So I share my experience today not because I am looking for sympathy. But because I know others may be going through what I have, and many alone. You are not alone. You are not broken. The pain may or may not fade but we can continue living.
Frantic, he started asking questions to the technician. And with each one, the technician replied, “I’m not able to give results, I’m sorry.” We didn’t need her to give us results. We knew what a healthy baby looked like. She placed her instrument on the baby to scan “HR”. A straight line raced across the screen. She checked again with the same results and then erased the “HR” on the screen.After we were asked to wait in a quiet abandoned corner of the hospital. A few chars lined the mint walls with a small side table. I glanced at my husband, the side table, the Kleenex on top, back at my husband, and an old cream colored phone next to the Kleenex. We didn’t need the call, we knew. I felt so bonded to my husband as we both cried in each other’s arms processing the reality that we had lost this baby.
The next day we were instructed to wake up early to go in for a D&C. The morning went fast. And before we knew it we were home, without a baby. The nurses told me I should recover in a few days.
I did not return to normal activity in a couple days but instead slept. I slept in my room most of the days that followed. My mind could not comprehend what had happened. My body did not work the way it did before. So I slept.
But as the days went on my mind became restless to return to normalcy. Not living in a regular routine made my recovery harder. Each day I spent laying in bed reminded me of what had happened; we were going to have another baby and then we weren’t.
I tried simple things. They were hard. It was as if my mind had shut down. Even sitting with my children was hard. They would talk loud or fight with each other and it felt as if my mind was exploding. So I sat and slept in the room some more.
By the weekend we had told our world about the miscarriage. We received overwhelming support. Flowers came. Gifts and kind visitors. We had dinners brought to us, my family took care of the kids and house. I was humbled by so many who reached out to me. This brightened my spirit.
Of those people, I had four friends reach out and offer emotional support. These four friends had experienced a late miscarriage or stillbirth and they helped me tremendously in my first week so much. They talked to me when I needed someone. They didn’t want me to feel alone. And because of them I didn’t feel alone.
Having this support made a huge difference for me. Talking about my feelings to women I felt safe with helped me. They shared tips and love. My husband truly was a hero that week. He did everything he could to take care of me. Unfortunately, as much as I talked to him and cried to him, I knew he didn’t fully understand what my mind and body was experiencing. So I cannot thank these women enough for taking time to listen to me and opening their hearts to a once if not still a painful experience.
|Photo by Mladyphotography|
We had extended family unexpectedly come into to town that first weekend. And they kept asking about the miscarriage. That is when I learned that it is ok to say, “I am not ready to talk about this.” Thankfully, one of the women I had talked to had suggested this.
This was beautiful advice to me. I wanted to be over my miscarriage. I wanted to be able to talk about it. But I wasn’t over it. It still stung. My world was blurred in pain and shock. And talking about it hurt deeper. I was frustrated that it was so hard. I was angry that it even happened. I was sad for the loss of what could have been. I was exhausted. I felt so much pressure to resume work or even just be there for my children. There was so much.
For the following month I struggled. My mind still didn’t want to process life. During this time I was trying to get back to work as I have been putting my husband through school. This added to my pressure and stress. I didn’t want to work. I wanted to do nothing. But life had to go on. I couldn’t sleep in my room for days even if I wasn’t working. After a month of mood swings, crazy hormones and a loss of ambition I realized I was battling depression.
|Photo by Mladyphotography|
I started to realize it as it slowly drifted away the following month. I remember one day waking up and feeling noticeably happier. My anxiety of life and sadness seemed to have shrunk. Even to this day I still struggle and its been almost 10 weeks. Thankfully, the happy days outnumber the sad ones.
My body didn’t bounce back very quick either. I’m 99% sure the nurses said that I might be able to workout the next week. I can’t be sure because I was on some pretty heavy meds. But I will tell you that I did not bounce back. As a fitness instructor I tried to teach a toning class the week after. I wanted to, exercise helps balance me. And I craved balance.I had to pretend to be stretching at the end of the class so they didn’t know that literally I was seeing stars and about to pass out. I had to sit for 15 minutes before I could get up to walk to my car. so you can bet I didn’t work out for a while after that. It’s all good to take a break working out, but between my miscarriage and taking a break it has been hard to get back into my cardio routines.
I still to this day have not lost the weight I gained during my pregnancy. My body has not been regular and if I have another mood swing I’m going to buy all the fudgcicles I can. But really, I still get these thoughts that maybe my body is damaged now. I still worry occasionally that I did something wrong like worked out to hard or ate sushi. And then I remember what my doctor told me before the surgery.
He knelt down next to my bed. He was calm. I could tell he was taking time to sit with me. He was not in a hurry. He looked me in the eyes with all the conviction I believe that man owned and said, “You are not broken. This is not your fault. You didn’t do anything wrong. You will be able to have more children. You are not broken”
Through the craziness, in the moments I haven’t felt like myself, I remember these words. So I share this today because I wish I had known all that comes after a miscarriage. Maybe it wouldn’t have been so hard. Maybe it would have, it probably would have.
But I hope that if you are in a hard place you know you are not alone. I’ve been there. I’ve not thought the same way as you perhaps. But, I’ve felt like my brain is broken. I’ve felt the frustration, regret, sadness, embarrassment, and anxiety. And even though your experience is different than mine and you may recover faster or slower, I hope you know you are not alone. You are not broken.
A huge thank you to those who sent prayers my way. I felt them. As women I love that we support and help each other. Much love to you all.