10 January 2015

Twelve Weeks

On January 9, 2015, at about 5:50pm, our 3rd baby left us and went back to our Heavenly Father.

I had been having lower back pain and period-like cramps the night before and even started bleeding a little. Jun gave me a blessing and we all went to sleep. I bled with my other two, but this time was different. I went to sleep, but Reia woke me in the middle of the night to go toilet and since that time, I couldn't sleep because the pain from the cramps was so strong. They didn't feel like cramps anymore, they felt more like contractions. I think by morning I believed that I was having a miscarriage. I lay down as much as I could in between feeding the girls and tried to cope with the waves of contractions. In my mind, the baby had already passed and my body was just doing it's job of flushing it out. At one point during the day, I thought, am I doing enough? Should I be doing more? I really didn't know what to do at a time like this. Jun and I were supposed to go to the clinic the next day and I honestly thought, what difference would one day make? I know what they're going to say. I should just wait. But something nagged at my mind so I put it to my Mums FB group and told them that I thought I was miscarrying. All of them told me to go get checked so I spoke to Jun and he also thought the same and asked Micchan if she could take us to the clinic. She came and dropped me off and I went in. When the Dr. gave me an internal ultrasound I wasn't expecting anything but the first thing he said was 「でかいな〜!」which means "It's so big!" and I immediately perked up and thought "What? What's big?" I searched for the monitor on the wall and there was the baby! It was moving around like it was fine and it even waved it's arm around as if to say "Hi Mum!" I felt so relieved in that moment thinking we were going to be ok. The baby was still alive! This must just be some pre-bleeding like I had with Reia and Aila! I got a photo to keep and was told to return the next week with my Mother Book. I was still contracting the whole time I was there and was issued 3 types of medicine to stop the bleeding and contractions.

We got home and I took the medicine and lay down again. I was Skyping with Mum and Pup because I was excited that I saw that baby and that it was still alive! I even told my group on FB, "It's alive!" I thought for sure that we were going to be ok and would be having another baby on the 1st of August 2015. Even as I was chatting with Mum and Pup, I was still having contractions and they were getting stronger and closer together. Mum was telling me to breathe through them. At the time I thought, I have taken the medicine, the baby is still alive, I'm OK. It was then that I thought I had better check on the girls in the living room to see if they were alright so I got up and peered in and Reia was watching TV and Aila was playing with my silk flowers. It looked like she was about to bite one of the buds off. I snuck back into my room and knelt down to get back into bed and as I landed, I felt this glob of jelly move inside me and thought "Omg was that the placenta?" I was on my hands and knees now and all of a sudden and I just felt that same blob come out of me. My heart stopped and I checked my knickers. I looked down and I couldn't make it out at first but in my heart, I knew what it was. I kept saying "Oh my gosh, oh my gosh, Mum, Mum", and she was saying "What!" But I think she knew too as I was almost crying. I said "The baby came out" and we both broke down in tears. I looked down closer and the baby had come out in it's amniotic sac with the fluid still in it. It was just lying there in it's little bubble. And then it kicked and moved. Pup was telling me to pick it up so I did and I held it in my right hand in it's fluid and everything. It moved and kicked again and I didn't know what to do. It was still alive! Does this mean it can survive? Surely it can't but what if?? I just didn't know what to do and Mum was telling me to talk to it but all I could say was "I'm sorry, baby" over and over again. As I was talking and crying, the liquid from the sac started to leak out until it was empty and the baby stopped moving and went cold. It was about 2 inches long from head to tailbone. It looked like a perfectly healthy little fetus for it's stage. Two eyes, a nose, a mouth, two arms, two legs... and it had moved in front of my eyes. I sat there for a while crying and crying while looking at this baby that could have been. I was definitely in shock. I said goodbye to Mum and Pup as Jun had come home. Jun told me he kinda knew it had passed because I had Facebooked him saying "I'm sorry, the baby, it's too late." He expected there to be a lot of blood and no baby, but when he walked in and saw me holding the baby in my hand, he became overwhelmed and broke down and hugged me. It was a lot for him to take in too.

Jun called Micchan back up and told her what had happened and asked if she could take us to the ER so I could be checked out. She came over and helped clean up the blood a bit and offered to take the girls for the night which we were grateful for. This was their first night away from us. I hope they were ok. So she took us to the hospital ER and I had to bring the placenta and fetus with me. When I walked in the room, I tried to shield/protect the baby from prying eyes. It was in a rice bowl with a bit of water and I put the rice bowl in a container. I wanted to bury the baby somewhere or commemorate it somehow so I was determined to bring the baby back with me. I was wheeled into Room 14 and met the Doctor. He asked me questions about my miscarriage symptoms and the baby. I was then asked to take my pants off and sit on a pink chair with stirrups. As soon as I sat down a big gush of blood came out and bled all of the chair. They assured me it was fine and to just let it. First the doctor checked to see if everything was out with what I imagined to be like a metal shoe horn or something and some tongs. Next he checked with the probe to see what was going on inside. He said that all the placenta and sac and everything were gone and all that was left was a lining of blood and that would come out over the course of 5 days or so. We were then given a choice about what to do with the baby. I had had it in my mind to bring it home but he was saying that the hospital could examine it to see the cause of death. The more that we spoke about it, the harder it seemed to bring the baby home. Of course I wanted to do something for it but on the other hand, what would that be? In Japan, you can't just bury something. You could just do it when no one is around, but when I thought about it, where would that be? I thought about putting it in a pot on the veranda and planting something with it, but what if it went wrong? What if there were bugs or the plant died? It might be kind of weird for it to just be there as a reminder. We could bury it somewhere outside, but that felt kind of sad and lonely all by itself. Even the thought of taking it home with me was depressing enough. I would have to wake up to it again and be reminded of what happened. It was depressing. In the end we decided to give it to the hospital. I felt that the memories I had were enough and I didn't want them tainted with something else. I took a photo of it before I left that I will never show anyone and will just be for Jun and I to remember. I am glad that I didn't have to wake up to a dead baby today. That would have been terrible.

After the hospital, Jun suggested that we eat somewhere. I had zero appetite for food but noticed that my tolerance of food smells was lightening and it wasn't so horrendous anymore. It didn't necessarily smell good, but I could discern what was smelling instead of it smelling like one disgusting blur of a smell. I smelt fried food, tobacco, and hospital. My body started changing back so quickly. We decided to go to Grachie, a Japanese Italian restaurant. I didn't find anything on the menu appealing at all. We both decided on the all you can eat pizza service, plus a main, and dessert. He got the scallop pasta and I got the carbonara (good choice I must say!). My taste buds were a lot more sensitive to tastes. I had a sip of a regular Japanese orange drink and it tasted different than it usually did. It had this weird sour kick at the end that I didn't like. I asked Jun to get me a different drink and the next one he brought out was a lot better. It tasted like Just Juice Bubbles! I drank 2 of those lol. I was very aware that I might not be able to eat much because my morning sickness had been so bad, but I wanted to give it a go anyway. The first round of pizza came to the table it and was thin and cheesy. I bit into it and oh my gosh it was so good!!! I had been craving food like this for weeks and weeks and finally I was able to eat it and actually like it! Cheesy goodness! I was happy. Sitting there in the restaurant and discovering all these new flavours with Jun was, in a way, therapeutic. We reconnected with each other, talked about the baby, talked about the what-ifs, and more importantly what we learnt and will do differently next time. This pregnancy was really hard on both of us and we hadn't connected as a couple since I got sick. He was in over his head trying to take care of the girls and the house, cooking, cleaning, dealing with his cold etc. It was a lot for him and he was struggling. I was feeling guilty locking myself in my room and I felt resented by him. Like this was all my fault and why wasn't I doing more. Anyways, during dinner I told him that the next time I am pregnant I am going to be more selfish and will take care of myself and the baby. This time I know he understood why I was saying that. It takes more than one person to care for an unborn baby. There is the Mother and everyone else around the her making sure she and her family are taken care of. I am definitely going to focus more on my body and baby rather than peoples feelings. This could mean life or death and I know that now. He also now understands what it takes to be able to take care of a household. It isn't easy! It is a lot of work that most of the time goes unnoticed. This whole experience has been a great lesson to us as parents and as a couple. I feel like we are now more on the same page and have an understanding of one another. We talked all night about nothing and everything. It was full of stories and we just enjoyed each others company. It had been a while since we talked like that. It was a roller coaster of emotions that day.

After Reia came back from our friend's house, she was so happy to see us but sad at the same time. We left them at the ER pretty abruptly without any explanation. She hugged me, cried and asked if I was ok. My heart broke when she asked "Is the baby in your tummy okay?" That caught me off guard and I had to tell her that the baby had to go.

Even though I am still coming to terms with what happened, I am grateful that I at least got to meet my baby and have an ultrasound photo of it to keep forever. It was only a short period of time but boy did we learn a lot from this child. Baby taught us a lesson that we will cherish always. And all of his or her future brothers or sisters will benefit because of it.

Love you always, my baby.

Your Mummy.

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