My Miscarriage - A Secret Grief
I am writing this blog post in the hope that it may help a mum who has gone through or going through a miscarriage. On the 18th of November 2013 I miscarried our second baby. It was still early on 7/8 weeks but it was enough time that we had gotten used to the idea, we had started imagining life and planning for the arrival of our second baby.
Although I knew the risk, I was devastated. When it happened I was unfortunately on my own, it was about 10pm at night and my husband was working a late shift so was unable to come home until about 4am. I just cried and cried, and could not sleep. I remember getting up, having a shower and just sitting on the bottom of the shower, and crying my eyes out…the pain in my chest feeling like it would explode and all I could do was sit on the bottom of the shower – stricken with grief, pain, self-loathing and felt unable to move forward. The next few days were just a blur. I battled with overwhelming emotions of guilt and self-hatred. I completely blamed myself and did not know how to re-plan our lives again. On one really bad morning I could not even get out of bed, to eat, to shower or be with my son (for which I felt even more guilty for).
The miscarriage process itself was also quite painful. I had a lot of abdominal swelling and bloating, the pain stayed for a least five days. It took about 10 days to stop miscarrying and I felt nauseous for a month afterwards. I had regular GP check ups and this is all apparently quite normal. During pregnancy your body is flooded with hormones and with a miscarriage it can take a while for the hormones to leave your system. For me it was just tortuous – like I was pregnant but not – a constant cruel reminder of my loss. I did not know who to turn to at the time. I have a very good friend who had previously shared with me she went through the same thing so in desperation I text her – and she was a constant source of love and support through this time and I will always be grateful for this. I do not know what I would have done otherwise. My husband was incredibly kind to me during this time and really carried the load at home but it’s hard to explain your thought processes. Every time a friend or some one I knew fell pregnant it hurt, I hated even seeing pregnant women around – I remember going to the zoo once with my husband and son and saw three pregnant women in the first 10 minutes - I just wanted to go home.
It made me wonder how many other women have gone through this alone – how it does not have to be this way. Grief affects you in different ways at different levels. It has taken me until now to speak publically of what happened. I just wanted to forget about it and focus on my son and work. I was incredibly grateful that I did have my son and his never ending ability to make me smile. I was also grateful to have work to keep me busy and focused. Though of course you never forget about it. It does take time. Sometimes just one day at a time, even one hour at a time, eventually these became days and weeks.
The courage I have to talk about this now has largely been through the assistance of Rebecca Armstrong from Shine Hypnosis – this lady is amazing (more about my experience with hypnotherapy in a future blog). She has helped me see that the fear of miscarriage and the lack of closure around this prohibited us in moving on. I have shared a video here with you about my experience and a ceremony we did to celebrate our Little Blip – which was a suggestion from Rebecca.
Watch Video Here - Little Blip's Ceremony
It was a very emotional experience but gave us the closure and acceptance we needed. I will always think of our Little Blip and there are times it still hurts but I feel now their soul has moved on.
I am now 19 weeks pregnant with our second child and the first 12 weeks were the LONGEST of my life. Even now the fear of miscarriage is still there and I just focus on every day being a bonus and I am grateful every day for being able to experience the gift of new life.
If you have gone through a miscarriage or are going through it my heartfelt thoughts go out to you. I am not claiming to give medical advice. I can’t tell you how to be or what to feel just know that it is a process, there is no way you should or should not feel and most importantly you are not alone.
xx Dr Julie