This week, things got interesting. Because it wasn't interesting enough envisioning our family of 6 in a 2-bedroom apartment, explaining our complicated Medicaid situation to the social worker well enough to be deemed eligible, hiding from all our regular babysitters the reason that I had SO MANY DOCTOR'S APPOINTMENTS, and spying on the large families in the parish to see which ones would soon be getting rid of their beat-up minivan so we could pretty please beg them for a cheap sale!
Well, I at least had that doctor's appointment bit planned out: just don't go. What are they going to do? Tell me to drink water and take some vitamins and do my best to keep my blood sugars in range? Check. My pregnancies have been pretty uneventful during the first trimester, so I wasn't too worried about it. Not even Rosie's third-trimester discovery that she was having twins was enough to scare me into scheduling an appointment.
But then, on Tuesday, I started to have some crampiness. Enough to keep me awake from 5a to 6a in the morning (or was that the Statesman coughing or the pregnancy insomnia?). Enough for me to put my husband on alert that I might miscarry. However, I didn't start bleeding, and I didn't feel any more cramping the rest of the day.
Then, the next day, Wednesday, the cramp came back. This time, it was sharp, painful, and located on one side. It lasted about 10 minutes. My mind immediately flew to ectopic pregnancy, of which I have a great fear. I have never had this kind of pain in early pregnancy. What do I do? Clearly, avoid calling the doctor (because the appointments! And the keeping of the secret!). So I e-mailed a friend who had an ectopic pregnancy once. She told me about her experience, and told me to call my doctor right away. And I...continued to avoid it.
Later that evening, however, the pain returned after dinner. Again, it was sharp, painful, located on one side, and lasted about 10 minutes. We were cleaning up and getting ready to put the kids to bed. I just about hyperventilated and passed out because I was so scared that my Fallopian tube was about to burst its contents and a whole bunch of blood into my insides. And, of course, they say that faintness is a symptom of rupture, which didn't help...
Long story short, we had to break the news to my mom (who not-so-subtly implied that I was probably just being a big pansy about some gas), so that we could ask her to watch the children. We drove to the ER, I had a transvaginal ultrasound and some bloodwork taken, and they discovered a healthy, 5w4d intrauterine pregnancy. No heartbeat because it's too early, and they wouldn't have been able to find twins, either, because it's too itty bitty. In any case, this was both a great relief and a great embarrassment to me. It was actually also a point of pride, because the ultrasound measurements exactly matched my estimated date of ovulation. I am SO GOOD AT NFP.
NB: My doctor suggested that the pain I felt may have been a ruptured ovarian cyst. For those of you who have suffered this pain regularly all of your childbearing life, kudos for not freaking out and going to the ER every time it happens.