“Possibly Ectopic,” or Otherwise Known as The Worst Day of My Life

Guys… I don’t even…. how do I…..?  It’s only 3:00 in the afternoon, but I’ve been through the full gamut of emotional wringers today. I’ve finally reached a place of subdued shock , which apparently means I’m coherent enough to write this and not fry my laptop with a torrential downpour of tears.

In case you missed my post from two days ago, I had to have a follow up RE visit today to recheck embie’s position in my uterus. The other day Dr. C was all types of concerned both that the embryo had implanted off center and that the yolk sac wasn’t visible. He might have been worried, but I actually wasn’t overly concerned myself. I know it’s still so early to be able to see a yolk sac, and a slightly off centered embryo didn’t sound like the worst thing in the world. So I popped into my follow up appointment this morning ready to just have a quick peek and be on my way. Yeahhhh….  but no. There were far more sinister plans in store for yours truly today.

During the ultrasound Dr. C grew very grave very quickly. He informed me that the embryo has implanted into the uterine wall right where the fallopian tube meets the uterus. You follow me? Not quite in the tube, but also not quite in the uterus either; just somewhere along that curve. I don’t remember 100% verbatim, but he said, “I’m sorry, but I don’t think this pregnancy can continue. It looks ectopic on all the images I’ve taken. These things don’t happen often, but they can happen more frequently in IVF pregnancies. I really feel the embryo is in a dangerous place in your uterus and the pregnancy will likely have to be terminated. I’m going to refer you to a fetal development specialist today just to confirm things.”

He did not just say that. Surely I’m having my deepest, darkest nightmare right now and this isn’t happening. I sat sobbing on the exam table. Dr. C awkwardly patted my shoulder. The nurse gave me a side hug and told me to take as long as I needed to get dressed. I managed to dress myself, and after leaving the room, had blood work drawn. It’s kinda a blur right now, but I do remember all the staff and a couple of patients looking at me sympathetically (and probably in secret relief that it was my bad day and not theirs) as I cried and covered my face and refused to meet anyone’s eye while my blood was drawn. I then booked it outta there. Like, literally ran to my car.

I sat sobbing hysterically in the parking lot of a nearby mall and called DH to tell him. I called Boss to let him know there was no chance I’d be in work today. I called my best friend. Then, just as I got myself together enough to drive and was nearing home, I received a call from Dr. C letting me know the high risk specialist person would see me in slightly over an hour.

The specialist’s office was nowhere near my house. Long story short, I arranged to meet DH near his job so we could travel to the specialist together. Which meant I drove this morning: A LOT. I hit two traffic jams, construction, pedestrians, a downed traffic light, three bicyclists, got stuck behind mass transit buses and tractor trailers, and basically encountered any traffic obstacle one could possibly imagine. And I sobbed my way right through them all, screaming and cursing at other drivers and not quite believing today had taken such a turn. So if anyone was driving in or around Philly today and looked over to see a hysterical bawling chick in an SUV plowing down other drivers, then hello.

Both DH and my BFF went with me to the specialist. Their presence made all the difference to my sanity; we sat in a waiting room full of obviously pregnant women and my peeps had my back the whole time. At one point, a very pregnant patient entered the waiting room fresh from her u/s. She waved her u/s images around and complained to the woman who accompanied her to the appointment that her baby was already six whole pounds and she still had four long weeks to go and, oh, whatever would she do?! I may or may not have nastily said out loud that if that was her problem for the day then I’d gladly change places with her. I then chose to finish the remainder of my wait out in the hallway where I could cry in private, far away from women rubbing their bumps and bemoaning nonexistent problems.

Finally, it was my turn. At first, the u/s tech tried giving me an abdominal ultrasound, which seemed pretty ridiculous for being so early in a pregnancy. An abdominal u/s must be able to scan through abdominal fat (of which I may have a teensy amount) and scar tissue (of which I have a ton), all in order to see something the size of an orange seed. After a few minutes of this nonsense, the tech decided the images weren’t clear enough and that we’d next go the transvaginal u/s route. Shocking, I know.

The specialist doctor (Dr. L, who shall now be added to the ever-growing cast of characters) personally stayed in the room during the trans u/s to monitor things. The end result is that, yes, the embryo is implanted dangerously close to the opening to my fallopian tube. To ignore this issue and stop monitoring things opens me up to the fun-filled options of: a) having my tube burst and undergoing emergency abdominal surgery, or b) death.

BUT, thank the Lord there’s a “but” here, Dr. L took one last look at the images and has hope: his hope leans more toward a likely good outcome than bad.  Dr. L believes the embie is implanted closer to the endometrium (read: center of uterus, ie. a good thing) than originally thought. He suspects that embie is growing toward the center of my uterus—which is away from the fallopian tube opening and therefore a good thing—than not. This means I have a very good chance that everything will turn out okay.

Believe this drama?!

The only thing to do right now is for me to return to Dr. L in 48 hours—and 48 hours after that, and so on—to see which way my embie grows. So as it stands right now, yes, I am very possibly experiencing an ectopic pregnancy and will have to terminate what I’ve fought so long and hard to achieve. But that could change yet. No one really knows.

Please know that I am very well aware how snarky and detached this post reads. Please also know that I am truly neither of those things; rather I’m hurting tremendously right now and this is my way of coping. Truth is, I’m pretty well terrified right now. I only wish this was a bad dream and someone would wake me up soon.

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Author: Marixsa

Navigating the infertility waters and encouraging other mamas-in-waiting along the way.

19 thoughts on ““Possibly Ectopic,” or Otherwise Known as The Worst Day of My Life”

  1. 😦 WHY! ugh, i am so sorry…. But let’s hope that this little embryo grows toward the center there… gosh my thoughts are with you girl. I will be thinking of you. I hope everything heads in the right direction!

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  2. Oh Mary, my heart is hurting so bad for you. It’s been almost a year since I went through something similar and I still remember it like it was yesterday. Waiting to see if the embryo grew towards or away from the uterine wall was effing torture. I remember being so pissed that no one told me this weird implantation could happen more often in IVF. I’m so sorry you have to through this. Beyond sorry. In the end, though, my pregnancy was normal (not interstitial/ectopic) and I hope so hard that yours is too. I did miscarry, but it had nothing to do with the implantation — it was all because of my immune issues. Did they see a yolk sac today? Sending love and hugs your way. Ugh, I’m so pissed this is happening to you!

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  3. I just can’t believe this! I am so, so sorry to hear about everything that you have been going through. My heart is breaking for you. I can only hope that Dr. L is right and that this precious little embie stays right where s/he needs to be!! The good thing is that, as the specialist, he is trained in this area whereas the other doctor may only see this kind of thing occasionally. My prayer is that this is just a scary bump in the road that you can look back on during the rest of your healthy and uneventful pregnancy. You and your husband will absolutely be in my thoughts and prayers, and I will be anxious to hear how things go at your next appointment in 48 hours.

    Also, as someone who is not all that far from the Philly area, I did not see you out driving today, but those who did were likely totally unfazed and have probably seen far worse in Philly. Feel free to scream and cry all you want through the traffic!!

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  4. I can’t even imagine what you’re going through. I am so sorry and I hope and hope and hope that your little bean is just the right side of the endometrium. I can also agree that the “problems” of pregnant women annoy me more than words!

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  5. Such a roller coaster of emotions and so much unknown. I’ll be thinking about you and praying everything is okay. I’m also sorry you had to deal with complaining pregnant women. You know it would have been justified if you just started screaming at them. Thinking of you!

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  6. I’ve had both a real ectopic and suspected ectopic, and they both suck, buy I’m hoping yours turns out to be a whole big to do about nothing and that you get this baby. Praying for you that it all works out.

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  7. What a day!! I think with a day like that one you are fully entitled to feel and behave as snarky and detached as you please. It sounds really tough, hey. Especially with the ups and down. Fingers crossed your little bean moves to the centre. Sending you guys happy thoughts!

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  8. oh my goodness, I really feel from you, so sorry to hear this news. Glad to hear there is some hope… and keeping central thoughts in my head for you – c’mon little embryo! xx

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  9. Thinking of you!! Hope you are doing a bit better!! I can’t stop thinking about this… just want you and the baby to be ok! keeping my fingers crossed for you!

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  10. Hey, I just wanted to say that I’ve been thinking of you throughout the day today and have been checking back for an update on your latest appointment. I don’t say that to make you feel obligated to post right away (please don’t if you don’t feel like it!), just to let you to know that you have been on my mind. xx

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