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"Sharing" Our Stories/Thoughts - Along this Path

Miscarriage - Many Relationships Influenced By Our Loss...'97

I was already planning everything
before I was even dressed to go home.
I have a five year old daughter,
who wants a sibling real bad.

~~~~~~~~~~Forever In Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~

Our relationship with ourselves, our baby-to-be, our doctor, our God, our other children, our spouse, our friends and, ultimately, our understanding of "who we were to become as we had our baby" are influenced by the loss. The stories that follow touch on these relationships, and how they affect our reactions after a miscarriage.


Letters from our Internet Visitors

"...almost three years..." by Colleen

"My Baby..." by Tracy

"Fathers Grieve Differently" by Jennifer

"My story has a happy ending" by Jennifer

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It is almost three years since I miscarried with Kelley and I would like to share some of her story.

I was so excited when I became pregnant in July of 1994 and scared . I had lost Michael in January at 21 weeks and after 6 months of intense grief work with a support group, I was ready to try again. We were elated when the test was positive.. I had a business trip to San Antonio scheduled for the last week in June and since my husband's parents live in Texas we decided that all of us would go on the trip and take a mini vacation. Me my husband and my 3 year old son flew to Texas and had a great time. We swam and even spent a day at Sea World. I was tired since I was only 6 weeks along but we were so excited. The day the meeting ended we drove to Chris's sister's house to spend the night with them. When we got there I went to the bathroom and saw spots of blood. I was so scared. I tried to ignore it and layed down for a nap. When I woke up and went to the bathroom again I was still spotting. I knew I had to tell Chris. I told him and then called my Dr. in Las Vegas. ! He recommended that I go directly to the hospital. We drove like crazy to the hospital. Got pulled over by the state patrol and I hysterically said please let us go I don't want to lose another child... He let us go. The emergency room at the hospital was so surreal. They said lots of dumb things and took forever. Finally I had an ultrasound and I could tell right away no heartbeat. I heard lots of confusing things from the nurses. Maybe you shouldn't be able to see a heartbeat at 6 weeks... I spotted and I had a healthy child...You'll be fine... You can have other children. I heard all of these comments and having been through a loss before I knew their intentions were good but not the right thing to say. I asked the Dr. for an autopsy of the fetus and was assured one would be done. I had a D&C and was released from the hospital the next morning. I was devestated and to make matters worse I had to go visit my in-laws who proceeded to treat the problem totally medically and pretend that there were no emotions.. And I had to behave so I didn't make them uncomfortable. I never did get the autopsy results. The hospital lost them. I have never quite felt the same about Texas again.. I miss Kelley and I remember her on July 1st every year... She will always be in my heart. Thank you for the opportunity to Share.

Visit Fourth Anniversary, Sibling Grief, Notes, and for more of Colleen's thoughts.
Colleen G.
SHARE Atlanta

~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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I had a miscarriage four days ago. I was six weeks pregnant, after trying for a year and a half, to be so. To most people, a six week old fetus is not yet a baby. To me, it was My baby.

My story goes like this: I was having abdominal pain for three days and then went to the Emergency Room, not yet even knowing I was pregnant. I underwent a series of tests and examinations to later find out that I was indeed five weeks pregnant, but no one could explain my pain. The pain, to me, no longer was so important because I was PREGNANT. I was more happy than words could say. My spouse was a little more unsettled. He didn't like the fact that we found out we were pregnant in the ER. Me? Well, I was already planning everything before I was even dressed to go home. I have a five year old daughter, who wants a sibling real bad. I couldn't wait to tell her. Thank God, I never got the chance to do so. The hospital told me to go home, make an appointment with my OB/GYN in the morning, and that is what I did. Miscarriage crossed my mind, but I never imagined that that is what was going on. I went to the doctor and had a blood test done to see what the level of the hormone produced through pregnancy was. She asked me if I had any bleeding with my pain. My pain had not yet subsided. I said no. I went home, went to the bathroom, and I had a spot of dark blood on my underwear. I freaked, called the doctor, and she said since it wasn't bright red, that it was probably from the examinations the previous day. So again, miscarriage was not a option, to me.

Three days later, I was still in pain and no one seemed to know why. I wasn't worrying about it because nobody else seemed to be. One doctor did tell me that my uterus is sensitive to being pregnant. Nothing to worry about, right? Wrong because on that tragic morning I start to bleed bright red blood, heavily. I called my spouse, he came and got hysterical me, and we went to the ER, again. I was in the middle of having a miscarriage. Even going from home, going through the examinations, and listening to the doctor, I still couldn't believe what was happening. There had to be another explanation. I couldn't lose my baby. But, I did.

I am not quite sure how to come to terms with it. I finally had it, and then it was gone. I haven't been able to call my best friend to even tell her. I haven't been able to talk out loud about it either without bursting into tears. How do I get past that? I want to tell my friend, but on the other hand I don't. She knew I was pregnant. I feel I need to talk in depth with my spouse because I am sure he needs support too. I don't know how to support him, when he is so busy fussing over me. I love him for that, but what can I do for him?

Thank you for listening to me. If anyone has any advice or support for me, don't hesitate to write. Thanks, again.

Rossford, OH

Dear Tracy, I am sorry about the loss of your baby to a miscarriage. Even though miscarriage is a common occurrence, it is not discussed very often and women often feel as though they should not grieve this baby. Our group feels as though each baby is our dream and our future and that we have the right to grieve our loss. We find that by sharing our experiences and, being permitted to have mementos, we can "make our baby real". Then we don't have to "deny" this very important part of who we are. Read "The Significance of You and Your Baby". Miscarriages usually involve difficult physical situations (pain, bleeding, etc.) that leads to fear, sadness, and loss of our innocence of "how easy it is to have a baby". What seems to be so normal and part of what we and others expect to happen,(having a baby) becomes a difficult and unforgiving situation. We grieve both the loss of our baby and the loss of what we thought we could and would have. Not to mention all the "unwanted" medical intervention - no wonder we are miserable and confused.

Time and patience play a big role in healing. It helps to understand the stages of grief(shock, denial, panic, anger, sadness (guilt) and then coping and hope returns). As we realize that we have had several kinds of losses: loss of our baby, our dream; loss of control around the events in our life; loss control of our emotions, we can gradually accept that we need time to "regroup" and recover from what has happened to us! During this time we can make sure we are physically okay and rested, that our doctor is ready to "be there for us the next time", and that our emotions have stopped being on the roller coaster of grief!

Grief is normal - we just have to learn what it is!

Usually, fathers grieve differently

Your confusion over what to do is normal in grief. Your husband is most concerned for you (and I am glad). He, most likely, had not bonded strongly with this baby. I am sure he wanted the child, but it was you that had bonded most strongly with the baby. Let him talk about the situation if and when he wants, but don't be surprised if he seems "over this" fairly soon. He is greatly worried about you and wants you "back to yourself". Please read what I wrote in "His/Her Grief" and "Others' Influence". The longer we carry a baby the stronger our bond, and the more the daddy gets involved.

Friends deal with your loss in many different ways

As to your friend - she may or may not be able to be supportive in your grief. Share our site with her, share your feelings, but remember it is hard for others to identify with the pain you are feeling. She did not experience a "body" change around your pregnancy, and she did not share in your panic at the actual loss. Often, close friends feel too much of your pain to share it, or they feel threatened by your loss and grief(maybe this could happen to them or someone else close to them). Some friends can be very supportive - others just can't. I would suggest that you write down your feelings even more. Perhaps get something special in memory of this little person that you carried for six weeks. Read "Making Memories, Mementos" This can be shared with your friend or husband (or me) or be kept as a special treasure just between you and your baby (for now or always...). Most of all give yourself time to heal and to adjust to what has happened in your life.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Fathers Grieve Differently

We had a miscarriage in the first trimester. I feel like I suffered alone. My husband said that it hurt him as well but it is hard for me to accept that because I didn't see him suffering. This happened 6 months ago and I still cry about it. I know that I have one child and should feel blessed by that because some don't even have that.

Defiance, OH

Dear Jennifer,

Yours is a common thought - a first trimester loss is very hard for a couple to cope with. The mother, because she (usually) bonds very quickly to her baby, usually has a much greater level of open grief than the father. It is not that he doesn't care - he does, but he usually is more worried about the health and emotional concerns of the mother than he is of the actual loss of the baby. A baby does not usually become totally real for the dad until he holds him/her - even though he really wants the child. The dad's body does not go through the changes and bonding - though bonding does begin during the pregnancy - is different for the dad. Usually, the later the loss - the more the bond is between the dad and child. Add this to the fact, that most men do not grieve as a women does. Men are fixers (and they can't fix this) and their usual way for taking care of things is to fix it and move on. While a women wants to "talk" and work through all the feelings around what has happened. Please read "His/Her Grief" and the "Sharing Our Stories Section with His/Her Grief" both of these sections speak to just what you are concerned about. Thank God - men and women are different. Most especially in grief, and it helps to understand and learn to cope with these differences. It can save marriages and actually build a stronger relationship if we work to learn how to help each other through these times. Marcia - 9/30/97

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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My story has a happy ending...
I have been a nanny for 6 years...I found out I was pregnant in October of last year....I lost my baby in December.......When I was pregnant, If it was a girl I was going to name it Alexis...Two weeks after I lost the baby, I went on a interview for a new job and the little 4 month old girls name was Alexis... I believe God sent me their for a reason.. I could not have my own Alexis, but I am so thankful I work for this family and have had such a wonderful experience taking care of her and her brother Justin......I am pregnant again and due in December. Very happy but nervious....

Lawrence, MA

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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