Pregnancy – a word that had eluded me for years, filled my thoughts, and shaped my dreams throughout my mid-30s. After a long and challenging road to conception, the positive pregnancy test in the spring of 2022 felt like a long-awaited miracle. However, just 11 days later, on a quiet Saturday, my world was shattered as I experienced a miscarriage.
A Glimpse of Hope
March 29th, 2023, was a date that will forever be etched in my memory. It was the day I saw that digital word “pregnant” on a pregnancy test that I had longed to see for years. The mix of excitement, disbelief, and overwhelming joy was indescribable. I couldn’t believe my dream of becoming a mother was finally coming true.
The Shocking Turn of Events
Then came April 8th, just 10 days later. I was house and pet-sitting across town from my home. It was a Friday like any other until sudden sharp back pain and cramping began. Not knowing what to do, I laid down to rest. Then, at 1:00 am, bleeding started. Panic, fear, and confusion consumed me as I grappled with the possibility of losing what I had just gained. I was miles away from home, alone and I found myself grappling with the crushing weight of uncertainty.
A Glimmer of Guidance
It was now the middle of the night, and in my state of distress, I actively reached out to both my husband and a good friend who happened to be a doctor for support. My next step was to call my doctor’s 24-hour line. While I anxiously awaited a callback, I considered going to the ER or Urgent Care to find out what was happening, but my support system encouraged me to wait for a call from the on-call OB.
Then, at 5:00 a.m., I received the call, and the OB offered much-needed guidance. After a heartfelt conversation, we decided to let the miscarriage happen naturally and scheduled an appointment with my doctor on Monday for confirmation. In those agonizing hours that followed, the world seemed to stand still as I confronted the inevitable.
The Long Weekend
The weekend dragged on endlessly. I experienced physical and emotional isolation as I observed my body undergoing the miscarriage process. Each cramp and every drop of blood served as a painful, constant reminder of my loss. The dog I cared for, detecting my distress, remained faithfully by my side, delivering a kind of solace that words couldn’t convey.
Visiting the Doctor
Monday finally arrived, and I was able to meet with my doctor. She explained that I had most likely experienced a chemical pregnancy. A chemical pregnancy is a loss that usually happens up until 5 weeks of pregnancy and is believed to be caused by chromosomal problems with the developing baby.
That afternoon I took a blood test to check that the level of the pregnancy hormone (hCG) in my blood had fallen. The confirmation was both devastating and strangely relieving. My pregnancy, so eagerly anticipated, had ended abruptly, and I was left with a profound sense of grief. It was a difficult reality to accept, but it was also the beginning of my journey toward healing.
The Journey Continues
My experience with miscarriage is an intimate chapter of my life. It’s a story of hope and heartache, of dreams achieved and dreams shattered. It’s a journey that so many women and couples face, often in silence. My hope in sharing my story is to let others know that they are not alone, that their pain is valid, and that there is a path toward healing.
In the wake of my miscarriage, I discovered the strength within me and the unwavering support of my husband, friends, and family. I am learning to cope with the grief, and I hope to inspire others to speak about their experiences openly, find comfort in each other, and embrace the healing process, one day at a time. I hope one day you will have your rainbow baby as I do, born May 6, 2023.
How to Support Parents Experiencing a Pregnancy Loss
More than likely you know someone who has experienced this heartbreaking loss. Your support can make a world of difference in the healing process. I was lucky enough to have close friends who had gone through it before me and were an ear to listen to and a shoulder to cry on. This loss is more common than you think with women and couples experiencing one or multiple losses throughout their journey for a child.
All forms of pregnancy loss, such as miscarriage, stillbirth, ectopic pregnancy, molar pregnancy, and others, devastate and deeply touch individuals. Reach out, seek support, and extend your own to those in need.
My biggest piece of advice is to support your partner. Fathers and dads grieve the loss just as much as the mothers and moms. Though in the moment they may be stoic and trying to support the mom, they too need the support. I talk about this more in an upcoming blog written with my husband. Join my email list so you don’t miss out on this incredible blog coming soon.
Read more about how to support parents experiencing pregnancy loss.