Mom to Lily Natalie Anne, miscarried at 10 weeks August 10th, 2006
and “Little Speck”, miscarried at 6 weeks October 13, 2009
Lily Natalie’s story:
Ever since I knew the meaning of being a mother, I knew that was what I wanted to be. Even my chosen career path as a teacher involves me utilising my maternal feelings in guiding students through their education. As cousins, friends’ babies and other family members were born, I knew that, even at the age of 11, the feeling of a newborn baby in my arms was just…right. I dreamed, imagined, visualised myself holding a baby, mothering a baby, raising a tiny life.
I always thought that at the end of a pregnancy, you got to hold your baby in your arms. That belief changed in 2006, when I found out that, at age 17, I was pregnant.
They say that all it takes is once, just one time, and a pregnancy can occur. By July of that year, I was extremely run down, exhausted, heavy and sick, severely sick. I had come from a term of physically and mentally exhausting school, preparing for my final exams for university entrance, at the end of September. I’d taken no notice of the fact that my period was late, I was merely concentrating on making myself well again. August came, and a small thought crept into my mind. I brushed it aside, vowing to share my concern that I may be pregnant with my (then) partner. I was unable to get in contact with him, so I was only able to SMS him “My period is late, and I think I might be pregnant.”
I never received a reply to that text message. He never knew he was going to be a father.
Not knowing where to turn, on August 4th, I swallowed my pride and took a HPT. The moment the two lines came up, my heart stopped. It seemed like an eternity before it started again. I was 17, and I was pregnant, abandoned by my boyfriend, and alone. It seemed like the script from a very bad teenage drama. But it was real.
I couldn’t find the words to tell my parents, and so I decided to wait until the time seemed right. I kept the pregnancy to myself, relishing in it, fearing it, dreaming of the baby I’d get at the end of it.
But that baby never got to be held.
On August 10th, 2006, I awoke in the dead of night, just before sunrise. I was disoriented, sweaty and in pain. I wish I could turn back to the moment in which I woke, before I realised what was happening. That moment in time changed me forever.
I realised that there were extremely bad pains washing all over my stomach, back and down my legs, and that my bed-sheets were literally soaked through with dark red blood. My heart began to race, tears flooded down my face, and I began to shake.
It was that moment that I was thrust into the world of miscarriage, and life after loss.
I knew that I was going to be a great mother, and even though I couldn’t afford to give it everything, the love that I had, even at 10 weeks into the pregnancy, I knew it was enough. I thought it was enough to keep the baby with me.
I named her Lily Natalie Anne; part of her name came from a very special teacher who helped me though the aftermath of my loss.
Lily should be 5 this year. I miss her every day, and thank her every day for the impact she’s had on my life. She gave me the strength to go on, to peruse my dreams, to fall in love again.
“Little Speck’s” story:
It took me years to recover from losing my first baby- literally. By 2009, I was ready to entertain the idea that maybe, one day, my (now) fiancé and I may become parents. Little did I know that this discussion we’d had was to come true again in September 2009.
We lived apart at the time, and spent one final weekend together before he was going away for 6 weeks. This was the night, that at age 20, I fell pregnant for the second time in my life.
By mid-September, I was sick again, barley able to drag myself out of bed, struggling to function, and on any flu medication I could swallow without going into organ failure.
In early October, I had my pregnancy confirmed, with a due date of June 2010. I was scared, but optimistic, as we were, and still are, keen to have children with each other. I wanted to wait to tell him in person when he came home again. But, again, fate stepped in, and I didn’t have to tell him.
On October 13th, 2009, I began to spot in the afternoon, and by the time I left the doctor’s surgery, confirming a rapidly falling hCG, I was bleeding heavily, cramping, my symptoms mirroring my first miscarriage. I drove myself home in tears, barely able to see the road in front of me.
I got into bed and stayed there for 3 days. “I’m okay,” I’d tell my fiancé on the phone. “I can’t wait to see you.” I could never find the words to tell him of the pregnancy, or the loss. To this day, he does not know. I know it will break his heart.
I recovered both physically and emotionally from losing “Little Speck” (as I had nicknamed the baby), but I will never forget the loss of my future.
To have lost two babies so young, to miscarriage, is something that has both defined me and changed me.
I now donate my time to a volunteer group for bereaved parents, and provide “care packs” to hospitals. It is a small gesture to make my babies lives count.
The extent of my loss my family and fiancé do not know, but I do know, that when the time is right, I will tell them.
Emma blogs at www.deepdreamer.wordpress.com.