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my miscarriage.

The following is a no-holding-back version of what happened Friday March 8th, when I had my miscarriage. Please be aware that I am open about the process and if that bothers you, don’t read on.  If you are an information junkie, or just care about what has happened to me in the last month or two… read on..

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When I decided to let the miscarriage pass naturally, I prayed that God would allow it to happen when I was home and that it wouldn’t happen during the bridal show.. a peace came over me about it and I knew that He would answer that prayer. We made it through the bridal show.

So, now I have been praying for three weeks.. for some sort of sign of when this miscarriage would end.

I have been slowly having it for about two weeks now.. but didn’t know if it would eventually just stop… or if there would be some kind of climax to it… really I had no clue what to expect and all the people I talked to had a ton of ranging answers for how they happen.

Well, today I got my second answered prayer.

Around noon, I felt a lot of pressure and pain in my stomach that felt pretty much like strong gas pains.. it was long lasting.. and then I realized it was coming and going..

I was laying in Ana’s room watching some CreativeLive on my computer while Ana watched the Lorax on the iPad.. we were being lazy because I didn’t feel great.

Around 12:30 I realized the pain was rhythmic, and peaking.. like a contraction. It was changing from pressure to straight up labor contractions.

At 1pm, I was having a hard time with them.. it was hurting pretty bad and it was sharp and impossible to ignore. I started to time the cramps to see if there was a pattern, and immediately found there was and that it was getting more frequent and intense. I found that timing them helped me cope, because I could see that they were peaking and coming to an end.. I was having 1 minute – 1:30 contractions, then 2 minute breaks.

Ana was just rolling with it as I was on hands and knees in her bed.. rocking back and forth. Then it happened…

I passed a golf ball sized clot.

I text Tim about it… he is concerned… but I don’t think he knew if I was in real pain or needed him..

Then another… and one more… and he asks if I want him..

at first I said no.. then another and the contractions are on top of each other now..

and I say “F it! I need you”

At this point, the contractions are lasting longer than the breaks and Analeigh is asking for me to come back to bed, as I have moved to the bathroom.. it was already an hour past usual nap time.. and I am trying to remain cool for her.. and luckily, shes easy going and is being a sweetheart..

I am texting with Angy, my midwife and I ask how much blood is too much blood.. because at this point, I am getting a little concerned with the amount I am loosing. She said it should last about 30 minutes.. I have already been bleeding for at least 45 now.. but I assume that means I am nearing the end..

Tim makes it home and gives me a glass of water, and a kiss and I tell him I am getting in the shower.. while he goes and puts Ana down for a nap.

holy moly. this is intense.

the water pouring down on me is immediately helping… I totally understand hydrotherapy as a pain relief in labor now. and if I ever do become brave enough to try to have another baby.. I will need a larger hot water tank for showering while I do it.

I get my phone (yes while still in the shower) and turn on pandora to my praise station.. like I had planned to when I was in labor.. and it helps so much. i am singing softly and letting the water hit me.. and massaging my uterus and praying.

The contractions seem to grow more painful and long.. and I start to think… “okay. all the stuff inside my uterus needs to come out, the contractions are doing that..” and it helps to cope to know that it is pain with a purpose and that it is doing its job.. and finally.. I wonder how much I am dilated or if I would even dilate at all in this process?

My doula training and being around so many births have left me with a few skills and a whole lot of “i’m comfortable with my body” so I check my cervix. I would say I am about 3 cm dilated.. which is a bit like… wow. Our bodies are amazing.

(here comes more oversharing)

I also feel that there is something large stuck in the opening of my cervix.

I know this is why my body is contracting so hard.. it needs to come out and with the amount of blood I am loosing, there really isn’t much longer that I am going to feel safe being home, laboring alone in my shower..

I push some… and I keep checking myself to see if its helping..

and finally the water gets cold.. so I hop out and sit on the toilet and I pray more.. it’s all I can think to do.

and then, BAM. it comes out. and it is a tiny placenta. about the size of a baseball.. but very obviously a placenta. (again, thanks to my history of birth photography and doula training)

My head is spinning as I return to reality and understand what was happening… almost immediately the contractions let up and the bleeding slows way down compared to what it was.. and then Tim appears.

Ana is asleep. The miscarriage is over. I am alive, a bit light headed but ok.

Tim starts to ask if he should go back to work or stay home and we decide that he should just go back. I guess I really should have let him stay with me because I got light headed after he left, but I ate and drank and felt better. Took a floradix iron supplement and a vitamin and a pain relief pill and rested until Ana got up.

In the evening I had a friend watch Ana while I went to dinner with a friend who recently had a miscarriage and now has a young baby and we just ate, drank and talked about highly inappropriate things.. and I am sure whoever could hear was grossed out.. but after the day I had.. I didn’t care.

I went to bed that night feeling a sense of pride, in my body and in my God. Knowing that I needed to let things happen this way or it would never have felt real to me, or over to me.

I also went to bed a bit overwhelmed by the fact that I felt like I had a baby today.. but there was no baby at all. And a bit shocked at how much like labor it was for me, and how painful.

All in all. I am so grateful for my faith in God, for a supportive midwife who believed in any decision I made and in my husband and his workplace for swiftly allowing him to come home in my crisis moment.

xoxo,

 

allie

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one week removed…

Well it’s been a week since we found out that I have a non-viable pregnancy in my body. After more testing, it is looking like it is just a blighted ovum, and not molar. Praise the Lord.

I decided against the D&C and have been waiting it out. Lots of cramping, but nothing incredibly painful. Not a lot else has happened.. I don’t know if my body is just taking care of it in it’s own way, or if I will have a more full blown miscarriage. Time will tell.

I have my hCg drawn and it was in the 30,000 range, then 48 hours later it had dropped 8000 units.. so that was a relief and in about a week I will have another draw to see if it is back to zero.

Aside from feeling a little detached from the real world and not having much motivation, I have really been ok. I have been trying to have plans everyday and get out and see people, even if it is awkward for me sometimes to have to tell people that I am not pregnant, when I had just told them I was the week before.. I know that for me, it is better to have to say that then to not have told anyone anything and to have to deal with it alone with no support.

Tonight we are setting up for our largest marketing push of the year, the Great Bridal Event at the Elite sport center. and to say my heart is in it, would be a lie. I am trying to get excited.. I know we will have a lot of fun. I talked Tim into coming with me and working it, because he has really done all the work in dreaming up and building our display while I sit back and pray it all works out.. He is an amazing husband and a talented artist. I would have been out of luck and looked like a fool without his help on this. (thank you honey, a million times, for doing all the things I should have been doing while I was coping)

I certainly feel like this experience has changed me, and my family, for the better. I have seen my husband be completely selfless and on the verge of taking a job that would take him away from us, a lot… because it felt like the only answer to financially making it when I was going to be pregnant and then raising a new baby and a toddler. And then, swiftly, he turned down a very significant raise when the miscarriage was discovered and there was so much unknown about how much I would need him during it for physical and emotional support.. as well as just being here for his family daily, saying, “money isn’t happiness”. I think I swooned and fell even more in love with him.

He isn’t taking the job, thanks to the amazing staff of MedExpress for allowing us to change our plans, and allowing Tim to keep his job. We certainly feel touched by an angel that we figured it all out before it was too late. I want to hug and kiss the staff at Parkersburg MedExpress for being so kind while we were there getting the blood draws done, and for helping me to see how loved and appreciated Tim really is there.. It changed our entire future..

xoxo,

 

allie

Our reason for so much… Ana.

 

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the birth story of Calynn – a bradley method home birth

Getting the opportunity to document Angela and Cam’s home birth came by chance. A client of mine’s mom helped make it possible. (thanks Charlene <3 ) When I met Angela and Cam at their home for the prenatal appointment, we hit it off just perfectly. I knew it would be a great birth, and lucky for me, getting to know them late in the game meant not a whole lot of waiting before the big show happened!

I got a text early in the morning from them on January 2nd (one day shy of my two year birth photography anniversary), that they thought today was the day.. so I waited for more info.. and eventually, took my kiddo to preschool.. which just so happens to be right by Angela and Cam’s house.

When I left preschool, I wasn’t getting any texts back and figured that meant it was time to do a drive by.

The doula (Catherine Fagan) was there, and I decided to go ahead on in.. I like being one of the first to arrive to home births.. to capture a bit of the build up and anticipation, and to take the time to really settle in before the baby comes.

Angela was so strong, so at peace and so in control. You would never have guessed this was her first born. She sang praise as she brought her baby into the world, and that image will stick with me for a long time to come.

I have never seen a more proud daddy as Cam was holding his sweet baby girl, in her own home, just minutes after her birth.

The midwives (Scenic Drive Midwives) Angy Nixon and Pia Long(apprentice) were fantastic, and working with them that day led me to hiring them for my own prenatal and now miscarriage care. I just adore them both.

Now without further ado –

 

 

Calynn Huffman 2 from Allie Bennett on Vimeo.

You can also watch the video at http://huffmanfamily.alliebphotography.com.

xoxo,

 

allie

 

if you are interested in birth photography and videography, please visit the birthographer info page 

Beth - February 27, 2013 - 6:00 pm

This seriously made me cry. The still photo of the baby touching mama’s face is the most beautiful image I have ever seen.

Kelley Klemick - February 28, 2013 - 12:51 am

Such a strong mama and amazingly supportive papa. Absolutely beautiful!

Page Watkins - February 28, 2013 - 4:44 am

Angela, I am just speechless! What an amazing treasure to have this beautifully captured video! You were so amazingly beautiful throughout the whole process and Cam so tender and attentive. I may have just become a proponent for home births after watching this. Thank you for sharing!

Anne-Claire - March 6, 2013 - 8:09 pm

Beautiful video! The picture of the Calynn touching Angela’s face is so incredibly precious!

Natalia - March 8, 2013 - 8:04 pm

woman!!! you seriously make me weep EVERY SINGLE TIME!! I’m not sure you realize what a difference you are making!!!! you are such an amazing individual and to be able to keep these sacred memories for your clients is the greatest gift. So proud of you!!

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drained.

So, i’ve decided to do nothing.. and just see what happens. The D&C appointment for this morning will just go unattended and I will go on waiting. I am more at peace with this then I am with going under anesthesia. Plus, I am not in a hurry to get back to trying to make a baby. The burning desire had fled from me and I actually will be trying to NOT get pregnant for a while.

I was so so so ill.

The last month has been hell.

Of course, I didn’t want to complain because I thought there was a solid reason behind the completely paralyzing nausea.. the growing of a baby! I know it’s part of the deal and I know there are a million women who wish they could be that sick in the name of having a baby.

But.. I can’t do that again right now.

I simply do not have the stamina to go through that again.

Last night I went and had a blood draw done to get my HcG levels measured to make sure they are going down, all the way. And I will have another in a week or two. I went to MedExpress, since that is where the hubby works and they are always so kind there.

Tim recently interviewed for a new job, a much better paying job that requires a LOT of travel. He knew I wouldn’t be able to work as much being pregnant and then having two littles.. so he manned up and went after it.. and got it.. and was set to start at the beginning of March.

Last night, I realized how much he is loved at his job.. and how much people are not wanting to see him go. And that is valuable to me. I want happiness for my husband and I am afraid that he won’t be HAPPIER with the new position than he is now… and quite frankly, in the current situation, I don’t want him gone.

Who knew things would be so complicated?!

For two months, you plan for your whole life to change, and then you find out that theres nothing going to change..

I cancelled two weddings for two amazingly fantastic couples, that I was SO excited to work with… and now, I am suddenly widely available again. Talk about a blow to the gut. Having to say “I’m so excited to be pregnant! but I am truly sorry I won’t be available to do your wedding now! :(”  then turning around a few weeks later to say “I am so sad… but I am available to do your wedding again, if you want me..”

It is the great conundrum of being a wedding professional, I suppose.

But I have amazing clients, and they have been beyond kind, beyond understanding.. and one has already re-signed on for the wedding.. and I CANNOT WAIT to be there for them.

It’s time to re-focus and get back on track with all the work I had outlying while I laid sick and out of commission for the last month. (a million apologies to those waiting on videos.. it’s imposible to focus on something that intense when you are struggling to not throw up. and I feel terrible that it has been outstanding)

Happy Monday… time to get back in the saddle.

isn’t Ana gorgeous?! thank God for her.

xoxo,

allie

shelby nuckolls - February 26, 2013 - 12:43 am

Allies my heart hurts for you. I had a very similar experience when Mikhaila was four years old . All the different emotions were overwhelming. Thank you for sharing. I am sure it will help others. Praying for you 🙂

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on making decisions about things you should never have to make decisions on…

I swear, I am driving my midwife nuts. I am probably the most annoying patient she has ever dealt with but didn’t have a full chart on. We were all set to take care of that stuff, then I had the ultrasound.. so it hasn’t happened yet.

I keep going back and forth on what needs to happen now.

Immediate reaction was that I would just let the miscarriage happen on it’s own. I am of the more natural persuasion and have a general disinterest in surgery, anesthesia and hospitals. I mean, I was going to be having a frickin’ homebirth this pregnancy to avoid those things.

When we found out there was a possibility that it could be a molar pregnancy and that if not completely removed, that can lead to cancerous cells in my body… I relented myself to doing what was right for the future and was going to have the D&C done Monday morning.. against my true wishes.

After more research and some help from some friends, we think this is probably just a blighted ovum and that it isn’t dangerous to let it pass on its own… but then I start thinking a about my life in the next month and I have the largest bridal show (and only one we are planning to do) this coming Sunday, and then Tim promptly leaves town to be gone for the bulk of two weeks while he trains for his new job.. leaving me alone with Analeigh.. and the fact that I will be having a miscarriage in that time kinda freaks me out.. mainly because I don’t know how bad it will be or how long it will last… or WHEN it will start.

I texted Angy, the midwife, last night saying maybe the d&c isn’t a bad idea…. and she told me to sleep on it and that it was completely up to me.. I have a standing appointment if I want it with her cooperating physician or I can go to my own choice of OB. OR i can do nothing and wait it out.. getting the blood draw for the hormone levels..

So I prayed, asked around and slept on it.. and woke up feeling like this is not my decision to make.

In so many ways, I am against trying to be the boss on my own life. I prefer God just take control and be the one who makes these things happen in his own time.. decision making isn’t my strong point and never had been.. and so far it has worked out pretty great..

So.. I still haven’t come to a final decision because I feel like logic vs. faith are battling it out in my mind.. and I can’t be sure which one will prevail when it is all said and done.

I have prayed that if I don’t do the D&C that God will have mercy and allow the miscarriage to happen at a time when I am not, say, talking to brides at the bridal show… and I have faith that He has heard my requests..

 

And I guess that’s really all I can do at this point..

 

 

3 When I am afraid, I will trust in you.
Psalm 56:4

 

xoxo,

 

allie

 

p.s. Disney on Ice was a blast, even though Ana spent her time making us run her to the bathroom and back, up 40+ steps. FOUR potty breaks in under 2 hours.. haha sometimes having a potty trained two year old sucks! But she screamed and clapped and then after about 3/4th of the show said…. take me home. haha I love a woman who knows what she wants. p.s. i have been waiting for an excuse to wear this obnoxiously yellow dress! perfect.

 

 

 

this is just a cute pic from this morning… she’s her mother…oh no.

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