When you pee on that stick and see the positive, you are elated…usually. Even in pregnancy after loss, there are moments of excitement which appear immediately upon seeing the positive test but it isn’t usually long until the worry and anxiety sets in. It’s almost as if entering pregnancy after loss means restarting the stages of grief.
We will do whatever we can to ensure this baby will come home. That includes delivering early either by c-section or induction. I’ve been there, begging my OB to induce just so I could bring my baby home alive.
Hiring a doula – Some women will hire a doula immediately after peeing on the stick…as if to say, “there, now the baby HAS to come home alive with me because I hired a doula.” We know this isn’t true, but absolutely feels like this can be a sure way to ensure a living baby at the end.
Testing – Some women have as much testing as possible and others refuse all testing.
Ultrasounds – Extra ultrasounds, one each week or more is another way to “bargain.” If I see the baby more often, I might be able to pick up on something that is wrong earlier and hopefully correct it.
Creams – Progesterone creams or other hormonal treatments can be another way women bargain with the universe to keep their baby.
Herbs – Special herbal remedies were definitely something I explored. I remember trying False Unicorn Root during my pregnancy with Ruby. I just KNEW I would get to keep her because I was taking it. She died only a few weeks after starting it.
Prayer – If I pray more, go to adoration more, attend church more, etc…God will give me this baby.
Heck, I would have hired a drummer to come into my home and drum on a daily basis if that would have guaranteed I would bring my baby home. But we know, nothing can guarantee that.
Sometimes it’s about rituals; appointments at the same time and on the same day of the week. Or still others have avoidance rituals:
Never returning to the same doctor/hospital/clinic.
Not purchasing anything for the baby until they are here.
Not announcing the pregnancy until very late in pregnancy or not at all.
These are all forms of bargaining. It’s a way for us to feel a sense of control. We desperately need to feel in control. We need to feel that we can do something, anything to bring home a living baby because the opposite of that is so extremely painful we feel we won’t survive again. Another loss feels as if we would surely die.
I think deep down we know that it’s still out of our control but we really need to feel a sense of control so we do things. Things that can confuse others and sometimes even ourselves. It’s not wrong to do these things. Some of them may help but at the very least, they help us feel better and as long as we are not putting ourselves or our babies at risk, then why not?