dec. 2010) turned out to be an ectopic. I made it to 10 weeks "pregnant," marveling at how great I felt, reveling in the excitement of "carrying life." While I was at work, helping a sweet couple labor with their first child, I began, very quietly, to bleed.
The smooth even of my world shattered in an instant. My husband collected me from work, and the midwife's voice on the phone confirmed it after the emergency blood work: no baby for us. The next morning in her office, as I sat weeping, she patted my shoulder and informed me that, "this, too, is a side of being a midwife."

From there, it's a fog of endless glasses of water, repeated violations with the vaginal ultrasound probe, empathetic faces averting their eyes from mine, and explaining it a million times over to everyone: "Yes, Gran. My body thought it was pregnant. No, there never was any baby. Yes, I'm fine." Whatever that meant.

A shot of methotrexate and a few weeks later and I was back to work, ready to get about the human business of moving on.

Not long after that, I woke around five a.m., cramping. Thinking I was having gas pains, I decided to get up and walk around a bit. 10 minutes after getting out of bed, I was dry-heaving on the floor, sweat dripping into my eyes and down my neck. In between heaves, I screamed for my husband. My appendix was apparently rupturing. My dumb luck.

About half an hour later, the E.R. doctor was asking me about my ectopic a few weeks previous. Through a haze of pain, I snappishly asked what the ectopic had to do with the price of tea in China. He calmly responded that my severe pain was likely due to a complication from that, not the appendix as I'd thought.
We found out a day later that my ovary (presumably the site of implantation for the ectopic) had been very kindly leaking blood into my pelvis, which eventually caused my sudden and severe pain. Excellent. My utter dumb luck.

But, like all tragedies, it's begun to fade. Somewhere in there I withdrew from grad school. Angry at the process of childbearing (and sometimes, as in my case, losing) I took my revenge by vowing to have no part in it.

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