It all starts with two pink lines.
Or, actually, I’d say it’s the “feeling” you have. Call it mother’s intuition for some, like me: I just know. I can feel things start to change almost immediately. And while I know better then to jinx myself by saying it out loud—or at least out loud to too many people—I still feel the excitement.
If you’re anything like me on your TTC (trying to conceive) journey, you start testing at the earliest possible time. Because obviously you’ve been tracking and waiting and spending WAY too much money on different types of home pregnancy tests.
It consumes you. Day in and day out.
But now, it’s the day. You squint your eyes just enough and you’re almost POSITIVE you see a second line. Or do you? So you look again, and again, and shamefully again. Trying to see if you’re losing your mind, or if your gut is right.
Turns out, after a few days of testing like a crazy person, you’re NOT all that crazy. Your two pink lines show up nice and dark. The kind that OTHER people can actually see too. For me, this is when I breathe a little.
My first miscarriage, a few months ago, started almost as fast as the second line appeared on my test.
I had just enough time to tell those I was closest to and get that exciting and also kind of terrifying picture in my head of how my new life as a mother of two was going to look.
It’s a shock I can’t really explain to be honest.
To go from walking down the baby aisle at Target, picturing the beautiful life that is being created right inside your body…to sitting on the bathroom floor, tears flooding your eyes, thinking to yourself this can’t be happening.
But it is. And it does. So often.
So many women have gone through this. Early on, much later on. Stillborn. I can’t for the life of me wrap my head around the pain some women have had to endure, all from just wanting to bring life into this world. It’s tragic. Absolutely heartbreaking.
For me, and for most women, it didn’t stop me from trying again. Statistics say 1 in 4 women will suffer a miscarriage of some kind during their journey of TTC. But statistics also state that the chance of multiple miscarriages isn’t as likely.
I took some time to heal but shortly after decided I was ready to get my rainbow baby. We tried again, and in just two months time, we were pregnant.
Ecstatic is an understatement. I sat in my living room, wrapped in my husband’s arms sobbing from the overwhelming joy that I was feeling for what felt like hours. I couldn’t believe how dark and visible the lines were this time. My heart was so full.
One thing I will say about trying after a miscarriage is no one tells you about the PTSD you will have. The paranoia that sets in about as fast as the excitement and joy.
The fear of every time you feel a twinge. The thoughts of, do I feel as “pregnant” as I did yesterday? Are my symptoms still there?
The three minutes you wait after using the bathroom before having the courage to stand up and flush, for fear of what you might see. It’s crippling, the thoughts and anxiety that come over you.
Everyone telling you that you need to relax and trust. But you know in your gut it’s nearly impossible to not feel the fear.
In my experience, once I passed the timeframe when it happened last time, I started to ease up a bit.
“Calm” is not a word I will use to describe my feelings, but “better than before” will do. I was going to carry this baby full term and do the up-all-nights, looking like a train wreck all over again.
This time around, the cramping started earlier on, as if my body was trying to let me down easy as to what was coming next. Ironically enough, I was at the doctor’s office getting my levels checked to make sure they were rising.
That very night is when my heart was broken all over again.
It was over.
The grief was different the second time around. It hit me harder than before. The hopelessness washed over me like being smacked in the face with the force of a hurricane.
I’ve been told again and again by the sweetest of people that a loss is a loss, regardless of when it happens. I’ve also experienced loss, in different ways than this.
Grieving the death of a loved one that you spent time with on this earth: that’s a different kind of heartbreak. Grieving the loss of a life that you never even got to meet, or hold, yet somehow already loved and cared for in a way you can’t describe? It’s a heartbreak too.
I’ve been unlucky enough to know what both kinds of heartbreak feel like. And I will say this: they both leave you crushed. They both take a piece of your heart with them. They both leave you with one more scar than before.
Thankfully, I was able to get some good out of going through my miscarriages.
When you know the feeling of being knocked down by grief, well, you learn a few things from it. And I want to share that with you all.
When things happen to you, that hurt really, really bad: feel it. Feel all of it as much as you need to. Don’t bury it and keep it hidden.
Let those who want to help, help.
And don’t ever feel like you have something to prove with your strength. Your strength will come from letting things happen as they need to.
After, evaluate it all. Try your very hardest to look for the bigger picture. There is ALWAYS something to be learned, even in loss and grief. Take what has happened to you to better yourself.
In my case, I decided that this was a chance for me to evaluate my health. Not that my miscarriages happened because I was “unhealthy” but because when my time comes to carry my next baby—which it will—I want my body to be in the best possible place it can be to help house a life. It’s a chance for me to take control of some things that I should have had control of all along.
And lastly, don’t EVER let fear and doubt stop you from believing you don’t deserve what your heart desires most.
Bad things happen to good people every day. Not because those people deserve it, but because that’s how life goes sometimes.
Learn from the bad times so you can have joy with the good times.
For more information and resources about grieving a miscarriage, click here.