First of all - I need to share a video that has helped me tremendously throughout my ectopic pregnancy. This video is the reason why I am sharing my story - I needed to read/see other stories to keep me sane, to see that I was not alone, to see what others were experiencing. This woman does such an awesome job of telling her ectopic pregnancy story, I kept viewing it over and over as my story progressed, what I went through symptom-wise was very similar. Everything is so well put and organized, if you found my story because you are going through the same, I highly encourage you to view this video - Kelsey kept me positive, hopeful, and sane! Thank you so much Kelsey, you've helped me more than you will ever know!!
And she has great vlogs and TTC vlogs, etc. - she seems so nice! I couldn't stop keeping up to date with her and her family afterwards :)
ok, back to the final part of my story.
After getting the shot, the doctor asked me to follow up in a week with blood work. He said that typically the HCG levels keep rising at first before they go down, so it would be useless to get more bloodwork done right away. If the levels were not dropping, I would have to get another injection.
I got a call from him personally when he got the results because my levels went from 16632 the day before the injection to 20715, a week later. He said he was on call that day so I would have to go to the hospital and tell triage to page him when I got there so that he could meet me and give me an injection.
If you have read my story so far, you know where this is going:
I got sent to get another IV, just in case.
''But I thought I was just meeting with my doctor to get a sh... ah forget it!"
They take some blood, and leave the IV in. The nurse I got was the absolute worse for putting an IV - and I'm sorry to be saying that because I have great respect for nurses, my sister is one - but it hurt like hell and no blood would come out, so she pulled it out and pushed it in over and over, and had me pump my fist over and over to get enough blood out - it took about 5 minutes of pumping to get 2 cms of blood in the little tube - I'm sure every body in the waiting room was ready to barf seeing this happening :)
I saw a new set of doctors, and they asked me for the whole story again, as if I had not been to the hospital before... I repeat everything, and they leave...
After a few hours of waiting, I finally see one of the first resident doctors I saw on my first hospital visit, my favorite one! She was so nice, she took the time to chat with me and see how I was doing. She said it was silly that I got an IV put in, but that for the hospital it was a safety measure because of how 'ectopic-pregnancy' might mean 'emergency-surgery'... She also said to me something that I will always remember about my ectopic story:
"I just want to open you up and look in there and see what's going on! Normally at 20000 HCG you see a giant ectopic with a heart beat and it's all very clear what's happening, but with you, it's a mystery!"
So she said I would get another injection soon, it was just a matter of waiting for the meds to come in after she order them. And that it was nice to meet me and to have a nice life...
I wasn't expecting to see her again, but here she was with a little post it note: "Did you get the injection yet?"
"The blood work they did shows that your HCG levels are now down to 12957!!! If you want you can skip the second injection!"
OMG!!! Now I didn't feel so bad about the useless IV/bloodwork :) Even if this was the aftermath:
After that point, I went to get blood work done every Wednesday. Most of the googling I had done showed stories of people who had the shot at less than 5000 HCG levels, so I was wondering how long it would take me to go all the way down to zero considering I was starting from 20000+!
here's how it went down from the highest HCG level results:
So all in all - it took from August 14th to October 30th (2.5 months) for it to resolve and for me to not be pregnant anymore. Two and a half months of worrying that I might bleed internally, worrying about every little twinge in my shoulder, every little pang in my belly... Did I mention that I was working 60 kms away from home at the time, walking outside 3+ hours a day in crazy summer heat, and loading and unloading hundreds of heavy boxes in and out of my work truck? yeah...
At first I felt weak, a lot of nausea, a feeling like chemicals were poisoning my body... But gradually I started to feel better and better.
Now, we're trying again. But I'm still spotting mid-cycles, having pain on the side of the ectopic every other month... I got checked, complete blood work done, ultra sound shows normal things down there... The doctors said just 'leave it be' and if I'm having no luck at becoming pregnant for a year, then they will see what we should do next.
Until then, I'm trying not to worry that this could happen again. I take home pregnancy tests all the time to be safe. I am tracking everything on my calendar. If I become pregnant again, I will be able to have all this accurate info to go back to. Essentially, the moment I get a positive test I am to call my doctor and get tests done and follow ups right away, just because of my history now.
I struggle with the fact that it feels like I can't trust my body anymore. I felt invincible before. But now, I know that I need to take care of my body, I can't take health for granted, if I let it down, it will let me down! Not that I necessarily did this to myself - it happens randomly sometimes. But it still had me thinking how much I need to value that I have my health.
Health is important - life is important!
Time will tell if we will be successful at having another baby. I'll keep you posted :)