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30th Dec 2015

The Pregnancy Diaries: Week 14 – Haema-what?

Telling friends and family our pregnancy news was, to be brutally honest, a relief.

It felt wonderful to proclaim all the nice parts about the pregnancy and what we were looking forward to. It also felt like things were finally becoming real and soon we were discussing practical things like prices of buggies and the merits of breastfeeding or not. I have a sneaking suspicion my husband liked it most, although creating a baby is a big deal!

However, just two days after shouting our news from the rooftops, came another scare.

I’ve been bleeding since week 8 and, while medics could not explain the cause, I’ve been taking solace in the fact that a lot of women do so in pregnancy and go on to have healthy babies.

However, on Tuesday afternoon it was heavier than ‘my normal’ and I felt weak just looking at what was happening. In a panic, I got in my car to make my way to the hospital. On route I rang my husband who once again showcased his miraculous powers by calming me down and knowing exactly what to do. He rang the secretary at our consultant’s office and shortly after it was agreed that I go straight to the antenatal ward to meet him.

I was greeted with sympathetic gestures by the nurses who directed me to a room to await my fate. The wait, although less than an hour, felt like an eternity. My husband pleaded by text for me to keep him up to date with everything and I agreed to do so while silently praying to the heavens for another positive scan.

The big chief came around with two of his team and as I recounted my horror of what happened, he remained calm and composed as the nurse plugged in the ultrasound machine. A few minutes later, the doctor swiveled the screen to show me that all was fine with baby but then pointed to a dark sack-like object sitting at the edge of my womb. He told me this was a haematoma and most obviously the cause of my bleed.

I was kept in that night for a more imposing scan and regular checks on the bleed. The radiographer described the haematoma as “quite large” and I struggled to listen to any words of comfort. To me, this sack full of clotted blood on my uterus was nothing but a danger to my baby and there was nothing I could do. Needless to say ‘Dr. Google’ didn’t help keep me sane in the hospital bed that night and I began to once again fear the worst.

I was also cramping so painkillers from the on-duty nurse were a must at 3am. Terrified I would lose the baby in my sleep, I struggled to fall asleep but eventually fatigue took over.

The next day, my bleeding returned to what I now describe as ‘normal levels’ and the nurses assured me this was indeed a good thing. I met the big chief at midday and searched his face as he poured over the radiographer’s scan. He went on to say that the clot, at five centimeters, was big but it was in a good spot in that there was no immediate risk to the baby. Many women have these all through their pregnancies but he seemed sure that mine would go away on its own accord in a few weeks’ time. We arranged follow-up appointments at the EPU to check its growth pattern.

I left the hospital that afternoon feeling anxious but hopeful things would work out. We’re still pregnant and that’s why I’m staying positive!