Jane

My husband and I have two boys ages 11 and 6. For the past 2 years, we have been trying to decide if we should have another child. I have high blood pressure, so we weren’t sure it would be a good idea. My doctor told me to just be satisfied with two children. Finally I asked my OB/GYN, and he said my last two pregnancies went okay, and we would deal with the blood pressure problem. Also I have to say that my three best friends just had their third babies recently, so I was feeling the desire to have a baby too. We tried for 6 months, which seemed long; it only took one or two months with our first two children. Of course I am much older now. I am 36. We found out through a home test that we were pregnant on December 29, 2003. We were both still a little unsure at this point but excited. We decided to keep it a secret until after the first appointment at 12 weeks. We didn’t tell our boys either. I was a little leery because with my second pregnancy, I bled for a weekend, and we thought we miscarried. By some miracle we didn’t.

From the start of this third pregnancy, it seemed different. I seemed to have a lot of cramping, was very tired, and the morning sickness started immediately and lasted sometimes throughout the day. I attributed all of this to being older, 20 pounds overweight, and out of shape! I went to my first appointment on February 6, 2004, which was just to see the nurse to fill out the paperwork. I was not scheduled to see the doctor until February 18. About a week before this I had some spotting, which seemed to be mucus tainted with blood. At the appointment, my blood pressure was elevated, so the nurse told my doctor about these concerns. It just so happened that he was between appointments so he wanted to do an ultrasound right then. As he did the ultrasound, I knew something was wrong because he wasn’t talking. He said things didn’t look right, and he wanted to do a vaginal ultrasound. He left the room so I could get undressed. I said a prayer to just hear the heartbeat. He then did the ultrasound. He told me he thought I had a molar pregnancy and began to explain the bad news. I had never heard of this. It was all very surreal. I didn’t cry at that point. I think I was in shock. I just remember wanting to leave as soon as possible. I somehow found my car and burst into tears. I was supposed to only be gone from work for about an hour. I teach school, so not being there on time is a problem. I drove home, and luckily my husband was home. I explained what I could and then had to return to school because there were no more substitute teachers available. I pretended everything was okay for the rest of the afternoon. I of course got on the Internet that day to learn more about molar pregnancy. I learned way more than I wanted to know! This was a Friday, so the nurse called me on Monday to confirm that my HCG levels were too high: 125,000. A D&C was scheduled for Thursday. On the Tuesday before the D&C, I had to see the doctor for an ultrasound to confirm one more time that it was the right diagnosis. It was Wednesday. After school, we learned that one of our teachers had died that morning unexpectedly. Thursday morning I had the D&C and in the doctor’s words “It went fantastic.” Definitely not how I felt. Friday I went to the wake for my friend and on Saturday to his funeral. I think I was still in shock by all of this. I don’t know if I can quite separate the emotions of the two events. I keep telling myself that things could be worse. A friend no longer has a husband, but that doesn’t make the pain of the molar pregnancy go away.

My HCG levels dropped to 23,000 right away, then 13,000, and my last test was 3,300, so I have hope that the test I find out about on Monday will be lower yet. I had the chest x-ray last Friday. My blood pressure won’t come down so now I have to go see another doctor to change my medication. I also cannot use birth control pills due to the blood pressure problems, so my OB wants me to try the mini-pill. I’m not too sure about how this will work. All of these tests and doctor appointments seem to be overwhelming. This weekend seems to be the worst yet. Depression has set in and it feels like I am alone in this. My friends I would normally talk to all have new babies so it is difficult for them to really understand. I am worried about cancer. I am also upset about not being able to try to get pregnant again for a year. I will be 37 in June, and I feel like I am running out of time. I now regret that we didn’t have a third child sooner. I also find it difficult to explain to friends, relatives, and co-workers why I have to have a blood test each week. (We had to tell our big secret when I had the D&C, but we didn’t tell our children exactly what happened.) I don’t think the receptionist at the clinic even understands.

I know that I will get through this, and I’m glad I found this site. Thank you for letting me share my story; it truly helps.

Update: April 2, 2004
I have had weekly blood draws since the D&C. My count continues to drop. I was at 14 last week and will get another result on Monday. So far, so good.

Update: May 14, 2005
I continued to have blood draws until October 2004. My HCG levels dropped to 0, and I survived without getting cancer. My OB/GYN then said I could try to get pregnant again. We conceived again in January, and I told my husband the good news on his 40th birthday, February 9, 2005. I had my first doctor appointment on March 1, 2005. There was a heartbeat; however, the doctor said the fetus didn’t seem to be developed as much as it should be for the number of weeks I was pregnant. I had to go back in 10 days. When I went back on March 10, there was no heartbeat, and I was miscarrying. After a discussion with the doctor, it was decided that a D&C would be best. We couldn’t believe this was happening again. It was determined that this was just a miscarriage and not a molar pregnancy this time. That was a relief because I didn’t want to do all those blood tests again and worry about cancer. My doctor told me that 1 out of 3 pregnancies will result in miscarriage in women my age. I will be 38 in June. We can try to get pregnant again now, but I am so unsure. I think about the loss of those babies everyday. I just don’t know if I can go through the loss of another baby. On the other hand, I will always wonder if the third time would work. I keep praying for a sign from God!

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