(Trigger warning: Miscarriage)
I was in Target a few days ago and needed to grab a baby shower card and came across a few “sympathy” cards for miscarriage. My heart swelled just a little bit. Losing a baby, even early on in a pregnancy, is a grief like non other. And this is a grief we tend to have to burden alone. You never got to hold them closely to your chest. You never got to press your nose to the top of their head and take in all that glorious new baby smell. You never got to look in their sparkling eyes. That is a hard reality to express. You have to reimagine and readjust all the hopes and plans you daydreamed about for that baby and for your family.
I lost a baby in July of 2006 and was completely blindsided. I started bleeding and rushed myself to the ER. They took bloodwork and told me my progesterone levels were not where they should be. It was a young male doctor and he never actually said to me that the baby was gone. I don’t know if he assumed I knew what the lab results meant or if he just didn’t have the words to tell me. None the less, I went home and held on hope for a few days, but knowing deep down it was over. At my follow up they confirmed what I had already started to process. I got lost in my grief. My partner couldn’t empathize. How could I expect him to? I could barely wrap my mind around it and I wasn’t very good at verbalizing my feelings at 22 years old. I read books and searched online only to discover it was pretty common, at least 25% of pregnancies end in an early miscarriage. I found a little peace in this fact. I wasn’t broken. I wasn’t doomed to a childless life. I would likely carry a baby to full term. Just not that one. They would’ve been turning 14 years old in March. Almost a decade and a half has passed and there’s still a piece of my heart missing. But that’s okay, I gave it to a sweet soul I carried within me and I never want to forget them. Still, all these years later the pain I remember the most is the crushing weight of bearing this inescapable sadness alone.
Come back for the story of my second miscarriage in March of 2007.