Pregnancy loss is sadly common, but going through a miscarriage can be one of the toughest experiences in a woman’s life. It’s normal to feel anything from anger, to sadness, to angst. Here are some things that only a woman who has had a miscarriage would understand.
1. People often say many things when they don’t know what to say. The last things you want to hear likely are, “It was probably for the best,” “Maybe it just wasn’t God’s will,” or “Nature has a way of taking care of itself.”
2. And you likely especially don’t want to hear, “At least you know you can get pregnant.” In fact, you probably wish people would stop it with all pleasantries.
3. Then there’s the obsession with figuring out what “caused” your miscarriage. Despite knowing that the vast majority happen due to chromosomal issues, you still analyze everything you ate, when you exercised, or what you even watched on television.
4. That moment when you look around the room and it feels like every other woman of reproductive age is nine months pregnant.
5. You go in for a blood draw to see if your hCG levels have gone back to zero after your miscarriage. At the appointment, you’re congratulated on your pregnancy because all the nurse knows is that you’re being tested for pregnancy hormone.
6. For once in your life, you really, really, really want your period to start so you can try again.
7. Your well-meaning friend tells you “It’ll be fine! So-and-so got pregnant again the month after her miscarriage and had a healthy baby.” As if the aftermath is somehow universal or a new pregnancy will immediately heal your feelings of loss.
8. You DVR your favorite show so you can fast forward through all those sappy diaper commercials. That friend who posts hundreds of baby photos on Facebook each day? Yeah. You temporarily unfollow them, too.
9. How the months, days, and hours slowly tick by when you’ve been told by your doctor to wait a few months after your dilation and curettage (D&C) to try again. It feels longer than an eternity.
10. You take 10 minutes to cry in the bathroom at work because the new hire in accounting just announced she’s unexpectedly 13 weeks pregnant. And it’s with twins.
11. The flood of emotions that washes over you on your baby’s original due date. You never met this little person, but they meant so much to you (and always will). You do something small to honor baby, like planting a tree, making a memory box, or buying a small piece of jewelry with their birthstone.
12. When you get your first positive pregnancy test post-miscarriage and feel more fear than happiness — at least at first.
13. The tremendous support you feel when friends open up to you about their own miscarriages. Though it doesn’t take away your sadness, you feel so much less alone.
Up to one in four pregnancies ends in miscarriage. You’re not alone. Try your best to surround yourself with a good support network of friends and family who have been where you are. If you don’t know where to turn, you can also seek support online with organizations like Through the Heart.