Missed a spot: Wait I’m still PREGNANT!

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That’s right mama it’s one month later, after what I thought was an uncomplicated delivery (in my opinion) and my pregnancy test is still saying POSITIVE!

Wait, what, how can this be? So many thoughts rushed through my head as I sit and rocked my sweet 5 lb 10 oz baby girl…and hemorrhaged. I don’t care how many times you read “What to expect when your Expecting” or any other maternity book for that matter, nothing can prepare you for something like this. Here’s your hospital checklist, comfortable pajamas (you know the ones that are an extra size bigger), water wipes for that newborn meconium and don’t forget to double-check your placenta? Exactly…nowhere did anyone tell me I needed to double-check to make sure they got all the placenta. I was warned about the sticky tar poop, but no one told me this was even a possibility. At this one moment, I wished I had done those placenta pills I read about, you know, the ones I felt like were a bit crazy. Maybe if I paid someone to come and harvest my placenta for those pills, they would have surely realized YOU MISSED A SPOT!

Oh well, fast forward to today, after my delivery I’m here to tell you my complications flared a month later and almost killed me. Now during this month, I felt like I had post-partum and wasn’t sure how to feel or how to handle being a first time Mom. What’s normal? Should I feel this way? Why do I feel this way? I have a beautiful baby girl, I should be on top of the world. No one expects to return to the hospital a whole month after delivery for a DNC and wake up in ICU with a breathing tube and asking what happened? Yup, that’s what happened! You see while childbirth can go amazing right, it can also go VERY wrong long after the BIG DAY. I thought I was fine, my breastmilk will come in…eventually. I thought I was fine…I’m going home with my baby. After all, I did deliver and spent my two days in the maternity suite and was released to figure it out as a new first-time mom. Well, I’m here to tell you to be careful and pay close attention to your body. Two weeks after delivery I drove myself to the emergency room in an extreme amount of pain. They told me I had an infection, here are some antibiotics…you’ll be fine, follow up with your OB/GYN. I did, I went back to my OB/GYN that Monday and they told me well those antibiotics aren’t strong enough, here’s some stronger ones, take these you’ll be fine. I did, and I trusted and I didn’t listen close enough to my body. Fast forward another two weeks and I start bleeding. I called my OB/GYN and they said oh it’s the return of your cycle, its “normal” don’t worry about it. Well, as I was driving back to my house I felt weak, something wasn’t right. I immediately called my neighbor to drive me to the emergency room, I knew I didn’t feel right. After an examination, the ER doctor insisted it was a bladder infection. Knowing this just wasn’t right and even after presenting a report from when I was there last for an infection which clearly read “retained products of conception” I was dismissed. I returned home, now I know more than ever something is just not right! I called my doctor back and insisted they see me, again! No, it’s not my period and it doesn’t feel like a bladder infection. I have no idea what’s wrong and I don’t know what “right” feels like, but I know something is definitely WRONG! Listen to me please…that was going to be my next words to them as I lay there undressed waiting to be examined then I hear a knock on the door. Please get dressed Mrs. Mackenroth, we need you and your husband to meet the doctor in the consultation room. There I sit with my husband holding my hand and we knew it wasn’t good. The same doctor that delivered me walked in and said: “I’m going to need you to report immediately to the hospital for surgery.” It’s already been scheduled and they are waiting on your arrival, the on-call doctor will need to perform a DNC…WE MISSED A SPOT!

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Now my story doesn’t stop there, unfortunately, I suffered several seizures after surgery which turned into a breathing tube, stabilization, a trip to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), a very HARD recovery, and even harder mandate of no driving for six months per Florida law! Talk about life-changing on top of figuring out how to be a first-time mom. I mastered the car seat installation in what seems like every UBER driver’s car in Broward County and made sure my husband assist with every bath, and always changed her on the floor as a precaution. Yes, this became my new norm. Looking back I believe it was the perfect storm of removing and releasing the toxins from my body (I did have a piece of dead placenta marinating in me for over a month), mixed with low blood sugar, and almost a twelve-hour delay in my surgery actually being performed. Yes, I believe this was the right mixture which I blame for the seizures. I’ve learned a few things from this experience. Nothing sucks more than FaceTiming your one-month-old from the hospital, there are more things in life that you can not control than you can, and what doesn’t kill you truly does make you stronger!

Almost a year-to-date I can finally share my story. The most important takeaway is to listen to your body. While every birth story is different, you are unique and you know your body. No matter what a doctor may tell you, don’t stop until you get answers and someone digs deep enough to find out what’s wrong. In today’s world of fast-paced medicine, it’s easier to dismiss you because “it’s so rare” or “highly unlikely”. I’m here to tell you that you have to be your own advocate for your health. No one knows your body like you, even if it’s changed by childbirth and it may feel like a stranger. Listen to that inner voice, deep down inside…you are the owner of your “normal” and demand answers when you know something is “off”!

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The second homecoming. Oh, how sweet it was. Home at LAST!

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Kellie is the Founder & Owner of Fort Lauderdale Moms Blog. A Southern Belle at heart with Louisiana roots, Kellie is a true Ragin’ Cajun who has called Fort Lauderdale her home since 2003. After ten years of marriage and enjoying sand and surf, a greater love was bestowed upon them in 2018 when Kellie gave birth to their miracle baby girl! Becoming a mother and experiencing first-hand the real challenge of not having family close, Kellie missed the true sense of community. Kellie founded Fort Lauderdale Moms Blog out of the need to do just that…connect local moms to resources, empower them, and build a true community that resonates a positive voice for family and motherhood. Kellie is a Certified Business Specialist, recently graduated from Broward College with a degree in Marketing Management. She also holds a degree in Accounting/Applied Technology and is Certified by the Executive Education Board at Florida Atlantic University in Marketing and Sales Management. She is passionate about lending her talents to cultivate a genuine community and motivating Moms to connect and be their true best.

4 COMMENTS

  1. OMG Kelly this happens more than you’d like to think. You are the 3rd one in our family….when we were kids Grandma Ida used to tell us of how she didn’t pass her entire placenta after birthing one of her babies. She warned us & told us how the midwife that came had just taken a course on how to handle this exact situation. Then it happened to ME!!! After I had my D&C from my miscarriage I had a strong smell when going to the bathroom….just to pee; it smelled rotten. I will never forget the doctors face when he did the ultrasound; he says there’s still fluid in your uterus & when I went back 2 weeks later for a checkup he said… they would not be able to see fluid on an ultrasound. I was like WHAT!!! you sure did see it a couple of weeks ago. Thankfully I didn’t develop complications from it like you did. But, you are SOOOOO right, listen to your body. You know your body like no one else.

    • I do remember Grandma Ida, but no one warned me about this. So crazy this has been going on for so many years, yet it’s not readily spoken of. Thank you for sharing your experience and letting other women know the possibilities. I’m happy you had a happy ended as well. It’s so important to be aware of it at least so when something isn’t right you have some grounds to stand on and not get dismissed.

  2. Oh my goodness Kelly and Crystal so sorry to hear you both went through this ! It’s 2019 and this retained POCs problem still occurs?? I as well went through the retained miscarriage experience in 1982 ( yes ,with the horrifying odor problem), profound bleeding in 1983 with 3 months severe anemia because the HIV / Aids problem had just been discovered in our area and my doctor was frightened of the blood supply at the time, and also a near death hemorrhage in 1985. Our baby was 9 days old when I picked up a gallon of milk to buy and started gushing blood all over the store . Was a horrible scene for so many to witness but a loving small community they were and EMTs packed me up to be airlifted to the nearest hospital ( we lived on an island ) only to find the Helo wasn’t available . Phasing in and out of consciousness I survived the 2 hour ambulance ride and was greeted by a smiling on call surgical team who saved my life . They gave me a total of 8 units of blood (four in one hour) and helped with God’s graciousness to keep this momma around to help my eyes wide open hubby raise our 2 precious girls . Needless to say I was advised to get a tubal ligation at a six week check-up, which my husband and I felt was very important .
    Thank you for taking the time to share your stories, have never really met any one who shared this common bond , and I often felt I was an anomaly . You’ve both helped given me closure , and help increase awareness to LISTEN to your body . Blessings!

    • Wow, Wendy! I guess you’re right and definitely not alone. We do have this common bond and we stand with you. You’ve bought up such a good point, your experience was in 1982, one would think with medical advancements that we would not be seeing this occur in 2018! (Mindblowing) My whole reason for starting Fort Lauderdale Moms Blog is to share and bring women together so they never feel alone. I truly believe together we can conquer all. Motherhood and the journey to get there is filled with extreme highs and lows and it’s so important to stand with each other and support one another. It can feel very isolating normally and then going through a rare medical issue makes you feel like you are on a deserted island without a lifeline (at least that’s how I felt). Sometimes just knowing someone else has experienced the same situation is so comforting. Thank you SO much for commenting and sharing your experience. I’m happy you too came out on the other side of it ok. I shared my story to bring awareness in hopes of saving another mom some pain. It never crossed my mind that it would provide closure, that is even MORE special than I could have ever hoped for! (Goosebumps)

      We are no longer a generation of being seen and not heard. We stand with each other, support one another, speak up (no matter how hard) and UNITE for the betterment of all. Living a life of purpose, thank you for contributing and validating that. Bless your heart!

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