Jessica’s real mum story – My story of multiple losses
I met my amazing husband, Scott, in London in 2011. It was a whirlwind romance.
I lived with his best friend, Shaun, who my husband and I met through in February, and I instantly thought to myself that I could see him in my life forever.
We started our amazing, fun filled, romantic relationship in June, and he asked me to move across the world to his home of Australia in October of the same year (I’m originally from South Africa).
We knew that one day we wanted to start a family, so we made the move from Sydney to the Central Coast to be closer to his parents. We bought our first family home and got married in Stellenbosch, South Africa in July 2014.
The following year was where our whirlwind pregnancy journey began.
We found out we were pregnant early that year, around January I think. We were so excited it was our dream come true. But it ended with an abrupt holt.
The first few weeks were great until I started spotting. It was my first day at my new job and I had to rush home… I can’t even remember the excuse I gave.
Anyway, I went straight to my GP to check my HCG levels were still rising. Everything looked great. A week later more spotting. I was concerned as I had heard it could be normal, but my gut was saying something else.
After getting bloods taken, I was now about 7 weeks. I called my GP who read my results. The conversation started like this: ‘Jess I’m sorry to say but you are miscarrying. Your HCG has dropped dramatically.’
With my supportive husband standing in front of me I started tearing up. Sobbing in fact. Unable to speak. My heart breaking into a million pieces…. when suddenly the GP stopped in his tracks and said ‘oops sorry, I’m reading the wrong results’. I was angry, and sad, and so many other emotions all at the same time.
Well in the end I did land up miscarrying our little babies (I was pregnant with twins). They stopped growing at 6 weeks and we were close to the 9 week mark when we found out.
I went in for a curette, which was disastrous.
I knew something was wrong about a month after the procedure as I kept bleeding. To and from I went to our GP and constantly got the same answer ‘it’s normal, your body is just taking a little longer to heal’.
After 6 months of bleeding, I went back to the specialist who did the procedure. He did a few tests and scans and we realised (again my gut was right), something was wrong. During the curette, placenta had been left behind.
We were due a trip, going away for my father in laws 70th. On our return I was going to have to go back under the knife to fix the issue. Thank goodness while we were away, I naturally passed the remaining product of conception.
This really took a toll on me. I did not cope with whole thing correctly and it put a strain on our marriage.
If I can give advice to anyone going through something similar to this. Please talk. To a friend (who can relate). A social worker. Someone who can give you sound advice and guidance on how to cope.
Don’t worry we came out stronger on the other end because of it. Scott is my rock, life and soul.
As this nearly took a year out of trying for a little baby, we planned a wonderful holiday with my in laws to tour Vietnam. If you haven’t been, go, it’s amazing. Finish your trip in Hoi An… a perfect end to our amazing adventure.
After we returned, I had a hot flush going to work on the train and knew I was pregnant. We felt so happy and grateful. Until I came upstairs for a shower after our routine workout in the backyard. I started to uncontrollably shake, and had the worst cramping I have ever felt.
I knew, here we go again.
I still remember what Scott was cooking (a delicious steak). I called out for him to stop as I needed help. As soon as he walked in the bathroom he helped me out the shower and I looked up to him. ‘Babe I’m miscarrying’.
And so, I did. We got to 7 weeks this time. After it all happened naturally I poured myself a big glass of red and had a big cry.
This was now early February 2016. March came, no period. And I had a feeling that I was pregnant.
We fell pregnant one week after the miscarriage. I was still seeing the specialist who did my first curette for support and guidance.
I booked an appointment to see him when I was 7 weeks for a check-up. When I walked in and said we were pregnant, he was convinced it couldn’t be possible and told us not to get too excited as I wouldn’t see a heartbeat as the baby can’t be 7 weeks. I was so sick out of stress of it all. I looked shocking with a blocked nose and all.
When he put the ultrasound doppler on my tummy I saw this tiny little flicker and burst into happy tears.
It was the most relieved I had felt in months.
I had the best pregnancy and felt amazing the whole way through. Our baby was due on 19 December. That date came and went. 5 days later, 7pm on Christmas eve, I went into labour.
After a 20-hour, drug free, powerful labour, our little surprise (as we didn’t know the sex) was born. Our beautiful baby girl Olivia Elizabeth Ryan, was born at 3.05pm on Christmas day weighing 3.02kgs. Our blessing!
She is honestly the most amazing little girl. She breastfed well, sleeps well and is just super happy. I wouldn’t change a thing about her….well besides the ‘teenaging’ toddler leap she’s going through at the moment.
My story doesn’t end there.
We tried again. At 9 months, I stopped breastfeeding and we thought we would try again. Scott and myself always wanted two kids close together.
Our first month of trying (December last year) we fell pregnant. Woohooo! How easy was that! We would have two under two. Excitement levels hit the roof!!!
Going in for our 7 week scan (did it early, due to our past history of miscarriages) we couldn’t see much. I started tearing up because at this stage with Olivia’s pregnancy we saw her heartbeat flicker.
Anyway, trying to keep positive I had bloods taken and booked in for another scan. My HCG levels were going up but not as high as they should have been. I couldn’t wait any longer and we went for the scan the next Friday, at 8 weeks.
We had the most amazing sonographer, Cindy, at Fountain Plaza Medical Imaging. She was so informative and answered all our questions. We left feeling sad but well informed. She was lovely and so supportive, as I was a mess.
This pregnancy, we found out we were pregnant with twins, possibly triplets (3 yoke sacs were seen with two definite foetal poles), but unfortunately, they were measuring at 5 weeks and we had lost them.
Heartbreak is no word to describe the feeling. Another curette was booked for the following Tuesday.
I went in, had it done, the following day went for a facial and felt amazing after a day resting in bed.
The Sunday came, and I was terribly ill, dizzy, and couldn’t lift my head off the bed. Being silly I should have gone to the hospital but didn’t think anything of it. The next day still not feeling great, I called the EPAS department and they said my symptoms don’t sound great and come in immediately.
All day Monday, I was on a drip and antibiotics as it seems I picked up and infection and my body was trying to pass blood clots. I had to wait all day, not eat until I had enough liquid in my bladder to get an ultrasound to see if any product of conception was left behind AGAIN. I got an ultrasound done that evening and it was clear with a few clots seen but of no further concern.
We are now at two months later, all healed and trying again…fingers crossed this time!!!
I hope my story can help anyone going through a similar thing. Always follow your gut and please know you are not alone!!!
Baby dust to you all…I know I need it.
Jessica was born in South Africa and grew up in Jeffrey’s Bay, after which she moved to the South Coast KZN. After high school she lived in London before moving to Sydney in 2011, and now the Central Coast. She works in Human Resourcing and is a proud wife to Scott and Mum to adorable Olivia. She loves a glass of red, and chocolate is her nemesis.
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