Do They Change You Completely?

When someone suffers a pregnancy loss, whether by miscarriage or stillbirth or even termination, do we ourselves change for the next time?

Women are like mother hens.  We cluck and fuss and make sure our children are safe.  I don’t know a single pregnant woman that doesn’t worry when something ‘different’ happens, whether that be ligament pain or slipping on ice.

It is in our nature to worry about outcomes.

From before we are pregnant until we die, we worry about the children we might have or the children we already do.

So, if you suffer from a loss, does it change how you would parent?

I have had two miscarriages.  I have seen the tissue of my babies and I have persevered.  I am forever changed by what I saw.

When I am even one day late, and even though I chart, if my period doesn’t start exactly when I think it should, I get excited.  And then when my period shows up, I dread seeing the heaviness of the first day for fear that I will see those masses that still haunt my dreams.

This last cycle was very rough.  I went to 17 dpo and I was 99% sure I was pregnant.  When my period came, I prayed so hard that I wouldn’t see tissue.  I barely slept that first night for fear I would wake up and see another baby.

What I have seen has terrified me of myself and what my body does naturally.

What happens when women that have suffered losses get pregnant again?

I know besides checking for blood every time they use the bathroom, they are so grateful for their symptoms.  Every wave of nausea, every cramp, every bit of irritability is a blessing.  It isn’t just a pregnancy anymore.  This is the miracle that might not be around tomorrow.  Every day is a blessing.

When you have suffered a loss, what lengths will you go to to protect the precious blessing growing inside of you?

Those that are nonmedical, would that include getting your levels checked, getting early ultrasounds just in case, or testing every day to make sure your levels are rising and not falling?

How far would you go to protect this blessing, and inevitably protect yourself from further trauma?

(I know this will sound incredibly insensitive, but it isn’t meant to be, and since I have been there, I understand this statement to my core).

In the end, what truly can you do?  If there is truly something wrong, you cannot stop it from coming again.  If there truly is a problem that checks and ultrasounds cannot fix, it will inevitably happen.

In some ways, I truly wish I could have another miscarriage just to prove to myself I truly can get pregnant.  I can’t keep the baby, but I know my body functions.

In other ways, I am so glad I haven’t.  Seeing what I have seen again would rip me apart.  The shaky foundation I have created would completely crumble.

In the end, do the precautions and dreams truly help?  Or do we trick ourselves into thinking that we can truly protect our children and ourselves from hurt?

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13 Responses

  1. Big hug. I can’t imagine seeing that, the baby. I am so sorry you went through that more than once. When I was pregnant with Cora, I had an early scare with a bit of bleeding and freaked out in fear for days. I am so, so sorry. xoxo

  2. I have been through two losses as well. One miscarriage – and while I didn’t see the fetus, I sure felt it (I couldn’t bring myself to look). My second pregnancy was ectopic and it broke my heart to terminate a pregnancy, even knowing if it continued it could kill me, and there was no way the fetus could survive anyway. It’s so hard to say goodbye to a life you created, you want, you love.

    I do feel it changes you for life. I don’t trust my body anymore. I am more afraid of pain and instead of feeling hope at the end of a cycle, it’s hope mixed with fear. I feel jaded and bitter in a way I could never have imagined. I resent pregnant women and mothers complaints, for I would give anything to trade situations. I have felt loss so deeply.

    My OB has promised me early ultrasounds if and when we get pregnant again, but I’m not going to be able to trust in a pregnancy until I have a healthy baby in my arms. I hope it happens for us – and for you, too.
    *hugs*

    • I am so sorry hun! I was never told how hard trying was, but also wasn’t told how hard it is if you lose a baby. It seems alien to me to be completely happy when I near the end of a cycle. There is truly so much fear and anxiety and barely any happiness.

      I know it will happen for us soon, I just know it!

  3. As someone who just suffered a lost at 13 weeks. I am so terrified that my body doesn’t know what to do.

  4. I really do believe pregnancy loss changes you. I’ve had 4 miscarriages, and each and everyone was absolutely devistating to me. Everytime I get a positive pregnancy test, I am thrilled, and terrified at the same time. Everytime I used the bathroom I check for blood, every cramp or ligament pull I feel rattles me. The first trimester for me is no fun at all, not because of the symptoms, but because I am scared to death. My 3rd miscarriage I was almost 4 months along…long enough for my baby to look like a baby, with fingers and toes and everything. That image still haunts my mind everyday as I went to use the bathroom and had to scoop my baby up out of the toilet after it slipped out of me. I am definitely changed forever by it. I will never take pregnancy for granted, I will always be extrememly grateful for my son, because he has been such a blessing in my life. I have nightmares about it, I have been so angry towards many people who are pregnant on “accident”, I am even more livid and more pro-life than I ever thought I was. I think I am a darker person, atleast for now because I still deal with it on a day to day basis. I am not the same at all. I have lost a little faith in what my body is capable of, and it’s sad. My marriage has definitely been affected by them, both negatively and positively. Nothing will ever be the same after each loss… and that’s common for loss, but I just have to keep in mind that it all happened for a reason and someday I’ll understand.

    • I think that has been one of the hardest things for me. The miscarriages hit me a lot harder than they did Blake and it caused a bit of tension. Seeing them definitely made it so much more real and devastating to me than it did to him.

      I am so sorry you have had four. That is just so awful and it makes you wonder how things could ever work. You truly do lose faith in yourself and a lot of other things.

      I so hope you are able to have another little blessing that stays with you. Hugs and I am so sorry this happened to you.

  5. Sending you HUGS! I too have gone through 10 miscarriages – i saw the fetuses in all except the last which i chose to have a d/c (baby was 13wks) because he was pretty formed at that age and i did not want to birth him at home.

    Each experience changes you – each is equally devastating. I have had 3 children as well (the m/c were spread in between all three) and as someone who has struggled so hard to have them they are little miracles to me – it can happen! No one can understand the struggle unless they have gone through it themselves. The pregnancies for me were quite difficult because i was so terrified on another loss – but we made it through with dr’s help and support of family.

    I am so sorry i don’t have the words to make it better. Just know you are not alone and don’t give up hope. I have gone through many measures to have the children I do and there are measures you can take to try to prevent another miscarriage – i was diagnosed with low progesterone and Factor V Leiden which are ‘easy’ to manage when being treated for.

    I am so sorry you are going through this – if you need to talk you can find me on twitter (@AccustomedChaos) or on my blog (http://accustomedchaos.blogspot.com).

    • Thank you so much! I always ache when I hear of women that have lost children and gone through so much to have the children they have now, but it is nice to not be alone.

  6. I miscarried one twin my second pregnancy at almost 6 weeks. I knew I was pregnant, but didn’t know I was carrying twins. I grieved the loss of my baby for a week, and at a followup appointment discovered a baby with a heartbeat. That pregnancy was by far my most difficult, on so many levels. I still sometimes wonder if the twin was identical to my son, or the daughter everyone was positive I was carrying.

    When I started bleeding at about the same point my next pregnancy, I immediately went in for tests and started progesterone supplements just in case. Since then, the pregnancy has been normal (and actually an easy one!) but I still worry almost constantly. I haven’t had a “normal” pregnancy yet (my first was unexpectedly born at 32 weeks) so it’s hard for me to “just relax and enjoy it”.

    After my miscarriage, I believed I’d never be able to emotionally handle another pregnancy and was positive we’d adopt instead. If I had lost both babies that pregnancy, I still think that’s the route we wold have taken for our second child.

    • Oh I am so sorry that happened! I am always so terrified of having the same thing happen even though the chance is so very slim. I truly am so sorry you have to live with the fear and wonder about that pregnancy.

  7. I’m so sorry for your losses 😦 I don’t think anything is wrong with your body! I think there’s just a plan for everyone. Sometimes I wish I could get a sneak peek at God’s blueprints for me 😉

    You know… I worried a lot when I first got pregnant too. I had never had a misscarriage but I had read so many stories and found out so early that I was pregnant (13 or 14 DPO) so I was worried when I started spotting. I was very grateful for nausea and all of those things, and early ultrasounds, so true!

    Praying you get another baby soon!

  8. Hugs.

    I cannot even begin to imagine.

    Warm thoughts to all that have lost a child.

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