When I left the office, I called The Husband to let him know the latest. Then I called my sister in law to cancel our plans, and ask her to tell the rest of the family what was going on. When she answered the phone I choked and cried. I told her between sobs what had happened so far and what the next plan was. Something about saying it all out loud made it so real, and she listened patiently while I cried. I was relieved to not be pregnant, and I felt guilty to feel relieved to not be pregnant. I was grieving the loss of the baby, and I was scared about what would happen next, and I was overwhelmed by the flood of all these feelings.
When the midwife called later that afternoon, she said my levels were very low, meaning my body had already terminated the pregnancy. She said I didn't have to do methotrexate, but I'd need to go to the hospital on Sunday for more blood work to ensure my levels were continuing to go down. That seemed like a positive. We resumed our plans for that night and for New Year's Eve.
We spent New Year's Eve at my friend Kati's house, at a 1920s themed murder mystery dinner party. I don't know if I've ever had a NYE where I've felt more grateful. We rang in the new year, and slept soundly in her kid's bunk beds. On New Year's Day The Husband went to get the boys from grandparents, and I went to the hospital for blood work.
I registered, was given a hospital bracelet, and was ushered to a room in labor and delivery. That seemed like overkill for just a little blood work. She said I'd need to wait until the results came back, and for them to call the midwife on call before I could leave. I texted The Husband, and then I promptly fell asleep. When the nurse came back in nearly two hours later she said my hormone levels had not gone down, and the midwife on call said I needed to stay and get the methotrexate. My body wasn't doing its job as well as they'd expected. I was disappointed, but I was okay. The nurse explained to me that I wouldn't get the shot for at least another hour and a half. I took myself down to the cafeteria for lunch, and then came back to my room and curled up in the bed.
The midwife came to give me the details, and then the nurse gave me the shots: one in each hip. I was anxious about the shots, but they were no worse than a flu shot. I learned that methotrexate is a chemotherapy drug, and I could expect a week or more of cramping and nausea, but it would prevent the possibility of my tube rupturing and causing internal bleeding. After the shot I was finally able to go home. I was exhausted. They say that you'll spend your year doing whatever you did on New Year's Day. I hope not.
The next day I dozed on and off all day. I don't know if the methotrexate made me so tired, or if I had been tired all along and this validated and justified it. Maybe a little of both. I was taking the ornaments off the tree when The Husband went to get on the roof to take our Christmas wreaths down. A few minutes later I heard a loud boom, and I ran outside, yelling at the boys to stay inside. The Husband had been on the ladder at roof height when the ladder slipped out from under him and fell on the deck, sending him flying. He landed on his feet first, and then on his hip on the ladder. Nothing was broken, but he was banged up. He had a bruise on his hip the size of a peach already, and it would grow to the size of a pumpkin over the next week.
I had to go back twice more to the hospital for blood work to make sure my levels were continuing to go down. This Thursday my hormone levels were at zero, meaning I was finally released. The next day The Boy's school called and said he had a fever of 102.7, he had suddenly come down with the flu. We rang in the new year with quite a bang, but we were all grateful that things weren't worse. We know a friend whose healthy sister was recently on life support after the flu, and one of my coworkers shared that her sister-in-law died because of an ectopic pregnancy. She had never even known she was pregnant when her tube ruptured.
We have been bracing for the weird social and political environment that 2017 has been promising, but this week we are also taking inventory of all the positive things that are already happening. Yesterday I took the boys to our local MLK parade, and I teared up at the hope I felt at our community coming together for service and kindness and equality. We've got a long way to go, but there are so, so many people fighting the good fight. Funny how all this started with a dream, which led to a diagnosis, and a roller coaster of emotion, and a treatment, and finally to gratitude. Maybe when we stop seeing all the good that still exists around us, perspective and appreciation make their way to us any way they can.
So yes, Happy. New. Year. Bring on 2017.