I’ve been pregnant twice this winter, but I haven’t a baby to show you.
I’ve miscarried twice in 7 weeks, but you wouldn’t know because you didn’t get told, because we don’t talk about it. Because it’s not until you have an awkward conversation with someone before you realise how common it is.
All I was left with was a swollen stomach, raw emotions and a fragile womb. My body wasn’t up to it. I spent a week in and out of bed without enough strength to get me out. After late night emergency runs, inconclusive blood tests and scans I endured a threatened miscarriage and then miscarried only 7 weeks after my last miscarry.
Did we plan for number 3? Not entirely but in these two pictures each being the day I found out I was pregnant we thought, imagined and even planned out some of our future lives as a family of 5.
People always talk about when you fall pregnant there’s no guidebook on when you give birth and take your baby home. Well, I feel like there’s no guidebook for when you don’t ever get to meet your baby. There’s no guide book on the strain to your body, the emotional heartache and the healing of losing a babe before you’ve even been ‘allowed’ to talk about it. If we talked more openly about pregnancy before 12 weeks there would be less hiding morning sickness, the growing tummy that let me tell you, one pregnancy straight after the next is not forgiving on a belly that’s already held two babes to 36 weeks and beyond.
There’s an article in this month’s Latte magazine for Business Chicks that talks about the mothers club that no-one wants to be a part of. It also discusses the things not to say to a woman who’s just miscarried. Things like: lucky it was early, it’s ok you have other kids & plenty of people go through it don’t worry you’ll be fine. It talks about these being the comments that come from parents or individuals who themselves have never experienced the loss and I get it, you don’t know what you don’t know and so why would your comments be any different.
This time around I’ve talked more openly about my loss, it’s been a way to help grieve and move through, it’s helped others understand where I’ve been and why I’ve been so unwell of late. I was sharing my news with another mother when I got a beautiful message that said ‘I hope there is an extra sunny corner of the sky for our little babies. It’s so so tough to say goodby this early.’ That comment, wow. it flawed me, it was from one of the few people who knew I was pregnant that had also felt loss, and the comment was real and it was nurturing.
My eldest daughter repeatedly asks me when the baby is arriving because ‘mummy has a big tummy’. I am of course so incredibly grateful that despite three miscarriages I’ve had two incredible, strong and healthy baby girls. I know how lucky I am, I remind myself over and over and over. But for now my body and my emotions need some time to heal and deal with loss. For now and maybe forever I will be content with our family of four because right now my body and my heart just aren’t up to the challenge of going through it all again.
Please, please talk about your loss with others, you will be surprised how healing talking about it can be.