Today marks 2 years since I had my first miscarriage. I've been approaching this day with some dread just because I wasnt sure how I'd feel exactly...I think I was expecting to be depressed or something? It was a horrible and awful experience that I am so relieved to have put behind me...so I should be sad right?
It's funny...every year around this time, Dan and I get an itch to get out of town for the weekend (and Nana and Poppy are always quick to volunteer for grandkid duty :). We didn't really plan it this way...but our getaways seem to fall on the same weekend each year. I always wonder...will this time away be heavy? Will it be a time of grieving? Is there something more that I need to work through? So I woke up this morning thinking "crap...it's today." But, I feel joy. Unexplainable joy. There is a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach that may always ache when I think of the loss of life...when I see an ultrasound picture, when I hear of a newly announced pregnancy or birth. I don't enjoy hospitals and I could live very well without ever seeing another ultrasound again in my life. But, I feel joy.
I share a bit of our story here. But today I have some things that I'd like to add. A LOT of people have been affected by a miscarriage, stillbirth, or other kind of infant loss. I can almost guarantee that the first time a person shares their story there will be someone close that can relate. The common occurrence doesn't minimize the pain...but it does make us aware that a lot of women AND MEN are silently suffering with this loss. Unfortunately it is so easy to hurt or be hurt by another person's story...and I hope that my few tidbits can help to ease some of the pain on both sides.
Each person's miscarriage experience is different...but the loss is just as real. Be careful how you console.
Whether it was a blighted ovum (empty egg), a 6 week gestation, or a full term baby...the loss is just as real. Yes, the intensity is different, the physical effects are different, and some experiences may be harder to heal from. The important thing here is to validate each mother and father's experience. The truth is that none of us know the details...the dreams, the struggle to get pregnant, the process of the trauma...none of us really know what it was like. Have grace. Please don't tell them that they can try again...or that it probably wasn't a good time to have another baby...keep your consolation to: "I'm so so sorry." And then just listen. And maybe even cry.
Dads feel it too...a LOT.
This kind of loss is a loss for everyone...especially daddy. Don't be so quick to dismiss dad. He needs help to grieve while he cares for mom and processes the trauma of the loss too. When I was in the ER and preparing for discharge, I passed out completely and slumped over a garbage can. My husband was scared...there were a lot of ugly things to see that night and he needs to work through those feelings too. Be a listening ear for him...(My kids were too young to even understand that I was pregnant...so we didn't have to really talk to them about it...but older kids need help here too.)
There is life and joy after miscarriage/infant loss.
I promise. When I share my story...I talk about how I literally felt cradled in Jesus' arms...I was so sad...but I was not in despair. I was ok...he held me up. Some scripture that comes to mind here is Psalm 34:18 The LORD is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.
In this life, I'm pretty sure that there will always be a sting...but there is LIFE. There is joy. If you have experienced a miscarriage or infant loss...and you have not experienced joy...please contact me. Jesus came so that we could have LIFE!
I still long to be pregnant again...since this time we had another miscarriage and I fear that my body is done. So, I may still have grieving to do...
"But I will trust in your unfailing love. I will rejoice because you have rescued me. I will sing to the Lord because he has been so good to me.
Until the next time :-),