Over the past few months we have been processing some of our own trauma. While it may not seem traumatic as war, losing a friend, a brother or sister in arms in front of you, being blown up in a truck, reintegrating back into the civilian world, we are still processing the fact that we were pregnant and then, well, we weren’t.
We didn’t think we could get pregnant and on Valentine’s Day I felt terrible. I mean, I felt so bad that I didn’t want to move from the recliner. I felt so uncomfortable that I could not even try to close my eyes and nap. I was so miserable that I had to call Sam and through tears ask him to come home.
A trip to the ER and our world changed.
A conversation with our kids about our loss and our hearts shattered.
Several visits to the doctors office for blood draws. Watching women who were expecting wait to be called back and hear their baby’s heartbeat. Watching moms become annoyed with a crying baby. Each visit I hoped that my hormone levels were back to normal. Each visit I hoped that the wait was less than 10 minutes so I didn’t have to see a woman who was expecting walk through the door.
Each visit I tried my best to distract myself on my phone so I wouldn’t think about the baby I lost.
At our last visit we were told about all of the things: apps, calendars, tests, options. We were told there’s hope and that we aren’t too old. We can still try, we can still get pregnant, but chances might be slim.
At our last visit I was told to take pre-natal vitamins. Keep track of cycles. And then you hope and pray and cross your fingers that maybe, just maybe you’ll end up expecting again.
But then it doesn’t happen. You aren’t sure how to feel. At least I wasn’t sure how to feel. Normal? Happy? Relieved? Friends get pregnant. You see pictures of sweet babies on Facebook, and as hard as it is, you don’t keep scrolling or swiping, you smile while your heart is a little crushed inside.
I don’t want to be annoyed with a lot of people, but when I see parents upset at their children for no reason, screaming at them in public, ignoring a child when they are trying their best to get their parent’s attention, I get a little upset, sad, maybe even mad.
These feelings creep in from time to time. I try not to think about what could have been or might have been because there are two amazing, beautiful, happy, healthy kids in our home.
You don’t want to spend every waking moment thinking about “what could have been,” but you manage. You try to relax and stay calm. You try to plan for the future, but you freak out because you feel like you are too old, and your time is running out. You hope that you can eventually go to the doctor and hear those words again, “you are pregnant,” but you don’t get your hopes up.
I read an article that no one really talks about miscarriage. I would agree with that. We debated on how to process this or what we needed to do to tell ourselves that this would be okay, we could get through this, we had each other.
And all those emotions, happiness, nervousness, excitement, fear, they came rushing back. They creep in from time to time. You remember to love what matters and you think “how could this happen?”
I thought to myself, you tell people when someone dies, when you lose a loved one. And then I thought about how we could barely manage to tell my dad that night in the ER. How do you tell someone about a person they will never meet, that you never met, how to you say that they are gone?
We had to tell the kids. Gut wrenching. With pain and sadness in my heart, we told the kids that we had good news and bad news happen all in one day. Overwhelming, right? We had mentioned in conversation or asked while having some family time what they thought about a baby brother or sister (and at that time it was adoption, remember we never thought we could have a baby of our own), and they were receptive, curious, interested.
And then heartbroken…because no one prepares you how to tell your kids that they were going to be a big sister and a big brother, but you lost the baby.
They wonder what that means, “lost the baby” and you can barely utter the word, the word that brings tears to your eyes, miscarriage.
Then you face your parents. The people who have loved you at your best and worst. The grandparents who kept your kids, fed them, had a small Valentine’s Day with them, who entertained them and made sure they were okay all while trying to keep a straight face and remind them mom was going to be okay.
You crumble in your dad’s arms. Bursting into tears because there are no words, just tears. He hugs you and tells you things are going to be okay and that he’s so sorry.
You do the exact same with your mom. Then again at home with your husband because you know deep down all he has ever wanted was to be a dad, to have a child of his own.
And you break down at random things: commercials, pictures in a doctor’s office, quiet moments when your mind races, writing a blog post.
And then those thoughts shift, you are reminded of how amazingly blessed and wonderful your life is at the moment, that God truly has blessed you, you have your home, your family, a job…and you really love what matters.
Through this process we have learned that life will indeed give you lemons, make you uncomfortable, and also allow you to count your blessings. We also have hope, we have one another, and we have love.
That’s all that really matters.