I think it’s important to start this post by saying that I am extremely grateful.
I’m thankful for the roof over our heads, food on the table (thank goodness for seamless), and warm clothes to layer with on walks to and from a job that I genuinely work hard at and love. There are many out there who have it worse than we ever will, and I’ve never known what a true struggle to survive is really like. And, on the days that I’m not feeling as appreciative, I have a husband who snaps me back into reality and reminds me that we’re making it.
I’m incredibly blessed with his support, and his optimism and positive outlook on where life continues to take us amazes me day after day. Not only are we living in one of the hardest-to-make-it cities in America, but we’re thriving. God continues to surprise us with the highest of highs and the lowest of lows, and all we can do is follow His plan. Whatever it is.
I’m not writing to complain, expect sympathy, or even prompt messages or comments in return. In true blogger and oversharing fashion, I’m putting our continued journey out there in hopes of helping others realize that they’re not alone. I’ve sure felt that way plenty of times, and it’s not an easy place to be.
On the same note, thank you to our family, friends, and all of you for your constant prayers, hugs (even if they’re virtual), and support. I couldn’t do what I do or include our personal stories here without it. I love you all so much. <3
It’s been a long time, friends. I’ve missed you, but I can also say that the break from posting everything that life has thrown us over the last few months in this space as well as on social media has been needed and very much appreciated.
Those who have been following our story for a while already know that Scott and I have had anything but an easy road in our five and a half years of marriage. Two unexpected job lay-offs, two moves across the country, and two miscarriages later, here we are.
I guess I should back up a bit …
Thanksgiving came early for us this year in the form of two positive pregnancy tests.
Almost a full calendar year after our first positive pregnancy test and almost two full calendar years after we starting actively trying to grow our family, we thought we finally succeeded. I instantly felt a baby growing inside of me and all of the symptoms that come along with it.
seeing Aladdin on Broadway at seven weeks
My heart rate skyrocketed on a simple walk uphill or trip up the stairs to the point of needing breaks, so I listened to my body immediately and took the last of my workouts that first week after finding out. To be completely honest, I haven’t worked out since.
Our first (8-week) appointment finally came on November 29th, about one month after we found out. It was my first time visiting a new OB/GYN in Midtown, and I felt very comfortable with her and our conversations leading up to the ultrasound. Scott was with me, and I had flashbacks of the bad news we had received the last time we were in this situation as soon as she turned down the lights.
Sure enough, our hopeful eyes turned teary when the doctor uttered the dreadful words that nobody ever wants to hear, “I’m so sorry.” She went through every angle and showed us how the pregnancy sac was empty. I was pregnant, but yet no embryo had formed. Most of you reading this know that you should be able to see the baby by eight weeks, pick up a flickering heart beat, and even hear one. When none of those things surfaced, we were told that I had most likely experienced a missed miscarriage.
The doctor went on to explain that she was very concerned, and prepared me for what my body might naturally go through over the next week or so. Just to be sure, and because my cycles have been all over the place – meaning I could have ovulated later than expected – we made an appointment for the following week to monitor any growth and make a decision on what to do next.
Scott and I rode the train Uptown on December 6th in hopes that the slightest percentage that the doctor suggested a fetus might develop actually happened. She got right down to business when we arrived and started the ultrasound as soon as we answered if we wanted to look together or only hear the results from her. Curious in nature, we agreed to look together, and what we saw was totally unexpected. The tiniest little bean and flicker of a heartbeat appeared and shocked us all.
We knew we weren’t anywhere near out of the woods, and that close monitoring needed to happen in the near future, but we left with smiles on our faces and a glimmer of hope.
Our baby was there.
Fast forward to a week and a half later, I found myself on the train again, days before I was supposed to be, after the doctor advised me to come in for a RhoGAM shot since I had experienced light spotting on-and-off for a few days. Before the shot (which costs $150 a pop, by the way), we needed to see what was going on through an ultrasound. This time I was alone, but still wanted to look together with the doctor. Our baby and the pregnancy sac completely disappeared. Again, I was shocked.
Our baby was nothing.
Instead of having a D&C like last time, the doctor suggested scheduling a MVA procedure in-office for the following day (December 15th), and noted that I would be awake the entire time. MVA stands for manual vacuum aspiration, so you can imagine how unpleasant that experience was while conscious. I was numb, but I wasn’t numb to what was going on … it was a lot to digest.
(While taking photos for our holiday cards this year, we shot pictures for an announcement as well. We were only about seven weeks along, but it felt right.)
Pregnancy is so strange to me. It’s also especially unfair.
One couple could conceive the first month of trying, have a perfectly healthy and positive experience, keep up their normal day-to-day routines including workouts and eats, and glow the entire time. Another could spend years and years battling fertility treatments, need to cut off all physical activity, go on bed rest, get poked and prodded at, spend an obscene amount of money on extra appointments, ultrasounds, blood work, and procedures, only to end up with a baby that doesn’t survive the pregnancy.
Why is it such a different experience for so many women and families to go through?
It just doesn’t seem real.
I’ve been at a crossroads with what to do with this blog, and it just doesn’t seem like the time to put on a happy face and produce the killer content I picture Life In Leggings to house. I’ve never been one to fake my feelings, and hope that reading this also proves as a reminder that life isn’t always as perfect as it can be portrayed to be over social media and blogs. It just isn’t.
The good news out of all of this is that, in the long run, I plan to stick around. My job is more demanding than ever as we gear up to open the studio next month (!!!), so I’m checking in when I can and feel like writing. Last night was one of those times, which led to typing up this post to share with you today. One day, I picture myself keeping up with it all and checking in on a regular basis again. I hope you’ll stick around, too.
The great news is that I can continue to learn from this process and am really happy with our choice of doctor who is determined to get to the bottom of what is going on and help us have a successful pregnancy. (Locals, if you’d like a recommendation that justifies our hour commute into the City and back, I’d be happy to let you know her contact information.)
As we get ready to celebrate another Christmas on our own, a part from our families, I’m okay with the idea of staying in pajamas and watching Christmas movies while we Skype with family members throughout the day.
If there’s anything I’ve learned from going through this twice now, it’s that there is no right or wrong way to grieve. If any of you reading this can relate to our struggles (although, I really hope you can’t), keep your heads up and your faith strong. Allow yourself to have good days and bad days, because it’s part of the healing process. Right now, I’m recovering both physically and mentally the best that I can. I’m blessed with an amazing support system, and continue to pray that 2017 will be our year.
Thank you for reading, and again, for your devoted support. <3
Brie @ Lean, Clean, & Brie
Oh Heather, I am so sorry for your loss. I cannot imagine the pain you and Scott must be going through but I know if you keep your faith strong, things will go up from here. Sending you lots of love from Michigan. Enjoy a cozy Christmas <3
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I am so sorry for your loss. Sending lots of love and positive thoughts your way. I hope you know how much reading this can help other people in the same situation, I know it must be incredibly difficult to share something so personal. ❤❤
Heather I am so sorry for your loss <3 I know you know that God's plan will work itself out, but it breaks my heart to hear your struggles. Thank you for being so open, honest, and vulnerable. My thoughts are with you today!
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I’m so sorry Heather. I’ve been following your blog for a while and I was hoping that this post was going to go in a different direction. My husband and I too had infertility issues for a few years and I am now feeding our three month old. I’m sure you hear a lot of that but just keep remembering that it is possible. When I think of the babies that I lost I just try to remember that if those pregnancies had worked out I wouldn’t have the baby that I have now. I do believe that will be the case for you as well! Keeping you in my thoughts this holiday season.
Heather, my heart aches for you. My husband and I struggled with infertility for almost 4 years and it almost destroyed me. But as hard as it is, please don’t lose hope. You can have the family you so desperately want. It may not be in the perfect way you planned it but it can happen. You are so brave to share your story and you have no idea how much you help woman realize they are not alone. Sadly, this is so common and so heartbreaking. Have they suggested you see a Reproductive Endocrinologist (sp?)? It might not be a bad idea if you can afford it. We are all with you in spirit, friend.
Hi Heather, my heart goes out to you. You’re so brave and I respect you so incredibly much for opening up about the topic of miscarriage. I know you haven’t had an easy road. Sending healing thoughts your way…
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I know it must have been so hard but thank you for sharing your experiences and putting it all out there. It is wonderful for many to know they are not alone.
That being said, I am so sorry for your loss and what you and Scott are going through. I have followed you for years and never commented but wanted to let you know you are in my thoughts and this very unique online community cares and supports you. Hope the holiday season can bring you some joy – warm hugs.
I’m so sorry, Heather. My thoughts & prayers are with you over these holidays & wish you the very best moving forward.
Suzanne @ My Life is a Mix
I’ve never experienced what you are going through but my heart truly aches for you. As much pain as you must be feeling, I find it incredibly brave of you to share your story as I know there are many who can relate and find some comfort in knowing they aren’t alone in their hurt.
Praying for you and your miracle that is to come!
I was hoping this wasn’t what you were struggling with recently…:( know that many people who don’t even ‘know’ you are praying for you – for comfort, hope and a little one in the future. <3 I will be here to check in on LIL for as long as you keep it going, however sporadic it may be. Thank you for sharing your heart with us; I am so very sorry you and Scott have had to go thru this. I know God is weeping with you and has amazing plans for you all the same.
Much love to you and Scott this Christmas and into the new year.
Heather I am so sorry for your loss. This time around seemed like more a of a roller coaster of emotions than the last one! I cannot even fathom the grief you and Scott are facing, and i hope spending time together over the holidays will help you heal. I hope your new dr is able to provide lots of answers and help you and Scott make the family you deserve. Wishing a happy 2017 for you!
My heart goes out to you Heather. I went through two miscarriages before having a healthy boy! You are right, it’s all in God’s plan, although it’s hard to understand some times. Glad you are moving forward and can’t wait to read more of your journey!
So sorry for your losses Heather. I myself have been struggling with infertility for 1 1/2 years and starting our first round of IVF in January. My prayers are with you & Scott. <3
Emily @ Always Emily H.
All my love and thoughts to you and Scott. My husband and I are going through some similar struggles and reading this post did, in fact, remind me that I am not alone. Thank you for being so strong and brave. <3
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I am so sorry for what you and Scott are going through. May you both continue to be positive and realize that everthing happens for a reason. Wishing you and your family a wonderful holiday season and positive blessings for the new year <3
Heather, I am so so sorry. My heart aches for you and Scott and I am in awe of your grace during what must be a really difficult time. If you are curious I follow a podcast called “monocycle” by someone in New York going thru a similar struggle.
Hi Heather- I’m a longtime reader and I am heartbroken reading this- I’ve never commented on a blog before. My heart aches for you. I am so sorry and I will keep you in my prayers. XOXO
Thank you so very much for sharing! It breaks my heart to hear what you and Scott have been going through<3 My husband and I have been trying for 2 years and haven't had any good news (although I've been delaying the inevitable IVF)- so when you ask why isn't it fair that one woman has it 'easy' while another goes through everything, know that you're not alone, I've asked that question so many times! Praying for you<3
My heart just broke for you guys reading this. Really admire how well you are handling it — truly an inspiration. You will be in my prayers.
I am so sorry for your loss. This probably doesn’t help (because not much does in this situation) but I too have had a miscarriage and struggle with fertility. I did IVF after 3 years of infertility and was blessed with my now 3 year old son. A year later I was surprised with another blessing, my now 10 month old son. There is so much that can be done scientifically these days. Please don’t give up hope. Praying for you!
I am so, so sorry to read this….it is truly so difficult to understand why some struggle and others don’t. But as you’ve said, being grateful for what you do have is incredibly important. I’ve said it before, but thank you again for being so brave and sharing your story because it does help people feel they are not alone, and hopefully in turn helps you feel the same. Wishing you both all the best this Christmas and into the New Year.
I know you werent posting for sympathy or anything other than just sharing your journey but I couldnt read this and not comment. You are so right, pregnancy is not fair and it makes no sense why some struggle and others don’t. Im so glad you have a healthy supportive partner, a job to keep you busy and you live in one of the best cities in the world to play in when you have time. My thoughts and heart is with you. Thank you for sharing.
Oh Heather, I am so sorry for your loss. I saw the title of your post this morning and just knew it wasn’t going to be good and it brought tears to my eyes. I will keep you and Scott in my thoughts <3
My prayers are with you and your husband! My heart aches for you both. I’m certain the Lord will order your steps and given you peace during these trying times.
Praying for you and your husband that 2017 will be “your year”!
Heather & Scott – your strength and faith are inspiring. Thinking of you during the holidays and praying for peace. Your beautiful spirit and the love you and Scott have for each other transcends your blog.
My heart is breaking for both of you. I am sending love and all of my very best wishes. <3
I truly feel for you. I suffered two miscarriages myself. The first at what we thought was 10 weeks, but an ultrasound revealed the baby had stopped growing around 7 weeks. The second happened about 3 days after my positive test. Before a third miscarriage could happen, I made an apt with my doctor and came up with a game plan for the next time. As soon as I found out I was pregnant again, we immediately went to the Dr that day. They sent me to a lab and drew 14 test tubes of blood and tested me for everything they could think of. Turns out, I have a blood clotting disorder only when pregnant which would cut of oxygen to the growing baby. As soon as the found that out (around 6 weeks), I started daily blood thinner shots. Luckily, that was the magic answer for us and we now have a 2.5 year old. Never give up hope!!
So sorry for your loss.
Don’t ever apologize for sharing your feelings, or for what you are feeling. There will always be someone who has it worse, no matter what your situation. And there will always be someone to tell you that. Life throws some pretty shitty curveballs sometimes, share your emotion. I know for me that was part of my healing process.
This video that a friend shared with me when I went through my miscarriage was helpful also (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Evwgu369Jw)
I can’t offer any advice, as everyone’s process is different. Please know I am praying for you and I wish peace for you and Scott this holiday season.
My heart sunk as soon as I saw the URL “miscarriage2”. I am so very sorry for your loss and will be thinking of you two.
Heather, I am so sorry for your loss. It is truly inspirational to see you try to look at the positive in such a hard time. Thank you for sharing because I know it is helping others who may be struggling as well. I am praying for you and Scott and I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and New Years together.
Heather, my heart breaks to hear this sad news. I have been rooting for you and Scott since I stumbled across your blog several years ago. <3 You are both in my thoughts and prayers. Sending you much love from the Mitten.
I know I don’t know you, but I’ve been praying for you and Scott throughout this last year & will continue to do so. You are so strong Heather and you inspire so many. Thank you for your openness & honesty. Blessings.
Susie @ Suzlyfe
When I saw Scott’s ig post, my heart completely broke for you both. I am just so sorry, Heather (and Scott).
All I hope is that 2017 brings luck for us both.
So much love to you.
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Thank you for sharing, Heather. My husband and I are going through infertility as well and it can be so isolating and lonely. It helps a bit when someone else understands how difficult, confusing and unfair the process of conceiving can be. I admire your ability to be thankful and recognize your blessings even in the midst of heartbreak. I know that’s not easy. I’m so very sorry for your loss. Since I read your very first post about your journey with trying to grow your family, I have been praying for you. I love your blog and know that I will continue to read whether you post a lot or a little or not at all and will continue praying.
I was truly hoping this wasn’t your news.. I will continue to keep you and Scott in my prayers. It is simply amazing to me how strong you both continue to be about this process. Your perseverance is absolutely inspiring, and I am constantly rooting for you both! Hang in there, and know that no matter how often you post, we still love you & are here for you! xoxo.
I’m so sorry for everything you and Scott are going through. It’s incredibly brave to be so honest, and I know you have been through a lot. Sometimes I feel like you guys are our twin couple ..dancer meets mascot, etc 🙂 and we know that with Eric having had cancer that our path to becoming parents won’t be easy either. I just wanted to thank you for sharing, and I hope you have a wonderful Christmas – We would love to have you guys come visit soon!
Erin @ Erin's Inside Job
Oh Heather this is such a tough thing to experience and to share with everyone. Thank you so much and I hope you two can life each other up during the holiday season.
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I couldn’t read this and not comment to let you know you are not alone in this infertility journey – nor are you alone in the pain that comes from miscarriage. My heart broke for you and also for my own losses as I read this. I too went through 2 painful losses. My husbanded adopted our son 3 months ago and he is in every way ours and I look at him and my heart floods with love. However I think about the 2 babies I lost and it still hurts. Days get brighter but you’ll never forget the pain. I wish you and your husband a peaceful holiday and I know that if you do not give up, you will hold your baby in your arms one day. You are strong, and you will get there!
My heart goes out to you, Heather. You are no doubt helping others feel they are not alone. I’m not sure this helps at all but my sister had two miscarriages (around the same time) before she had her first baby and now she has three boys. It was so hard for her at the time but her third pregnancy had no complications and neither did the ones after that. Just a little hope to share. I hope you guys figure out what’s wrong and get to the bottom of this. Lots of love & prayers.
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My husband and I had almost this exact scenario happen to use in October. We had three ultrasounds – empty sac, then baby with a heartbeat, and then an empty sac again. It was definitely a roller coaster of heartache and hope. Thinking of you and wishing you both the best!
Heather I am so sorry for your loss <3 I wish there was something I could say or do to make it better but I also know that's not what you're looking for. You are such a strong woman and a great inspiration to share your story, thoughts, and emotions and know that life isn't always perfect. God truly has a plan for you. While your circumstances may dictate other feelings just know that He holds all of you in the palm of his hand and you will see your babies one day. Keep on striving for the top and continue to be amazing! <3 Beautifully Candid
Hi Heather, I just wanted to let you and Scott know how sorry I am for the loss of you baby. I too had gone through a full term stillborn – 9 days before her due date. And yes it was our first. It is so hard to go through these losses. I know I didnt see it then but it definitely made me a stronger and better person. Luckily, I got pregnant 6 months later and had a beautiful baby girl and the 2 1/2 years later a gorgeous baby boy. All babies are truly miracles and I pray that you and Scott get that miracle too one day. It is so healthy to talk about it too. If you ever need to talk I would be available. Enjoy a cozy Holiday!
My heart brakes for you and Scott. I’ve followed your journey from the beginning as my husband and I were also trying to conceive for about a year. We were blessed with a beautiful daughter in September, and she is worth every moment of frustration, anger, and heartache! Praying that you get to fully experience this love very, very soon!
Jen in TX
Heather, I am so sorry. I’m praying for you and Scott. As someone who has also experienced multiple miscarriages, I know everyone’s experience is different and nothing I say can lessen the pain. I hope that time helps and brings your many blessings.
I am so very sorry for your losses. Sadly I have experienced four losses of my own, the first one being an ectopic pregnancy. Many prayers to you and Scott.
my heart is broken for you. i’m so sorry.
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Dear Heather, words are missing…so sorry for you and Scott…
heather @Lunging Through Life
I am so so sorry for your loss <3 I can't imagine how you two are feeling but I am hopeful this doctor can get to the root of the problem. She seems like a really great one.
It is not fair one bit. I’m so sorry you’re going through this. I’ll pray for you guys and for the wisdom of your doctor.
Sending you so much love. You are one of my favourite bloggers and I am praying you find the answers you need in this journey very soon <3
I’m so sorry my heart is breaking for you when I saw the picture on the post I thought the opposite was going to be shared. Sharing your story is helping so many people and just to let you know many people I know suffered multiple miscarriages but were eventually able to get pregnant so don’t lose hope.
Sam @ Hygge Wellness
I am so, so sorry for your loss. My heart breaks for you and Scott. I don’t know if this is helpful at all, and I apologize if it isn’t, but my friend just gave birth to a healthy baby girl after years of trying, experiencing several miscarriages, and being told there was absolutely no way she could get pregnant on her own. They were interviewing surrogates, and boom. Pregnant. I guess I just want to offer you hope and for you to know that, although it makes absolutely no sense why this process is so different for you than others, it is possible and it will happen. I know it. Xo
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First of all, my sincerest sympathies to you and Scott during this difficult time. I have read your blog for years, and have always loved your positivity and perspective (and killer workouts)! I recently suffered a miscarriage last month and it was the hardest thing my husband and I have ever gone through. I just wanted to let you know that many, many times throughout my experience I thought of you and your strength. I honestly thought to myself at one point “Heather got to the other side of this. You can too.” I completely realize that sounds a little crazy, but I wanted to let you know that you sharing your experience helped me so much. I’m sure it is very difficult to decide if you want to put information like this out to the world, but I wanted to let you know that it helped me a great deal with my grieving process. I am thinking of you!
Emily Swanson (@Emily11949309)
My heart still hurts for you; I know this is not easy, but seeing you grow in faith and in trust is absolutely incredible. Thank you for being so truthful and vulnerable to share the struggles. I know God will work a miracle.
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I am so, so sorry to hear this Heather. No one should have to go through what you’ve gone through and I will be praying for you. I pray a healthy pregnancy and baby is in your very near future<3
Bless your sweet little heart, Heather. I’m so sorry and I know that doesn’t help, but I know the longing to have a baby. I didn’t have to go through the heartache you are enduring to have my children but I can certainly empathize. I was so worried I wouldn’t be able to conceive for one reason or another. When you want a baby, you want a baby and once you are pregnant you worry until it’s in your arms and then you continue to worry. Continue to stay positive and hold onto your faith, it’s a powerful thing. Prayers for you and Scott and for the doctor to help y’all get it all figured out. XOXO Merry Christmas❤️
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Heather, I’m so sorry for your loss. Wishing you and Scott all the love and comfort in the world, and a happier outcome in 2017. Hugs to you. <3
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I don’t even have the words and I can only imagine your feelings. I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. Wishing you all the best and success in 2017!!
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I don’t know you, but my heart is breaking for you. I felt compelled to share a story…my parents tried to conceive for nearly a decade and experienced several miscarriages due to a medical condition. At one point, a doctor pulled my dad aside and told him that his wife would never conceive a child. They had (and still have) a strong faith in God and refused to give up hope. One day they were walking by a store that sold musical instruments, and my mom went inside and bought a piano even though neither of them played. She told my dad they would have a daughter who would play the piano. Less than a year later she had me at the age of 44, and I do play the piano. I don’t know what your future holds, but faith is a powerful thing. Wishing you comfort during this terrible time.
Patricia @ Sweet and Strong
Heather I am so sorry to read about your this. I too always wonder why pregnancy can be so unfair. Keep staying positive and hoping 2017 will be your year!
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I’m very sorry, Heather. xx
You are absolutely right. There is no right or wrong way to grieve. My husband and I dealt with infertility, with miscarriage, with IUIs and IVF and now have a special needs son and twins. None of it was easy or “normal”. My thought and prayers are with you.
So sorry you’re going though this. I’m going to school for holistic nutrition and have also worked with a naturopath who opened my eyes to MTHFR gene mutations and the vast array of side effects, illnesses and conditions that these mutations can cause, including recurrent miscarriages. Now i have no idea what you have already researched and or tried but i wanted to add my two cents in because i don’t believe that many people are aware of this. Here’s a link http://mthfr.net/recurrent-miscarriage-mthfr/2016/11/01/ People with this gene mutation can’t utilize folic acid (the synthetic version that is recommended when pregnant). Therefore, the embryo is not able to use the folic acid, preventing it from growing.
I don’t know if this will help you or not but i feel like it’s worth looking into if you haven’t already. Basically you will need the methylated version of folic acid (folate) and to avoid processed foods with added synthetic folic acid.
Good luck!! I feel like this year will be you and Scott’s year. Don’t give up!