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Old May 1st, 2018, 14:42 PM   1
Trying to conceive (TTC)
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Things I wish Iíd known

I hope this post doesnít upset anyone, Iíve tried to keep the tone light but Iím hoping it doesnít come across like I donít care - itís a coping thing for me - but now a month after my little boy was born sleeping at seventeen weeks, I was laying in the bath tub pulling out clumps of hair, wishing someone had warned me about some of the stuff thatís happened. This was my first second trimester loss, very different to my early ones. I havenít had any other children so have never experienced birth or post partum. I wasnít far enough along to have starting reading the birthing books. So I was quite unprepared. So I thought Iíd make a list of things I wish Iíd been ready for, and if people want to add that would be good.
1) So as I mentioned - hair loss. Clumps of it, though luckily not enough for bald patches. Apparently this is quite normal after birth.
2) leaky boobs. I hadnít even thought of this until the midwife told me the tablet she was giving me was to stop me producing it. I still had a tiny bit of clear stuff which I noticed once, wiped away, and never noticed again.
3) there was a cot in our room at the hospital. I hadnít really thought far enough ahead to that point but it was a shock walking in and seeing it. I made them take it out until it was needed.
4) depending on where you are in the pregnancy, your baby may not look like a baby. I googled beforehand so I knew what to expect here and I was glad I did. Our baby had died a few days before he was born, and was very red and honestly looked like a little monster.
5) monster or not, I still felt that love. I didnít feel it until about four hours later and I made them take him away as I couldnít look at him until that time - I think I went into shock a little. But I did feel it and I still do.
6) this one is fairly obviously but be prepared for lots of people looking into (yes actually inside) your vagina. I think my count was 8 and I was lucky that was it as I nearly had to have surgery to get the placenta out. Luckily the consultant on call was able to remove it with forceps. ďLuckilyĒ.
7) it can go on a long time, and can be boring. I think itís so weird such an emotional event can get dull, but it did at times. We were told we could be in hospital for up to a week, but we were only there about 30 hours or so. We took magazines and ended up watching a film in the iPad, and Iím glad we had them there for distraction.
8) buy some maternity pads. I had vaguely thought that mega sized sanitary towels would be okay but they werenít. Any clots smaller than a 50p piece are fine afterwards - bigger than that then speak to your midwife.
9) you wonít feel what you think you will. I laughed, cried, went totally numb, fell in love massively more with my husband, swore at him, refused to talk to anyone, over shared, you name it I did it. And I didnít do it how or when I thought I would.
10) pooping. Oh dear. Make yourself poop sooner rather than later. Again magazines may help. Itís not easy.
11) be prepared to feel a bit abandoned afterwards. I found that suddenly we werenít a priority. We still havenít got our son back, havenít had results etc - it can take three months. It would be nice to have our calls returned but they havenít been. May dependent on the hospital, but we were told we would be offered counselling, get a bereavement midwife etc, and we havenít.
12) your baby may be taken somewhere else if youíre having a post mortem. We had no idea our baby was taken to London until it was casually dropped into conversation thatís where he was.
13) Itís a long process. Itís really hard to start healing when you havenít had a funeral or whatever you chose, donít know when to expect calls etc. Weíve been told it could be around three months before we get results back, but we should get him back sooner - anytime now. Weíre still in limbo, but five weeks in and it is getting easier to be okay. I felt guilty every time I smiled at first, but it does get easier.
14) you can do it, and youíre stronger than you think. I did not think I would make it through, before during or after. But I am. I did.

I really hope that no one ever needs to know this stuff, but hopefully if they do, then it helps. I also really recommend looking at sands the charity as theyíve been really helpful.

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Old May 10th, 2018, 07:06 AM   2
Waiting To Try (WTT)
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Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 12
What a useful post. This is a difficult subject and I can identify with so many things on your list. If it's ok can I maybe add a couple more.....

- expect your brain to be caught in a permanent loop for a while, replaying events over and over again. I think it was my brain's way of coping and processing with such a traumatic event.

- your body knows it has given birth. My arms literally ached like they were desperate to hold a baby, I had overwhelming urges to breastfeed. The intense feelings/sensations passed for me after a few weeks but I still miss the opportunity every day.

- you’ll be surprised at how quickly everyone else moves on. I had several family members refuse to talk about it and my partners mum said she didn't class our baby as a 'real' grandchild. It will be difficult for other people to understand unless they have been through something similar, try not to let their words hurt or distress you.

- people will think it helps to tell you to 'get over it'. It has been 6 months since my loss and I had 2 months off work immediately afterwards. I still think about it everyday and cry a few tears most days in private. I realise now I won't ever completely get over it but I can live alongside the pain and loss while still functioning and even being happy.

- don't be in a rush to make any big decisions. Everyone will ask if/when you will try again. I changed my mind everyday. I still change my mind everyday. I try to remind myself that we don't need to decide right now.

The support and information from SANDS is excellent. There is also a charity called Petals that offers counselling. Some of the larger hospitals also have a bereavement midwife who could offer support.

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Old May 10th, 2018, 09:25 AM   3
Trying to conceive (TTC)
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Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 1,088
Thank you - I really relate with yours too - I catch myself remembering certain moments and replaying it over and over all the time remembering every little tiny detail. And other people moving on and telling me to get over it - 100%.

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