I grew up with pretty educated parents, in a very “affluent” family. I was encouraged to have goals, and set plans, starting at the young age of 5. I had goals written on my mirror- not just everyday plans- a 1 year plan, a 5 year plan, and a 10 year plan. All of these plans I ended up bringing into fruition, including my big goal of getting into the college of my dreams as a young 17 year old, straight out of high school. However, I never really knew what to do once I completed these plans. I got to college and realized I was all planned out. Somehow I managed to get by, but never really started planning again.
Luckily, only 10 years later, I met my husband, and he was a planner! After 8 short months of dating he proposed and we started planning- our wedding, our dream home, and when we would have children. Before we even walked down the aisle, we had names picked out- one for a girl, and one for a boy, just in case. He prided himself on the fact that we were the only couple from his social circle to get married before having a child or “bun in the oven.” As our wedding neared, being a planner, I went to my gynecologist for every test in the book- just in case. She said we were A-OK, but warned that I might want to stop my birth control 3 months prior. However, that was 1 month before our wedding, so I started taking prenatal vitamins, and got excited thinking of a honeymoon baby.
6 months later… As anyone that had been TTC (trying to conceive) for 6 months without any progress, I decided it was time to give up. My husband and I went for a Valentine’s Day massage and actually ended up buying a puppy- like I said, we were mostly planners. One week later, I missed my period, and finally another week later, I decided to take a pregnancy test. For the first time, I watched it instantly turn positive, and celebrated at 4 am (my first morning urine, of course). That day I called my gynecologist and told her I had a positive at home test, so I went into her office and left a sample of urine. A day later, I got the call- “You’re definitely pregnant!” When I texted my husband, he texted back “This is the best day of my life.” Having some knowledge of possible miscarriages in the first 3 months, I didn’t allow myself to get excited, but instead focused on the new puppy we had at home.
One week later… I was still spotting. I started spotting during the time of my expected period, and it just never ended. However, the blood started changing from a brown color to a bright red color. I knew what this meant. I called my new potential OB, and let them know. They didn’t seem concerned, and told me if it was “more than one pad an hour” to go to the ER. I called my gynecologist. She had me go take a Beta HCG test, and said she’d repeat it in a few days.
A few days… I was doing a class presentation, and I felt a sharp pain. I called the new OB’s office & let them know it was more than just spotting now. They told me it was time to rush to their office, to make sure it wasn’t an ectopic pregnancy. “How far along are you now?” “About 6 weeks.” “Come in, and we’ll do a scan.” I left work abruptly leaving a voicemail for my boss, me… the planner. My husband, who never missed a day of law school (even when he had a kidney stone), met me at the OB’s office. “Empty your bladder, and then pee again.” During the vaginal ultrasound, the tech said “How far along are you again?” “6 weeks,” I replied. “Hmm… looks like 4 weeks.” I knew that meant it had stopped growing, but my husband was optimistic that it meant we were just off on our timing. I think I became at peace in that single moment, but my poor unsuspecting husband was still holding out hope.
I will never forget that night. It was the season finale of “How I Met Your Mother.” My husband and I sat together to watch the episode *spoiler alert* and at the very end, it shows Lily’s 2nd positive pregnancy test. I cried. I cried harder than I had ever cried before. Harder than I cried when my dad passed away. I cried as a bewildered husband stared at me, wondering what in the world was going through my mind. The next morning, I learned what it meant to soak through a pad in only an hour. I had the most horrific cramps I had ever suffered in my life. I crawled into my bed in the fetal position (how fitting) and cried… I was home alone, and I truly mourned the thing I had been dreading from the moment I saw that positive pregnancy test. I received the most comforting call from my gynecologist that day, letting me know that my HCG had dropped so much, that they didn’t think the baby would make it. I felt a moment of relief… knowing it wasn’t my worrying, but truly something else that caused this. In all my time of planning, I had never planned this. I prepared for it, but never really thought it would come to fruition. The entire time, all I could think about was my husband’s previous text message, “This is the happiest day of my life…” I couldn’t even fathom how this was all the part of the master plan. All I could think that entire day was, “I didn’t plan this.”