"I will praise the one who's chosen me, to carry you"
-Selah: I will carry you

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

24 weeks

Thoughts out of my head and on to the screen. Read, or not, as you wish.

Tomorrow I will be 24 weeks pregnant.  It's the milestone in pregnancy where the baby is considered to be "viable". An awful term that means they have the potential to survive outside the womb, so doctors will do everything possible to save the baby if they are born from now.  (Well, four hours from now to be exact.  Given my birth history, there's still time.) In short, it is the point where the baby changes from being considered a "miscarriage" to a human being.

I've been waiting with baited breath to get to this point. 24 weeks has been the new 12 weeks for, well the last 12 weeks.  Morbid thoughts of "at least they would help us now."  This baby isn't even born yet and already I am looking for the "at leasts".   It is small comfort of course. Bertie came at 26+3 and didn't make it.  Still, a chance is better than none.

Paranoia has set in. I have been carrying my maternity notes around with me everywhere since 22 weeks. Is that paranoia? Or sensible? It is one thing I can control.  History won't repeat in that respect (at least...!). I won't go into labour without having my notes. Win. Control. Or the feeling of control anyway.   Or, I won't be able to blame myself for not having had them anyway.  Damage limitation perhaps.

My mind is in a constant state of flux. I spent most of this morning in a state of near panic at work.  Triggered in part by seeing a little boy, one of triplets born at 26 weeks. He is now six and has multiple physical and mental limitations. Bam. A reminder that it isn't simply a case of keeping them alive, but what happens to them if we do?  Also a mix of joy for her that she has her son, and jealousy that I don't have mine. Worry that Grub will come too soon too. Would s/he live? What would that life look like? 

Every twinge, every ache, every normal pregnancy gripe becomes a sign of pre-term labour in my mind when the flux shifts to maximal fear and worry. Then, a few hours later, I will be making plans for 6, 8, 10 weeks time, planning on still being pregnant! It's an exhausting merry-go-round only someone forgot to bring the "merry".

Sleep eludes me. Well, quality, refreshing sleep anyway. The current pattern is nod off at a reasonable hour, but wake up in the early hours-3am ish is a popular time for my bladder to join the party- then lay awake praying for Grub. Because, you know, maybe I didn't pray enough for Bertie.  Faith settles my mind. Prayer, more than mindfulness, works for me.  But, there is the seed of doubt because Bertie. Still. Died. God may have a plan bigger than I can understand and be working it all out for our good. But, I know how hard and painful the road of grief is to walk and I just don't want to do it again. Thankyou.

Crossness. Yes, crossness is a word in this context, that we can't just have, after everything, a straightforward pregnancy. Jealousy of those who do/did. Still not really feeling willing or able to join in with pregnancy talk or birth stories. I think that one may surprise a few people, some will get it.   I'm playing a game with my patients at work, "when are you due?" "Is it your first?" "You must be so excited!" All answered with a smile and the expected response. Because, "Well, September but at the moment I am just hoping for July at the earliest; no, I have a son in Heaven; and yes, but it's tempered with overwhelming fear most of the time" probably won't go down too well! So, we dance the dance and each say what polite society expects of a pregnant woman and a person she is seeing in a professional capacity. They leave happy. I feel drained.

Truth. Thoughts out of my head and on the screen.


  1. Rainbow pregnancies are the hardest. I felt so distant from Lilah until she was about 4 weeks old, because I was constantly waiting for her to be taken away. Going in to surgery on her birthday was so surreal, because I honestly didn't expect to get that far! It's gonna be a tough road, but hang in there. Each day brings you one step closer to your due date. -julie

  2. It is a lot harder than I ever imagined it would be. I knew these next few weeks would be the worst and hopefully it will get easier if we make 30 weeks. I do feel bonded to Grub, probably as much as I did to Bertie, but in a slightly different way. This time, instead of imagining bringing them home and what that life will look like, I'm imagining an NICU stay, and possibly another loss. You are right, one day at a time and each day is a day closer x