A new task has been added to my Mondays—going to the lab so my physician can monitor the HcG levels to ensure my body is recognizing the pregnancy is no longer viable and the “products of conception” have passed. As suspected after some pretty shocking and painful physical symptoms, the level is going down significantly. It’s bittersweet, really. Yes—it’s good that my body recognizes that there is no baby growing inside me anymore…but on the other hand, there is no baby growing inside me anymore. It’s sometimes hard to articulate how I feel, as some of my grieving is set aside by the job of raising a 1.5 year old. In fact, she is my saving grace.
However, there are moments when I’m reminded of this loss. I am now acutely aware of pregnant women of all shapes and sizes. I sometimes catch myself watching a woman from the backside betting to myself that when she turns around (to pay the cashier for example), that I will spot a baby bump. Sure enough, I do 95% of the time (Ok, so that percentage is a slight exaggeration, but my point is that every woman, her aunts, sisters, cousins, friends, and even grandmas seem to be pregnant right about now). That is another bittersweet thought—to celebrate the joy of conception, healthy pregnancies, and their upcoming arrivals…but on the other hand, it’s those women celebrating this and not me. It was supposed to be me too.
You often hear “life is not fair.” This is a cliché I know to be true, especially now. It’s easy to ask, “Why me?” but then I have an internal retort prepared already for myself—“Why not me?” Why would I be immune from the 10-20 percent of women whose pregnancies end in miscarriage? My physician told me that this is probably a low number and only accounts for documented pregnancies and in fact, 1 in 4 ends this way. So—to better grasp what this looks like statistically, I decide to create a visual. I cut 10 pieces of paper. On 8 of the pieces, I write, “healthy.” On the other 2 pieces, I write “miscarriage.” I put them in a container. If trying for three children , I pick out 3 pieces of paper. First: “healthy.” Second: “healthy.” Third: “miscarriage.” Fourth: “healthy.” Well, there you have it—1 in 4 were labeled “miscarriage.” I do understand that odds, percentages, and statistics all vary due to the woman’s age, health, lifestyle, etc, but with all factors being simple- it was kind of interesting seeing it this way. Although I don’t want to be just a “statistic,” it helped me understand the odds…in maybe an odd way.
So my husband and I ask ourselves “where do we go from here?” We have decided to focus our time and energy on our new home and to our daughter, who is learning so fast, I can hardly keep up. In fact, she now says, “Mom, I got you!” Yes, my dear daughter, you do. You have my heart for sure.
Despite the bittersweet pangs that I often feel now, I try to be mindful. I think it’s important to allow myself to feel whatever it is that I am feeling, acknowledge the feeling, then move through it. Most currently this involves some sadness, loss of future plans and hopes, some anxiety, and a little fear of the unknown.
Yet another cliché I will throw out there is “this too shall pass.” Yes—it will. In the meantime, I will write about it.