As a child I was always playing with my dolls, for days and days I pretended they were my babies and I remember a couple of times I told my Mum I was poorly so I could have the day off school to look after them. I always wanted to be a mother, I loved babies and young children and didn’t imagine for a minute that this may never happen.
I met Sue when I was 20, Sue had 2 children but from day one she always said if I wanted children she would support me and never stand in my way. As a lesbian couple this was never going to be easy, we discussed adoption but this just wasn’t suitable for us and clinics wanted far to much money that we just didn’t have so we started looking up other options and soon realised that the internet was full of knowledgeable people. We soon got chatting to a lesbian couple that got pregnant via a sperm donor that they had found on a website dedicated to couples or even single ladies looking for donors. We soon put up a post explaining what we were looking for but sadly this was met by a lot of time wasters. As I was still in my early 20s we knew we had plenty of time so decided to enjoy our relationship and try again in a few years.
It was late in 2013 that we decided the time was right to start our sperm donor search again. Sperm donation had become a lot more popular than when we first looked. We joined a website called Pride Angel and soon met a very kind man L who was willing to help donate to us through home artificial insemination. In February 2014 we had our first try which sadly didn’t work and we tried on and off with L for a year but although very kind L was not very reliable and the timing was not great. We decided in November 2014 to look for another donor we soon got chatting to R who was happy to help us after Christmas.
Christmas came and went i wondered if this would be my last childless Christmas. We received our first donation at the start of January 2015, 3 weeks later we found out I was pregnant although we were both over the moon we were also very worried as I had experienced a lot of bleeding and on Saturday 7th February I went along to my local walk in centre as I was bleeding very heavily and was told that there was nothing they could do and to wait to speak to a midwife on the Monday for the rest of the day I continued to bleed very heavily. A couple of days later I went for a scan after speaking to a midwife and I knew deep down this was just to confirm what we already knew, sadly there was nothing at all on the scan and I had suffered miscarriage. We were both devastated and we decided to take a break from trying to conceive to come to terms with our loss and to just have a break from ovulation tests and tracking.
In September 2015 we decided it was time to try again, R was still able to help us and we tried the following week. We fell pregnant on our 2nd try, once again we were over the moon and actually believed it was our turn but sadly our happiness was short lived before I started spotting blood, I visited my GP a couple of days later as the bleeding was gradually getting heavier and she booked me in for a emergency scan the next day. We arrived at our local EPU and met with the same nurse I saw when I suffered my miscarriage, she sent me down for a scan. After months and months of chatting to people on different pregnancy forums I knew what you should be able to see on a 7 week scan and we weren’t seeing it in fact we couldn’t really see anything at all. I went back up to speak to the EPU nurse and she told me that they could see my uterus had prepared itself for pregnancy and perhaps my dates were wrong, I explained our situation and if they were wrong then it would only be by days not weeks. I then had my bloods taken and she would ring me in 48 hours with the results. I researched a lot in that 48 hours and a lot of ladies said that this had happen to them and on their next scan they were able to see their camera shy baby. She rung and explained that my HCG (pregnancy hormone) was very high and that they should of seen something on the scan so wanted me to go back the next day to have the bloods retaken.
This is where it all gets a little harder to write. Despite having a rocky start with our EPU nurse she wasn’t very nice when I suffered my miscarriage and actually asked if I had definitely been pregnant due to scanning to late to see anything, I really do thank her for my life. When we arrived she wanted me to go down for another scan due to it being a Friday she didn’t want to leave us hanging all weekend and thank goodness she did. I had a internal scan which lasted a good 30minutes, we knew something was wrong and then we saw it a tiny beating heart which was sadly in the wrong place. Shortly after the technician confirmed this and told us it was a ectopic pregnancy and we were asked if we minded waiting in the waiting room while she sorted the paperwork out for the EPU nurse. This was one of the hardest bits for me, waiting in that waiting room which was full of happily pregnant ladies knowing that I would never see my baby again.
Walking back up to the EPU nurse I was in a bit of a daze not really knowing what the next step would be. Our nurse met us at the door and had already had a call from the technician, she explained that it was a live ectopic pregnancy and that I would need emergency surgery. Sue asked if she could take me to hospital in the car but the nurse said she would have to call a amubulance in case it ruptured. All I could think of was that tiny heartbeat, that wasn’t a live ectopic that was our much wanted and already much loved baby. I started shaking, I was frightened what was going to happen next our nurse tried to keep me calm and chatted to me about work etc and shortly after the paramedics arrived and I was wheeled through the hospital that only a hour before I had walked through full of hope. Due to the hospital being 40 minutes from home I told Sue to drive her car and that I would be fine travelling on my own. I was blue lighted to the hospital, I felt like a fraud I didn’t feel poorly yes I had experienced bleeding but no major pain. I remember the paramedic asking me lots of questions but the journey was all a bit of a blur, fear had completely taken over by this point. I soon arrived at the hospital and I was taken onto a ward, before I had even had time to adjust to my new surroundings I was met by what seemed like 100s of different medical staff in reality it was probably only 5 and then Sue arrived. I had a couple of nurses one putting in a cannula the other measuring my legs for surgical stockings suddenly it all became very real and shortly after I would be going down for surgery. I was then met by the anaesthetist and the surgeon who explained what they would do during my surgery and also told me that they would be removing my right Fallopian tube and it was at this point I broke down I don’t think I had cried up until this point but before I could even dry my eyes I was taken down for surgery. I woke up under a hour later, very sore but relieved I was still alive. I was taken back to the ward and Sue arrived shortly after, we talked for a while and then she left to let me sleep. I couldn’t sleep the day played over and over in my mind, all I could see every time I closed my eyes was that heart beating away that was sadly no more. I lay there watching the fireworks from my hospital bed thinking of what could have been. On the 6th November 2015 I suffered my second loss, the first was devastating enough but this broke my heart into tiny pieces.
I was allowed home the next day and my healing began physically I healed quickly but mentally it took longer. I went through months of sadness and what ifs. Dates are tough, due dates, dates of my losses and birthdays but the day I struggle with and dread the most is Mothers Day although grateful my Mum is still here to spoil I can’t help but really hate the day. There’s no getting away from it cards and flowers everywhere, all over the TV and radio if I could bury my head for the week leading up to Mothers Day and the day itself I would. I should be enjoying Mothers Day with a 9 month old cheeky happy precious baby instead I’m sat here feeling very sad and wondering if I will ever be called Mummy. I know I am an angel Mummy and my angel babies will never be forgotten, they have made me the person I am now.
I hope one day I am strong enough to try again…
With permission from claire Jenkins