So for me October can't come quick enough so I can find out what our future holds. I know whatever happens, my dreams came true with Charlotte and she will be cherished no matter what. I look at her everyday and know how lucky I am.
Normally people have their first babies with no problems and get to take them home a day or two after they are born. Enjoying their newborns in the comfort of their own home.
I am tortured by the image of my baby's cord falling off in the hospital, marking the first event in her little life and that we should be able to cherish but instead, 6 months on, I still cry at the thought of it. Some people will probably think these feelings are pathetic but to me, I've lost a lot which I won't and can't get back.
So what's rhesus? Well everyone is either positive or negative. You're tested for it in pregnancy and if you're positive then this probably won't make much sense to you as you probably won't of heard of it :) but if your negative, which is what I am, it can cause problems. Now to be honest we are the rarer end of the scale, as normally first babies don't cause this kind of problem. It normally affects subsequent babies, who are rhesus positive and to combat it you are given an Anti-D injection at 28 weeks pregnant and after giving birth to prevent any reaction. The problem is caused when the mothers blood mixes with the babies to cause a production of antibodies. This is why the injection is given to prevent this.
In my case, we have been told that it is very likely that I have miscarried a baby or babies, which I didn't know about and they have caused a stimulus in my body to produce antibodies to fight against my growing baby. These antibodies see the baby as a threat to my body. This is basically what has caused Charlotte all of her problems, as my body was protecting me against her, attacking her blood cells and trying to kill her off.
Thankfully my little fighter, fought her way through as otherwise she wouldn't be with us today. This is what caused her jaundice and then eventually her anaemia. She still has these antibodies in her blood today, however as she is older now her body is able to manage it by itself and the antibodies will eventually die off, so won't cause her any problems in the future, thank goodness, it will just take time but thankfully the doctors are no longer concerned.
I think the difficultly for me has come with all of this being so unexpected, being in and out of hospital for blood test and the constant fear that she would have to go back in for what seemed like she would need multiple blood transfusions and god knows what else. It's been the crying that she won't feed or the health care professionals looking at me like it's my fault. Saying "Are you sure your feeding her correctly?" Or "You are only feeding her on one side aren't you?" Making you feel like your the reason for you baby being so poorly. Then these same idiots having to prick her heal more than once because they didn't do it right the first time. Seeing her blood being taken that many times that you could do it yourself better is so infuriating. It's also watching your baby cry while she has her blood taking and her looking at you to make it stop.
In the early days blood tests were every few hours, then daily, weekly, two weekly and then finally monthly before they were stopped.
When Charlotte first came out of hospital, she had 24 hours at home. The midwife came to visit us and took her blood to make sure her bilirubin levels had stayed low. As you know that night we return to hospital for a further 2 days, the worst part is we were rushed in because it appeared her levels were dangerously high. Don't get me wrong but they were very high but it wasn't as high as the community test had made out. Scary to think that as the blood was taken to the hospital it altered the results, making them a lot higher. This happened twice before I refused for the community nurses to do it again. The second time it happened we were allowed to stay home and return to hospital the next day for another test. Creating an additional test which she wouldn't of needed.
As I wouldn't let the community nurses carry out the tests anymore, we were asked to attend children's outpatients at the hospital. This was a completely nightmare as all of the nurses seemed incompetent at their jobs, from pricking her big toe at 4 weeks old, to taking 40 minutes to take two tiny viles. My poor baby was tortured into hysterical fits of crying by these barbaric people. I couldn't take anymore and refused to take her back. I eventually made a complaint which to this date is still being investigated.
For the final few tests, we were allowed to go to Koala Unit where thankfully we experienced people who could do it properly.
Witnessing all of this as a new mummy would tip anyone over the edge. I've found it extremely hard to hold myself together through it all.
Thankfully Charlotte is at the better end of it now and doesn't require anymore tests. They are still keeping an eye on her but through symptoms rather than blood and for her reflux aswell.
Last month, I was eventually followed up myself by a haematologist to look into what has caused all of this and what kind of problems we are going to expect in the future, for more babies.
I have previously been told that if I have another rhesus positive baby, we can expect this all over again, however I will be classed as higher risk and it could be a lot worse. If my body doesn't reject the baby completely through a miscarriage, we are looking at blood transfusions for the baby in pregnancy and possible prolonged stays in hospital and all this dabbling could risk me loosing our little one anyway. Apparently we should expect to see a consultant throughout the pregnancy on a regular basis. Scary thought really as I still cannot be parted for Charlotte now, she hasn't left my side for more than a walk to the shop with Daddy and even then I go to pieces. How will my poor little one cope without me and me without her.
So anyway back to my actual appointment, it's all very complicated as at the moment and they are at the guessing stage, guessing what may happen. They have took mine and Ricky's blood and we have to return in October for the results. This is where we will find out how this will really affect us and how likely it will affect all or some of our future Children. I'm so nervous about it. I would love more children since I've had Charlotte.
It's crazy because when I was pregnant, after having SPD I was adamant that I wasn't having anymore. In fact I was becoming a nun and crossing my legs haha but then she was born. This perfectly gorgeous tiny little being and the overwhelming joy and love that came with her. She has made me crave to experience it again. I crave to give my perfect girl a sibling or two to play with :). To feel them and watch them grow inside me. To bring them into a world where they will be loved beyond any imaginable level but is it fair is the question. What that poor little baby will go through, even though I know it's all worth it in the end. Or will we just experience loss and devastation before they are even brought into the world and will we loose a part of each other we can never get back. Will I recover from such a loss. I'm already struggling with the losses I didn't know about.
It's crazy because when I was pregnant, after having SPD I was adamant that I wasn't having anymore. In fact I was becoming a nun and crossing my legs haha but then she was born. This perfectly gorgeous tiny little being and the overwhelming joy and love that came with her. She has made me crave to experience it again. I crave to give my perfect girl a sibling or two to play with :). To feel them and watch them grow inside me. To bring them into a world where they will be loved beyond any imaginable level but is it fair is the question.