Firstly I want to make it clear that I’m not writing this for sympathy but because I’m still in need of talking / thinking this through and the reality is that this is quite a lonely issue when it really shouldn’t be. So, I’m gladly joining Tommy’s #MisCOURAGE campaign.
In August I got the best news ever: a little + in the window of a Clear Blue pee stick. It was something I’d been waiting to see for 10 months and worried that I may never see when it looked like there may be a problem with my ovulation.
However on 11th September a scan saw my pregnancy was only 4 weeks along when it should have been around 10.
Words cannot explain the emotions that follow such an emotionless phrase: “it’s a non-viable pregnancy”
Holding back my tears caused me physical pain. Once at home I had to go through the trauma of calling another hospital, one with an early pregnancy unit, to discuss my options.
My surgical miscarriage was scheduled for the 16th September (sadly the day before my birthday) and the nurses were so kind. However with only a handful of people who knew I felt so alone.
And to be honest, I still do.
Miscarriage, whether natural or medically induced, seems like our version of Voldemort. Everyone’s scared to say its name out loud. Maybe we’re scared of breaking down? Or making people uncomfortable? Or inviting it into our or our friends’ lives? Who knows, but it leaves those who go through it in pain and without many people to talk to.
I’m lucky to have my husband, who was exactly what I needed when I was in hospital. But I’m scared to talk to him now. I know it’s irrational, but I do feel guilty. Not because I did anything wrong but because it was my body that didn’t do what it was supposed to. And, worse still, I’m terrified that it may happen again or that the problems they were looking into before the pregnancy (and never found an answer to) will turn out to be something real, something serious, something that means it’s unlikely that I’ll have a healthy pregnancy.
I don’t wish to sound melodramatic, and maybe that’s another reason I’m finding it easier to talk to anonymous internet people. The problem is, as well, that I ‘stiff upper lipped’ it when I went back to work so now feel that I can’t break down and let out what’s inside when one of the few who knows asks if I’m OK.
In these past months I’ve found that the pain remains and sneaks up on me. I’ve shed a few tears while I’ve been driving to or from work and I’ve found myself withdrawing from life recently. This past fortnight I’ve forced myself to go out and although I enjoy myself once I’m with my friends the desire to curl up under my duvet and sleep is very strong. This has also had an impact on my job; once I returned from my week off I had a lot to catch up on, but I didn’t feel the same enthusiasm and passion as I normally did. I struggled to stay focussed during my frees and have found it hard to motivate myself to work once I arrived home. All this has kept me with my head barely above water these past few months. Luckily, once I started drafting this blog post last week I started to feel a bit better and I felt some of my passion return and with it my motivation; I still have an enormous pile of marking to catch up with, but I’m not hiding from it any more. I don’t want to hide from it any more.
And I don’t want to hide from what happened. I want to confront it head on:
I had a miscarriage and I still feel pangs of guilt & sadness about what my body took away from me and my husband.
I am worried that it will happen again.
But I will not live in fear of it happening again.
I will have a family, I just don’t know when yet and that’s OK.