I just wanted to be clear that I know everyone’s situation is different, and people have different experiences. I am just sharing my choices and my experience.
The moment I found out our child no longer had a heartbeat in my belly, so many thoughts instantly spiraled through my head. The first was total and utter disbelief, and then a crazy influx of sad emotions, and finally the dreaded thought of “oh my goodness I have to end this pregnancy in some way…how do I go through this again?”. The choices I made after finding out our first baby would not make it are ones I would never make again. What’s the saying? Hindsight is 20/20? I know everyone has a different experience, and has reasons why they make the decisions they do, but I wanted to share my experience. Why? For knowledge. I feel like people don’t always talk about the “what happens’ next”, and sometimes…people just want to know.
A D&C vs. A Medicated Miscarriage
The first time we suffered our loss I chose not to go to the hospital and have a D&C. I thought the invasiveness of the procedure would be worse mentally then the alternative which was to take medication at home to induce the miscarriage. I thought that going through it in the comfort of my own home on my own time would be better. (Here’s some more about my medicated miscarriage should you want to read about it). It wasn’t. The doctor couldn’t tell me exactly what to expect because every situation is different…it hurt…and it was very emotionally hard to experience the loss physically (if that makes sense). I mean I physically had to miscarry the child…and to see it happen was emotionally unbearable. It happened over hours, but once it was done…it still wasn’t done. The effects of the loss carried on for two weeks. I had to see it and feel it every day. Then, when they checked to make sure it worked and the baby had in fact miscarried we found out it hadn’t. It was holding strong, so I had to take the medication again to go through it again. Only to find out another 2 weeks later that it still didn’t work. In the end I had to suffer through an in office D&C which meant I only got a local shot of anesthesia and was awake through it all. Let me tell you…brutal. Just wrong, and I wish my doctor never allowed me to do it. But I chose that just to have it all be over. I didn’t want to go through pre op, and surgery. I just wanted it done. And then it was…(here’s more about the in office D&C)
This time I wasn’t doing all of that. I get that it doesn’t usually happen like that, but I couldn’t risk it. Maybe my body hated the medication. Who knows, but to me, I had no other option but to have the D&C at the hospital. I’m not going to lie..it’s all technical and rather cold. There is pre op the day before, and the procedure takes a very short amount of time. Figure about 3 hours of your time from start to finish. Meaning the moment you walk into the hospital till when you leave. We had to get there an hour before the procedure time. Of course Captain Awesome was with me. That hour was spent in the uncomfortable backless hospital gown, but they at least gave me a robe and booties. The thing that made it bearable was the episode of Divorce court which at least brought a little humor. Everyone kept asking “what are you here for?’” I think they have to ask so there is no mistake what you are having done, but for me I hated to whisper “A D&C” over and over. For some reason I felt shame…I know I shouldn’t but I did. The nurses and doctors were great. They tried to bring comfort, but not much helped when I had to leave Captain Awesome and walk to that OR on my own. The room was so scary and cold. One small table in the center of the room. At least they tried to make me comfortable with warmed up blankets. But no matter what I felt alone. I held in my tears because they just didn’t feel right. I didn’t know the people in the room and they didn’t know me. As I laid on that table I knew in a mere minutes I no longer would be pregnant. But the good doctor put me out of my misery fast and the anesthesia knocked me out cold. Amazing stuff that anesthesia. The good drugs took me away, and didn’t bring me back till it was all over. And it was just that….over…
The recovery from the D&C has been rather bearable. Physically that is. Minimal pain, minimal bleeding, and minimal exhaustion. It only happened last Friday, but I feel physically OK. I am happy with my decision to go this route.
I remember searching the internet the first time to get some information of what to expect either way, and I had trouble finding “real life” accounts. I wanted to write this down to hope it gets out there. I take comfort in knowing I maybe made someone feel better about a decision they made, or were going to make.
Let me be clear. I don’t think the experience of the medication should be like that. But no matter what you still need to feel everything that happens and see it all happen. Also everyone feels differently about the D&C. Their experience could be different. I won’t lie. It’s scary. But for me I needed it to be done. I need to mentally heal and I think this choice will help me do that faster.