We’ve heard from Ruth twice before. The first time she spoke candidly of the frustrating diagnosis of ‘unexplained infertility’ and, most recently, shared her experience of the relentlessness of undergoing IVF. I know her story has been of great help to many of you and here is her next instalment. We pick up where she left off.
Disbelief, that was the overriding feeling when I saw the positive pregnancy test. I spent about £40 on different pregnancy tests – I wanted to make sure that the line was getting darker. I splashed out on digitals to see it in writing and was delighted to see it said 2-3 weeks. Having got this far after so long I was well aware of how precious this pregnancy was and how easily I could lose it, but I decided to try to relax. After all, worrying about what might happen would not be beneficial, would it?
Two days after my good news it was New Year’s Eve and I was going to a party at a friend’s house. I was going to have a job keeping my news quiet, I am well known for my love of fizz. I declined an offer of a drink in front of everyone, citing the excuse of antibiotics – they all looked at me. I could tell they didn’t believe me and knew they suspected, but I hoped no-one would say anything. I didn’t want them to know, what if I miscarried? An hour after midnight I went to the loo, glad to escape from my very very drunk friends. As I wiped I looked down and saw blood. My heart was beating out of my chest. Not blood, please no. I wiped again, hoping it would be clean, but there was more. I wanted to cry. I raced downstairs and grabbed my husband, it took me ten minutes to make him understand what I meant and that we had to leave (he too was smashed after copious amounts of champagne cocktails!). There was nothing I could do when I got home but try and sleep and call someone in the morning. The next morning the bleeding had stopped and a pregnancy test showed a positive result. I felt relieved but not relaxed. The clinic was closed as it was New Year’s Day so I waited and called them on the 2nd January. I was told in a very matter of fact way that there wasn’t much they could do and I should go to A and E if the bleeding came back or got worse. I had to cross my fingers and hoped that I made it the two weeks for my first scan. It was longest two weeks of my life, even worse than the two week wait. Luckily the bleeding didn’t come back so I was able to go for my six week scan at the clinic.
I nervously sat outside the scan room waiting to be seen for my six-week viability scan. This is where they check to make sure that the pregnancy is in the right place, is the right size and has a heartbeat. I could hear another couple in there and I heard the Dr say, “Congratulations!”. This for some reason made me more nervous. When our turn came the doctor found the baby quickly with Dildo-cam and it was in the right place (ectopic pregnancy is still possible with IVF), was the right size and had a heart beat. I kept on saying to the doctor, “I can’t believe it worked!”. I think she thought I was a bit mad and said, “We wouldn’t be allowed to do it if it didn’t work”. I was given a photo of what looked like a baked bean and went home.
Ten days later, when I was at work, I noticed more blood. I cursed my luck. Of course I would have trouble, my body was incapable of conceiving without help after all. I went back to my desk and decided to ask to go home, I felt devastated and couldn’t concentrate on my work. I emailed my sympathetic boss who said I could go, then my desk phone rang. Stupidly I answered it. It was an irate customer going mental at me and I spent half an hour to getting rid of her. On my way to the train station I nearly knocked over a few dawdling tourists in a desperate bid to get home as quickly as possible. I got home and found no more blood. I thought pregnancy would mean an end to the constant knicker-watch of trying to conceive. How wrong I was! This time the bleeding stayed away enough for me to relax and start actually believing I was pregnant.
I started window shopping for baby things and allowed myself to watch One Born Every Minute (I had stopped watching it as I found it too upsetting). Then more bleeding 9 weeks, again at work, this time it was bright red and clotty. I raced home and booked the next available GP appointment (the following day), he referred me to the Early Pregnancy Unit. As we sat in the waiting room, the bad memories I had of my ectopic two years previously came flooding back. They hadn’t even changed the very depressing miscarriage posters on the walls. I went into the sonogram room expecting to meet Dildo-cam again, but they did an external scan. A first for me. We both looked at the screen and saw a prawn. My baby! There it was! With a perfect heartbeat and was measuring perfectly for the dates. Another milestone reached, I was nine weeks pregnant and I had seen the prawn to prove it.
‘An IVF Pregnancy: Part 2′ coming soon…