I Am the 1 In 4: What My Miscarriage Taught Me
I am the 1 in 4.
If your not familiar with this statistic, it's the number of women who conceive that will miscarry a child. That's 25 percent. A 25 percent chance that a woman will experience one of the greatest losses she will ever face.
Some may know this, some may not, but I have been pregnant two times! And I have 1 child. I am that 1 in 4. Since 3 out of 4 of you most likely have never gone through this tragedy, let me give you an overview: I'v experienced that panic, and the pain, and I'v experienced the silence. Whether this baby was part of your plan or not, it is a grief that never leaves you.
I was always a planner and my lost baby was not part of that plan in anyway. I was overjoyed with this unplanned pregnancy and the thought of housing a little miracle. Knowing that my body created a life was the most amazing epiphany I ever experienced. But that was taken from me in the blink of an eye.
A miscarriage doesn't care. A miscarriage doesn't care to rob you of your happiness. It doesn't care if your 18 years old or 40. It doesn't care about race or ethnicity. And it most definitely doesn't care about timing. But through that grief, and through the pain, you learn many things about life, about yourself, and about the rest of the world. You learn that sometimes emotions are real and terrifying, and that sometimes you can't sugar coat them.
Once you know your body is no longer growing a baby, you cant help but think it's your own fault. That your body did this and something must be wrong. As women, we pride ourselves in being able to create and carry little beings that will run around, outside of our bodies one day. But that pride quickly depletes when you think that it has betrayed you. The doctors tell you "its not your fault, this happened because that egg and sperm were never meant for each other"- as if that's supposed to be reassuring. It's not their fault for being so textbook. That's their job. But at the time, there is nothing anyone can say that can take the guilty feeling away.
No matter how many people I told to comfort me, the loneliness is indescribable. And for some reason, you seem to become angry at the loneliness. Moments of crying turn into rage and soon your emotions are bouncing all over the place. You were once accompanied by a another heart beat, a tiny flutter, and now its just you. Just you at home, just you at the store, just you at work, and just you in the car. The group gatherings with friends and family seem to numb you for a short while, but soon enough, your back in your bed, in your own head, telling yourself that your alone.
My optimism left me for a short while. It has since come back to me but it took a little time. The future just doesn't seem so bright anymore, thinking that you couldn't help this innocent baby into the world and that it wasn't their fault. Your plans to travel, get married, have kids, or whatever other plans you had seem to be dim at the time. How will I ever trust my body again? And that question ran through my head over and over.
Learning to trust that my "plan" may have not been the right time for that child in my life was a hard lesson to drill in my head. Little babies enter this world as miracles, and we always trust that its going to happen in its right time. Well, it's the same trust that is important for when they leave. Two things that are so different but not in our control.
Just as you have forgiven people for hurting you, its the same when forgiving yourself. For a good while I beat myself up mentally, trying to rationalize something that was out of my control. Telling myself that that it was okay to love myself again was huge in moving forward and moving on.
These are just a few of the many roller coaster of feelings that you experience after a miscarriage. And it is 100 percent okay to feel all of these ways. After replaying all of those emotions, I figured out all the things I learned from my miscarriage:
It is out of my control, its not my fault.
Miscarriages happen more often than you think.
That was your baby, no matter what anyone else tries to discredit it as.
Don't expect people to understand who have never experienced a miscarriage.
Don't ask another women if they have had a miscarriage. Its a very hush hush subject and usually we don't want to take about it.
Partners can only understand so much.
The female, human body can go through high levels of pain and extreme stress.
It doesn't define me.
The pain never goes away, even after having a "perfect" pregnancy.
Within 11 days, I had found out I was pregnant, and then I found out that I wasn't. It is pain and heartbreak at its most intense. A level of complete anger and helplessness that you never knew had existed.
But after all of that hurt and fulfillment I learned that the pain I felt could not compare to the joy that was coming. I am now a mother of a healthy little boy. I am filled with joy everyday when I see his happiness. I am sometimes reminded of the pain I'v felt. I still experience the grief. I am the 1 in 4.