Tuesday, October 14, 2008

My Uterus Is Not My Buddy

Remember the My Buddy commercials? I do ... I even had one when I was little, I think. But right now, all I wish is that my uterus would be my buddy again. We've been through a lot together, and I don't know what I did to piss it off, but I wish it would just stop being mean to me.

My uterus and I have been through the mill together ... In the summer of 2002 I had a miscarriage, and I mostly dealt with it alone. Ex-husband wasn't even Husband yet which makes me feel even more stupid for marrying him after he pretty much left me alone to lose our baby by myself. And I know it's not like he could have bled for me ... but I didn't have a D&C with that baby. My doctor and I chose to let nature take it's course, and over the next week, I lay alone on my couch, cramping and hurting for the child I would never hold. I spent my days that week hoping that by some miracle the blood would stop and my baby would start to grow again and everything would be fine. But each time I went to the bathroom, I'd go pee and see the water turn pink. I'd see the paper turn red when I cleaned myself, and know that my child was still dead. Maybe it would have been very ill and not lived anyway, maybe it just wasn't my time. Then, I was convinced that it would have been a girl, a little girl who died because I so desperately wanted a boy. I know better now, but it still hurts. It still hurts remembering how alone I was, and that heartache completely overshadows whatever pain I might have had physically. I had heard that miscarriage would hurt physically even more than a regular labor, so I was terrified along with feeling guilty, shamed, and just lost. But I don't remember any strong pain at all, just really bad cramps.

Then with Teenybop, I had a really rough pregnancy. I was sick the whole time, throwing up, and I was so hot during the winter at the end of the pregnancy that I would wear cotton pajama pants and a men's cotton t-shirt outside. With flip-flops. And I'd gripe that it was hot outside, wearing so little clothes and in 30-degree weather. I would throw up so hard that it would make me bleed, it would make me wet myself, it would make my throat hurt and sometimes bleed. I threw up so hard and so often that I was in and out of the hospital the whole time I was pregnant with her, because no matter how much I'd drink, I would throw up enough to keep myself dehydrated. It was awful, and I think maybe the constant dehydration was part of why she was never an active baby. I didn't feel her move more than a couple times, and I never got the bumpy rolling belly that other pregnant women had. My baby simply would not wiggle, no matter how much I poked and prodded my belly trying to spur her into action.

Finally the vomiting gave way to heartburn that was so bad I'd have to throw up anyway just to stop the burning. I was eating Tums like candy and it was doing nothing. I couldn't even sleep in my bed because if I'd lay flat it felt like I'd swallowed a fire that was burning my insides. In the end, the last day of my pregnancy was miserable, and I was in the hospital again, being filled with saline from an IV because I was dehydrated again. They filled me up, watched the mild contractions I was having on the monitor, and said that both baby and I were just fine. They sent me home, told me to rest, but I was a little hungry so I went to Wal-Mart instead, just to pick up something to eat. I wanted Hot Pockets with milk to drink ... both things that I didn't have at the moment at home. So I went to Wal-Mart. I got the Hot Pockets, forgetting to check the ingredients for yucky things that I don't eat, like onions ...

I headed to the back of the store to get my milk (Mayfield brand only, please), and somehow I ended up chatting with the Mayfield delivery woman. I remember that she was a very VERY large woman, tall and still much rounder even than I was at the time. She had big curly brown hair and a big brown Mayfield jacket on, and I have no idea how we ended up talking. But as the conversation progressed I told her how I'd been at the doctor and that they'd told me to rest at home, and she laughed and said, "Oh, no! Don't you go home little girl (I was 20 at the time), you're going to want to walk around a bit. You're having a baby tonight."

I thought she was crazy! I was too early, there was no way I was having a baby. My baby was in the breach position, and I'd been scheduled for an early c-section specifically to prevent my going into labor. Even the surgery date was a week away ...

I went home that night and tried to forget about the crazy Mayfield lady, but I had lost my appetite in my fear that she was right. I watched some tv, and finally I was hungry again, so I got out the Hot Pockets and popped them in the microwave. They smelled great, and I remember thinking they would be really good with the milk I was pouring, preparing to go eat them while I watched my show.

They were horrible. They had onions in them, and not only could I taste them, but they were a little crunchy. I choked down half the first one, but then I gagged and knew there was no way I was going to finish them, so I finished my milk instead and threw the Pockets in the trash. I watched the rest of my show, and curled up on the couch for bed since it was the only place I could sleep comfortably. Eventually I was awake again, feeling so much heartburn and so much nausea that I wanted to throw up just to make it better. And as I lay there, I could feel it coming, so I jumped up and tried not to trip over the dog as I ran to the bathroom. I got there just in time to lean over the sink ... the toilet was farther and there was no way I'd have made it there. I threw up, and felt my water break, but I thought I'd wet myself, so I tried to sit on the toilet and stop the flow, but there was no stopping in. I realized what it was, and the Mayfield woman's face floated in my head. I was in fact, going to have a baby that night. As I called my family to meet Ex-Husband (who was Husband at the time) and I at the hospital, I prayed I'd get there before I started active labor, prayed I'd get there before labor put my daughter in danger. And I did, the surgery went well and there were no complications. That story goes on, but after the birth my uterus stopped being such a big part of story, you know, so we'll just move on. It must have been at that point, at the very point of the scalpel, that I lost my friendship with my uterus.

Now I'm pregnant again, I'm only seven weeks along, and there has been a lot of spotting. A LOT. I've been to the doctor about it, and while they say my ultrasounds show a good growth level and things look well, my chances of ever having this baby in my arms are slim to none. They say I've got whatever 15% of 50% is of having this baby, and I'm no good at math, but I know that works out to being a very small number. So my uterus is NOT my buddy ... and I could use your prayers if your reading ...