I’m not even going to beat around the bush about this. Today was the hardest, most mind fucking, messed up day I’ve ever experienced. If “trigger warnings” exist for a reason, I guess this is it. Don’t read if you don’t want to hear about bad shit.
Today was the day I prepped for and got my D&C procedure. To those innocent and blessed individuals reading this that don’t know what that is, it stands for “dilation and curettage.” That is literal, fancy medical terminology for removing a failed pregnancy.
For whatever godforsaken reason, I had to spend Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday gearing up for today’s procedure. By “gearing up” I mean “suffering through intense cramping and frightening bleeding.” Every damn time I went to the bathroom, it was like some cruel reminder that my body had failed me. My bathroom routine was cry, change my pad, cry, wipe, cry some more and then return to the couch.
The heating pad became my best friend. The cramping intensified like my body was just following the manual for a miscarriage. It was textbook. Cramping, bleeding, repeat.
I woke up knowing that by the day’s end, I wouldn’t be pregnant anymore. There would be nothing left to protect, I’d have to abandon the habit of touching my stomach or examining my body to look for new symptoms. Soon, there’d be no symptoms. There’d be nothing.
Some d&c procedures can be done in the hospital under general anesthesia. It’s not an insanely invasive procedure (although anything happening in that region is invasive if you ask me) nor is it very time consuming. It’s the reality of the procedure, of what’s being done, that probably makes it very appealing to be asleep during.
At 10:30, four hours before the procedure, I had to take a medicine to help dilate my cervix. My aunt arrived an hour later and we visited like we normally would have: talked about movies and shows, played with Oliver and gossiped about annoying people. By 1pm, the cramps were all consuming. It felt like someone was using every ounce of their strength to stretch and knot my insides.
I took my medication an hour before the procedure, as directed by the doctor. There were pills for anxiety, antibiotics and pain reducers. By the time we got in the car, my legs were shaking uncontrollably . Ryan asked if it was because of nerves or the medicine and I had no idea. Probably both.
I teared up in the waiting room, but when they brought me into the room…
I broke down.
It wasn’t an ordinary examination room. It was a “bad” room, reserved for bad things like this. It felt unusually large, cold, sterile and unwelcoming. This was a room no one wanted to be in. It meant bad things.
I undressed, had the procedure re-explained to me and got into the all familiar gynecological position. Above me were two painted ceiling tiles, meant to distract patients from why they were laying there in the first place. It was some type of painted skyline that was presumably meant to be peaceful. Look up, stare at the illustrated sunshine and forget why you’re there.
Not so much.
To my left was my husband, quietly reminding me how much he loved me and rubbing my arm.To my right was my aunt, who probably thought she was going to remain in the waiting room and read an Us Weekly or something. I wanted her there though, which is such a selfish request. “Hey do you want to come witness this awful thing and be permanently scarred? No? Yes, you do.”
I closed my eyes so tightly. Tighter than I have ever closed them. I gripped my hands together over my chest and tried to breathe.
Move your toes.
Flex your feet.
Relax as best as you can.
Take a deep breath.
But I just couldn’t. The doctor was moving through the process for what felt like hours, but in reality was minutes.
Here comes some more cramping.
We are going to numb the area.
Going to be a little uncomfortable for a minute.
You’re doing great.
Just a couple minutes more.
Then the worst came.
I knew what they were doing. Those reading this right now know what they were doing.
The noise will haunt me forever. It will be something that wakes me up from a sound sleep. A noise that will take a lifetime to get over. If I ever get over it.
It was done.
Just like that, twelve weeks of unconditional love, hope, promise and growth was gone. My little baby…and now my little angel. However completely f***ing corny that sounds.
As much as I’m relieved that this final step is complete and we can begin the emotional healing process, I feel physically and emotionally empty.
I woke up pregnant and ended the day…not.
I don’t know where to go next. I fear that I’ll be physically better in days, but mentally and emotionally stunted for however long it takes. People will move on. I’ll laugh again. I’ll get off the couch and play with my kids again. This will become a distant memory to outsiders. But I fear that I’ll put on a strong face, get back to my sarcastic ways and everyone will assume I’m okay.
But I’m not. Not after today.