I fell pregnant with my first child at 36 on the second month of trying. In fact I thought that I had got my dates muddled and with a busy month we had missed our chance that time – but it turned out not and our first beautiful baby was born 9 easy months after.
We had always planned to have a second child and as Ella turned a year and a half we started to try again. Bingo! First month we were successful and I found myself pregnant again. What luck… Or perhaps not. In retrospect I had noticed that things were different and that heading to our 12 week scan I hadn’t noticed much change physically, whereas my friend who fell pregnant at the same time was complaining of an early visible belly.
I started bleeding at 11 weeks and went into A&E as the early pregnancy unit was not open. It was a rushed visit where they questioned my dates and told me that I’d have to wait and see. The full miscarriage happened a day later, it was shocking and uncomfortable but at least my kind GP stayed on the phone for a good while to just chat.
I was devastated. My partner was so much more pragmatic, he just couldn’t see why I was so upset.
Once we had the all clear we began to try again. But the months just passed by with unsuccessful tests again and again. Eventually I decided to get help and started to see the acupuncturist Zoe Lake at Neal’s Yard Therapy Rooms. I have to admit to not being a huge fan of needles but I liked her approach and we chatted a great deal about acupuncture, placebo effect and the power of the mind. All while I groaned and complained on each and every needle!
After 6 months I fell pregnant again. We were so chuffed but it was short lived. After an early scan at 8 weeks they could see that something was wrong and that I would miscarry again. I was devastated. My partner was so much more pragmatic, he just couldn’t see why I was so upset. We had booked a holiday for the 3 of us and for a short while it looked as though we would have to cancel as I had chosen to let the foetus go naturally again. It started a few days before we flew and I began our holiday avoiding the pool and using thick pads.
Unexplained secondary infertility is the wind that is taken out of your sails or the rug that is pulled from under you.
It was however the tonic needed. I gave up and focused on my daughter and myself. We’d needed a sunny break and it was wonderful. Upon return I went back to weekly visits with Zoe and fell pregnant again the following month.
I cannot verbalise how scared I felt during that early days scan at 8 weeks. I didn’t look at the screen, choosing the wall instead. My partner said later that he saw something cross the face of the sonographer and thought, ‘oh dear, here we go again’. Neither of us were prepared for what she said next: ‘Do you have twins in the family? Because you do now’. Double rainbows.
It was a month later at the midwife checking in appointment that the midwife said ‘Lost two, gained two, looks like they came back again’. I am sure that plenty of people would have resented that statement, but it seemed whole to me.
Words have become my chosen tools and they are very powerful tools indeed.
Unexplained secondary infertility is the wind that is taken out of your sails or the rug that is pulled from under you. With pregnancy either first or second time we make an assumption, pretty much from when we are children, which is then reinforced through cultural conditioning. Having difficulties can affect people on a very primal level.
Now my three are all at school and those days are long past. However, it was life changing for me as I had a complete career change following the birth of the twins and retrained as a hypnotherapist and hypnobirthing teacher. I now work a great deal with those suffering fertility issues and preparing new mums to give birth confidently.
I would probably have moved into acupuncture which I absolutely credit for the twins…. but those needles… those needles! So words have become my chosen tools and they are very powerful tools indeed.
Later at the midwife checking in appointment the midwife said ‘Lost two, gained two, looks like they came back again’. I am sure that plenty of people would have resented that statement, but it seemed whole to me.