Friday, January 21, 2011

Our Loss: Ectopic Pregnancy

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. Philippians 4:13

On January 18th around 9:30 pm I began to have very bad cramping. It was painfully intense and it made it very hard to talk or walk. The pain then subsided and I layed down for a while. After about a half hour it started coming in waves of painful then not, and painful again. I woke Adam up around 10:30pm and told him what was going on and I didn't think this was right. Soon after waking him up I felt better and we started to fall asleep again. Within minutes I had severe pain in my left lower side that went all the way around to my back. It was so painful it caused me to get sick. Adam called my mom to come over and stay with the girls so we could go to the emergency room. 

At the ER we were sent quickly to triage, but by then my pain was gone. They took us immediately back to ultrasound. Adam watched the screen as the woman worked. He asked her what she was looking at, and was told that is the uterus. It was empty. She looked around some more and saw the small mass in my left tube. She said that's not supposed to be there and usually you can't even see the tube in an ultrasound. Immediate heartbreak and mourning set in, I am going to lose this child. The ultrasound techs are usually not allowed to tell you anything, but she was very sweet and Adam asked her specifically if that was the baby in my tube and she told him it most likely was. We didn't see a heartbeat and there should have been one.  

I was then moved to a different room and seen by several Dr's and nurses who all needed blood from me.  My blood draw levels were about the rate for a 4 week pregnancy and my beta count was only about 1/3rd of what they should have been for a normal 6 week pregnancy. Adam and I sat there quietly on the hospital bed holding each other with tears in both of our eyes. Seeing him so hurt made me want to try and hold it together as best I could. An ectopic pregnancy was more or less confirmed by all of the factors presented to us.

 We were told this is a life threatening thing. The outcome will be death for the baby no matter what. It is impossible for it to survive in the tube. If the pregnancy were to continue the baby would rupture my tube and I could die within hours of that happening. There is absolutely nothing we could do to save our baby. This is a helpless and unimaginable feeling. Mothers are supposed to protect their children from harm. If there was any other choice available,  I would have have gladly taken that choice.  Adam continued to sit close to me and we just talked about things. We discussed our options even though we knew we had to make the choice that we didn't want to make. This was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do.

There only two things to do for this type of pregnancy one is surgery on the tube to remove the pregnancy and possibly the tube too, and two is receiving a shot of a type of chemotherapy drug (Methotrexate) which stops the rapid division of cells and disolves the pregnancy. Because I was within the 6 week pregnancy time, my beta count was very low and my baby didn't have a heartbeat, I was a candidate for the shot. We read over the papers and blood results over and over again to be sure we were making the right decision. We talked with the on call OB for a long time. He was very knowledgeable and easy to talk to. (I do not usually see male OB's but when you are in the ER, you get what they have.) I was really scared about making the wrong decision. We were not pressured at all in any direction. We were given facts and told what our options were. We felt very confident with their medical opinions. Adam even asked the Dr what he would do if it were his wife in the exact same position with the same factors. I prayed a lot that God would lead us to make the right decision. Adam was more in control and rational than I was so I trusted his decision on what was best. This was his child too, but it also is his wife, and I don't think there is anyone who loves me more or would protect me like he would.

I've been doing a bit of research on ectopic pregnancies and have found some discussion forums with women who have gone through them. I was very fortunate to have them discover mine. A majority of women experience a ruptured tube and have to have life saving emergency surgery. I also read that discovering a tubal on an ultrasound like mine, at 6 weeks is rare. It appears that the pain I experienced that led me to the ER had nothing to do with the ectopic pregnancy. I have no idea what it was but that type of pain should have indicated a ruptured tube and mine was still intact. Through this experience, my faith in God has increased seeing his protection over my life. My love and respect for my husband has also increased. He is a wonderful man. Even though he is hurting, he is strong for me and takes such good care of me. He is a true man. I feel a closeness to him that we didn't have before.

I pray that after this is over that we will be able to go on and have another child. I don't think we realized how much we wanted this child until we couldn't have it. I know that when we get to heaven there will be a sweet child there to greet us. I am looking forward to the day we get to meet our baby.

Please pray for us. I have to continue to go in for blood tests every few days for a while to make sure my hormone levels are decreasing.

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

8 comments:

Sarah said...

I am so sorry you had to go thru this. Would like to send some cards. Can I have your address?
Princessbride 42 at gmail

Karen said...

My heart breaks for you. I thought this might be happening to me once but thank God it wasn't. It took them days to figure it out and they were terrible days wondering what to do if it was an ectopic pregnancy. I can't imagine what I'd have done if it had been.

I am so happy God let you know what it was before anything ruptured. God is so good! I'm so happy your husband is such a wonderful man and helping you through all this. I hope you will be blessed with another child after you heal from this. It is so great to know you will be able to see your precious baby in heaven one day.

My prayers are with you and your family.

Anonymous said...

There are babies who have survived. http://realchoice.blogspot.com/2007/11/ectopic-survival.html My sister wouldn't abort when she had an ectopic pregnancy. According to the Mayo Clinic and other studies, the baby can have a heartbeat before the 6 week mark, and it may or may not show up on tests. My sister didn't want to kill a potential life. The baby died on it's own. She did take a risk and terrified the whole family with her decision. I am pro life with the exception of the mother's life being in danger. Personally, if it happened to me, I'd terminate the pregnancy. This is why I never judge abortion or any other sin for that matter. Life has a way of dealing us the very things we judge others for. God teaches, and sometimes the teaching is painful. He said not to judge for a reason. Maybe you should take down the abortion post that you just made. Read what you wrote. There is a great deal of irony in your abortion post. You can deny that what you wrote doesn't pertain to your situation, but it does. Admit it, eat crow, and then get down on your knees and ask God to forgive you. Learn a lesson from it. First, don't listen to people who preach about all the ways people are sinning. It's none of their business and they have no right to judge others. Second, don't judge other people's sins. It may someday happen to you, and it is a very painful lesson to learn. I am sorry that this has happened to you and pray that you find peace.

Dawn said...

I am so sorry , I will be praying for a quick recovery , and for GOD to bless you with another child ...

Kimmie said...

Anonymous,

Those are incredible stories on that blog. I have chosen to follow God through my husbands guidance as I believe the Bible says for me to do. I am under my husband and he is the head of our marriage. I trust him with what is best for me. I believe that God knows my heart and it's intentions, and I do my best to honor Him through the guidance of my husband.

I would have chosen to continue the pregnancy until it ruptured but after much prayer I left the decision in my husbands hands.

God didn't say to never judge others. That is a nicey false statement spouted up by flippant so called Christians and others who want to sin freely and not hear about it. God EXPECTS his people to judge. If judging people is wrong, how can we obey Romans 16:17-18? II Corinthians 6:17? II Timothy 3:5-6? I John 4:1? If judging is wrong, then God has contradicted Himself and His words cannot be trusted! The Bible is clear about the importance of judging on a regular basis to properly serve and honor God. God expects us to judge.

I do not believe in what goes around comes around. Life didn't deal me this because of my previous post. I already had a feeling that this was going to happen with this pregnancy. In the back of my mind I suspected it the moment I took the first test. Something was just different and wrong from the beginning.

I will not remove the abortion post. You can believe what you'd like about these situations being ironic. I don't believe they are even close. Some may disagree with me and maybe even made a different choice. I am pro-life. I do not believe that being pro-life means that both my child and I should lose ours. I don't ever believe in abortion. I just can't see how this would be considered the same thing. Abortion is a decision to end the life of an unwanted pregnancy. Our child was very much wanted and I would have done anything if it were possible for it to survive. I'm sure I can find a million after the fact reasons for why I should have made a different decision. I had the facts in front of me only and not a whole lot of time. I had a baby in my tube with no heartbeat, that may not have even been alive considering the extremely low hcg numbers.

I have spent the past days in extreme agony wondering if I made the right decision. My husband says that it was. After my prayers I don't believe that God would have led him to that decision if it was wrong. If we were wrong we will deal with that sin when we meet the Lord.

Again only God knows my heart. I would never intentionally harm one of my children. We have to be wise. I have 5 other children who need a mother. I have a husband who needs his wife. To risk my life when there was nothing that could be done to save the baby would have been very unwise.

Finally, I think it is extremely hypocritical of you to spew all of your nonsense about judging others to me and then judge me. Is that not the same thing? You obviously had to judge me to even write your comment.

Anonymous said...

I had a tubal reversal in March 1999, and like you, three months later had the wonderful news of a positive pregnancy test. Unfortunately, also like you, I had an ectopic pregnancy and had to have two shots of Methotrexate to disolve the pregnancy.

It broke my heart.

I went on to have two more ectopic pregnancies and ended up losing both of my fallopian tubes.

My doctor didn't tell me that back in 1995 when I had my tubes tied in the first place, they were burned and not "tied" and thus my reversal, while successful as far as being able to reconnect the tubes, was not truly successful because the growing embryo could not pass through the tubes to implant. Something about the tissue inside the tubes being burned far past where the tubal was done in the first place so when they were reconnected at what was seen as "healthy" tissue, it was not really the case.

I am so sorry for your loss. I do pray that your reversal surgery will be successful and that you will go on to have more children.

I did have a daughter in 2004 through the miracle of IVF. Whether it was right or wrong, she is the light of our lives and we are so thankful she is here.

Zsuzsanna said...

I am so sorry to hear about your loss. Please know that you and your family will be in my prayers.

missionarymomma said...

So sorry to hear of your loss. May you know God's comfort at this time. We will be praying.

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