but I’m going to do it, for my own sanity and for many others who want to speak up but are overwhelmed by feelings of shame, guilt and grief.
I had a miscarriage.
There. I said it. It’s out in the universe.
A few weeks ago I learned I was pregnant. I had my well woman exam and told them I was 1 day late with my cycle. This was no big deal and I was certainly not getting my hopes up. They decided to do a pregnancy test, and sure enough, it was positive. Faint, but positive. There were lots of congratulations and I walked out of there like a deer in headlights. I told Todd and my mom that night by showing them the prenatal vitamin bottle and telling them I needed to get some more. I think they were just as shocked as I. We were all expecting it to be difficult again. This time, it was going to be difficult in an entirely different way.
5 days later, I woke up in the middle of the night with serious gastrointestinal issues. And then I saw the blood. It was faint at first, so I didn’t freak because spotting happens. The next time I was in the bathroom, I noticed it was heavier, and it proceeded that way through the night. I knew instinctively what was happening. When I finally woke up to the alarm, I ran to the bathroom. It wasn’t all a dream. In fact, it was a terrible nightmare. I told Todd I was bleeding, and he shot out of bed. I called my midwife’s office and told them what was happening. They said it sounded pretty textbook miscarriage, to take care of myself physically and emotionally, and to take a pregnancy test a week after the last day of bleeding. That will be this Saturday. A negative will confirm that my hormones are back in sync. A positive will send me up the river, because that could mean procedures that I don’t want to deal with. And it will just prolong it. I want to move on.
I called into work that day, and Todd also called in because he was sick, as well. I moped around the house through my discomfort, and stared into space. I went to a training the next day because I knew it was better than sitting around thinking about it. When I saw tissue in the toilet, it took all of my mental strength to return to the training smiling. I got through that day just fine, but I was certainly not my normal, happy self. I was quite subdued and didn’t come out of my shell much.
Last week sucked, to put it mildly. I know I only knew about the pregnancy for 5 days, but even 5 seconds would have been enough to bring the pain. I wish I would have never told them to go ahead with the pregnancy test. A late period would have been far less distressing. It was very early in the pregnancy, and that helps me feel better about the baby’s suffering. I know this shit happens for a reason. I am 36 so my eggs might not be in the best shape. The body sometimes aborts the fetus because of abnormalities, or there are other reasons.
Gage wasn’t meant to meet this sibling. Todd and I weren’t meant to parent him/her. It wasn’t meant to be.
The upside to this experience is that Todd and I got pregnant naturally! We had such trouble with Gage, and finally had to seek professional help. This time around, it happened about 6 months into trying. I am holding on tightly to this thought because it is helping me handle this emotionally. There will be a next time, and I will try not to hold my breath the entire pregnancy. Once this happens to a woman, I don’t think there is anything you can do to lessen the anxiety going into a new pregnancy. There are women in my family and close friends who have experienced miscarriages, and some much farther along or more physically scary.
Society doesn’t want to talk about this occurrence. It’s very uncomfortable. For someone who doesn’t have a lot of experience with grief, I’ve never known how to talk to my loved ones about this topic. I just try to listen and be a positive, reassuring person in their life. I want women to feel empowered to talk about this issue that plagues so many of us.
Tell your story. Don’t go through this alone.