My Miscarriage Story

I heard the most beautiful thing yesterday...

Well, first off my husband and I are really taking our marriage to new levels and our new thing is watching Wheel of Fortune every night and yelling at the TV.

But yesterday, as Pat introduced and partially interviewed the show's guests, one lady began listing her 3 children and continued by saying that her first son was her guardian angel. Then she listed the ages of her other two children. -I was touched.

She lost her first son but has not forgotten him, has not continued on without honoring him as if he never mattered, as if she never loved him.

I miscarried at 8 weeks, one week before Christmas. I had wished for a baby all year. Losing my first child has been one of the hardest experiences I've ever gone through. So much love, hope, worry, fear, emotion, desire, dreams -gone. No chance to experience that. I struggle today letting go of my first child and I think I am realizing I'm not supposed to let go of them. Here are some of the journal writings I kept along the way.

The Trying (TTC) Years
(Written summer 2018)
The feelings happening inside are overwhelming; through my deepest depressions, I've never felt this empty. I never imagined I would feel this or that I would be here -questioning whether this is God's plan for me or if I'm going against His will. Wondering why He would ignite this motherly desire deep inside of my soul if He intended to put me through this is pure devastation. 

When we get the question "are you trying" I give an abrupt yes hoping it'll suffice and that the conversation will change.  There's always more questions and unsolicited advice from others who've had very dissimilar experiences. -I've heard it all but none of it changes the fact that I am not yet a mother, and none of it replaces the loss of hope that comes with each failed attempt. The pain that comes along with wanting to share and love our child so much that it hurts feels validated. It feels validated in the love we already have for a child we don't have yet.

It sucks to feel like I can't do it naturally. And it sucks that I won't be surprised by it. It sucks keeping it from my family. And it sucks hearing them say they want me to have kids already. But it sucks more that I want that too.

For a long time I was too stubborn to believe we needed help to conceive and I blamed God for that. 

We found out Monday, November 19, 2018 that our first IUI was successful and I struggled to be excited. After more than a year of numbing my feelings about a child and pregnancy, I now found myself struggling to be excited that I was pregnant. -And already, I felt like a bad mom.

Excitement became very foreign because of the enormous amount of hope we were so familiar with losing.

We told no one about our decision to move forward with IUI. I almost felt guilt or shame in admitting to our family that we did IUI. It was a conversation that was weighted with a lot of pain and sadness.

We made the decision to share the news with our immediate family aware that we were well ahead of the 12-week "safe zone." They made this pregnancy very real for me.

More than anything this experience has taught me that God blesses you when He is ready and sometimes those blessings look different than the ones you prayed for.

Being Pregnant 
I began writing to our baby to connect and to transition emotionally from sadness to hope and joy.

"Your heart beating inside of me...
something I was hoping to see, 
wondering what you'll be,
or how it'll feel
when you grab only for me.

You are the ocean of my sea,
something I was hoping to be,
you made that of me.

Your mommy,
I will forever be."

The Worst News - 7 to 8 Weeks
(Written to our baby)
December 5, we were given the news that you were measuring a little smaller than the doctor would have liked. She put me on pelvic rest and asked that I come back in a week to ensure you were growing.

At that next appointment the doctor came into the room to begin the ultrasound. Your dad is usually the one who asks questions before the doctor offers any news, I typically give her some time. Close to ten minutes of silence went by when I suddenly wondered, well I hope everything's okay.

"Jessica, I'm concerned," she said.

Sitting up to hear the very unexpected news, she continued, "the baby is measuring only 6 weeks. The heartbeat is there but it's very faint, much more faint than last week."

"Okay," I replied waiting to here what that really meant.

"Jessica, I am so sorry, but I am really concerned that this pregnancy will likely result in a miscarriage. I don't want to say this is it until I can definitively say that, so I need to see you back in 6 days. We need to see if there's any growth and if there is a detectable heartbeat."

What?! My baby's heartbeat isn't going to be there next week? What, why? It's there right now??!

I surprisingly was able to quiet those initial thoughts and compose myself in order to have a very realistic conversation about the possible outcomes and what our next steps would look like.

The doctor and I both agreed that if there was a heartbeat, we of course, would not interfere with the pregnancy but, she cautioned me with the likelihood and the odds I was facing. Unbelievably there were no tears between us, just a very matter of fact discussion -until she mentioned your dad. 

"Jessica, I am so sorry this happened, and I know....I know how much John was relying on me to make this work."
-She shed her first tears.

I found myself consoling her telling her it wasn't her fault and that I understood that these things just happen.

I tried to say, "I can be strong for the both of us," but I paused at be. Holding my breath and gasping for breath all at the same time, I was able to force out strong. Again, regaining breath, and holding back tears, I was able to finish my sentence but with tears rolling down my face.

She handed me a tissue and we hugged and cried together.

She left me to be alone for a minute. I called your dad and delivered the news. His response was much like mine, "'s going to be okay.....everything is okay." -That was the shock talking. He said he was turning around and coming up to the appointment regretful that he missed it (he hasn't missed an appointment of mine since). I told him that it was already over and that I could meet him at home instead.

I walked in, sat on the couch still in shock, ....and then, I broke. We cried together for a while and then I told him I needed to tell my mom. The hardest part of that conversation was telling her this, 

-"We don't need anything, we are going to be okay but, all we need from you and Dad is for ya'll to accept that we have tried and I don't know how much more we can give before we accept that this just isn't meant to be for us. And we need ya'll to accept that too."

That morning my world seemed so full, so bright, so full of beauty and potential, and that night seemed so empty. I was so strong for everyone around us, for your dad, for my family, for the doctor. I had convinced myself I could accept losing you

I went to bed with an eerie peace that we might be saying goodbye soon.

The next morning I woke up feeling as if my whole life had been lived in one day and night, and a sense of loneliness fell over me. I became enraged remembering what the doctor had said. Still in bed, I yelled through the blankets, 

"Why?!!!!!!!!!!! Why did you do this to me you asshole!?? I needed my baby! I needed...MY BABY!!!!!!!!!!"

-I was yelling at God

How could He give me you only to take you away from me. I cried and yelled just to feel it, to feel the pain, to get it out -for over an hour that morning. I wanted to lay in bed all day and cry, but also just to lay with you; just to have what might be our final days, just us -together, comforting you, and giving you all that I had just to keep you for as long as I could.

Somehow, with every ounce of God given strength I made it into work. The phone rang for the first time and I physically could not answer it. There was no desire in me left to do anything other than be your mommy, and not knowing how much longer we would have, I couldn't give my energy to anything else. 

Regardless of, and not knowing the outcome, I needed some time to cope, and to deal with the roller coaster of emotions ahead of us. HR approved medical leave.

-I still have you,
my baby -right now,
in this very moment.

And your heartbeat,
it may or may not be there,
but I have you with me.

And I am so grateful
you were here for your dad's birthday,
because at least we all shared that.

That moment,
where we felt complete
because of you.

I love you so much.
We love you forever Our Little One.
From the bottom of my heart always,
Love Mommy.

Our Final Goodbye - D&C 

Feeling responsible for their pain,
because you are gone too soon -
...I even yelled at my mom.

“Stay hopeful and pray” they say,
but with hope and prayer
you still went away.

Be with the Lord my little one,
because you are gone too soon -
...but I will still play our favorite song.

We accepted the pain of losing you but not because we gave up on you. So desperate to keep holding on to you, we convinced ourselves the doctor was wrong. It was that hope that got us through the days: the hope that you would still be there.

"There's no heartbeat," the words we feared.

I wasn't ready for those words. I began to refuse surgery (D&C). I told the doctor I wasn't emotionally prepared to let go of you. 
-Your dad was strong.

"The heartbeat is gone, Jess. It's not coming back."

I felt the burden of the pain we would soon be responsible for because responsible is how it felt. Responsible for disappointing our parents; responsible for getting their hopes up; responsible for telling them too soon; and responsible for having to explain something so devastating to our niece and nephew but more than anything,

-I felt responsible for losing you.

We all really wanted you. I was so happy to be able to give the gift of you to our families.

At night I laid in bed sobbing.

A part of me will always be empty without you. For the rest of my life I will always feel like you are missing from me, like a piece of my heart is permanently broken.

"How long does the crying last," your dad naively and innocently asked.

"Forever," I said.

Last Wednesday waking up from the anesthesia, I asked for your dad immediately and after, I asked if we would be allowed to pray over our baby

The nurses ...they were our angels

They brought you to me and they let me hold you. Your dad and I held hands as we prayed. We prayed for the Lord to hold you and heal you, and asked that He fill you with all of the love we had and still have for you. We thanked Him for allowing us to be your mommy and daddy. We asked for peace in accepting our loss and prayed for strength to remain hopeful, and then we said Amen.

The nurses said they would pray for us too.

My dad gave me a necklace with an angel over a heart. It was for you because you are our angel.

I am a mother to an angel.

I don’t know if I’ll ever stop wanting you but, I do know that you are still one of my favorite memories. And your dad, I have never loved him more. 

Rest well my sweet baby.
Love always with all of my heart,

You're still my favorite memory.