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My Miscarriage

I recently experienced my first miscarriage. While this is usually a more private topic, I have chosen to make my situation public to inform others of abdominal pregnancies.

If you are squeamish, I suggest you stop reading now. I don’t blame you if you don’t want to hear the rest.

A couple weeks prior to going to the ER, I started having relentless pain when in the bathroom. (I know, not a classy topic to discuss, but the more information I provide, the more you will know in case you or a loved one are faced with this.) The best way to describe the pain would be severe pressure that is focused on the rectal area. My tummy was also bloated and tender.

One cold Tuesday became a very painful day, and instead of just feeling the pressure in the bathroom, I was feeling it wherever I went, especially when I walked or ate. That night I called a 24hour nurse-line that our insurance provides. She suggested that I go to the Urgent Care immediately, or to a family doctor in the morning.

Based on my previous experiences with Urgent Care, I decided to wait until the morning to get in with a regular doctor. So I asked some friends for a recommendation in the area and called that doctor in the morning. I was relieved to hear that she would see me at 2:30 in the afternoon.

My pain worsened through the day and I took an unexpected nap on the couch before getting myself together and driving to the appointment. The doctor ran urine tests and thought I may have the start of a urinary tract infection, so she wrote a prescription for that. She also suggested that I may have internal hemorrhoids, so she wrote a prescription for that too and said to come back in two weeks if I wasn’t better.

I was discouraged that I wouldn’t have immediate relief and was not convinced that I had a UTI or a hemorrhoid problem. However, I had no choice but to drop off my prescriptions and go home. It was about 4:30pm and I knew the kids would want dinner soon, so I made a lasagna and put it in the oven. I must have had angels helping me because the pain was getting worse. Especially after I ate a granola bar.

While it was baking, my husband got a call from the repair shop that was fixing our vehicle’s fender bender. I was writhing in pain in the bathroom when he came to tell me he would be back soon, and looked concerned as he asked, “Are you sure you’re ok?” I told him I was and to come back soon.

After he left, I spent most of the time on the floor crying, praying, and attempting to look brave and happy when my little girls approached me. When I heard the timer go off for the lasagna, I used every ounce of strength I had to retrieve it, then returned to the floor where I called my parents. I said through my tears, “Mom, I need you to send dad down here to stay with the girls so that Jesse can take me to the emergency room. I am in a lot of pain.”

Thankfully, Jesse walked in the door right then and I hung up the phone and told him what I had decided to do. Embarrassingly enough, we argued about this for a moment while he felt we should go immediately and take our kids with us. I felt the opposite. I wanted them to be able to eat dinner and stay home. The ER is not a fun place for children.

While he fed the kids, I laid on the couch and texted my best friend who offered to come stay with the girls until my dad arrived. I gladly took her up on her offer and was soon on my way to the hospital.

The drive felt like an eternity, and was excruciating. I honestly didn’t know how much more pain I could take. I tried drinking some ice water but that made the pain even worse if you could imagine that. Luckily once I checked in to the emergency room, they quickly admitted me and gave me an IV of heaven to relieve the pain. I could not have dreamed up a better feeling. Fortunately, I was sitting in a wheelchair and a male nurse apparently had to transfer me to the hospital bed.

After my IV of heaven, Jesse said it made me as white as the sheets. I mumbled, "Show me a picture." Well if paleness is the price for being pain-free, sign me up! (I'm actually always this pale though.)

After my IV of heaven, Jesse said it made me as white as the sheets. I mumbled, “Show me a picture.” Well if paleness is the price for being pain-free, sign me up! (I’m actually always this pale though.)

Shortly after getting settled into a room, a doctor came in with the surprising and exciting news that we were pregnant! I was shocked because the timing didn’t match up right as I had just ended my period. We had been trying to conceive for the past couple of months and I was thrilled to hear that we had a baby on the way. The doctor sent me back for a ultrasound to find out more.

Eventually, the doctor came back to my room to discuss the results from the ultrasound. She thought that the baby had implanted in one of my Fallopian tubes, and that it would have to be removed surgically. I was devastated, but hopeful. When an OB/GYN became available, she came to discuss surgery with me and to perform a standard Pap Smear test. Unfortunately, she was not able to finish the pap because I was screaming in pain and clawing the table to retract from her. She said, “If you are in that much pain for a Pap Smear, then you just won yourself a ticket to the OR!”

She wanted to witness another ultrasound though since she wasn’t in the room for the first one, so they rolled me back to the ultrasound room. It seemed like she was speaking in code with the technician, and when I asked if she saw the baby in my Fallopian tube, she said she couldn’t see anything due to the amount of blood in my stomach. She was going into the surgery blind. Oh goodness I was nervous but so so anxious to make the pain stop.

I got sent back to my room to wait for the doctor to prepare the operating room. It felt like foooooor-eeeeeee-verrrrr. Suddenly the pain just took over my body and knocked me out. Everything is pretty blurry after that, and I couldn’t get words out except for grunts like, “uh huh” but there is one funny thing that happened. There was a middle aged male nurse who looked like he belonged in a biker bar that came and scooped me up out of the wheelchair and as he placed me on the hospital bed said, “You just wanted me to pick you up again!” If I had the strength to bust out in laughter, I would have because that was hilarious to me.

During my four hour surgery, they found a nine centimeter sack/fetus that had burrowed in my rectum. (My fallopian tubes were fine!) The doctors also removed a unit of blood from my stomach, and a small cyst from one of my ovaries. I lost a lot of blood, and received three units of blood in return. They also doubled my c-section scar and made it asymmetrical since, as the nurse said, “They were in a hurry.” I am very grateful I made it out of there alive. After surgery the doctor relayed the news to Jesse and said, “You are lucky she came in when she did. One more day and she wouldn’t have made it.”

I'm alive! I think my looks scared my poor girls though.

I’m alive! I think my looks scared my poor girls though.

Since the surgery, I have returned home to my family as I recover. It has been a painful recovery, emotionally as well as physically, but I am happy to be here with the children I was blessed to have, and a sincere husband. I am also thankful for wonderful family and friends that have provided childcare and meals for us.

I have come to find out that my miscarriage is considered an “abdominal pregnancy”. I had NEVER even heard of that type of pregnancy prior to my emergency surgery. This happens to ten out of 100,000 women. I don’t know that many women, so I think you are safe from this happening to you, but please listen to your body. Take care of your body and don’t put off going to the doctor when you feel something isn’t right. I had no idea I was pregnant, let alone that I would have a miscarriage. I thought my appendix ruptured or that I was having gallbladder problems. You just never know and I wish you all good health.

Have you or a loved one ever experienced an unexpected surgery? If you are comfortable, please share and inform us below. Also, you can find more information about abdominal pregnancies here.

12 comments… add one

  1. Oh, Janna. I’m glad you made it through all of this. I had read something about it on Facebook, and I wished I was there to make you a meal and babysit the kids, too!

    Thanks for blogging about it, though; I think it will help someone in some way, if only to remind them to pay attention to their bodies. So often, doctors can’t know everything because they haven’t lived with your body day-in and day-out, so it’s important to trust your feelings!

    Thanks, thanks, thanks. And take care. You have a lovely little family. :)

    Reply
    1. Thank you Sara, I love your uplifting comments!

      Reply
  2. I just read your blog entry for the second time, and I just have to say that I am so grateful you are okay. I followed Jesse’s Facebook posts religiously that night, waking up every hour or so to check online to make sure you were okay. At around 4 a.m. (I think), I read that you had come out of surgery safely, and I was just overwhelmed with gratitude. Many prayers were said on your behalf that night. I kept saying to Brandon, “she was just here yesterday to make sure I was okay, and the whole time she was the one truly suffering”! You are an amazing person, and I feel so blessed to have you as my VT.

    Reply
    1. Aww Julie, you don’t know what your comment means to me. Thank you for those kind words and for your sincere prayers.

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  3. wow Janna, I am so glad you made it through all that, the part of your story that is so scary is that you went to the dr. and they didn’t do any test, they were guessing!! Did they test your Urin? Did they even ask you if you could be pregnant? Did they even do a pregnancy test?
    I also have a story I could share, I had a miscarriage 12 years and 4 months ago, but who’s counting? the truth is you never forget it, I was almost 16 weeks, had already heard the heart beat and had bought a crib and was just starting to feel the flutters and had just started to show. and then one night I started to spot and to cramp, I got scarred called the dr and they told me to go to the ER, by that time I had started to pass a lot of blood and I knew I was loosing my baby, they did an Ultra sound and they told me I was having an abitual abortion I didn’t like the name but basically my body was aborting the baby they gave me some pills to help my body continue aborting the baby only it didn’t work, two days later I could barely stand up I had lost a lot of blood and my blood count was at a 7 the Dr said I was running on a half a tank, I had to have an emergency D&C. After that I did feel better, the best way I can describe the experience is like having a Period from HELL Emotional it is draining, but at the time I just wanted it to be over, I just wanted to be strong again, and as for losing the baby it is disappointing and it sucks, but it wasn’t as life shattering as one might imagine, because you are trying so hard to get better, The dr told me to have 2 cycles and try again And I remember thinking NO WAY I’m going to wait at least a year, Well I had my 2 cylces and then Gracie started cookin’, she was my first girl after 2 boys, I was very blessed,

    Reply
    1. Wow Cathy, thank you for sharing that story with me. I feel your pain. To answer your questions, yes, the dr checked my urine, but I’m not sure what she was checking for. She obviously didn’t do a pregnancy test! When she asked if pregnancy was a possibility I told her that we were trying to conceive, but that I had just ended my period two weeks prior. Maybe she thought like me and realized the timing just didn’t match up for a pregnancy to occur. Little did we know…

      Reply
  4. Since a baby is fully a baby when conceived, and God formed that child – I think you’ll see/meet that baby in Heaven some day!

    I hurt reading your experience – thank God you are doing OK and on the road to recovery.

    Reply
    1. Thank you Beth, I agree with you and am thankful for your reminder that I will be with that baby again one day.

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  5. Janna,

    I can’t believe I read this after doing my make-up for the day, time for a redo! So happy that you are okay and recovering from this. Love and prayers for you and your family!

    Reply
    1. Aww Trudy, you are so cute. Skip the redo, you don’t need it! Thank you for your love & prayers.

      Reply
  6. Hi Janna,
    I just read this for this first time. I am shocked I have never heard of this kind of pregnancy before either. I am so glad you went in when you did and that you made it through the surgery ok. Love, Ashley

    Reply
    1. Thank you Ashley. Ectopic pregnancies are the number one cause of death for women in their first trimester. If I’ve learned anything, it’s to listen to my body!

      Reply

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