By: Heather Somaini
No one tells you there’s a chance you could miscarry. I mean we all know about it but no one tells you how often it happens. Or how devastating it is and seemingly impossible to recover from. That moment at the doctor’s office was surreal. The whole day and the following number of days were surreal.
Dr. C asked if we could talk in her office. Tere was doing a good job of holding it together. As we reached her office and she closed the door, Tere started to cry. I held her in my arms, telling her we would get through this, that we were a team and could survive anything as long as we were together. Dr. C started to explain our options – we could wait for the miscarriage to happen naturally or we could have a D&C – Dilation & Curettage. She told us we should take some time to decide. We asked for her advice and she said both ways were fine but waiting could produce complications like excessive bleeding. We agreed the D&C was the way to go.
It was the Friday before Thanksgiving and we were scheduled to leave for New York City in four days. We needed to get this handled quickly. The nurses told us they would try to move the schedule around so we could have the procedure later that day. I drove Tere to her office in Orange County. She had a number of phone calls to make for work and needed to focus. I started driving. I knew what I had to do. I’m good in a crisis.
So many people were waiting for our update. It crushed me to have to disappoint them. I called my Mom. She was devastated. She knew how much we wanted this. She did her best and made sure we knew how much this hurt them too. I emailed my friend Lauren at work and I asked if she would just tell everyone for me. I couldn’t bear actually speaking to anyone. She did it without question. Soon after, my boss called. It was the type of conversation he and I have often – short, to the point.
It’s just not viable.
What do you mean?
There’s no heartbeat.
What happens now?
They have to take it out.
Probably later today.
Ok, I’m here if you need me.
I know, thanks.
We got to Tere’s office. Everyone already knew so there wasn’t much to say. They all looked so sad. I looked through them. I had to. I felt like I was this wall between Tere and everyone else protecting her from their good intentions. I think I actually stood at the door to her office so that no one could get in. I got on the phone with the nurses begging them to fit Tere in today’s schedule. I pleaded with them to not make Tere go through the weekend; that it had to be taken care of today. Tere focused on her work and refused to think about what had just happened to us. I had to be her advocate and pushed the nurses to make this work for us. They slowly relented and agreed to get her in.
It’s a two-step process, as the name implies, with a few-hour wait in between and we hadn’t even done the first part yet. We got back to the doctor’s office and they handled the first part – the dilation. We went and got something to eat. We talked about New York and all the things we wanted to do. I knew we wouldn’t do any of it.
They were finally ready for us and took us into the procedure room. It was awkward. I didn’t know what to do. Tere was starting to seriously feel the effects of the valium they gave her when Dr. C came in and gently steered me out of the room. I really didn’t understand so she explained that the room was small, there were too many people and that I had to wait in another room. I know now of course, that it was a polite way of saying not only can we not allow you in here during the procedure but you don’t want to be here for this.
I did as Dr. C asked and sat waiting in the other room. It was torture not knowing what was happening, not being able to be there for Tere, not being able to hold her hand through one of the most heartbreaking events in her life. How could I not be there with her?
They finally opened the door and brought Tere in. She looked defeated and promptly got sick, a normal side effect for Tere after pretty much any anesthesia. Eventually, they let us leave. One of the nurses highly suggested Tere have a glass of wine when we got home. Wine plus Valium is apparently a very nice high.
I took Tere home. I waited. She fell asleep. Eventually I did too.