Monday, August 20, 2012

All about August

The month of August is special to me. It is the month of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary! Four years ago, my life changed in a big way on August 19th. I lost my first baby to an ectopic pregnancy and the memories are so fresh, etched into my mind.

We were newly married and enjoying the initial stages of married life. Since my hubby was working here in the US, I left my job in India and moved with him. While attending the pre-marriage classes, we had learnt that contraception was a sin. We used NFP (Billings Method) for postponing pregnancy. It was the end of July and I was supposed to get my period. Well, I don't have perfect 28 day cycles, anywhere between 30-35 days. So, I wasn't worried when I didn't get my period for a few days. I began asking myself if I could be pregnant. What if NFP had failed?? I would be so embarrassed. It would mean that NFP didn't work!

I shared my concerns with Hubby and he was pretty cool about everything. I admire him for that. I was only 25 and so naive. I spoke to my friend and she suggested getting a Home Pregnancy Test from a Drug Store. I finally gathered my courage and decided to give it a try. For the first time in my life, I picked an HPT from a shelf and hurried to the counter. I felt embarrassed as I checked out and felt the whole world was watching me. We went home and I was a nervous wreck. Anyway, while my husband looked at the timer, I tested and was relieved to see that the test was negative.

The very next day, I began feeling different from my usual self. I had happily told my friend about the negative HPT. Soon after, I began feeling tired. I took a nap in the afternoon. The following days, I realized I was using the bathroom a lot and unusually hungry. After four days, on a Sunday morning, I woke up to brown spotting and was happy that the long awaited AF had arrived. Well, I was wrong! The spotting/light bleeding continued for 3-6 days, but it never changed to a full fledged period. I began getting worried and googled about spotting and I found "Implantation Spotting". I was worried if it was implantation and that I had tested too early. I called my cousin and she confirmed it was my Period and not Implantation Bleeding. Implantation Spotting was only for a day. I stopped spotting but I was unusually tired and bloated. My symptoms seemed to get worse. I noticed I had put on weight within a few weeks. Maybe it was all the junk food we were eating.

We had scheduled a trip to DH's uncle's house in TX.  I tried to keep myself busy with preparations for the trip. We went and stayed there for a few days and returned home on the 19th of August. While the flight was landing, I felt a strange pressure in my abdomen as if something had burst inside. I tried ignoring the pain, came home and slept as I was too tired. When I woke up in the afternoon, I felt a sharp shooting pain on the right side of my abdomen. The pain continued to increase and when hubby returned home from work, I told him and he began to get worried. When I went to the bathroom, I found out that I was bleeding severely with heavy black clots and felt dizzy. How could this be? I just had my period 2 weeks ago. This couldn't be my period. It had to be something else! The pain became unbearable and I realized I needed to see a doc.

I didn't have a primary doctor since we were fairly new to the US. It was around 10 pm when we found a nearby hospital and went to the ER. I was curled into a ball and started throwing up. We waited for hours and hours until they finally decided to call us in. They ran a few tests and told me that I was pregnant and looked like I was miscarrying. After numerous tests and an ultrasound, they diagnosed the Ectopic Pregnancy and told us that my Fallopian tube had ruptured and I needed an emergency surgery. Knowing that you are pregnant and losing your baby at the same time is as horrible as it can get. I was bleeding severely and was having difficulty keeping my eyes open. My mind had stopped working. I hugged DH and cried as we waited for the on call surgeon. We prayed the rosary together as tears fell from our eyes. We were miles away from our family and all I wanted was to see my Mom. At some point, I thought I was going to die because of the severe pain. Amidst all the pain, fear overtook me and death seemed so real. I prayed to the Lord to spare my life & allow me to live with my husband for a while. Probably, the most sincere prayer I had ever prayed until then.

The surgeon explained to us what an ectopic was and why I needed a surgery since my tube had ruptured while DH kept requesting him to save the baby. I had read somewhere that they could transplant the embryo to the uterus and I thought they would be able to do that. I was so naive. I went in for surgery not knowing if I would ever wake up. My heart broke as I said goodbye to DH. All I wanted was to fall asleep. I woke up a few hours later and remember asking for DH. I was so happy when I saw him. I was asleep for most of the next day and my thoughts were incoherent. They had to remove my right tube because of the damage and they didn't even acknowledge my baby instead kept referring to it as pregnancy tissue. I bled for 2 weeks after the surgery and passed golf ball sized clots. DH took good care of me while I recovered. It was the most difficult time we faced all by ourselves without family near us. But God strengthened us in a special way and our marriage grew stronger. Looking back, I know God was merciful and spared my life. I don't know what would have happened if we had been late going to the ER. I went for the surgery without going for 'Confession' or receiving 'Anointing of the Sick'. God spared my soul and now I know how important it is to be in a state of grace because you never know what will happen.

Four years later, my nephew has been baptized on the same day I lost my first baby, making the day all the more special for us. We always pray for our dear baby whom we never got to see. Sometimes, my heart breaks because we weren't able to baptize our baby. The Lord is merciful and we pray that he/she is with Jesus and our Blessed Mother.


  1. Oh, honey. What an awful, dreadful experience. I'm so sorry you had to go through that. I'm thankful you are alive and your marriage is stronger as a result of the experience! And how special about your nephew's baptism on the same date. Good can come out of terrible tragedy.

  2. You have been through so much and are so strong! I can't imagine going to surgery like that, each of mine has been planned, I would have been a wreck too. I'm so sorry you've had to go through all this but am glad it's brought you and your husband closer.

  3. Your post brought tears to my eyes. Continued prayers for you!

  4. I am so sorry you had to go through this. Praying for you!

  5. I am so sorry for your pain. You are in my prayers.

  6. Having never miscarried (or been pregnant) to know what that's like, you are so brave for sharing your story. How terrible that you lost your baby, never knowing until you were so sick, that you were pregnant, and then having to have emergency surgery! I am so glad God spared your life!
    I know the Blessed Mother has your babies in her arms, watching over you. Prayers continue for you!