Susan

Mom to Baby A,
Lost April 10, 2009 at 5 weeks

and

Baby M,
Lost April 26, 2010 at 8 weeks

I’ve always wanted to be a mom, but circumstances in my life had always seemed to conspire against it.  So when I had a positive pregnancy test just three weeks before my 40th birthday, I felt overjoyed and blessed.  The doctors estimated that I only five weeks along and had only known about my pregnancy for a short time, but just knowing I was pregnant flooded my heart will a profound love. I never felt calmer and more peaceful in my life. The feeling of that first pregnancy was magical.

I began bleeding the evening after my first pre-natal visit, a Thursday night. I was told to come in on Friday morning for another examination and blood test to monitor my HCG levels. Since this was my first blood draw, I needed to wait until Monday for another one to be used for comparison (were the numbers going up or down?). In retrospect, I should have known that I was experiencing a miscarriage; but because the doctors would not conclusively say anything, Hubs and I held tightly to that tiny thread of hope. It was a long, emotional weekend. On top of it, we were hosting Easter dinner that Sunday, so we had to act as if nothing was happening during the whole event (a task at which I failed – as Hubs loves to point out I have worst poker face ever and I hate it when he’s right). The entire weekend I prayed non-stop that we’d be granted a miracle and this baby would be a fighter. But it was not to be.

A year later, I thought I’d been given a reprieve, when I was once again pregnant. We had moved further along in the pregnancy where we could see a very strong heartbeat.  It was something that had given Hubs and I great comfort, but the memory of our first loss hovered over the new pregnancy. We were determined to be optimistic, but were forever cautious. We had just four more weeks to go until we reached the viable mark, but things were looking good. Then, on April 26th, just two days after my birthday, I began to bleed. A visit to the OB/GYN the next day confirmed Baby M’s heart had stopped beating and I was, again, miscarrying.

One of the hardest things about miscarriage is that people who have not experienced it view it very clinically.  It’s very hard for someone to comprehend how traumatic it truly is, what it entails, and the pain you feel both physically and mentally.  Both of our miscarriages occurred naturally (without a D&C). So every day for several days in a row, I faced painful reminders of what I’d lost.  For my second, I had a D&C scheduled but I began having contractions the night before and passed what doctors call “the products of conception,” (but what I would much rather refer to my baby) at home. We had to handle to remains in an attempt to preserve them for testing. The memory of this is distressing and seldom shared because of its graphic nature.  This and many other visceral memories come flooding back without warning even to this day.  The memories are tied to pain, so when they flood back so does the heartbreak.  It remains fresh.

What I also lost was the awe and innocence in which I viewed pregnancy.  What moved in instead is a guarded and jaded perspective.  Every commercial with a pregnant woman or couple makes me feel cold; because in idealized commercial world, every pregnancy ends in a baby, or three.  I know that it doesn’t always work that way.  I know that life can be cruel and the unexpected can happen, and happen more than once. To this day, I still feel chill when I see or hear of a pregnancy announcement.  It doesn’t mean I think something bad will happen or expect it.  In fact,  I pray very hard that everything goes well.  I would never wish that level of pain or heartache on anyone.

It is just that tiniest things send me back.  The memories are vivid and visceral.  The pain is still extremely real.  Like a microburst, it leaves my heart completely flattened and longing for the children I never got to hold and an innocence I want back as badly as my babies.

I was never able to have a child with the man I love.  The journey towards healing is long.  The grief that comes with child loss and childlessness is not so easily overcome. It’s cyclical. Just when you think you’re past it, it greets you elsewhere down the line. I’ll be forever haunted by the memories surrounding both losses. 

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Comments

  1. Susan, our stories are Almost Identical. I’m 42 and just had my 2nd miscarriage 1 month ago~ both were without a D&C, one at home/ER and the 2nd straight to the ER because I couldn’t go through it all again. I’m O- Blood type so I have to have a RhoGam shot after no matter what. My first miscarriage I was only 7 weeks but 7 weeks of loving and wanting a first child and abruptly taken away on April 27th, 2011. The most horrible and violent pain I have ever experienced and nothing but an $8,000 medical bill to be demanded to be paid less than 2 weeks after the tragedy. No answers, just, “it’s not your fault”. Wait to try again in 6 months to a year but remember your age! We were not “trying” to get pregnant when we learned of Pregnancy #2! We were nervous b/c of the previous m/c but were going to conquer this one! I was sick day and night and thinking these were the good signs of “being pregnant”. I was days away from the 4 month mark and the blood arrived on the 1st of July (very light), went immediately to the new doctor and she checked me and said no red blood and my cervix was closed(all good) Wrong~ I rested like I was told,nothing was getting worse or better and then right before midnight on the 4th of July (2012) I went to the bathroom and Red Blood everywhere (sorry so graphic)….all my previous memories took over and I told my fiance’ we had to get to the ER because I couldn’t endure this again at home…On July 5th after 9.5 hours in the ER our 2nd Angel left us and went to “Angel Playground Heaven” (that is where I see my babies). I believe the first was a boy and the 2nd a Girl. I wont’ get to know until I meet them someday. I have no answers medically and went through one of the most traumatic things a person can experience physically and emotionally. There is not a day that doesn’t go by that I don’t think about the “what could have been”…I’m still sad a lot and just when I think I’m doing better I take 3 steps backwards. I have joined a group on Facebook called “Mother Of Angels” which has helped me vent. I was asked to be an Administrator to help out within the first week….I’ve never been in therapy or a part of any support group but this has been very helpful in my slow journey towards healing! I just wanted to reach out to you and tell you that I am sorry for your losses and unfortunately I DO Understand! If you feel like chatting feel free to email me. I believe our Angels are together and have brought us together to make us stronger! Thanks for sharing your story! Jill :)

    • Hi Jen. Your comment got stuck in my spam fetilr for some reason. I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of one of your triplets. My thoughts are with you and your family.

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