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Loss

April 2, 2014

So according to my stats here on this blog, I have like negative readers, but that’s ok, because this blog post is more for me than anyone else.  This story may not be super nice to read and it certainly isn’t going to be easy for me to type out, but this blog post has been trying to get out for some time and I’m finally ready to let it go.

 

Let’s start way, way back (like a whole 2 years ago, haha) I had a boring job that paid the bills with a large insurance company.  It’s not something that I ever wanted to do. but it paid the bills and for the most part, I liked the people I was working with.  Then after months of speculation and worry, I was laid off!  My job was outsourced to someone in India, and at first, I was super upset  I felt like the floor had fallen out from under me.  I felt like my family had finally started to make some progress on our dream of owning a house and then we were set back 3 steps.  Luckily though, we already lived with my in laws and they were super helpful.  Because my job was outsourced, I qualified for a government grant to help me go back to school to obtain training in another field.  I had always enjoy the random medical training I received when I was a dive master so I figured I had nothing to loose and applied at the local community college for the registered medical assistant program.

 

I got accepted!  Woohoo, I was so elated. I was positive this was going to be the change that I needed.  I went through the program with little problem, I was one of the top students in class and scored an amazing externship with a local hospital in their OB/GYN office, my dream placement!

 

The first day I went to my externship was such an eye opener for me.  Three patients had miscarriages that day, I went home and cried.  I was so upset for those poor women.  The week went about the same, a few patients a day either were in the process of having a miscarriage or were being seen as a follow up to a previous miscarriage.  I was sad for the patients and I remember emailing my medical assistant instructor and just letting her know what was going on.  She was so supportive and just gave me some encouraging words and let me know that it was more common than I thought.

 

I didn’t think I was being naive, I mean I remember hearing hushed whispers of family members or friends having miscarriages, and I belong to an online community of women and there were a number of ladies who had miscarriages on the site, but it wasn’t something people really talked about.

 

Fast forward a few months and my husband and I were ecstatic to tell our families that we were expecting a second child, due in August.  We told them by giving our 3 year old daughter a shirt that read “Big Sister” on Christmas morning.  We got the whole thing on video, it was amazing.

 

This pregnancy was much different already than my first.  I felt light headed almost all the time, I had super smelling powers and just felt strangely off for the first few weeks.  And then slowly, I started feeling better.  Every day brought less and less pregnancy symptoms.  In my brain I knew what was going on and started to research symptoms of miscarriages.  Then the spotting happened.  I called my OB and they told me they were sorry but there was nothing they could do for me, they offered to send me for blood work to see where my numbers were and I gladly accepted.  I knew what was going on by the time the spotting turned into full bleeding and the cramps kicked in.  I was having a miscarriage, the three days of blood work confirmed it.  I was seven and a half weeks pregnant.

 

I know, to some that seems like no time at all, but if you’ve ever expected a child, you know how much your heart can grow to love that  child in such a short amount of time.  My husband came with me to the doctor’s office where they confirmed my Beta numbers were so low, too low to indicate a normal developing pregnancy.  The medical training I received just a year before kicked in and I asked all the appropriate questions and completely understood what the doctor was saying, partially because I had been on the other side of the  conversation so many times, but then my heart broke into a million pieces.

 

I cried.  A lot!  I barely made it out of bed for those first couple of days.  I watched a lot of crappy tv and read stupid books.  I completely withdrew from my husband and daughter.  I just wanted to be left alone and not at the same time.  I wanted the world to know what was happening.  I wanted everyone to know why I was acting so different, but really, how do you work “I just had miscarriage” into a conversation?

 

Then my husband got the flu and I was forced to get out of bed in order to take care of my daughter.  The friends and family that knew what was going on started to slow with their “just checking in” texts and I felt like I was going crazy.  I was still crazy upset and felt like everyone else was just going on with their lives and I was stuck grieving the loss of a child.

 

That’s when I started doing some research.  I knew of a few people personally who had a miscarriage, and there were all those patients from months earlier, but really how common could it be?  My OB said that as many as 25% of all pregnancies end in loss, and that percentage goes up with maternal age.  But how is that number so high if we hardly ever talk or hear about this?  I think it’s partly because no one really wants to talk about it.  My husband and I have a friend who is so emotionally supportive and he had no words, he’s never even mentioned it to me.  My own father had to send me a text to tell me how he felt, but that was at least he was talking about it.  I was really upset by how other people were responding, but really, everyone goes through grief or sorrow in their own way, and sometimes, there just aren’t the right words.

 

I felt like I was going to drown in sorrow and be sad forever, until one day, I just wasn’t sad anymore.  It does get better, but if you don’t feel like it’s getting any better, you need to see your doctor.

 

So, that’s my story, I wanted to put this out there in case anyone is doing late night internet searching and finds this.  I feel like the only way to break the taboo is to talk about pregnancy loss.  If you want people to know, then tell them.  Be kind to yourself, this is a club that no one wants to be a part of.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Cathy permalink
    April 2, 2014 7:56 pm
  2. April 2, 2014 8:28 pm

    Oh man…. Thank you for sharing. It IS weird how everyone seems to wait until the 2nd trimester before going public with a pregnancy and then if something happens it’s like no one can know. What a strange taboo.

    I hope this doesn’t sound totally offensive, but when I first found out I was pregnant with Taschen my initial reaction was to schedule an abortion. Which I did. After talking it all out with Matthew we realized we could do it. That second we both were so attached to him, even at only 5 weeks pregnant. What’s kind funny, and I know the conservatives will love this, when I called Planned Parenthood to cancel my abortion they seemed genuinely disappointed!

    Im glad to hear you are healing and I am so sorry you had to go through that. Like having a baby, even though it’s very common it’s still incredibly emotional and very very personal. Take care! xoxoxo

    • bethy3 permalink*
      April 2, 2014 8:53 pm

      Thank you Leah, I really appreciate it.

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