Topic: Missed Miscarriage at 12+ weeks/I don't know what to do

A few weeks ago, at a little past 8 weeks, I went in for my first OB appointment, and my wife and I saw our baby on the ultrasound monitor, measuring appropriately and with a strong heartbeat.  I went in yesterday, just shy of 13 weeks, for my regular appointment and learned that the baby had died.   The whole experience was awful.  I was by myself because my wife has just started an intensive training program for her new job; she's not allowed to miss a day and we were unable to re-schedule this appointment for her lunch break.  The doctor first checked with the doppler and was smiling, talking about how she could detect all of this movement, that she was surprised I wasn't feeling more because the baby was obviously very active and the whooshing caused by all of the movement was preventing her from finding the heartbeat but that there had to be one because you couldn't have movement like that without one.  She then brought in the ultrasound machine and less than 2 minutes later I went from having an overactive baby to having a dead one.  I can't say it any other way.  To me, it's not a loss.  It's not tissue.  It's not a missed miscarriage.  It's a dead baby.  My dead baby.

For the first few minutes, I couldn't even cry.  But when I did, I couldn't stop.  My wife came for me immediately and took me home, but what was I supposed to do then?  What am I supposed to do now?  I'm a college professor.  I teach summer school every day.  I gave a lecture this morning.  I almost cried in front of my students.  My body is still apparently making pregnancy hormones as my symptoms have barely subsided.  None of my regular clothes fit and I couldn't bring myself to put on any of the maternity clothes that I'd bought, so I have one dress to wear. I still look about 5 months pregnant.  I have a very small frame and this was my third baby so by 10 weeks there was no hiding it anymore.  We didn't really tell anyone til we'd passed the 12 week mark, but lots of people had already figured it out, including our 5 year old who I had to tell last night.  An hour before my appointment, the barista at the coffee shop where I get my daily decaf latte asked if I was expecting.  Every Saturday afternoon, we go swimming with a group of families from our synagogue, so they all saw me in a swimsuit last week and offered their congratulations.  I can't bear the thought of having to repeat the reality of this loss over and over.

There was no hint--no cramps, no spotting, no nothing.  I can't stop thinking about how, for weeks, there was a dead baby inside me (and there still is).  Part of me just wants it out, for everything to go back to how it was before--before I felt too tired and pukey to make dinner for family, before I looked like a bus with enormous boobs.  The other part can't bear the reality that this pregnancy is really over.

I am scheduled for a D&C on Friday, but I am beyond petrified.  My doctor recommended it because I show no signs of completing the miscarriage naturally any time soon, and she thinks it's a good idea to take care of it in a controlled environment as opposed to starting to bleed when I'm in the middle of teaching summer school or taking my other kids to camp.  I also don't know that I could handle that, to go to the bathroom one morning and be surprised by all the blood, to see the "tissue" that was our baby.  I don't think I could handle the torrent of that emotion.  But I am so scared of the D&C.  For those of you who have gone through this, what were the pros and cons for you of either process (or managing medically which my doctor didn't really present as a strong option)?

I know many of you reading endured similar losses.  My sister and my best friend are far away, and I don't know how to talk to my wife about everything that I am feeling because I know that this is her loss, too. Thanks for letting me share my story.

Re: Missed Miscarriage at 12+ weeks/I don't know what to do

I just want to say I'm so sorry for your loss. I have had to have a couple of D&Cs. It has been almost 2 decades since my last one so I'm sure things are different now. They kept me over night. The pain afterwards was very minimal but the physical pain was much easier than the emotional pain of knowing I no longer had a healthy baby growing inside of me.
My heart is breaking for you and your family.
I just turned 50 and fabulous!!!  Enjoying life with my amazing family!!
Mom to Rachel 33, Bethany 30, Rebekah 30, Zachrey 20 and several angel babies
Grandma to Larissa 11, Brittney 11, Trevor 11, Destiny 7, Jayvin 6, Jackxon 3, Kaleb Joshua Rian 1. Grandbaby #8, Sariah Grace born 11-17-16

Re: Missed Miscarriage at 12+ weeks/I don't know what to do

I am so very sorry for your loss. I too have just experienced my first loss You are at 6w1d and am scheduled for a dnc tomorrow. You are absolutely was a baby, your baby that you and your wife lost. The grief is just so horrible. I too was looking pregnant at only 7 weeks and not fitting in my clothes because I have had other children as well. I know how hard this process is. As far as the dnc goes, I chose to have it because my body was still growing the sac and making pg hormones and I couldn't stand it. It's very painful for me to know I'm carrying around a dead baby inside of me and my body is doing nothing. I too have not had one episode of spotting or bleeding and my dr said that she recommends the dnc over natural because of risk of infection. I wish you luck with your dnc. I have no experience with that as of yet until after tomorrow.

Re: Missed Miscarriage at 12+ weeks/I don't know what to do

So sorry for your loss. xoxoxo I didn't have a DNC. I delivered preterm in the hospital. Having to deliver a dead baby and have him slip out of you without having to push and sit there between your legs makes me wish I had a DNC. But I only know what this is like. If I had a DNC, I might have wished to deliver naturally.

Nicole-SMBC-39y/o-TTC since Jan. 2013
IUI~BFP (BORN STILL) AT 16w5d 4/3/14
Chemicals~IUI 7/24/14;8/21;BFNs~9/25;10/19;IVF#1-2/21/15~No embies made to blast.
IVF#2-BFP~4/16 trans. 2 embies

Re: Missed Miscarriage at 12+ weeks/I don't know what to do

I am so so sorry for your loss. When I had an ultrasound at 11w5d that confirmed our loss I felt so calm, like I had already known what was happening and that just confirmed it. I can't imagine having no idea and being blindsided like that. I'm so so sorry.
I chose to wait rather than have any intervention, but I was already spotting at that point. The process was incredibly painful, much more so than I would have expected. At one point I was having contractions and labor pains. It was horrific. If I had to do it again, I'm not sure if I would go for the d&c and try to have some answers about what happened.. Or if I would go natural process again. It was nice to be at home and not have to think about other people. But I felt really alone and like my providers didnt care about me at all (I'm still a lot mad at my midwife)...
I'm sure I'm not making any sense.
For work, I would recommend pushing yourself to go the next couple of days. You don't know what recovery will look like and you may need a sick day or two.
Be gentle with yourself. Expect a LOT of crying. Talk calmly and truthfully with your five year old .  I had thought that E wouldn't notice/understand as she was only 3, but she did know something was wrong and it made a huge difference to talk with her about it. I can tell you more about how I talked with her about it later on if you're ready and interested. Even six months later she still asks about her baby.
See if you have someone you can talk with who will let you text and call at any hour. You never know when you'll need someone to listen!

Re: Missed Miscarriage at 12+ weeks/I don't know what to do

Thank you for all of your kind words and sharing your personal experiences.