It’s been 4+ weeks since I landed up in hospital only to find out that I had an ectopic pregnancy and I needed to have an operation. I am overwhelmed by the support and response from everyone that I have come into contact with. Thank you for all your support and kindness.
Something that has blown me away is the realization that so many women have had the same or similar experiences. I always thought that miscarriage happened to a few women, but by the response I had I started wondering how many women have had a miscarriage.
According to this article 15 to 20% of verified pregnancies result in miscarriage, with over 80% of miscarriages occurring in the first trimester. That just goes to confirm the feedback I have received from so many women in the last few weeks.
When I think that so many women are trying to fall pregnant and lose their babies – I cannot come close to comparing my pain with theirs. I was sterilized, our family was complete and we were happy like that. Then we found out that we were losing a baby… the pain I have felt in the last few weeks has been unbearable. I can only imagine how much worse it must be for a women that is trying for a baby. That happiness and joy at finding out you are pregnant and then having to face such a huge loss.
From me to you, I am so sorry. I hope you find peace.
The last 4 weeks has been so rocky for me. At times I have felt fine, even happy and laughing with my friends, but there have been so many moments filled with tears and pain too.
Here’s what has been happening and how I’ve been managing after my ectopic pregnancy:
Recovery Ectopic Pregnancy – The Physical Aspect
Right at this moment I am doing well physically. One week after the operation I had a slight infection. I was put on antibiotics and it cleared up in very quickly.
For the first week the pain from the operation was very intense, made worse of course by the fact that other than some anti-inflammatories I only took paracetamol because I am a recovering alcoholic and drug addict.
The second week after the operation the physical pain was much less – after a hairy experience with my doctor giving me some meds with Tramadol in them by accident I stopped taking all pain medication. I was high as can be for 2 days but I will share about that on my addiction blog when I have some more time on my hands.
I am still not allowed to exercise or do any lifting for another 2 weeks but I am feeling much stronger now. The pain of the operation has just about disappeared. It is only when I moved in a certain way, like a twisting motion or trying to sit up in the morning that I sometimes feel a bit tender.
The area where they cut me is numb and feels gross. They cut in exactly the same place as my previous two c-sections so that is to be expected.
The one area that I am still struggling with is being tired a lot. I still need to rest a lot. I am sure that while this comes across as a physical feeling and my body is still recovering, I believe a lot of my fatigue is due to the emotional struggle this has been.
I am experiencing a few postpartum symptoms. My hair is falling out in chunks and my skin broke out in pimples. I am feeling the hormonal ups and downs too.
Recovery Ectopic Pregnancy – The Emotional Aspect
I left this to discuss after the physical recovery because it is not as simple as the physical, not by a long shot. In fact I miss the physical pain in a big way because it took my attention away from my emotional pain. It may sound strange but it is truth. Physical pain is easy for me, I just get on with it, but when it comes to matters of the heart I struggle.
The emotional pain is still here in all its glory, maybe not as intense and overpowering as it was the first few days, but now that I am mostly physically recovered I must get on with life… but I don’t want to. I have this intense loss that I somehow have to process and heal from but I don’t know how to.
When someone dies you have a funeral and everyone cries and pays their last respects. I’ve lost my baby and I am sitting at home with this pain and nothing to hold onto.
I’m not having any “what if” thinking, or “why me”… its more a case of “What the hell just happened to me?”.
I was combing my hair after washing it and watching my hair coming out in clumps and remembering doing exactly the same thing twice before after giving birth to my children. But this time there is no baby, just heart ache and a hand full of hair.
I’m feeling so much anger and pain but I can’t quite access the source of it or where to direct it. The smallest thing can bring me to tears.
Those are the bad moments. I am also having plenty of normal moments, and happy moments too mixed in.
Something that I highly recommend for anyone else that has had a miscarriage is to seek counseling. I had a counseling session shortly after I got out of hospital and it really helped me to process my feelings and all the mixed emotions.
Things That Helped My Recovery
My kids have been amazing for my recovery. Whenever I feel sad and overwhelmed I go and play with them. I need to remind myself that life goes on and my kids need me. I need them too, very much so.
I’ve been doing a lot of cuddling with my children, especially my youngest since he is so affectionate and cuddly. It’s a little harder to pin my daughter down for a decent hug.
My children don’t know about the baby, they just know that I was sick and I had an operation. They insist on carrying things for me and bringing me things. I’ve been surprised at how they want to help me so much. It makes my heart lighter.
Talking with my husband has been very helpful too, we have had so many discussions about it and this has surprised me and helped me heal. I’m sure it has helped him a lot too.
My friends have been so amazing. We have a Whatsapp group and talk about everything in there, the discussions are sometimes really deep and emotional but there is also a lot of silliness. I have had so many awesome laughs, the really good ones that make you feel so happy afterwards. Laughing is good for the soul.
Getting out of the house is really important. For the first week I stayed at home, which is understandable since I was recovering from the operation but when the second week arrived I really didn’t want to go out and face people or face the world. I wanted to stay at home and hide under the covers. I couldn’t do this though because my mother had to go back home, my husband had to go back to work and I had to lift my kids to school… I am quite grateful that I had to get on with it. I think if I didn’t have a reason to leave the house I would have just crawled under the duvet cover and not come out.
Once again, it is so important to get support and help from others, it will help you to heal faster. I have been so fortunate with so many people being so kind and helpful. Even my neighbor would come out every time he saw me to see if he could carry my shopping in for me. Yes the physical side of carrying in the shopping was great, but it also made me feel cared for.
Something else that has been really good for me has been self love and being kind to myself. I am the type of person that takes a knock in my stride. If I get knocked down I get up and recover very quickly – physically and emotionally. Not this time. This time I was taken down for a while. It has taken me much longer than I expected to start getting up again. I have had to be kind to myself and let myself rest and let myself feel all these emotions.
I bought myself some books to read and I climbed into bed to read them when my kids were in school. I have been eating well and giving myself a pampering with awesome skin care products.
I am starting to feel more normal now and I am getting back to my usual routine. I will update again soon.