Miscarriage Is Not a Failure
When Caitlin asked me if I'd be willing to write about my experiences with miscarriage, I realized it’s an interesting topic to try and sit down and actually write out. Where do I even begin? How do I start this eloquently? How can I portray my story to help out others?
I’ll begin with telling my story. Sharing it and putting it out in the universe not only helps with my evolving healing, but it also gives encouragement if you have not had your rainbow baby yet. If anything, I truly hope you can find some comfort, even in the smallest way and feel my virtual presence hugging you. I’m there girl, right beside you.
For the eloquent part? Well, that’s going to be hard. This is a hard ass topic to talk about, which is why you don’t hear many stories from women. I feel we need to try and change that.
When I went through my first miscarriage, the blanket of guilt that poured over me was the hardest thing to get over. Thinking, for some unknown reason, it was all my fault. It was my body. The baby was growing inside me, so obviously I took the blame. No matter how many times I would hear, “it’s not your fault,” it didn’t help. I truly, TRULY didn’t realize how freakin’ scientific it was to have a baby. You grow up as a young woman with the message of, “don’t get prego” and then you become a responsible adult and then shit like this happens to you. How is that fair? It was hard to open up to people about it. I felt like I couldn’t talk to anyone unless they actually went through it.
The second was even harder, completely different from the first one. By the third one, I was numb. That was over 4 years ago. By now, I should have a 5 year old about to go into Kindergarten this fall. Wow, that’s insane to think about. But I can’t. That wasn’t supposed to be our story. For some reason, my husband and I had to be put through the ringer to have our family. We had to be pushed to emotional limits we didn’t think possible, and for me, physical limits.
But. Isn’t there always a but?
We have a handsome 3.5 year old boy named Ethan and we have a beautiful 7 month old daughter, Amelia. Okay, start the tears now while typing. So crazy.
The first miscarriage, my body decided to have it happen “naturally,” as they say, a little before 8 weeks. I’ll never forget it. I remember texting Caitlin while I was drinking tea asking if it was normal to start bleeding during pregnancy. She had said yes, but to keep an eye on it. I googled a million things and reassured myself, “It’s okay. It’s fine. Calm down.” An hour later I was at my doctor’s office, realizing something was very very wrong. We did an ultrasound, saw the tiniest blinking heartbeat on the screen. I bit my tongue with my teeth so hard to prevent a burst out sob. I’ll never forget my doctor’s face and statement of, “I bet you didn’t expect to see a heartbeat. The next few hours are going to be rough, Christy.” After that, I felt like I floated out of the office. I made it to my car, my sweet little Corolla who had been through college with me, moved out west with me, moved back to Ohio with me. It felt like it was hugging me. I lost it. I heard a tap on the window, looking up I saw a complete stranger who had a tissue in her hand. I opened my window, not even able to see. She handed it to me and just said, “Girl, I will pray for you” and walked away. This stranger and this moment can come to me so vividly. Her, not realizing how a simple act of kindness made such an impact on my crushed soul. The doctor was right, it was one of the worst days of my life, just “waiting” for my body to do what it had to do and then heal from it.
Got pregnant the 2nd time within 6 months after. They said your body knows what to do already so it’s good to try again sooner than later. Mentally, I wasn’t really there, but didn’t want it to beat my enthusiasm. I had to wait for our 8 week ultrasound. The nurse came in and gooped me up, with my husband and I half-smiling. I was trying to hold my excitement since I felt so nauseous this time around, something I didn’t feel before. I couldn’t see anything, but thought, obviously I don’t know what I’m looking at. She ended up leaving and a minute later, my same doc came in. I knew something was wrong. A blighted ovum, they call it. A baby starts to form, the sac is there and good to go, but then the baby stops growing. Unfortunately your body doesn’t realize it. It still thinks it’s pregnant. I had to have a D&C done, which you go under for. That one… that one took a while to sink in. That one took me out mentally.
I needed to run away.
I asked my husband if I could leave for a retreat weekend. I went to Nemocolin in PA (incredible place). I did the spa. I took myself out to dinner. I sobbed at night after having too much to drink. This was my way of thinking I would heal. It takes way more than wine, tears and pampering, however I feel everyone needs to find what they feel heals their soul best. It’s hard not to think your spouse doesn’t get it. It was my body, how could they truly understand? But, they see how badly you are hurting, and you have to remember they really wanted a baby too. When my husband told me that, it really hit home. I would get mad at him for not remembering the due date of when we were supposed to have a baby. I would get upset one year after, realizing it was the “day” we got our new scar on our heart. It wasn’t fair to hold that against him. I encourage you not to put up your walls either, although, it’s extremely hard not to.
My third one happened naturally around the same time as the first. It’s ridiculous how you have to have 3 miscarriages before insurance companies will pay for testing. We saw a guy after going through SO many tests (did you know your ovaries have an AGE? I definitely didn’t!) and all he said was, “I think you just had really bad luck, try again.” My cousin, who unfortunately also suffered multiple miscarriages, told me to take baby Aspirin after finding out I was positive. I would have tried anything different when going for the 4th time.
It worked. I’m not saying the Aspirin really did the trick but who knows? I will say though I took it again when I got pregnant with our daughter too. No issues!
The hardest part of miscarriage is not trying to nit-pick it like crazy, trying to understand why it happened to you. It’s hard not to take it out on your body. I wanted to just drink myself drunk and punish my body for what it put me through. I had the wrong mentality because I was just so angry and hurt. Now, I truly value my body and the insane magic is CAN go through. I mean, seriously ladies, we are freakin’ magical creatures who can do so much shit!
No matter where you are in the stages of life, whether you want kids or not, whether you've tried and experienced loss, one thing remains important. Just love your body. Yes, there are things that will happen that is completely out of your control but your story continues on and how you deal with it afterwards, how you handle the chaos and pit of emotions is the bigger picture. You got this. Because you are a strong ass woman, my friend.
I leave you with this quote. "Fall in love with taking care of yourself. Fall in love with the path of deep healing. Fall in love with becoming the best version of yourself but with patience, with compassion and respect to your own journey." -- S. Mcnutt
Tell me about you and your story. I’d love to hear it <3