I have struggled to write this blog post for over a week now. Each night lying in bed, crying myself to sleep and saying in my head the thoughts and feelings that I want to wash from my memory. The thoughts and feelings that I want to put in writing to rid them from my mind. To begin to heal from this entire experience. Because writing has always been my therapy. My means to heal. To get what I so deeply feel out into the open, no longer bottled up inside my heart and mind.
This blog post was meant to read like this:
On Thursday June 23rd, I was casually doing housework in the late morning while Brighton played as the other two kids were at camp. I was set to have Aunt Flo visit but she hadn't made an appearance yet. I checked my calendar and realized that I had an appointment for acupuncture in an hour. That moved me to take a pregnancy test just to confirm that I was NOT pregnant. (See my fertile window hit between my high school reunion and our St. Pete Beach weekend getaway so I was certain that it was impossible for me to be preggo). But just for precautionary measures and being responsible with my acupuncture, I felt the urge to test. I ran upstairs while Brighton tended to his toys in the pack n' play, grabbed a test, peed on the stick, and headed back downstairs. I nearly forgot about the test until I couldn't find my phone and realized that I had left it in the bathroom. When I peered in I saw the test on the floor. I saw words AND numbers. Numbers mean pregnant. Numbers mean number of weeks. Numbers mean baby. I squealed and my heart beat super fast with a smile inside. You see I love being pregnant. I love my children. I love them from the minute that I know they are inside my body. I immediately FaceTimed my best friend Whitney who was in South Carolina. After 7 failed attempts, I simply called her and demanded that she FaceTime me back. She did and she saw the positive test. She was speechless. Later I picked up the kids from camp and let Adelaide know that "mommy had a baby in her belly." She beamed with pride and I would later found out that she told all of her camp counselors and the entire Saw Mill nursery. So much for keeping our secret ;) I would tell Ryan in a "Topics to Cover" agenda that evening. And for 8 weeks and 4 days, I would dream and pray for my child.
But this is how it reads now:
Then on Monday July 25th, we would find out that our baby no longer had a heartbeat. We would see him or her on the ultrasound; but we would not see that flickering heartbeat. The one that gives you your first sense of relief when pregnant. The one I continued to blink in hopes that it was just my eyes playing tricks on me. And when Ryan reached for my hand, I knew what I had feared. That my eyes were not playing tricks.
If I am being honest, I felt that it was possible for something to be wrong two weeks prior. And I analyzed for two weeks every, single thing that my body felt, my mind thought, and my heart consumed. I spent the weekend in Miami hiding my pregnancy from my mom and sisters by drinking fake shots and virgin Mojitos (which are not actually that bad). But inside I was nervous as hell and worried about my baby.
Maybe I knew something was happening, or not happening for that matter. Maybe deep down I knew that my baby was struggling to grow. Maybe. I am not really sure what is reality and what is in my head right now.
I called my mom and could not talk. Literally could not breathe or get one word out. I had to tell her that I was pregnant and I lost my baby all in one sentence. And I couldn't find the words for a few minutes. Thank God that she was literally across the street. So I went to her and I just cried and cried and cried. And then I called the one person who I knew would know exactly how I felt...my sister Kendahl. So then I drove to her and when she hugged me, I felt my body collapse. My heart sink and my tears waterfall. I didn't have to say anything because she knew. She just knew. And while I hate that this ever happened to her, I am grateful that she was there to just hug me.
Three days later I had to have a D&C to remove my child. My precious child who I will never meet except should I be so lucky in my dreams. My precious baby who has a coming home outfit, a scrapbook ready to be filled, and a life of love and joy that I had planned. If you have had the misfortune of having a D&C, then you know that it sucks. It sucks so bad. In so many ways it is like giving birth. Your uterus contracting. Bleeding. Passing the after birth. The hormones. God the hormones are horrible. But there is no joy. There are no smiles. There are no happy tears. There is no baby.
I have tried to put into words what this feels like for those who may not understand. The best I can come up with is this: you are grieving the loss of someone that you never even had the chance to meet. It is an incredibly lonely and surreal feeling. It is mourning all of the hopes and dreams you had for someone. It is the loss and grief of something somewhat intangible. It is real and raw. It is sad.
My heart is sad.
I am trying so hard to process it all and heal and grieve and be a mom to my three beautiful babies. But it is hard. And some days I am more sad than others. And some days I am a little angry. Or a lot angry. In my heart, I know that I am blessed beyond measure. I have 3 amazing babies who I love more than life itself. And I am trying to be strong for them. I think of my friends who have no children but have been trying for years. I think of my friends who have children with cancer or other serious illnesses. I think of my friends who have lost their children. And then I thank God for my children. And deep in my heart, I know that God has a plan and that His plan is bigger and better than mine. In time that will help me heal, but it does not lessen the pain right now.
I have yet to go a day without telling someone that I know or telling a stranger that I recently had a miscarriage. In part because I believe that it is not talked about as much as it should be. It can be a lonely, isolating thing especially in the beginning. I want to break that societal norm. I want women to know that they are not alone. I want women to know that they do not have to grieve by themselves if they do not want to. I want women to know that it is not "their fault" or that "nothing is wrong with them." But I also talk about it because it helps me. I do not want my child to be forgotten. Because he or she will always be a part of my life, my story, my family.
I ask for your prayers in the coming days and weeks. I ask that you lift myself and my family up to God. That you pray for healing and understanding. That you pray for grace and faith. I ask that you hug your babies extra tight. That you fall asleep next to them tonight. That you count your blessings because we all have them. I ask that you live your life to the fullest, each and every day. For those who do not have the opportunity. For my sweet, sweet baby.