Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Thoughts on Christmas

image: scottchan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I was worried that I would find Christmas sad but I didn't. Yes there were moments when I was sad when I would think how we should have Orson with us and how he would be just a few months old but there were many more happy moments. Maybe I wasn't sad because I kept busy?

Christmas eve was very busy. I thought we would leave everything to do in one day including putting up Christmas decorations. We only just managed to get the house nice and Christmassy in time for us to pick M up from nursery in the afternoon.

Christmas Day was very busy too. Lots of presents to open. I loved watching M open his presents, it was the first year he got a visit from Father Christmas. He left a drink and some food out for Father Christmas and Rudolf the night before and was so happy to see they had gone. It was lovely seeing him so excited. In fact on second thoughts I think it was M that ensured I wasn't really sad this Christmas. It is amazing how the happiness of a two year old is infectious.

Saturday, 25 December 2010

Christmas

Merry Christmas to everyone.

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Hindsight

I read this post (http://aidanbabyofmine.blogspot.com/2010/12/oh.html) recently and it made me think. Emily quoted statistics on conception rates and how they get worse as you get older and at the same time the risk of miscarriage goes up. I am 33 now, so not too old just yet but still a little closer to the more concerning 35 - 40 year old age range than I would like.

Emily asked if knowing what you know now, would you have done anything different in your reproductive past? Does your dead baby make you question any of your previous choices?

They are good questions. Would I have done anything differently with hindsight? Well I have been with S for over 12 years and we only had M about 3 years ago. We were very lucky, we conceived him very quickly. It really wouldn't have been a disaster if I had become pregnant sooner but at the time we just thought we were not ready. And maybe we were not ready, who knows.

What about Orson? Again we were lucky in that he did not take long to conceive (a little longer than M so maybe the statistics about age and conception are correct!). We wanted to wait to add to our family because we wanted to concentrate on M. We thought having another child too soon might mean we had to give him less attention. Probably had I seen the future I wouldn't have wanted to wait so long as now of course there will be an even larger age gap between M and any other child we might be lucky enough to have but again we did what we thought was best at the time. I think in the end that is all any of us can do.

Hindsight is a nice idea but I wonder.... Had I known I was going to lose Orson at 31 weeks and had I known how much it would hurt would I have avoided it completely because I didn't want to go through that pain? I think in the end it is best not to know the future that way there is a little hope. And in the case of women who have lost babies we definitely need the hope that things will get a little better eventually.

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Firsts

If you read my blog you probably think I am sad most of the time and that I am completely obsessed with pPROM. Well it is not true. I am happy a lot of the time and think my interest in pPROM is only a tiny bit obsessive!

So today's post is going to be a happy non pPROM one...

Here are two firsts that happened this weekend.

M went on a bouncy castle for the first time. It was empty apart from another little boy who's mother was collecting the money from the parents of children going on the castle. He loved it and had a great time. He ran round and round as fast as he could (not jumping up and down like I would have - there should be more bouncy castles for adults).

Did we see the real Father Christmas? (Image: Salvatore Vuono / FreeDigitalphotos.net)

The second was a family trip to see Father Christmas. M had never met him before. He was quite excited and seemed to enjoy himself and the present he got although he did doubt whether he got to see the real Father Christmas because the one we saw never said "Ho, ho, ho!"

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Pregnancy after pPROM

Some of the women whose blogs I follow have given birth in the last month or so. I wanted to post links to their blogs because they are all successes after previous pPROM births. Always fabulous to hear about these pregnancies. In none of these cases did pPROM happen again - there is hope!

Congratulations and welcome to the world Naomi, Samantha and Puck.

http://sunshineandseahorses.blogspot.com/2010/12/naomis-arrival.html

http://thismommasjourney.blogspot.com/2010/11/welcome-to-world-samantha.html

http://carrie-ourjourney.blogspot.com/2010/11/prestons-birth.html

The last link is to Carrie's blog. Her baby Puck isn't well. Please visit her blog and support her. Wishing little Puck continues cope well with his condition.

Monday, 6 December 2010

Time for some statistics

image: nuttakit / Freedigitalphotos.net

It is time for some statistics.

Before go on I should probably point out that I have no idea if any of the statistics I am going to quote are correct. I have added links to the sites that use them but often the sites themselves do not say how they came up with the statistics so who knows if they are correct.

Getting pregnant

To start with here are the statistics nobody tells you when you are young and being warned to always use protection otherwise risk an unplanned pregnancy. Nice and scary when you are impatient and trying to conceive though!

90% of couples in which the woman is under 35 will conceive naturally after one year of actively trying according to the NHS. 30% conceive in the first month and 60% within six months according to Babycentre.

Miscarriage

When you are lucky enough to get that positive pregnancy test these are the next set of statistics to worry about. These stats are curtesy of Babycentre.

What is the chance of miscarriage in first 12 weeks? After a positive pregnancy test, there's about a 20% chance of having an early miscarriage. Late miscarriage (between 12 and 24 weeks in the UK) is less common. It happens in about 1% of pregnancies.

Stillbirth

Now for the statistics that Orson fits into...

In the UK 17 babies are stillborn or die shortly after birth every day (ref: SANDS ) In the UK stillbirth is defined as death of a baby before birth at 24 weeks gestation or above. In England and Wales 5 out of every 1000 babies are stillborn (just over 3000 a year) (ref: NHS )

pPROM

And what about the chance of pPROM? Only around 2% of women experience PPROM.
(ref: RCOG ) Since pPROM is where a women's water breaks before the onset of labour before 37 weeks I would imagine many of the cases will have a positive outcome because the water will break so close to term. I have not seen any statistics on early pPROM but I suspect it is rare. And the chance of having pPROM before 24 weeks and continuing the pregnancy for another 10...? I think it is very rare, after all there must have been a reason the doctors told tell women whose waters break so early they will miscarry within 3 days.

What does it mean?

And what do all these chances mean (apart from that I have been using the Internet too much!)? Well nothing really. Any of you reading this blog of course knows that statistics really don't mean very much. We have all been unlucky with statistics. We can't predict what will happen, we just have to hope and be positive. Still on a bad day it is hard not to be disheartened by these statistics.

Friday, 3 December 2010

No blessings in disguise

I almost didn't bother with November's Faces of Loss, Faces of Hope writing challenge simply because I couldn't think of anything to write. It has taken me so long to write this post it is now December!

November's topic is / was: It's easy to focus on all the negative things that come from losing a baby, but have you discovered any 'blessings in disguise' throughout your journey? What can you find to be thankful for related to your loss?

My problem with November's topic is I really cannot see any blessings in disguise. There are no positives. None.

At first I thought of one immediately. The 10 weeks after pPROM but before we lost Orson meant I could not fully look after M. As a result my parents and S's parents helped out. Both my Mum and S's actually stayed with us at different times. As a result M became very close to them. I love that bond he has developed.

However that isn't a blessing in disguise resulting from my loss, it is a blessing resulting from pPROM. It happened before Orson died after all and had he survived M would have been just as close to his Grannies.

So what else is there that could be a blessing? Everyone says this type of loss often brings couples closer together. Am I closer to S now? Hmmm we were already close, and yes we are still close. So not really a blessing.

My only other thought is blogging and the online communities I have come across. But I had discovered this before I lost Orson. I read lots of blogs after I had pPROM and the 10 weeks after. Yes I have discovered a lot more great people who have also suffered losses. Many have inspired me and these amazing women have helped me to cope these last few months. But to me that doesn't feel like a blessing. It is like medicine tasting a nice fruity flavour, the flavour just makes the medicine easier to swallow.
Fruity flavouring just makes medicine taste better, it isn't a blessing in disguise. (Paul / FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

After all this writing and thinking I just have to conclude there just isn't a blessing in disguise resulting from Orson's death.