So, today is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Remembrance Day, I wasn’t going to write anything today, but then I realized that it’s important for people to understand why we need awareness for pregnancy and infant loss.
I’m not going to lie, I’ve already been crying while just thinking of writing this.
For those who don’t know, I had my first miscarriage April 2012. I would have a 4 year old by now. At the time I was married to my ex and it was extremely stressful, that miscarriage was the most painful experience I’ve ever felt. Physically it was worse than childbirth. Emotionally is was like my heart was ripped out of my chest. My child had been my only solace at that time, I remember being so shaken and stressed and feeling defeated and I would stand alone by the sink and just touch my belly and sing to my baby. And then I woke up bleeding and it progressively became worse and I denied it over and over and said it wasn’t happening until I saw my baby, actually held their little body in my hand, no bigger than a quarter.
I know people say that time heals, but it’s not true. Sure I don’t break down crying every second of every day but that pain is still there. I think what happens is we can get numb to it. We cope with it. But I do not feel healed. I know someday I will see that child again and that brings me comfort.
I recently experienced my second miscarriage. The situation is so different. I expected everything to go just as well as it had with my toddler. I wasn’t stressed, I’m in a happy marriage, and yet I still woke up bleeding one morning. This time there wasn’t pain, I bled for 2.5 weeks with minimal cramping and I couldn’t actually see a baby this time. The physical pain wasn’t there as much as before. The emotional pain was different. This time I felt the loss of a child conceived out of love and I knew my poor husband’s heart was breaking right alongside mine, I didn’t feel alone even though he was away at work at the time, emotionally we were connected.
I was so scared to get pregnant again for a totally different reason, I thought I might gain 60 freaking pounds again. Being nervous that I might miscarry again was in the back of my mind, sure but I figured everything would be fine like with Tavo I was just scared I would get fat. Hah. How dumb am I? At this point I don’t care if I would have gained 100 lbs, I just want my baby.
Why DID everything go wrong? did I do something wrong?
No, the truth is, I didn’t. No one can fully know why things happen the way they do, they just do; and for some unknown, unbelievably unfair reason, the loss of my third child was meant to happen.
Most women will experience a loss. It’s heartbreaking, it’s unfair, but it happens.
Here are four reasons why this remembrance day is so important:
1. No one in this situation should feel alone.
When I had my first miscarriage, I hadn’t really told anyone aside from parents and my ex. I was in England away from my family and everyone I really knew and I thought it was all my fault because I wasn’t eating properly. I didn’t feel like I could tell anyone because how are you supposed to bring that up? “oh by the way, I was pregnant but I’m not anymore so, yeah”. I felt like there was something wrong with me and that’s why it didn’t work out, and no one should feel that way.
2. So people will stop being insensitive.
Listen, if you’ve never experienced this kind of loss then please please PLEASE be careful how you speak to people going through this. So many people reach out with the best intentions and say something utterly hurtful like these:
“It just wasn’t God’s timing,” Oh, so being married, owning our own house, being financially stable and already having a toddler isn’t good enough timing? There are a million other ways God could have told us that. You have no idea what you’re talking about. (PLEASE never say this to anyone, I love God, I know he has everything mapped out and makes all things work together for my good but for the love of everything that is holy, DO NOT SAY THIS)
“God is good.” what the heck dude. I shouldn’t have to explain this one.
“At least you already have one,” thankfully none of my friends or anyone have said this or I would have virtually slapped them. PLEASE never say this.
**To any of my friends who are reading this and have said these things to me, I still love you, when I hear these things from people I know love me and want to help I take it in a “it’s the thought that counts” sort of way. We’re good, just make sure to word things more sensitively.**
If you really want to say something to someone in this situation go simple: “I am so sorry for your loss and what you’re going through, I’m here if you need me/praying for you, hugs, <3”.
3. We should remember
Remembering our lost loved ones is a good thing, being sad all the time isn’t, but remembering that one day we will get to see them again is good, remembering that we had those hopes of seeing them in the first place is good. As painful as it can be, our emotions make us human and putting a day aside to remember them to help us process our grief, I think, is good.
4. A Life is a Life
As some of you may know I am pro-life. We can’t advocate for life and then put a taboo on speaking about the loss of our babies in the womb. A life is a life, and a loss is a loss. We need to be able to speak our grief and process it and know that others are hurting with us, weeping with us, and supporting us. I have been tremendously overwhelmed at how much support I’ve had from friends, I am so very grateful for everyone in my life. Everyone should have that.
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” – Matthew 5:4
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-4