I've always been . . . me, on my blog. Me, as in, Bella Bryce the author - but the real Bella has always shined. This is not a place for me to have an alter ego, to be another person, or even just an author who has a separate identity to the 'Bella' my husband or friends see. I maintain honesty in everything I say here and with every fan, friend or fellow author I speak with on social media or in private conversation. It's part of my moral compass and I won't depart from it. I don't always share everything but I don't lie. I'm raw and honest. The Bella you have come to know through my books and blog posts is the same Bella that I am at the coffee shop with a friend from church or a stranger I meet in the queue at the shops. I'm the same Bella who giggles with her husband at silly things or cuddles a friend. There is symmetry between all aspects of my life inside and outside of the written page. Some people put on a different identity as their author self. I can't. I feel compelled to be raw even now at a most vulnerable and devastating time of my life. This is the part where I can't avoid being raw because it feels untrue to tell you so much about me, my books, and some times my life, without also telling you this part.
I found out I was pregnant last Monday. My husband was overjoyed, I was overjoyed, and two family lines of brokenness were coming into a new generation of wanted birth. In August we'll have been married six years. We have been dreaming and planning our little family for about three years now and after two of those years spent not preventing our little family, we couldn't put into words how glorious it felt to know we would be adding more life to our home. I couldn't concentrate. I was both more giggly and even more patient than usual. Husband and I barely spoke an unkind or frustrated word to one another for an entire week. We were far more cuddly (and we are pretty cuddly anyway). We told everyone. It was on my author Facebook page, our friends and family on every continent knew, and it was celebrations all around. I was supposedly about seven and a half weeks.
Easter Sunday was a very exciting and busy day at the Bryce household. We hosted luncheon for eight friends in the afternoon and then in the evening we had a BBQ with more friends.
I read on several reputable sites that 'spotting' during the first trimester of pregnancy was okay, and checked with a friend on the validity of the claim - she had two children and she confirmed it. However, I scarcely noticed on Sunday that it was no longer spotting, but bleeding. On Monday (yesterday) I had a temperature and couldn't get out of bed. I haven't experienced such fatigue since being diagnosed with septicemia in 2007 and living on painkillers for a year. It was almost as bad as that. I noticed the bleeding hadn't stopped and I could barely get down the stairs. Yet, I got dressed and forced myself through my afternoon violin lesson, figuring it was pregnancy tiredness and perhaps I had multiples and I needed to just have a stiff upper lip about the fatigue. After all, I would have it for 9 months and would need to deal with it. My adopted big brother/violin teacher even thought I looked questionably unwell. I also received a phone call offering me an audition for a voice-over role and so straight after the lesson he drove me to the studio. Meanwhile, I rung my husband to see if he could leave work early and meet me at hospital. I knew something wasn't right at this point considering I felt warm and could barely stay awake in the car.
When we got to hospital my husband and I didn't wait long. I was admitted and told to change into a gown and get into bed. Happily. I couldn't keep my eyes open and I felt so hot with a thumping headache and yet I was cold and required two blankets. They took a wee sample and declared I wasn't pregnant. But I was supposed to be. The girl mumbled an apology and quickly left the room at the onset of my sudden panicky tears. I was under the impression they knew I was pregnant because I registered as a new patient at that very hospital the week before after two home pregnancy tests and confirmed the third there. It was quickly realised that this visit wasn't about my fatigue but about pregnancy. There must have been some miscommunication after I told the initial booking-in lady ''I'm pregnant, bleeding, and can't keep my eyes open. I also have a temperature.''
They took five vials of blood and I slept in between the constant exchange of staff coming and going from the room. Husband sat in a chair beside the bed and held my limp hand. When they came back I was told, 'you are pregnant, but your quantitative count for pregnancy is 52 but it should be at least in the 10,000s." They wanted to do a pelvic exam. They also wanted to do an ultrasound, and an internal ultrasound. So before I can understand whether or not I'm supposed to grieve, I'm ill and can barely react. I'm not sure if I should cry. Do we still have a baby? If we do, is he or she going to live? After the invasive pelvic exam I'm relieved to learn I'm not hemorrhaging and am supposedly still pregnant. I agreed to the next two exams simply because our 'first appointment' was scheduled for 15 April and I didn't want to wait until then to find out if we were still going to have a baby. The technician was very kind and knew what he was looking at on the screen. I sensed it, even though he told me he would send the images off to a radiologist who would read them and get back to us within the hour. Afterward, he put the blankets back over me and said, 'let's get you all tucked back in'. I didn't realise the significance of that until we returned to the room and within minutes the doctor returned to tell me that there was no gestational sac inside of me. I was not pregnant. Any longer. Most certainly I was experiencing miscarriage. What else could I do but cover my face with my hands and cry? I politely thanked the doctor and the assistant for their care and they left the room to give us privacy. As soon as the door closed I dissolved into the most undignified sobs. We both did. I realised too, that the technician must have known what was on the screen because he could barely look at me when replacing the blankets over me - as if he was offering subtle comfort for the news he knew I would receive.
We came to the hospital as what I thought, was a threesome and most definitely left as a twosome. We had nothing to say in the car, but held hands and didn't exchange anything other than silent tears. My head was pounding and I forgot that I could take medication for it because, well, I was no longer pregnant. I did take something right before we climbed into bed. I managed to text a few close friends and tell them the news because I knew I needed the coverage of support, love, and prayer as we slept.
We are sad. Devastated. I cried on the phone today with several people. I cried at every text message and offer of continued prayer. A dear friend sent me this.
I cried at that too.
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