After our wedding in May 2017, my thoughts quickly turned to trying for a baby. In October, we found out that we were expecting. I was excited, but tentative. I always had this strange feeling that getting pregnant would not be easy, but it seemed that it was. A few weeks later, when I was around 7 weeks’ pregnant, I started bleeding a little, but I didn’t have any pain at all. Luckily, I had a GP appointment that day to get a mole checked. The GP referred me to the Early Pregnancy Unit.
When we got in the scan room, we knew something was wrong quite quickly. The sonographer was quiet – she was struggling to find something. She said she was very sorry but she could not see anything in my womb. My husband and I were heartbroken. We were escorted to the “sad room” as I call it and given a leaflet on having a pregnancy in an “unknown location”. The rest is a bit of a blur, but after I had my bloods taken, a doctor came to tell me that the pregnancy was in my right tube and it had ruptured – I needed surgery ASAP to remove the Fallopian tube and the pregnancy that was not meant to be.
At this point, I was mourning so many things and asking myself so many questions. I wasn’t pregnant anymore. I didn’t have a due date in June. I needed to tell my parents. I was losing a Fallopian tube. Was I going to be able to conceive again? Was my fertility about to be reduced by 50%? How long would it take to get pregnant again? Would this happen again? Why did this happen? I remember Googling frantically while awaiting my surgery. I was pleased to learn from The Ectopic Pregnancy Trust’s site that it did not mean that my fertility would be halved and that sometimes the clever little remaining tube swings across and catches the egg from the other side. It made me a little more hopeful.
The surgery was fine – I recovered well physically. Mentally – that was a different story. I wanted to know why it had happened. The doctors said it may have been caused by scar tissue that I had obtained from bowel surgery in 2016, but it may have been completely random and unconnected. Sometimes these things just happen, they said.
After the surgery, I was told that we shouldn’t try again for three months. Mentally that was really difficult, as I was desperate to be pregnant again. Fast forward three months and I was pregnant again, the first month of trying. I was gobsmacked, but felt so lucky. Sadly, that ended in a missed miscarriage, but it showed me that getting pregnant easily was possible with one tube! I then got pregnant with my rainbow, who is nearly two years old.
As I reflect, I realise how much my two losses affected me. It led me down a path of anxiety and extreme sadness, where I felt like I had a grey cloud overhanging me. I found it difficult to find joy in life. I was no longer myself. I think it’s important to share stories like mine for so many reasons. To try and tackle the taboo of pregnancy loss and the devastating impact it can have on your mental health, to raise awareness (particularly as ectopic pregnancies can be very dangerous) and to give others hope, especially to those who were in my position in late 2017.