You see, I have always been very in tune with my pregnancies. Call it a gift or call it crazy, I can feel my babies’ spiritual presence in my body, even before taking a pregnancy test.
The next day at 4am, I woke up and couldn’t wait any longer. I took a pregnancy test. I anxiously waited for the results to show. Three minutes later, my feelings from the previous night were confirmed. I was pregnant.
I was immediately overwhelmed with so many feelings. Shock, confusion, joy, fear. I couldn’t believe it. This baby was not planned and felt like a total fluke. Eli was only 9 months old and after quickly doing the math I realized that I was going to have two babies only seventeen months apart. The thought of having two babies so close in age terrified me.
That day I told my husband, Joseph. He was very excited which helped me to feel slightly better about the situation. Even still, the fear crept in. I had a very difficult pregnancy with Eli and was so scared of experiencing that again. I felt guilty for not being excited about having another baby because I know so many would have done anything to be in my position. I was confused by the conflicting feelings inside me. I felt grateful and blessed while still feeling fear and anxiety.
As days passed, the negative feelings began to subside and I allowed myself to truly become excited about the new addition to our family. I began picking names, daydreaming about Eli being a big brother, and discussing potential baby shower ideas with my best friend.
A week later, my biggest fear came true. I was spending the day getting ready to go out of town to see my grandparents. That morning in the back of my mind, I had a strange thought.
“I don’t feel pregnant anymore.”
I quickly shoved that feeling aside. It couldn’t be true. I was obviously just getting in my head and letting my thoughts get the best of me.
A few hours later, I started bleeding. I was crushed. In that instant, I knew that it was over. I couldn’t feel the baby’s presence anymore and I knew I had lost him/her.
I called my husband in a panic. He was at work and immediately left to come be with me. He sat by my side while I shed tears of total devastation.
It was at that point I remembered that we were supposed to be leaving to go see my grandparents in Arizona. My husband asked if I wanted to stay home due to the circumstances but because my grandparents were in poor health, I decided we needed to make the trip.
That was quite possibly the hardest weekend of my life. I mourned in silence. Because it was so early in my pregnancy, I hadn’t told anybody about it. I felt that I had to let my miscarriage happen quietly as to not make anyone feel uncomfortable.
I felt so confused. I felt guilty. I felt like it was my fault. The “what if”s started running through my head. “What if it was because I skipped breakfast that day?” “What if I worked out too hard and that’s why I lost the pregnancy?” Over and over again these thoughts ran through my mind. I was certain I had lost this baby because I had done something wrong.
The worst part was, I felt alone. I was suffering in silence. I had read that 1 in 4 women suffer from pregnancy loss in their lifetime, but even so, I felt like I had nowhere to turn. Nobody to talk to about what I was experiencing. I felt that I couldn’t reach out and ask for comfort because nobody knew I was pregnant to begin with.
Over a year later, and I still struggle with this loss from time to time. I often think about how if I hadn’t lost that baby, he/she would be here now. He/she would be almost five months old. Eli would be a big brother. I’m still paying off emergency room bills from my miscarriage and it feels unfair to me that it cost me more money than the birth of my son. My heart hurts for the baby I never got to hold.
80% of miscarriages happen in the first trimester, usually before pregnancies are announced. I understand this statistic to mean that about 80% of women experiencing pregnancy loss are also doing it alone. To me, that is absolutely heartbreaking. I believe a miscarriage is absolutely one of the hardest things a woman can experience in her life and she shouldn’t have to face that tragedy alone.
It is time to break the stigma. It’s time to talk about the parts of motherhood that are a little uncomfortable. It’s time to speak up so others who are experiencing these hardships know they are not alone. Nobody talks about pregnancy loss, but that needs to change.
If you have struggled or are currently struggling with miscarriage or infertility, please feel free to reach out to me. Know that you are not alone. Speak up. Share your story. There are millions of women walking this path with you. You shouldn’t have to face it in solitude.
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