On anniversaries and other things

Our 7th anniversary happened in June. I meant to write about it, but never did. It did get me thinking, though, about our other anniversaries. It’s hard for me to believe sometimes that it’s already been seven years, but other times I look at everything we’ve been through and I wonder how all that could have possibly happened in ONLY seven years.

I discovered I was pregnant for the first time just in time for our first anniversary. I loved the symmetry in that; it seemed meant to be. We were thrilled. Of course, that pregnancy ended shortly thereafter and I went into my next pregnancy with considerably less certainty that we’d have a baby at the end of it.

It seemed fitting then that I learned of my seventh pregnancy the day before our seventh anniversary. But having the first six pregnancies result in only three children has maybe made me a little cynical about the whole process. A positive pregnancy test makes me think, “Well here we go again. I wonder how long this will last.”

I mouthed the words to Brian across a crowded breakfast table, “I’m pregnant.” He raised his eyebrows at me and I nodded my confirmation. Apparently that’s all the announcement a seventh pregnancy gets around here. But announcement style notwithstanding, it looks like this one decided to stick around. I’m 14 1/2 weeks in. Here we go again.

The things I haven’t said

I had another miscarriage, back in October. My third. I was shocked to find out I was pregnant, since we were preventing. I was considerably less shocked when the bleeding started around 6 1/2 weeks. It was, depressingly, so familiar to me that I didn’t even bother calling my doctor.* A negative pregnancy test a week or so after everything was over was confirmation.

I didn’t write about it at the time because what is there to say? We weren’t trying, and it would have been terrible timing. And where my miscarriage before Daniel threw me full on into wanting another baby RIGHT THIS MINUTE, this didn’t. Yes, I want more. Not right now. Don’t get me wrong, I was sad. Devastated even. Much sadder than seemed appropriate considering I was terrified to find out I was pregnant in the first place. But I would have happily welcomed another baby, terrible timing or no.

Miscarriage is one of those things that, as long as you’re managing to also have babies, sort of gets ignored. Half my pregnancies have ended in miscarriage. What does that mean for my medical records? NOTHING. My doctor told me that they wouldn’t do any testing until I’d had three miscarriages IN A ROW. It’s not considered “recurrent miscarriage” until it’s three in a row. It’s actually lucky for me that I ended up having the clotting panel run during my pregnancy with Kalena. (If you’re newish here, my sister Kirsta had a blood clot during her first pregnancy. I was also pregnant at the time, so my doctor ran the whole clotting panel as a precaution.) The clotting panel showed that I have Factor V Leiden (puts me at increased risk of blood clots) and a homozygous MTHFR mutation. Now, my doctor told me that MTHFR affects the way I process folic acid so I’d need to take more during pregnancy. That was it. I’ve since learned that MTHFR can be related to headaches (check!) miscarriage (check!) and babies with trisomies, specifically trisomy 21 (AND CHECK.) So I’m fortunate to know the likely cause, but there’s little to be done about it. I take folic acid, the only thing that might make a difference.

Anyway. I have no moment of understanding or life lesson learned here. It happened. Honestly, I expect it will happen again before all is said and done. We all have struggles. Apparently this is one of mine.

*I don’t remember if I mentioned here, but during my previous miscarriage I called the doctor who had me come in and do an ultrasound and blood work. Which meant I ended up paying several hundred dollars to confirm that I would not, in fact, be having a baby.