Thursday, June 23, 2011

Not Gone

There was something significant about Monday’s OBGYN appointment that I forgot to talk about. Actually, I didn’t truly forget. It was more like I ran out of room because the post was already becoming a short novel. I initially thought it would be better for me not to talk about “the other thing”…sort of a “stick your head in the sand and it will go away” strategy. But it hasn’t gone away and so, maybe talking about it is exactly what I need to do.

When I had the ultrasound on Monday, there was initially a scare. The technician tried to do an over-the-belly ultrasound but couldn’t see anything inside of the sac that was showing up. So, she moved to an internal ultrasound. Immediately, a large empty sac showed up. The technician and the nurse turned and looked at me and looked very relieved when I said “There was a twin that was lost early on, but I thought the sac had gone away.” It took the technician awhile to get around the empty sac, so that she could get a good look at the sac with the baby in it. I held my breath the whole time, terrified that there wasn’t an “other” sac…that the baby was just gone. I was so relieved to see our baby and its little heart flickering. But, after the ultrasound was over, I was also really sad that the empty sac was still there.

Apparently, at the fertility center, they did a good job at avoiding the empty sac, so it looked small on the ultrasound screen. But the ultrasound technician in Dr. B’s office didn’t know to avoid that sac, and so I got to see that it has continued growing. It is not “going away” like I was told. I’m not upset that I didn’t know or that I was potentially misled by omission. I’m only upset that there is still a reminder of what was lost inside of me. I’m upset that, at the next ultrasound I get, I will more than likely see that empty sac again…a visual representation of the void in my heart that I try so hard to forget about.

I asked the nurse that was in the room during my ultrasound why the empty sac was so big. She said that, in all likelihood, my body hasn’t recognized that the sac is empty yet. It will likely continue to grow until the baby that is alive needs the space, at which time the empty sac should go away. Even if it doesn’t, it won’t harm the baby. Am I an awful person for wanting the empty sac to just go away right now? It is physically painful to think that my body is refusing to recognize the loss that my heart is still struggling with. Every time I see the empty sac, there is a little part of me that struggles to see whether there is actually a tiny baby in there. Every time we listen to the baby’s heartbeat, a little part of me is listening for any trace of a second heartbeat. I guess maybe my body is just following where my mind is at…still in a bit of denial that one of our babies is gone. But maybe if my body took the lead and made that visual reminder of the loss go away, my mind could let it go too, so I could just be peaceful and happy with the amazing blessing I’ve been given.


Christina said...

I'm so sad for you reading this! I couldn't imagine seeing that 2nd sac time and again. My heart hurts that you have to for the foreseeable future. Hang in there and try to focus on happy, healthy, growing little Hamish.

Elaine said...

It's very strange to see it, we had the smae situation and it does take a little while for the second sac to go away but it will. It's easier said then done but we just tried to stay focused on what we had not what we didn't and it really helped. As far a holding your breathe waiting to hear the heart beat at 33 weeks I still find myself doing it, that doesn't go away. I wish you lots of luck!

China Doll said...

That must be such a difficult experience - I know how much you cherish and love Hamish, but seeing what could have been will always be hard :( xx