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Parents of lost babies and potential of all kinds: come here to share the technicolour, the vividness, the despair, the heart-broken-open, the compassion we learn for others, having been through this mess — and see it reflected back at you, acknowledged and understood.

Thanks to photographer Xin Li and to artist Stephanie Sicore for their respective illustrations and photos.

ttc | pregnancy | birth after loss > March Pregnancy Thread

I think there are a few of us that are pregnant right now, so I wanted to start a new thread to offer each other support. It's so much harder for me to feel comfortable around 'normal' moms.

I'm 19 weeks right now with a girl. My son died at birth almost 7 years ago with a chromosome abnormality, which is when I found this online community. I had a take-home baby girl right after him. Since then, we've lost a lot of pregnancies and finally turned to IVF to screen out the genetic issue and get this baby.

She seems fine so far, but it's still hard for me to imagine that this will actually work out. Our anatomy scan is next week, which will hopefully be another step toward bringing her home.

I hope all of you are having very uneventful and healthy pregnancies. <3
March 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJack's mom
Hi Jack's Mom,

I'm currently 20w after losing my second child last year, they were stillborn. Physically my pregnancy is going well so far - we had our anatomy scan yesterday and all seemed to be normal (including the placenta, which was the reason for our loss). That has alleviated a teeny amount of my anxiety but overall I'm finding this a completely different pregnancy to my previous two - I'm detached and reluctant to bond yet with our babe. My brain can't imagine bringing home a baby - as much as I try and will it to. It's frustrating and guilt-inducing. But my psychologist has been great at giving me the permission to feel these feelings and accept the bonding if it comes, and if not - we will deal with that too. Lots of mindfulness is in order for me I think xx

How are you finding your second PAL? Do you feel more relaxed than the pregnancy with your second child? I only ask because we are tentatively planning another child after this but I don't think I can stand to feel this removed through another pregnancy. Sigh, life is tough huh.

Best wishes to you and anyone else who jumps on this thread. xx
March 5, 2019 | Unregistered Commentermeg
Hi Meg and Jack’s Mom,

I am currently 19 weeks with my third. We lost our son in January 2018 at 11 days old from a virus. Meg, I find I’m having similar issues with feeling detached s I’ve felt a lot of movement in the last few weeks, which helps in some ways, but I also find it impossible to even picture bringing home a living child at the end of this. We have a few things we need and I am terrified to buy anything or plan for this baby because I’m so afraid of planning and getting ready only to have another child taken from us.

We have our anatomy scan next week and while we have always waited to find out the sex until birth, I am really struggling with waiting this time. My husband wants to wait and be surprised, but I feel like I need to know everything about this baby in case it’s the only time I get again. I don’t know what we will do, I may find out and try not to tell him although I’m afraid I will slip and ruin the surprise for him.

Best wishes to you both for healthy and uneventful pregnancies. Thanks for starting this thread Jack’s mom!
March 7, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMJ
Hi everyone,

This is my first time back here in a while, and it was a relief to see this March thread. Thank you Jack’s Mum for setting it up.

We’re currently 21 weeks pregnant, and all the scans are looking good and the doctors are happy. Third time pregnant though. First time, we lost our son at the point we’ve just past, pre-term labour. Second time was only a few months later - some missed complications from first time that weren’t picked up in time. Hitting 20 and 21 weeks were big milestones, but now all I can think about is that we’re still not at the point of having a chance if something goes wrong again. As was said so well above, “it's still hard for me to imagine that this will actually work out”. “My brain can’t imagine bringing home a baby”. “I’m so afraid of planning and getting ready only to have another child taken from us”. These all rang so true.

Being “more pregnant” than I’ve been before also puts me so on edge with every tug or pull or twinge. I have such a warped radar for what is “normal” because of our history.

I just want so badly for this to work out.
March 11, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterS
Hi Everyone,

Thanks for setting up this thread! I've been looking for one, but didn't feel certain enough in my pregnancy to start one myself. I know, silly in this community. Anyway, I am 12 weeks and so far things are looking good. I had a miscarriage, a stillbirth at 27 weeks (our son Arav), and then a healthy baby girl who is turning 2 soon. I am pregnant again, and while I am not as anxious as during my last pregnancy, this is — as you all know — not easy.

So meg, yes, I would say my second PAL is a little easier than the first. I am not very far along though, so my feelings might change.

One cause of anxiety is that we moved countries and I can't go to my beloved OB-GYN anymore. The new one is fine, but she hasn't gone through all that history with me, so I feel awkward around her. She has put me on aspirin, though, which I wasn't on for the first PAL.

MJ, I'm with you on finding out the sex. I was the same way and will do the same this time. I'm of the "don't push your kid into gender stereotypes" kind, but it does feel like something more to know about your baby in case they don't make it. Also, how did the scan go?

S, a third pregnancy after two such terrible losses must be so hard. It helped me when I could finally feel the baby and monitor the movements. On a schedule and whenever I got nervous I did kick-counts. The doctors also put me on a tight schedule for my third trimester. I went in twice a week.I know it really depends on the health care system and insurance.

Sending good wishes to everyone! I'm glad I can come here.
March 14, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterArav's Mom
Jack's mom, you also had your anatomy scan? Do you mind sharing how it went? I worry with everyone here.
March 14, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterArav's Mom
Thanks Arav’s Mom. I’ve been looking forward to more regular movements, just for that reassurance as you say. I’m lucky to have great doctors monitoring me really closely too - I wasn’t feeling all that well today, and the ability to head in for a quick check up means the world. I’m now on bed rest for 2-3 days, just taking it really easy.

Wishing all the expectant mothers out there all the good luck in the world xx
March 15, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterS
I'm glad to see some more activity here!

Arav's mom, thank you for asking. The anatomy scan went well, except that the baby didn't let them get all of the angles they wanted so we have to go back on Tuesday to finish up one shot of the spine and some others of the heart. Because she is an IVF baby, we are also getting a fetal echocardiogram this week. Gentle congratulations and best wishes for your pregnancy.

Meg--I don't think I'm more relaxed with this one than my first rainbow, but we had 2 tfmr's at ~13 weeks after my daughter was born, plus several other early miscarriages, so it's been constant pregnancies + loss for years and I've come to think of us as unlucky.

I'm trying to get used to the idea that she will come home because we really really need to figure out childcare, among other things. She has become more active, though she doesn't seem to have a routine--except that she kicks at my laptop if I lie down and rest it on my belly. I bought a bjingles baby heartbeat monitor from craigslist around 14 weeks, and I've found it reassuring to be able to find a heartbeat every few days.

Thinking of all of you.
March 16, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJack's mom
Hi All,

Thanks so much for keeping this thread going! We had our anatomy scan last week. Everything looked normal and baby is doing great. We met with a new doctor for the scan, who listened and even cried with us as we retold our son’s story. He recommended some additional tests he would like to do now and after the baby is born just to give us some peace of mind that everything is ok. It was comforting to have an understanding and sensitive doctor trying to help us as much as possible. Sadly that hasn’t always been our experience.

We did end up finding out the sex at the appointment. It was emotional and somewhat weird to know. I’m glad to know and it is giving me a bit of enjoyment that I didn’t have before to connect a bit more with baby and to try to think of the future. Granted, it hasn’t helped me with the moments of total panic that come and go as I think of all that can still go wrong. I am trying to find the joy and connection and breathing through those moments of panic. Luckily, baby is pretty active so I get a lot of reassurance that things are ok. Wishing everyone continued healthy pregnancies! Please keep us all updated as to how things are going!
March 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMJ
Hi Everyone!

MJ, what a lovely doctor! It's so nice when the provider shows such compassion. We had the first trimester screening and everything looks good so far. We also found out the sex. We are having a boy and I have mixed feelings about that, because our stillborn baby was a boy. As you say, it is nice to know something about the baby and connect that way.

How are things for everyone else? Sending good vibes.
March 22, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterArav's Mom
It’s so lovely to hear that everyone is physically doing well and your babies are showing reassuring signs on all the scans and screening tests.

The last two weeks have been a mixed bag for me: for three or four nights I woke with awful anxiety and having bad dreams about my living child. Going to work has been exhausting as I haven’t been sleeping much. But at the same time, I’ve managed to muster the strength to sort through baby clothes from my son and stillborn daughter and start planning this baby’s bedroom. As this wee babe starts to strengthen their movements i have started tentatively connecting with them more. Thank goodness. It has been a tiring fortnight though!

I’m due to finish work at 32w this time, a few days before the gestation I was when we lost our daughter. I’m hoping I can last that long, as I’m anticipating the lead up to my daughters first birthday/anniversary (end of April) plus getting 32w shortly after (end of May) will take its toll on me.

Keep up the updates, it’s lovely hearing how every one is doing xx
March 22, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMeg
Hello all!

I'm not quite as far along as most of you are on this thread, but I too am pregnant. I can't believe I said that out LOUD. I'm 13 weeks along and much like the rest of you, I'm truly terrified and haven't been able to muster up the excitement. Our first child was born last April and he passed away from an undiagnosed velamentous cord insertion. This pregnancy is much like my first with conceiving via IVF due to chromosome abnormalities. With our first, we didn't get much care. Our OB said I didn't need a specialist even after the heavy bleeding I had starting at 32 weeks. He said heavy bleeding was "normal". We are at a different hospital/doctor and already feeling a little bit better just knowing this time around we have a team that actually knows what they are doing.
I ran into an ad the other day on my laptop that said: "It's never too early to start buying baby items during your pregnancy" and I just wanted to say Are you kidding me???!!! Those ad creators obviously have never felt what we have leave a hospital with empty arms only to come home to a house full of baby items.

Jack's mom- I'm curious if you don't mind the schedule they have you set up as an IVF pregnancy. Did they let you know what tests will be perform at each week? It sounds like they will know just about everything about our baby at 20 weeks and then at 24 weeks they are doing another test for the heart. I'm super impressed with our specialist. He seems to really know his stuff and is completely floored that we didn't have a specialist the first time around even before I had heavy bleeding. I know you are farther along, so I would appreciate any details you can give me about the tests and how everything went :)

To the rest of you beautiful mamas, I'm hoping that everything goes well for you! Like it was said, please keep us all posted with updates.
March 22, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterG's mom
Hi everyone,

How is everyone going?

Some good news for us: we’ve officially hit 24 weeks. Our first time getting to this point. Everything seemingly looking good, although we’ve been on some preventative anti-biotics as some recent swab tests hinted at some unwanted signs. That, combined with what I now know are Braxton Hicks, mean I’m certainly looking forward to this week’s check up.

Does anyone have any tips on how they keep calm even when having more frequent BHs?

March 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterS
S, congratulations on getting to 24wk! That’s excellent news. As for the Braxton hicks, I have also been getting them. I find that staying hydrated keeps them to a minimum and also being aware that if I have an over full bladder in the night makes them more uncomfortable. That’s when I expect them most. I hope you get used to them in time and they won’t be such a source of worry for you xx

I too have had a course of antibiotics after getting a UTI last month. Ugh. But I’m ok now. We are 24wk tomorrow and have our first growth scan this week too. I’m a bit nervous but also I’m looking forward to seeing baby again. I’ve been approved for birth centre care with extra obstetric surveillance so I’m really glad to have some continuity of carer now. Seeing a different doctor each time in the high risk clinic was very anxiety provoking for me (constantly worrying that I’d get someone junior or unaware of my history etc).
April 1, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMeg
Hi G's mom--

I'm past 23 weeks now. I'm so sorry to hear about your loss and how horrible the dr was, dismissing you when you were bleeding.

Most of the tests are finished by 20 weeks, as you say. I was lucky to find an MFM at my practice who put all of my appointments on his schedule in advance so that I would not have to explain my history over and over again. He has taken me seriously and makes sure that I get all of the tests done that I need. The main extra test from IVF is the one you mention--a fetal echocardiogram at ~22 weeks. The appointment can take awhile because they get tons of pictures of the heart and blood flow. Hopefully you will have a good 20-week scan (like I did) and go into the appointment with no risk factors beyond IVF.

Here are some numbers I found helpful leading up to the scan: it's something like 0.7% of all babies have a heart problem. The risk is double for IVF (which is still pretty low, under 2%). Of those that DO have a heart problem, about 10 percent requirement intervention--I don't know whether the dr meant intervention in utero, or treatment in general. So the overall risk is fairly low, and many problems are not fatal.

My baby just had that test and was deemed "normal", so it looks like she is healthy. We are going to do some size estimates scans as we approach the due date because my rainbow daughter was very large and I might need a c-section if I get another that size.

I hope things are going well with your pregnancy.
April 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJack's mom