6 Years, 1 month, 1 day ago, my heart was lifted as high as it could be, hopes and dreams soaring, just to be pushed off a cliff and sent hurtling to the jagged rocks below, where it proceeded to shatter.
You see, 6 years and 2 months ago, I found out I was pregnant.I was thrilled, it was a planned pregnancy, though there were lots of other things going on at the same time that complicated things, more on that here.
After years of therapy and self analyzing I've come to realize that the pregnancy in question was a desperate ploy to try and save my marriage. Not that I will ever regret pushing my husband to agree to another baby, the heartache that ensued was probably my saving grace.
6 years, 1 month and 1 day ago, I went in for a routine ultrasound, the first one of my pregnancy, to figure out my due date. You see, judging by my last period, I should have been 8 weeks pregnant, when I went in to see the doctor, they said I measured only 6 weeks. They had me in within a couple of days for the ultrasound to date things as accurately as possible.
The ultrasound was quite normal in almost all aspects. I went in with a full bladder, former husband beside me. We watched the screen as the ultrasound tech looked around and did the normal measurements. After a few minutes of her poking around, we were starting to get a grasp on what we were seeing. Having had 2 children previously, we were quite adept at looking at ultrasounds and started to notice some things that weren't quite "right".
You see, on a normal ultrasound this early on, you tend to see a roughly oval dark shape, surrounded by static-ey white areas, and within the dark oval is a smaller static-ey white area that is shaped vaguely like a head and body, sometimes you can see arms and legs, depending on how good the machine is.
We saw all this.
We also saw, right next to the first dark oval, another dark oval, similar static-ey white area within it.
Former husband noticed it at the same time I did, and brought it up to the ultrasound tech, asked her if we were seeing what we thought we were seeing. She calmly nodded her head and said "I really can't say much, but yes". Kind of struck me as odd for her to say something like that. She continued to look around in silence, occasionally pointing out measurements.
We started to notice that something didn't look right to us, and after paying attention to the things she was focusing on, we became concerned. Former husband made a comment about the unusual attention she was paying to one of the babies, and she told us she couldn't tell us anything and that she needed to speak with my doctor and that we would need to speak to my doctor as well.
Way to scare the CRAP out of a newly pregnant woman who just found out she's carrying twins...
What felt like hours later, after finishing up at the hospital and finding our way across town to my doctors office, we were given the news.
Baby A was fine, measuring on track, good heartbeat, active.
Baby B was not. He*had stopped growing approximately a week before my ultrasound. He had no heartbeat.
I was devastated. Broken. I went home and collapsed in a panic. I couldn't stop crying.
The next day we went back to the hospital and they printed some ultrasound pictures for us, so we had pictures of both babies together, and some of Baby B alone.
I spent weeks in desperation. Trying to cope with the fact that my body had given me two babies, and then saw fit to take one of those babies away from me.
I left Former Husband after 2 of the longest months I have ever endured in my life. He just didn't care, He had his girlfriend, who was also pregnant (and due just after me), I did everything I could to save the marriage, get the girlfriend out of the picture, pick up the pieces of my life and move on. It ended shortly after I had to have a SWAT team come to my house and put former husband in a hospital to have a mental evaluation after he threatened to kill himself.
His mental breakdown in addition to the girlfriend he refused to give up and the loss of my child put me into a very dark place, I wanted to die, the only reason I didn't end up going through with all of the dark thoughts I was having was because of the child I still had growing inside me. When I gave him an ultimatum and told him he needed to give up the girlfriend, or I was leaving, he got physical with me and threatened my life. I was gone that day, a single mother of 2 who was 18 weeks pregnant with a third.
I had no idea what to do, where to go, or how I was going to survive. I hadn't finished school, had never worked, didn't even know how to drive a car.
I filed for a protection from abuse order due to the threats on my life and I was given full custody and rights of the children. The day we went to court for the hearing, he had me served with divorce papers.
5 Years, 1 month and 1 day ago, my 3 children and Current Husband sat and watched me graduate. A small class of about 12 adults like me who had left high school and returned years later to finish their education through independent studies. In my cap and gown I remembered the child I had never known, who had left me before I even knew he was there, just one year to the day before I finally got my diploma. It was a bittersweet day, but an important day for me nonetheless.
If I hadn't lost my child, I may never have gained the strength to leave a man who spent our entire 6 1/2 years together brainwashing me. I would never have met the amazing man who is now my husband, and I wouldn't have my beautiful youngest daughter.
*My gut has always told me that Baby B was a boy, I named him Hayden.