*Disclaimer: I continue to speak honestly – and at times graphically – about my recent miscarriage. If this bothers you, stop reading now. Writing this down is helping me get through everything, and I hope that this might help someone else who might be going through the same thing.
It has been a few days since we lost our baby, and I don’t know how I will ever find “normal” again. Phil says one day at a time, but even that seems too hard. It seems like I should be wasting away with my grief, but I think I’ve actually gained weight. Food choices aren’t a top priority right now, and I don’t care how I look.
I hold the only picture of the baby we have – the 8-week ultrasound – stroke the little image and say how sorry I am that I couldn’t keep it healthy. I hold the picture close to my heart, thinking it was supposed to have been one of many ultrasounds. I’ve always hated having to go to the specialist every week during my pregnancies, the only consolation that I would get to “see” my baby each time… but this time, I only have the one. I have nothing else to hold. At first I was glad I hadn’t made any baby stuff, but then wished I had a blankie or something so I could hold it close to my face and dry my tears.
I wished I had asked the doctor if they found the baby when they cleaned my insides. I wanted to see the baby I had grown for three months, told the kids about, shown them photos of what it looked like at each stage. I wanted to see the tiny hands and feet, see if it were a boy or a girl. I asked Phil to sift through the bucket of blood and tissue he saved that morning – maybe our baby was in there and we just didn’t see it. I was suddenly desperate to find out.
We didn’t find the baby. My midwife asked the doctor, and they didn’t find it either. She told me that it’s likely we missed it – perhaps it got flushed away with my initial panic that morning – or the baby died sometime before the miscarriage and decomposed so we couldn’t see it.
I started going over the last couple weeks, horrified that I didn’t know what was happening… but relieved at the same time. Some mothers know their babies have died, and wait for the inevitable miscarriage to begin. Mine was sudden, shocking, but I can’t imagine just waiting for it to happen. I realized my baby was probably dead at my sister-in-law’s baby shower, a beautiful time of celebrating new life. How could I not know? My dreams were suddenly dead, along with everything else.
I told the kids we couldn’t find it because God took the baby straight to heaven.
“Emptiness” seems to be a resonating word with me right now. I found this beautiful, simple poem at Naming the Child:
Since you’ve been gone
there is a place
inside of us
that is shaped like you
so empty now
that place which is filled
with so much love