Just over two weeks ago, our lives changed. My husband and I lost a baby and I have (hesitantly) decided to share our story with all of you and the world.
The last thing I want from this post is attention and sympathy.
I truly appreciate every single comment and message we have received regarding our journey, and I love you guys for those. Your support means more than you know. Please know, however, that I am sharing these types of posts solely to help others who are in our shoes or who might be in our shoes one day. You are so strong. <3
I had my two-week post-opp appointment at the doctor’s yesterday.
It was weird walking back into the environment that has caused me so much joy, yet so much pain. I didn’t think that seeing a pregnant woman or happy couple waiting for their appointments in the office would bother me, and it didn’t.
What I didn’t expect, however, was to overhear a couple getting congratulated by my doctor in the room next to me while going over all of the same prenatal questions I had just a few months ago. It felt like a sucker punch to the stomach that I just wasn’t prepared for.
I tried not to listen, but I couldn’t help it. It’s like driving past a car accident and not looking to see how bad it was. You always look, right?
Something else that I wasn’t prepared for was meeting my friend’s sweet 8-week-old baby boy the day before. As much as I wanted to, I couldn’t take up the offer to hold him and felt like I had to get out of the room as quickly as I could before I had a breakdown in front of my friends.
So I did.
Coping with a miscarriage is hard.
There are good days and there are bad days when you don’t know what else to do but curl up into a ball and cry. And then you cry some more. But, I’ve learned that doing that is okay.
There is no right or wrong way to grieve, and you have to just do what feels natural to make yourself feel better and surround yourself with supportive friends and family.
I feel so, so blessed that we have received what seems like an endless amount of love and support from people we are close to, others we haven’t talked to in years, and even complete strangers. The reason I choose to share stories this personal on my blog is to reach out to those going through the same experience in hopes that they realize they aren’t alone, as miscarriage can feel extremely isolating.
Unfortunately, miscarriage is very common and happens a lot more often than we realize. I’m only now learning this because miscarriage is still considered to be taboo to talk about. But, in my opinion, it shouldn’t be.
The only reason I am on my way back towards the road to “normal” is because of all of the stories I have read from readers and friends. I’ve received hundreds of comments, emails, and bits of personal advice from those who know the exact pain we are experiencing, and every single one of them ended with a reason to hold onto hope. Most went on to have healthy, happy babies and quickly.
There are other things that I have learned over the last two weeks, and I can only hope that sharing them here will help some of you reading this.
After you deliver a baby or go through a miscarriage, you should be tested for Rh in your blood. You are either Rh-positive (85% of the population) or Rh-negative, and if you are Rh-negative, you will most likely need a RhoGAM shot to stabilize incompatibility and help the outcome of future pregnancies. (Read more about why here and here.) As it turns out, I am Rh-negative.
It is possible that you could have had a previous miscarriage already and not even known about it. Any abnormal periods? I can recall being a week late followed by two weeks of spotting several months ago. Soon after, I went in to see my doctor and chose to take blood tests as well as get ultrasounds to track my ovulation and see what was going on. Everything came back normal, but there was part of me that thought there was more to it. I could just tell that there was something off with my body and cycle. If that was the case, and now knowing that I am Rh-negative, that could explain why the pregnancy didn’t carry to term.
Once you hear the heartbeat of your baby, you have less than a 4% chance of miscarrying. That number drops to 2% at nine weeks. The odds are crazy, but they’re there. And they happen more often than people know.
It can be a struggle to work off the pregnancy weight, even if you only have a small amount to lose (I gained five pounds). Between being on bed rest before the miscarriage, healing from the procedure, and not wanting to do too much too fast afterwards, it’s hard not to gain more weight at first (I’m now up to six+ pounds pre-pregnancy). And of course, this makes it even harder to get over. But, eventually, you will start feeling more like you and get back to a fitness routine that feels right for you. Go easy on yourself.
And on a more positive note…
You don’t have to wait a crazy amount of time to start trying again. In fact, most doctors recommend that you wait until after your first normal period (which usually happens 4-6 weeks after a miscarriage or D&C) and then go for it… if (and only if) you’re emotionally ready.
You’re also extremely fertile for a while. (Yeah!) Two of the nurses who were kind enough to share their stories with me at the hospital told me that they had the same procedure and then found out they were pregnant (and went onto deliver healthy babies) one and two months later.
You’re going to get a lot of people who reach out to you if you let them in, and you’re also going to get a lot of people who don’t know what to say and pretend that it didn’t happen. Try not to take it personally if some see you for the first time since sharing the news and say “hey, how’s it going?” with an enthusiastic voice. Not everyone knows how to react or talk about a miscarriage, and everyone handles it differently.
And lastly, it’s okay to share your journey. Not everyone will agree with that, but taking a look back to the day I shared ours proves that talking about it really, really helps. If not for me (which – oh my goodness – it helped), for others. Going on about my life without mentioning what we went through didn’t seem genuine. But, that’s me, and it’s okay if you prefer to stay private.
We are about two and a half weeks out from the day that changed our lives, and it’s a slow healing process. Like I mentioned above, some days are better than others, and there have been triggers that have set me off that I didn’t expect.
But, that’s how it’s going to be for a some time, and that’s okay. It’s part of mourning and moving on.
They took another blood test at my doctor’s appointment today. The reason was that I have a slight “M antibody”. She wanted to see if the level got higher, and if so, we will know to take extra precautions in the future.
Everything having to do with pregnancy, trying to conceive, miscarriage, and moving forward can be exhausting and overwhelming. To be honest, that’s where we’re at. But, we know it will get better and we are just taking life as it comes one day at a time.
In the mean time, I am doing my best to keep things normal on the blog front. There will be days where I don’t feel like logging on to post anything, and that’s just how it’s going to be for a while. I hope you understand and know that things will eventually get back to normal.
Thank you again for all of your love, prayers, and support.
We appreciate you!
You are an incredibly strong woman. Like you said, one day at a time. Many prayers for you.
Thank you so much, prayers are most certainly welcomed <3
Know that your story (and the more any woman talks about it!) is so helpful to those experiencing similar losses. Brave girl xo
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Thank you for the support, Bri. <3
Susie @ SuzLyfe
Thank you so much for sharing these stories, Heather. Truly, they are going to help so many.
Susie @ SuzLyfe recently posted…Running by Effort aka Perceived Exertion Training
Thank you for the support, Susie. Give your mom a hug for me the next time you see her! xo
Today one of my dear friends put on Facebook this message.
“After 3 years of fertility treatments, 1 miscarriage, 2 surgeries, 1 failed in-vitro fertilization, 1 year ago today, God blessed us with the greatest gift of all.”
She had her baby boy in October. That may be hard to read but I want you to know that you are not alone. God has a plan for you and your husband and when the time is right by Him you will be parents. My friend never thought she would be able to be a mother. They started to look into adoption and then that little boy showed up on the ultrasound. God works in ways we do not understand but always with a purpose. I hope you find comfort and peace. My heart goes out to you and your husband. God will always come through for you even if it isn’t in the way or timing that we want. 🙂 Hang in there!
Oh wow, congratulations to your friend and her family! That is amazing news. We are holding onto our faith and know our time will come in His time. Thank you for sharing. <3
I’m so glad you are at least getting some answers and are (hopefully!) feeling a little more in control of things now that you understand how your body works. Fertility is such a mystery, even in the best circumstances, and while I don’t in ANY way mean to say that one person’s experience is like another’s, in my case, it was really soothing and comforting to know what challenges my body presented and to be a bit more proactive in meeting them head on (I have a progesterone/hormone issue and had to take supplements during ovulation and through my first trimesters) .
Every day, you’re in my heart, friend.
KatyBugChild recently posted…Dear Remy (Week 11)
Thank you so much, Katy. And yes, it is comforting to know that there are things I can do to take even more precautions in the future. I can only hope that people in my position stay hopeful and learn to look at it the same way. <3
I have had 2 miscarriages and am also rh negative. My blood wasn’t typed after the first one, so I didn’t get the rhogam shot until after my second miscarriage. 3 months later I was pregnant with our son. You’ve been in my thoughts Heather! Your story will no doubt help others in the same place ❤️
You have been in my thoughts and prayers. I don’t think there is ever a right way to grieve. You sound like you’re doing everything you need to be and that’s all that matters. I definitely think the Rhogam could have had an affect. I am also RH negative and had to get the shots. Your baby already knows how loved it still is, and God has plans for you.
Ashley @ A Lady Goes West
I’m so glad you shared your story and unlocked so much love coming your way! Sending you plenty of good thoughts for the happy things ahead for you and Scott! 🙂
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Beth @ Sublimely Fit
An ocean of love to you. Thank you for sharing your journey. I know your experience will help me tremendously if I ever have to go through the same thing. Thank you thank you thank you for being so brave and open.
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Erin @ Erin's Inside Job
I love it. I am a huge proponent of transparency since I spent so much of my life lying and keeping things secret. I find the most healing and processing by sharing things that I have gone or am going through. Even though it’s not for everyone, it helps me and I know it helps others who may be going through the same thing.
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alexandra @ my urban family
Thank you for continuing to share your story. Sending positive thoughts your way!
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Heather, I wanted to let you know how much of an inspiration you are to me. I am not at the point in my life where I am trying to conceive, but reading your words about your experience is so inspiring. Life can knock you down sometimes, and it can be very difficult, but you show me the importance of working through it. I don’t know you personally, but from your blog, I can tell you are so full of life, and things are going to work out for you and your husband in the best way. Much love!
Thanks so very much for being so open about your heartbreak. I’m sure your words can be of help and comfort to others in your situation.
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Wonderful post Heather and thank you for sharing! I can remember very clearly sitting in the doctors office hearing the ultrasound in the next room with a strong beating heart and losing it. It’s so hard to go through that plus all the rest of the pain and emotions that come with a miscarriage but you are so strong and doing an amazing job of healing. Keep being positive and sharing your feelings! It’s so helpful for others even if they’ve never experienced something like this. It’s something that should be talked about so much more but for some reason, is hush, hush… So keep it up girl! xoxox
Debbie of California
Hi Heather, first I have to say I love the bracelet in today’s blog. I think you are doing so well. I think it is wonderful that you talk about it and that others will have the opportunity to learn, connect and understand what you and others have gone through. I commented previously in one of the recent posts. I went throng a full term stillborn (9 days before due date). My sister in law had her baby just 10 days before me. You can imagine how I had to leave abruptly on Christmas. I thought I could be brave but to see the new nephew (2 mos old) and I couldn’t hold back the tears. Gosh I wish there were ways to connect with others back then so I didn’t feel so alone. Also to know there is light at the end of the tunnel. I can relate to so much you are writing about. I went on to have two beautiful children and I am now a grandmother to a 2 old granddaughter and in April a new grandson will be here. I am lucky and I know that every single day. Keep on talking and I do believe tears help us heal.
Jen @ Chase the Red Grape
You are both so strong and brave – sharing your story will help so many too, a small blessing in what has been such a difficult time.
I keep thinking about you both and pray that you will heal and be blessed very soon! X
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I have never commented before, but I just wanted to tell you that though I can’t imagine how painful this experience has been I think it’s so powerful that you are sharing your story. I wish you all the best!
I absolutely love that you shared this. I’ve had 3 losses and my son was born after my first. The last two were hard, the last one I think in the end was the hardest as we had seen the heart beating at 6 weeks. I wouldn’t wish this on the world but I have been forever grateful for those who have stories to share.
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Heather, this is the most heartbreaking news and i am so sorry that you have had to endure this pain. But you are so brave and courageous for posting your story and sharing with so many others, that may have or will experience this. Your strength will inspire so many others.
I had a miscarriage in November last year at eight weeks, and it was so terribly sad. There are so many different feelings for each woman and family that experience this loss, and some can’t be put into words. I have been forever grateful that I have two healthy little girls and losing a third is never easy but I have the joy of children already. We also weren’t actively trying to get pregnant so the shock of a pregnancy and then of a miscarriage may have gone hand in hand. In saying that, I wasn’t prepared for the physical pain and discomfort and the emotional rollercoaster that comes with it. Christmas Day when we were to announce to family was very difficult, as was this past week when we were to find out the sex. These little milestones are constant reminders of the sweet babe that we have in Heaven.
Sending you my love and prayers x
Ellen @ My Uncommon Everyday
You’re amazing, Heather. Sharing your story is a brave, beautiful thing, and it’s bound to help not only you, but also others going through the same thing. Continuing to send love your way!
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So sad to see your news. Sharing your story will both help you heal and help others who may be struggling. Prayers as you and your husband move through this.
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Emily Swanson (@Emily11949309)
I’m glad that you are going through the process of grieving the loss of such a precious little one. Still praying for comfort in the Lord and peace for you. <33 Thank you for being willing to share each feeling and struggle. Your vulnerability is a treasure.
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My heart goes out to you and Scott. I never personally experienced a miscarriage but my daughter just went through 3 years of fertility and had a baby 10/31/15. I read a lot of different blogs (family, beauty, etc. ) and this one has some interesting information on miscarriage and testing she’s gone through. She is currently pregnant after several miscarriages after discovering some things in her tests and treatment. I will leave the link for you: http://www.thewiegands.com/
My prayers are with you during this difficult time.
P.S. I won something (a $100 Pizza Hut certificate) last year from your blog and you’ve given me some pointers for running in this icy freakin freezing weather!
Thank you for sharing. I miscarried in December and found out the week before Christmas. Your sharing your story helped me feel brave enough to start telling people. My thoughts are with you and your husband as you cope with your loss.
You’re such a strong, inspiring woman, Heather! You will make an amazing mother someday <3
Hi, Heather. I am so so sorry for your loss. I found out this week that I lost my baby as well and just had my D&C procedure today, so your blog has been so comforting for me to read. Thank you for being so open and honest.
If you don’t mind me asking, how long did it take you to recover physically? After having morning sickness while I was pregnant, to realizing that something may be wrong, to having to have the D&C, I am ready to start feeling like myself again (at least physically). I’m not expecting to jump back into my normal exercise routine or activities right away, but I was wondering how long it took you to feel well enough to start running and doing some strength workouts.
Again, I am so sorry for your loss. It really is one of the most devastating things to go through, but we’ll both get through it :). Thank you,
I want to thank you for this wonderful read!! I certainly loved every bit of it. I’ve got you book-marked to check out new stuff you post