Life after an ectopic pregnancy

Two years ago today I went to the early pregnancy unit for a scan as I'd been having some bleeding. Before I could really take in what was happening I was suddenly all wired up for emergency surgery to remove an ectopic pregnancy. 

It was a scary and very upsetting experience. I couldn't stop firing questions at anyone who would listen. I quizzed the consultants like crazy. On the one hand I was grieving for this tiny little being that was growing in the wrong place and on the other hand I was desperate to know if I'd be able to have another one.  

Plenty of tests took place that first day and then the next day they had to operate. The operation happened before visiting hours, so I had to go down to have the surgery on my own. No one to give me a hug, no one to tell me I'd be ok, no one to tell me they loved me. I have never felt so alone and scared. I had three little children at home and I was about to have surgery. And not just any surgery but surgery to remove a tiny, little baby and probably parts of my body at the same time. I sat waiting outside theatre and cried. I'm sure under the circumstances it would have been really, really odd if I hadn't cried but the response I got from the nurses was unbelievable. One of them handed me a box of tissues and said 'please don't cry in front of my because I'm on my period.' How very caring!! 

Fortunately the operation had the best outcome I could have hoped for in the circumstances. They just had to remove one fallopian tube and of course the pregnancy that couldn't be. I had a brilliant consultant (even if the rest of the care was a bit rough around the edges!) who came to see me after my operation to tell me that everything else she had seen inside looked beautiful and she was sure I would be able to have another baby, it just might take a little while. 

I tried my best to be strong and in my heart I felt that one day we would have another baby. At the same time I tried to give myself space to grieve the baby we had lost. That's never something that's easy, especially when it's something that people don't really talk about. 

And I guess the fact that not many people talk about it is why I am writing this today. I want to offer a ray of light and hope to people who may be going through the same thing. 

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Two years later and I am sitting here writing this with my little baby Rudi on my lap. She's my post-ectopic pregnancy baby and the happiest little person I have ever met. I will never forget the little baby we lost but wow how incredibly lucky we are to have beautiful Rudi and out other amazing children. And thank goodness I went for that early scan and hooray for amazing keyhole surgery and the NHS.