On Miscarriage: One Year Ago

It was one year ago on Thanksgiving that I awoke early to check the turkey and to begin preparing the rest of the meal.  I was cutting the bread into little cubes and leaned against the counter.  I felt the presence of the pregnancy in the first "real" way.  Up until then the evidence was known only through the hormonal cues.  I was emotionally off my rocker and was able to sleep, to laugh or to cry in an instant.  I had been pushing the knowledge of the pregnancy to one side for many days.  We had decided that we would wait until Christmas Day to tell our families and it was fun to daydream about different ways of announcing the pregnancy.  It was a special feeling to know that Handsome and I had the secret and only a couple of others knew.  Our families would have to wait.

It was one year ago on Saturday that I let myself work on a firm plan…I had decided that a movie poster announcement would be fun.  I picked the photo…I worked on the text…and that afternoon I began to cramp and bleed.  Fear entered in and shut-down the fun.

It was one year ago and we lost the baby.  We never met him.  We never even got to see a shape in the ultrasound.  It is still a miracle though.  We got to see the place where the pregnancy was forming…the egg sack…evidence that the pregnancy was underway…evidence that it wasn't our imaginations…evidence.

The grieving is confusing.  I am a mother!  Or, am I a mother?  That is the strange part of pre-term miscarriage.  It is a grief that belongs to the couple but others never felt what we felt.  Others didn't see the pregnancy tests.  Others never got to "see" the reality.

I write this post because I don't want to be sensitive about it.  I had a relative bring it up on Thanksgiving Day.  She said that she had heard that my feelings were hurt and she explained to me that probably nobody knew what to say.  I suppose that is true.  I didn't even know what to say.  I had to wonder what made her bring it up finally

The miscarriage lasted almost a week and a half.  I eventually had to have a D & C in order to finish what my body couldn't.  A couple of days later, my emotional world began to collapse into a pile of emotions that were hard to manage.  These emotions resisted the truth…resisited hope…resisted kindness…resisted understanding…resisited the familiar.  I learned a lot about myself as a result.  I learned that rigid answers don't heal folks.

This issue has not allowed for creativity at all.  This journey has been very much about survival.  It stripped me of my pat answers and has given me a new perspective on the issues in the lives of others which I might have once thought "minor" and of no consequence.  This journey with the miscarriage is teaching me compassion (but it would be untruthful to say that I have become compassionate) and I need this lesson.

The journey of wanting to have a baby and then being pregnant has left me with something else.  This thing seems to be more significant than anything else.  (Someday I will have to tell you the backstory for what I write next but I can't do that right now.  It is 3:45 a.m. and I really need to finish my processing for the night.) I have been left with a gift.  I am a woman and belong to the tribe of women.  I loved my husband and we got pregnant.  THAT is a miracle.  I found out I was pregnant the week of my 44th birthday.  It defies statistics.  It was a blessing to our union.  The marriage and pregnancy didn't make me a woman…but revealed to me my place.  It isn't a curse.  It is good.  Being a woman in my marriage with the man who pursued me for years to get me…it is very affirming and I am lucky to have him.  Together, we have a child.  Our child is waiting for us. 

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24 thoughts on “On Miscarriage: One Year Ago

  1. The marriage and pregnancy didn't make me a woman…but revealed to me my place. It isn't a curse. It is good. Being a woman in my marriage with the man who pursued me for years to get me…it is very affirming and I am lucky to have him. Together, we have a child. Our child is waiting for us.
    This is beautiful. Thank you for sharing this journey with us. The grieving and healing processes are vital and you are touching lives by sharing your personal experience. May God continue to bless you and your family as you are still healing.

  2. Thank you for sharing this. I have never experienced a miscarriage and can no way say that I understand what you are writing and the feelings around this experience. But, I am glad you did share for others who have experienced a miscarriage, or as for those who may in the future.

  3. This is deeply, deeply moving. A friend of mine had a miscarriage many years ago. As it has for you, the experience redefined her in a way, casting truer priorities into sharp relief (the necessity for survival that you wrote about here) and leaving her for a time very vulnerable emotionally but also very compassionate and softened, more gentle. I know this isn't the case for everyone who is cast into the grief of a miscarriage, and I stand in respect and honor of those of you who've traveled through it and come out (or are coming out) of the experience somehow more than you were going into it instead of allowing yourselves to be diminished.

  4. Together, we have a child. Our child is waiting for us. There are very few blog posts that have moved me to tears. I don't know of any that brought instant bittersweet tears.Yours did. My prayers are with you.

  5. Thanks to you, girlie. You've been an encourager. Glad you have decided to come back to the neighborhood. Sometimes we are shallow. Sometimes we are deep. You are going to be fun to read. You are a good writer.

  6. Thanks for stopping by and for the comment and understanding. I've appreciated your blog as well. My situation ultimately isn't like yours (I think) but I am praying for your future and for the health of your next pregnancy.

  7. You remind me of that tree in Jeremiah 17 ~ (I envision it being a Palm Tree) Planted by the river you are, with roots reaching deep into that Living Water; not bothered by the heat or worried by the long months of drought. Your leaves stay green and they never stop producing fruit!
    Someone gave my mother this poem recently when she lost her husband, thought of you when I read it today…

    There will come a day when your tears of sorrow will softly flow into tears of remembrance…and your heart will begin to heal itself…and grieving will be interrupted by episodes of joy…and you will hear the whisper of hope. There will come a day when you will welcome the tears of remembrance…as a sunshower of the soul…a turning of the tide…a promise of peace. There will come a day when you will…risk loving…go on believing…and treasure the tears of remembering.

  8. Thanks for your comments, dear shining one. It is odd that your comments have correctly interpreted back to me what I am working on understanding. I know that probably wasn't your intention but it is a little like having a light shone on the still shadowy places. Thanks for the encouragement.

  9. I appreciate your kind empathy. I am glad you are here to share in the healing. It seems that my entire journey is about healing…about revelations…about emerging. You are a good man.

  10. Hey, Mz. B! I like the poem. I'm going to send it to someone else I love. Yes, it is strange that it somewhat true. I'm a tree, being a tree. In all my treeness I only know how to either go deeper or to die. My growth and greenness seems to have nothing to do with my own efforts. Just BE planted, I guess. Thanks for the affirmation. That is refreshing.

  11. GP, I am just reading this. I have noticed by clicking on 'Neighborhood' I have somehow completely missed some posts and this is one of them.
    My heart hurts for you. I'm thankful that God is helping you through the whole grief process.

    I have been left with a gift. I am a woman and belong to the tribe of women. I loved my husband and we got pregnant. THAT is a miracle. I found out I was pregnant the week of my 44th birthday. It defies statistics. It was a blessing to our union.
    God's goodness and mercy… you wanted a baby and you got a baby and in that process He gave you a gift (your words above) He also gave you a child who will be there upon you and your husbands arrival. I type this through both tears of joy and sorrow for you.

  12. I often admired the Japanese opportunity for people to mourn babies at any stage. Every shinto shrine you visit will have jizo statues to represent lost babies–usually carved in simple lines of stone. In the winter people dress them in stocking caps and scarves, and in the summer sun hates and windmills.

  13. Hey…I just read this blog of yours and it is beautiful, Laura Leigh…Is it not exceedingly interesting how our God leads us down paths we may not want to go, but with purpose…using our humanity and the inevitabilities of just regular life…things that are common to mankind…to teach us lessons that are so valuable that, though they bring great pain and cause us to search deep within to rely upon our roots in Him, are precious and treasured…just as the memories of the precious one once within you is cherished…and shall be long after he is gone. I would not trade my experience…I would rather have had that time with my Baby Faith…though short and tumultuous…I would not trade having her in order to spare myself the pain and grief of the experience.
    Blessings…moonflower…

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