In real life, I’ve always been very open book about my life with the ups and downs, but generally tend to post the “pretty things” on social. This time, I’m going to try and help alleviate the taboo conversation of miscarriage because to be honest it sucks, it’s a club no one wants to be a part of. And it sucks even more when you feel isolated and alone. So here’s my pregnancy and miscarriage story from the beginning – my ultimate dream in life is to be a mom. I can’t really say when it started, but growing up, I was just always with babies and toddlers – teaching Sunday school to preschoolers and babysitting for 10 different families regularly since I was 13. I remember when my college boyfriend and I broke up and I was more sad at the prospect of not being a mom moreso than the end of the relationship (probably an obvious sign that he was not the one 😬). I was single for a while and I actually prayed that my desire for a child would subside if God didn’t have that as my path. Then along came my husband and we fell in love ☺️ We had a plan to date, get married and have a family. Well the road to get married was rough with the pandemic and rescheduling and replanning our wedding 3 times, but it happened and we closed that chapter and was ready to move on to parenthood.
And we were lucky! We weren’t “trying”, but also “not not trying” just to see what would happen and within a month lo and behold we got pregnant! I did 5 pregnancy test because I just didn’t believe it. The shock on both our faces was amazing and such a special joy that I hope I continue to hold on to despite the end result because it was the best.
At the 6 week appointment, we heard the baby’s heartbeat and I felt myself give a sigh of relief. I’m a numbers person and I read that 25% of pregnancies end in miscarriage, however after a heartbeat is found, that number drops to 10%. I thought “well 90% is great odds” and I finally allowed myself to be excited. My therapist was also a great help during this time (strong advocate for therapy here!) because I told her how anxious I was feeling from day 1 about wanting to be excited, but also so fearful of a miscarriage. She said to me trying to temper my joy and “prep for bad news” wouldn’t actually make me less sad if there was bad news. I am pregnant today and I should try to be joyful in it. So I did! The days between getting the “pregnant” sign on the pregnancy test and my 9 week appointment, I can honestly say, I celebrated every day I woke up and was pregnant.
Sadly all that came crashing down during our 9 week appointment as the ultrasound couldn’t pick up a heartbeat anymore. Our baby stopped growing and I was going to have a miscarriage. The doctor gave us options and I honestly just wanted to get past this nightmare as soon as possible. Instead of surgery, I opted for pills to help the miscarriage happen asap since my body wasn’t processing that our baby had stopped living and the pain of knowing our baby had died and was just in me…I desperately wanted this sad chapter to be over.
This is where I’m going to rant a bit in light of the news of the Supreme Court drafting a decision to overturn Roe v Wade which affects more people than I think people realize. I recently learned that my miscarriage could have been affected in some states because the pills I took are also known as abortion pills. Did I want an abortion? No. If I could have done anything to keep my baby alive, I would have done it, but the baby’s heart just didn’t make it. And if Roe v Wade is overturned, pills and surgery that help people like me whose body didn’t know to miscarry naturally would not be as readily available. Sometimes the body can take weeks or even months to realize the baby has died and that means potential for infection and most definitely the mental and emotional pain is dragged on. I don’t wish this pain on anyone as a miscarriage is not just one day – it’s been weeks and I’m still dealing with the physical and mental recovery of it all. This is my request that for those reading who say they are pro life, please really think what that means. I hope pro life means being a champion for ALL LIFE including the physical and mental health for moms, people who want to be moms like me and people who don’t want to be moms. We all deserve a choice. And now stepping off my soap box…
For the next few days, I was in pain physically from the miscarriage and emotionally from the future I envisioned being ripped away. I know logically it’s not my fault, but it’s hard not to feel like my body betrayed me. It gave me a great surprise gift and then it just ended. Also it’s hard not to be mad at God and His plan. I know I pray for God’s will, but really what I’m praying for is that God’s will would actually be my will and really just give me what I want in life. So far, God’s plan has been VERY DIFFERENT than what I planned, but I have to say, He knows better than I ever will – it gave me the blessing of my job, it brought me to LA which then it led me to my husband and most of all, it’s given me this life and family and friends. And as hard as the last few weeks have been, I’m choosing to cling stronger to my faith. I will definitely still have sad and mad days, but I will try to put hope above it all.
So my last notes for now are for those who have gone through a miscarriage: I’m so sorry we’re in this club together because it SUCKS. Please take the time you need to recover physically and mentally as it can come in waves. I would be completely fine one moment and then randomly start crying while doing the dishes…or looking at the sky. It’s okay to not be okay so grieve as you need. And no matter what stage you’re in during this process, please don’t go through this alone. I’m so thankful that we didn’t completely follow the “first trimester rule” of not sharing with anyone and did share with some family and a handful of friends that we were pregnant because having their support during this dark time when I’m not pregnant anymore has been such a life line. And for those who didn’t share before, please don’t isolate yourself and feel like you must suffer in silence. It can be awkward to bring up because who wants to say “hey, this bad life thing happen…”, but honestly the people I’ve said this too have given me a huge hug and just been there. People want to be there for you. For me. For us.
Family and friends, if someone close to you has miscarried, I know it can be hard to know what to do or say. I was in your shoes before and I was at a lost on how best to support. This may not work for everyone, but what I really appreciated was just having people check in and say “how are you feeling TODAY?” because honestly the feelings change daily or even hourly. Sometimes I felt bad crying to family and friends too much or bringing it up again because it can feel crazy being so sad over a “blip of time” so when they would ask, it meant a lot to me. Also please don’t exclude us from life things because even though I am grieving, I still want to celebrate with you. And if I’m not at a place to celebrate, I will let you know, but please don’t exclude us as we want to feel as “normal” as possible so thank you in advance for adjusting with me.
Lastly, I’ve realized how much my husband and I are a team and even though it’s my body going through this I know it’s our hearts together in this. As a good friend told me, be gentle with one another. We need this time together xo