This post has taken us a long time to write, and even with a generous time frame it is still behind schedule. This is because some things in life are simply hard to articulate. For some things there are no real words.
Intentionally or not, we rolled the dice. We were not sure what numbers would come up and no one expected the playing table to be upturned on us before the dice had come to rest. We’d not truly been able to fully grasp the situation we were finding ourselves in and we were suddenly in a different one, a much darker place.
Kristy wasn’t well, she was laid up in bed rest and it was difficult. She’s a very active person, I describe Kristy to others as someone who runs flat out until she hits a brick wall forcing her to lie down for a while and then up she gets, climbs over that wall and off she goes again. Seeing her struggling is difficult, especially when it was for the task of preserving a pregnancy.
The bed rest wasn’t being obviously helpful, Kristy was frustrated, I was frustrated, nothing seemed to be going the way we thought it was. The doctors had been unhelpful, at least that is how we felt, and answers were not forth coming. After just over two weeks on bed rest Kristy had the first of two follow up scans. In spite of the blood tests and the notes of from the first ultrasound, Kristy, felt that the news was not good from what she saw during the scan. She came home distressed and concerned about the coming weeks, there was nothing I could do other than be there for her and offer small comforts.The opinion of the specialist was totally at odds with the outcome that Kristy was resigning herself to, from what she had seen and understood from the results provided was that our pregnancy was over. The specialist however was more optimistic and wanted a follow up scan to be completed a week later to ensure that the outcome was truly known. I found this heartbreaking, I’d just come to the acceptance of us having a child and then I knew it was not happening. I trusted Kristy’s judgement over the doctor’s, but allowed myself the small hope that maybe things would be ‘OK’…
Almost a week after the first scan we attended again, this time we felt it was for the closing of a chapter. We already were aware that Kristy’s pregnancy hormones had dropped. I felt that this was more about closure and less about confirmation. It hurt but the pain was more of the ache you get from a healing wound, something you knew you would survive.
As the scan proceeded it was clear that measurements and dates were no closer to matching. So, again, like every scan since Kristy’s hospitalisation, they went hunting for a heartbeat. We did not need to be told. We knew what we saw, or rather what we were not seeing. Yet, we were told anyway.
Neither of us took the news we were afraid of hearing particularly well, no matter that it was in many ways expected. Kristy was numb with grief, she’d been living in this state of dread for such a period that the confirmation of our, her, loss, was an unshackling of the emotions that had been held at bay. It meant also that plans could start to be made, forward movement could once again occur, even if that was going to be in a different one to what we had just started to come to expect.
There was some relief, a lot of grief and disappointment. Not just around the loss of the baby, but also the concept of what it could have meant to us. We’ve got a family, seven children we love and cherish, the idea of another was frightening, but also held a seed of promise. Could they be a link between our two sets of children? Could they increase the depth of our relationships? These and others were questions that would remain unanswered. All that we had left was to say goodbye to someone we had never met.
Next on this theme: ‘Taking time to ‘reset’‘.
Missed this series up until now? Read from the start with “Out of Control“.
Kristy has spent time over the last few weeks collecting pins on a board ‘Miscarriage & Loss of a Child‘ that met her in her grief. Just last night she made the board public so you can check it out for yourself at your leisure.
Photography with thanks to Lyndal Gibson, especially for being willing to share the journey, and to Dr Jones & Partners for special permission to undertake photography on premises.