It all started on Halloween.
I hit some wet pavement and the car skidded slightly, into the trunk of the car in front of me. No injuries, just a damaged hood and front bumper for me and a few scratches on the other car. I was frustrated, but we got insurance involved and made the requisite appointments with only a few minor headaches.
It’s okay, I thought. This is life.
On Thursday, I called Arthur as I was leaving work for the evening. He sounded strange on the phone. I knew almost instantly something was wrong. “I’m over at my parent’s house,” he said. “Why don’t you come over here, and we’ll talk.”
I pushed, expecting that something related to his family had happened. I was in no way, shape, or form expecting what he said next: “I lost my job today.”
There really are no words in those moments.
I somehow managed to convey to Arthur that I needed to go to our home to absorb some of this in private. I drove home. Arthur had come back to the apartment to be with me. I walked into the kitchen, still puffy-eyed and blotchy from crying. Started heating up some soup for dinner. Felt something funny. Checked my pad.
Bright red blood. The exact color of an infertile woman’s worst fear.
“ER. Now.” I snapped tersely at Arthur. I was done. I’d been cramping for two days, but because I’ve often had on-and-off cramping, I’d dismissed it. Up until then, I’d had no bleeding.
In the ER, the lab tech drew blood, I reassured everyone I had done no international traveling recently and had no fever, and the ultrasound tech wheeled in the machine. I tried to take deep breaths. No, no, no, I thought. Not this too. Not again. I can’t do this.
She spread the ultrasound gel on my abdomen. I waited. “Is there a heartbeat?” I whispered.
“Yes,” she replied. “You can see it right there.” She pointed.
The baby was beautiful. Measuring on target with a heartbeat of 176. “It’s moving all around,” the ultrasound tech told me. “That’s not me moving. That’s the baby.”
It was one of the best things I’ve ever seen.
And at that moment, I knew the job situation, while wretched, didn’t matter as much as it had only hours earlier. It’s upsetting and I don’t want to minimize the difficulties it’s going to cause for us. But it’s a crisis we’ll figure out our way through somehow. We’ve been through it before, and we’ll live through it again.
We talked and waited for the official report from the ultrasound. I reminded Arthur that if we were low on the list of scans for the radiologist to read, this was a very good thing since it meant that there was nothing acute going on. Turns out that per the radiologist, there appears to be a small subchorionic hemorrhage. My cervix was not dilating, my HCG levels were exactly where they needed to be for the stage of pregnancy I’m in, and there was no sign of anything wrong with the baby. I was told to take it very, very easy until my next RE appointment on Monday, and then have Dr. E take a look at everything.
While I’m reassured by the ultrasound, I know we’re still not out of the woods. So I’m waiting, resting, hoping, and praying that Monday goes well.