When Her Heart Stopped Beating {Trigger Warning}

my-miscarriage-story

It’s the aspect of pregnancy that’s just not talked about, it’s a part of pregnancy that I thought would never happen to me, but it did…my baby’s heart stopped beating.

8 weeks ago today I found out that I had lost my baby, I had miscarried at 9 weeks. I had absolutely no signs, no pain and no bleeding, up to that point, life was full of dreams and excitement for our new baby, due September 23rd 2014.

Unlike my pregnancy with Elliott, I wasn’t very sure about my dates because I fell pregnant so quickly after having my contraception removed. Because of this, I went for an ultrasound to get a better idea. I then booked myself in to see my obstetrician when I was 8 weeks. I felt different this time, I was accompanied by a two year old instead of my husband.

It came time to have an ultrasound to have a look at the baby, the obstetrician couldn’t see anything using the external ultrasound and had to use an internal one. I wasn’t too phased at this stage because the same thing happened when I was pregnant with Elliott at 7.5 weeks. Then the image came up on the screen, it wasn’t what I would have expected for 8 weeks gestation, well at least not compared to what we saw with Elliott. My obstetrician went on to say that it looked like the baby was only about 6.5 weeks but that she could see a flicker of the heart. She reassured me that she had seen this in many women before who had gone on to have healthy babies. I told her I was a little concerned because it was pretty much impossible for me to only be 6.5 weeks considering the dates I was aware of and the fact that I had my first positive pregnancy test a whole 5 weeks before that. She quickly typed up a referral for another ultrasound.

baby-announcement-2

This is the photo we took to announce the pregnancy to our families.

I was 9 weeks pregnant when I walked in to have my next ultrasound. I was confident because I had no signs of something bad going on and I still had pregnancy symptoms – nausea, sore breasts, and fatigue. But, as soon as the radiographer put the ultrasound on my stomach and couldn’t see anything, I started to worry. My worries were confirmed when he used the internal ultrasound and there was a baby that had not grown since my very first ultrasound and no longer had a heartbeat. Even a layperson who didn’t know what they were looking at could figure that out.

I went to my appointment alone that evening because Mr. G was at home with Elliott. I tried putting on a brave face as I walked out through the reception area of the imaging clinic. As soon as I walked outside into the dark car park, tears started rolling down my face. I got into my car and sat bewildered and shaking over what had just happened. All my dreams and plans had just disappeared in an instant, my poor baby had lost its little fight and never got the chance to live in this amazing world of ours. I felt angry, I felt guilty, I felt such a deep sense of despair.

As I drove off out the car park I just wanted to keep on driving into the distance and not stop. I didn’t want to return home because that meant the start to life being back to what it was.  I just wanted this horrible nightmare to disappear, I wanted to be able to see my precious baby, what she looked like, the sound of her cry, to touch her soft skin. But, I did return home to break the news to Mr. G who was clearly devastated, but showed immense strength to support me when he too was hurting.

The day after having my ultrasound, I was contacted by my Doctor and given some options. There was no way I could emotionally cope with waiting for my body to naturally miscarry. The fact that I had no signs and still felt as though I was pregnant hurt me enough already and to continue to have those feelings, possibly for a number of weeks, well I just couldn’t do it. It was recommended that I go to the hospital to have a Dilation & Curettage procedure and the hospital booked me in that afternoon. I remember putting on my gown and having my leg stockings put on. I sat and waited while reading a book until I was collected, hoping that reading would take my mind off things. I was taken into another room and asked to lay on a bed, the bed was wheeled into another room where curtains were pulled around and where I lay to wait for the anesthetists. It was at this moment that I broke down in tears with the realisation of what was about to happen.

After having a drip inserted, I was wheeled into the operating theater. Looking up, I could see big lamps and about 5 or 6 people scurrying around to get things prepared for the surgery. Two people on one side setting up the anaesthetic, two on the other side saying things to me that seemed clouded. It was overwhelming and worse than before, I broke down again. It was now that my baby was going to be taken from me, I kept thinking about what they were going to do, it was the most horrible day of my life.

I woke up in recovery with a nurse by my side. When I came to,  I realised what had happened, that I was just one person now. Silent tears rolled, the nurse comforted me, she had gone through the same thing too.

For a good few weeks after the surgery, I would wake in the morning thinking I was pregnant but then reminding myself that I was not. I would go to eat something and think to myself ‘should I eat this if I’m pregnant?’ and then I’d remind myself that I was not. Days have progressively become easier and I remind myself of how lucky I am to have Elliott and the crazy love I feel for him. I know that my miscarriage was a way of my body telling me that something was not right and that there was something seriously wrong, and I accept that.

This miscarriage experience has completely changed my perspective on life, to make the most of every day, to be thankful for the gorgeous family I have and the time I have to spend with them, life can be taken in an instant. It has also made me more understanding of others and that you never know what has gone on in someone’s life, it is so important to consider this before criticising or judging.

The other thing I learned is that it’s a good thing and perfectly OK to tell those who are close to you that you are pregnant early on, I’m so glad I did, because it’s those people who showed complete understanding, love and support through the process and I’m not sure what I would have done without it.

As for trying again? I’ve been asked that question and to be perfectly honest, I’m not ready just yet but, time does heal and I’m taking the time to really appreciate the great things I have at the moment.

Eva Lewis (The Multitasking Woman)

Eva is the Editor and Owner of The Multitasking Woman - a lifestyle and parenting blog.She always has her fingers in many different pies but wouldn't have it any other way. Eva is a Mum to her 4-year-old son, 2 month old daughter, two chickens, one dog and a fish called Bob and a wife to Mr G. They all live happily in their little cottage on the outskirts of Brisbane.

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45 Comments

  1. AParentingLife
    April 14, 2014 / 9:18 pm

    So sorry for your loss Eva. How incredibly heartbreaking for you. Sending lots of fairy wishes and butterfly kisses your way

  2. Lucy @ Bake Play Smile
    April 14, 2014 / 9:42 pm

    Oh Eva my heart is absolutely breaking for you. Time does heal everything… as much as you think it won’t get better. I wish that I couldn’t relate to your story, but I definitely can. Everything you said is so, so true. Those awful emotions and feelings of complete sadness and despair. Sending you so many hugs and kisses. xxxx

  3. April 14, 2014 / 9:50 pm

    I’m so sorry for the loss of your baby and all the hopes and dreams you had of holding her in your life. Take care. I’ve been here too. Yes, telling people early lets you have the support you need both xox.

  4. April 14, 2014 / 10:25 pm

    Oh Eva I’m so sorry 🙁 My heart is breaking for you. Sending love and gentle hugs your way.

  5. April 15, 2014 / 12:44 am

    I could have written this post word for word about seven years ago…. especially the part of feeling so sad, but also somehow feeling so grateful for what I had and so aware of all that is wonderful in life.
    Be gentle with yourself as you grieve and heal… much love.

  6. April 15, 2014 / 4:22 am

    Oh Eva I’m crushed for you lovely. Such heartbreak for you and your family. That chair photo almost made me cry. I agree that telling people early is a good thing, so we have support. Hugs and strength as you cope with your immeasurable loss xxxx

  7. Jody Sun
    April 15, 2014 / 4:39 am

    Thanks so much for your touching article on miscarriage. I felt pangs of sadness as I read your story. My first pregnancy/miscarriage occurred at 10 weeks, it was the most devastating event. The baby I had wanted so badly was taken from me. Then 13 months later I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. When she turned two we decided to try for a sibling for her. At ten weeks again I miscarried and went through the grieving process again. We then fell pregnant and had a beautiful baby boy. I often think of the babies I lost but then remember if I didn’t lose those two I wouldn’t have the exact two that I am now blessed with. I really do send good wishes your way, this is a very emotional time for you. Time does ease your pain and until then get lots of cuddles from your husband and your little man!

  8. April 15, 2014 / 5:22 am

    Eva, I am so, so sorry this has happened. I know that no words from an internet stranger can make it hurt less but my heart is sore for you. I’ve never experienced a miscarriage myself but my sister lost her first baby at 9 weeks only a month ago. I still grieve for her, and the baby that she has lost, and despite her brave face I know she is hurting. I’ve cried so many tears for her and I’m crying a few for you now. Super special big hugs lovely xxx
    #teamIBOT

  9. April 15, 2014 / 6:48 am

    I totally agree with you about telling people early. During the years I was struggling with infertility I decided that when I did get pregnant I would tell people (close people at least) that I was pregnant asap. I wanted to have the love and support around me if anything did ever go wrong. Going through infertility and having to suffer alone was bad enough, I can’t imagine having to suffer a miscarriage without support. I haven’t ever had a miscarriage thankfully, but I’ve watched a number of close friends go through them. Time will heal, but you will always be different. Don’t try again until you are ready, take the time to grieve for your baby and yourself. Wish I could hug you. Its an incredibly courageous thing to write about this experience and I think its a good thing for people to get a better understanding of what happens in these cases.

  10. TeganMC
    April 15, 2014 / 8:12 am

    I’m so sorry for your loss. Sending you love and hugs xx

  11. Zita @ It's time...
    April 15, 2014 / 8:31 am

    There’s not many words I can say that would be helpful but I am glad you are seeing some positives through this terrible time. I can’t begin to imagine the experience you have been through… take care..

  12. Kathy www.yinyangmother.com
    April 15, 2014 / 10:38 am

    Sorry for your loss Eva and sending you hugs that it gets easier. I had an ectopic pregancy and had the same experience of the scan showing nothing. It was after our first IVF and sadly I never fell pregnant again, despite a total of 9 IVF’s a lots of years. We have our two precious children through adoption and feel very lucky. But last week I wrote about that baby we lost who would have been turning 16 (I feel so old). The memory, and I guess some of the pain, will always be there.

  13. April 15, 2014 / 10:44 am

    Oh Eva, I’m so very sorry to hear this. I can’t even imagine how hard it must be for you right now.
    I have no words really that could help right now, but you will be in my prayers. xx

  14. April 15, 2014 / 11:03 am

    Oh Kathy, that’s so sad. I’m so glad you have your precious children to appreciate and love. x

  15. April 15, 2014 / 11:03 am

    Yes, I’m seeing positives Zita and I’m so lucky to have my son.

  16. April 15, 2014 / 11:04 am

    I can remember feeling guilty about telling people so early this time around, but I felt so confident that it was all going to be ok. I’m so glad I did because I had an amazing community of support around me. Yep, I’ll always be different but for the best, it’s made me who I am now. x

  17. April 15, 2014 / 11:06 am

    Apart from having Post Natal Depression again, that is my fear of trying again, going through the same thing but it is people like you and your stories that make me realise that there is hope.

  18. April 15, 2014 / 11:07 am

    It’s been so eye opening to realise that so many other women have gone through the same as me and I never realised, I guess that is one of the reasons I decided to share it, so perhaps women who go through it for the first time know they’re not alone. Thanks Kate.

  19. April 15, 2014 / 11:08 am

    Yes, the emotions are terrible but it has certainly made me stronger and I’m sure it’s the same for you too. Thanks Lucy. x

  20. Kathy www.yinyangmother.com
    April 15, 2014 / 11:39 am

    Thanks Eva

  21. April 15, 2014 / 1:27 pm

    So sorry you have had to go through this pain Eva!! Once again you write about your experience with such heart. My stomach was in a knot while reading your words. Thank you for so bravely sharing you story it is a definitely a side of pregnancy that needs to be spoken about more. You are right also about telling those close to you so you have that support rather than trying to brush it under the carpet as would have happened to many. Sending you strength and belief! x

  22. April 15, 2014 / 11:15 pm

    So sad that you have to go through all this Eva. Sending big virtual caring hugs your way. Hoping that each day that passes your grief gets easier. Unfortunately this happens to so many ladies and their some of their grief is internalised and I commend you for sharing the process and the feelings you have gone through. You will be helping so many.

  23. Francesca WritesHere
    April 16, 2014 / 9:46 am

    I feel so sad for you Eva. I lost my second baby at 6 weeks gestation. Although I miscarried naturally and didn’t have to go through what you did with the surgery, I absolutely know what you are going through. Mine was almost 6 years ago and I still have tears pooling in my eyes as I write this. I agree that telling people early can actually help you feel supported if the worst happens. I wish all the best for you, your husband and Elliot. Whether or not you decide to try for more children, you have your love for one another and I hope for happy times for you ahead in life xx

  24. Glenda Bishop
    April 17, 2014 / 11:54 am

    Looks great Eva. It surprises me that it doesn’t stick to the pan, but it does seem much easier than the traditional method.

  25. April 19, 2014 / 10:33 am

    I am so sorry for your loss Eva. Like you say it was your body telling you that something wasn’t right but it doesn’t make it any easier. Acceptance is a wonderful thing and at times like this, it’s what makes us stronger. Sending all my love to you and your beautiful family x

  26. April 20, 2014 / 11:37 pm

    Oh Eva! I really feel for you. This post really gripped my heart as it is almost exactly my experience when I miscarried my very first pregnancy. It happened so silently and unexpectedly as well. After the final diagnosis, I actually was veering toward wanting to let my body miscarry naturally… maybe it was just my way to hold on to the final remnants of my little baby and the hope I had been building up inside. Eventually a couple of people counseled me to go for a D&C for some closure instead of letting it drag on and on. I remember feeling so blank and empty after the procedure. It took me a while to feel ready again, so don’t rush. Just take the time to grieve over this loss, as seemingly small as it is, it is still as real as any other baby.

  27. April 20, 2014 / 11:37 pm

    This is such a genius idea. I’m not sure if the lid of my pot as a vent in it but I’ll check and see if I can use this method to cook pizza in future!

  28. April 24, 2014 / 12:19 pm

    It’s a sad, sad thing, Eva. I hope you’re doing okay. x

  29. Lisa Berriman
    April 30, 2014 / 11:58 am

    I have only just managed to read this properly and want to send you a big hug. I have experienced something similar and so I know (in my own way) the pain of losing a little person that you already loved. I hope that when the time is right that you will be blessed with a healthy pregnancy and a beautiful baby to hold in your arms. xoxox

  30. May 10, 2014 / 9:34 am

    Thank you for sharing your miscarriage with us all. Mine occurred when the baby would of only been four weeks. I only knew I was pregnant for two days, but it still broke my heart. A loss of life is still a life lost, regardless of all the other details. I miscarriages naturally, and you probably made the right decision. It was a long four weeks of bleeding, pain and emotions. Essentially, my body felt like I’d just given birth. But, unlike you I had to replace that baby quickly and was pregnant again before I’d had another period. Big hugs to you. xS

  31. May 14, 2014 / 7:29 am

    I am choked with tears as I read this. I am so so sorry for your loss. It is so true what you wrote – we do never know what is going on in someone’s life. I also agree that it’s a good thing to tell people early on in the pregnancy so that people can grieve with you if you need them to. Sending you lots of love and hugs. xxx

  32. Lucy @ Bake Play Smile
    May 16, 2014 / 3:53 am

    Hi Eva, Thank you for sharing this recipe on Fabulous Foodie Fridays. I just love how easy it is… and pizza is always a winner in our house!!! xx

  33. Emma Fahy Davis
    July 11, 2014 / 8:15 pm

    Oh Eva I only just stumbled across this post, I am so sorry for your loss. We lost a little baby whose heart never beat back in 2006 and even now, I can feel that devastation as if it were yesterday. Big love and hugs to you xx

  34. Monique Olijve
    October 23, 2014 / 1:59 am

    Finally got onto reading some your articles…absolutely love your style of writing…burst out laughing looking at the pictures in your diet article and Eva oh my ive got tears rolling you describing your experiencing the heartbeat stopping of the little baby that was not meant for this world….it hits home. Had similar experience just before Alicia…thanks so much for sharing!!!!!!

  35. April 1, 2016 / 7:24 am

    Oh Eva this is very similar to my miscarriage in December 🙁 I’ve gone on to have another recently but I know there will be light at the end of the tunnel I will one day get my second bub