I had a miscarriage recently, and I’m actually OK.
It’s been awhile since I posted anything of actual substance online. I update my Instagram regularly, mostly with absolutely pointless videos of my son eating breakfast, or playing with dinosaurs, or coloring. You can follow those exciting updates here #yourewelcome
I’ve tried sitting down and writing many, many times since we moved here, but it’s been awhile since I had something concrete that I could actually process from start to finish. Something defined. Black and white. Easy to process.
For some reason, this miscarriage has been that for me.
Most of you probably didn’t even know I was pregnant. I was only 7 weeks or so. While it definitely wasn’t planned, we adjusted quickly and welcomed the news. I knew I was pregnant for about a week before the miscarriage started, and there have been some gloomy and wistful days. Not just for the loss of life, but also for the loss of another plan.
Since leaving CO we’ve watched so many plans come and go. Living life completely open-handed is not easy. Holding out everything to be redistributed, redirected is exhausting at times. We’ve left nothing behind for a Plan B. Moving forward into the things that are before us is often… Daunting. Exciting, for sure. We’re both adventurous people. But everything’s turned out just so darn different than what we had planned or consciously hoped for. There are so many factors that are up in the air right now. So many unknowns in the midst of walking out the path we find ourselves on. When we found ourselves expecting a child again, we accepted that as another factor to consider as we move forward. Because of the pleasant surprise of Ellis (we weren’t exactly the most enthusiastic parents-to-be before Ellis), we knew this child would be the same; an absolute joy.
So you’d think that when I experienced miscarriage, peace wouldn’t be the primary experience. But it was. And I’ll tell you why. Or I’ll try to, without offending anyone.
When I was pregnant with Ellis, I read several books on natural pregnancy, labor, and delivery (See my Goodreads if that kind of thing interests you). The main thing that stuck out to me out of all the literature I consumed was this quote
“One cannot help a physiological process. The point is not to hinder it.”
When I was in labor, I made the controlling, Type A part of me (the part that wants to know what is going on, why it is going on, and what I can do about it) chill out. I trusted my body. I let my body do what it needed to do. And it did.
Side Note & Disclaimer: I 100% realize that this cannot be the case each and every single time. There are things that go wrong where medical intervention is absolutely necessary. For those times, I’m so grateful for the medical professionals trained to right the wrongs happening in our bodies. But the majority of the time, our bodies are created to operate a certain way and they are fully capable of doing so.
The point is that I gained a deep respect for my body through the experience of labor and delivery.
And in the same way that my body can, when operating correctly, sustain a life for nine months, my body knows when it cannot.
Here are some facts that I learned while having a miscarriage:
- They are very common: Statistically, about one in every four confirmed pregnancies end in miscarriage. See here & here & here
- Of those miscarriages, most of them occur because of chromosome abnormalities. See here & here.
- Also, most women report feeling emotions like shame, isolation, and guilt as a result of a miscarriage.
Maybe this is common knowledge to most people. It was new information for me and instead of experiencing extreme sadness and shame that most women report feeling when experiencing a miscarriage, I experienced peace.
I just deeply respect the order of things that is set up in our bodies. In a weird way I feel like this miscarriage has broken through a cloud of confusion around me. In our life right now with so many unanswered questions, plans that constantly change, constantly weighing the pros and cons of a new decision – a concrete thing happened. Definitely not the outcome I would have chosen, but I’m OK because I know that my body is operating as thousands and thousands and millions of other women’s bodies have operated since the beginning of time. Being apart of something solid, something bigger than myself feels grounding in a way that I’ve been craving. Even through the midst of a dealth, I feel such light and peace.
The opportunity to have this perspective shocked me.
And of course we’re sad. This was a precious life. And we would have loved and cherished him/her regardless of any abnormalities present. And granted, I haven’t been trying to have a baby for years, I don’t have any past traumatic experience with having a baby, not to mention I was only 7-8 weeks along. All that to say, there are so many factors that go into my emotional response. If you’ve had a miscarriage and had a very different experience, I’d love for you to feel free to share that experience. Everyone is different and this is not my attempt to write a trendy post to contradict what everyone says about something standard like being emotional when there is a death.
I guess I just wanted to share our experience in the small chance there someone out there who needs to hear a story of how we went through a miscarriage and were OK.
Like, really OK.
And maybe this perspective can bring this converstaion out of the realm of only emotions, (all of which are valid) to also include facts, which are just as valid.
Maybe it really just helps me to write it all out, document and process it in some way.
Either way, that’s what has been going on with us lately.
That and many other things.
Maybe those will be in the next blog post.
Photo credit:Madison Grooms