Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Universe 3 - Me 1

I'm reviving the Happy Ranter for this post, and possibly a few subsequent ones, because this is where my other sad stories are. I feel like they belong together, in one spot.

On January 5th, 2014 I had the pleasure of a positive home pregnancy test. On February 12th, I had an ultrasound and the joy of seeing our baby and its healthy heartbeat. On February 28th, I learned that little heartbeat had stopped and my heart broke.

If you've followed this blog, or have looked through the archives, you'll know that this isn't my first loss. I'm familiar with how this process will go. I know that only time is going to ease the pain. Only acknowledging my grief and letting it run it's course will get me through to the other side. But right now I'm in the thick of it and I wanted to write this out. This is part of how I deal with pain and even if no one reads it, my story will be here for me. I'll be able to come back to it in a few weeks, months or years and measure how far I've come. But I'll also be able to remember, which is also just as important.

My previous losses were very early in my pregnancies, over almost before they'd even begun. Painful none the less, because the hope, love and joy of what was wrapped up in that all came to a crashing end. This time....I don't know that I'm more sad than I was before, but there is a difference. This time I saw the heartbeat. This time I felt great, like I did during my pregnancy with Sadie. We had slowly started to tell people, parents mostly, because everything was looking so good and because we were so damn close to the 2nd trimester. And then it all just....stopped. Suddenly it was just over.

As someone who dealt with infertility for years, and as someone who has had a baby, I've read a lot of material on the subjects and so I knew, academically, what to expect from this miscarriage. To be honest, the physical process over the past few days has been less physically painful than I thought it would be. The emotions of it though caught me off guard. I've never had anything happen to me before that I could call traumatic. I've been lucky. I am still lucky because there are worse things. My rational brain knows that.

And yet, my baby this time was no longer an embryo. My baby had officially reached fetus status. My baby had substance and weight and was a perfectly formed, though tiny, being. No one – the ER doctor, my midwife, books I have read – prepared me for what I went through. I'm not going to describe everything here in detail. I don't have the strength for that and I don't think I have the words. What I do want to say is that what I went through in the wee small hours of Saturday morning, while my family was sleeping, is something that has changed me. It has marked my heart and I will never be the same.

Those moments were some of the most terrible I've ever had but there was also love and sweetness. There was a feeling of incredible loss but thankfulness for the chance to say goodbye. I'll never let go of my love for my baby but eventually I will be able to make some peace with what happened. I just won't be the same me. I'm okay with that, too. I am not weaker for the experience, although my strength has left me momentarily.

I haven't been sleeping well. I don't want to go to bed at night because I don't feel tired but I do because I know my body needs the rest. I do fall asleep but I dream about babies, about children and it isn't very restful. I feel like I'm not getting a break. But do I want a break? Today was my first day alone in a quiet house since everything happened. At random intervals, regardless of what I was doing, I broke down and sobbed. Full, body wracking sobs, blinded by tears, and feeling like I was going to split in two. A minute or two later and I'd be fine again. Like it never happened. Then the whole process would repeat itself. I know this is something that I need, too. I know it but I don't particularly like it.

What I have found the most difficult to deal with are the moments when I forget that our baby is gone. Thoughts pop into my head about what we'll do when the baby is here and in the next instance I remember. It surprises me every single time. I never experienced that with my previous losses. I have a terrible feeling that I'm going to start talking to someone about being pregnant and realize mid sentence that I no longer am. My brain needs to catch up with my body and I hope it does soon. It will, eventually. One small step at a time.

A friend posted this on facebook today, and I thank her for it. Sometimes we all need to know it's okay.


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