An Unexclusive Club

In the interest of not hijacking Miss Zoot’s comments, I’ll use my own damn blog. One supposes that’s why I have it and all …

Lily Allen has had a miscarriage. I don’t know who she is, or maybe I do and I don’t know it? But now I have this piece of intimate knowledge about her and I feel so … sad for her. To lose a pregnancy that you were happy about is horrible. I hate to say “lose”, it’s not like you misplaced it. You don’t wake up one morning and say, “hmmm, I wonder where I put that fetus.”

I had a miscarriage in my first pregnancy. We saw the heartbeat at 7 weeks and I assumed I was in the clear. And then the day after returning from our honeymoon I was standing in a co-workers cube when I felt a gush. And I knew. I had someone drive me to my doctors office. Crying the whole way. Praying the whole way. An ultrasound confirmed it, no heartbeat. I was just over 10 weeks pregnant.

People in our social circle didn’t have a lot to say. I heard through the grapevine that they felt bad for us but didn’t know what to do or say. So most did nothing and said nothing. Except B – she called and said, “I don’t know what to say. I don’t know what to do. But ask anything of me and I’ll do it.” Acknowledging my pain was worth so very, very much.

I was told it was for the best. That these things happen for a reason. That it’s nature’s way. I’m a smart girl, I get natural selection. But really? Not what someone that’s been planning a life with a baby wants to hear. We were choosing names. We were planning a nursery. And then we weren’t. I was told there’d be another pregnancy. That in three months we could start trying. And we did. And seemingly everyone around us got pregnant before we did. It took 13 months of trying to get E. It hurt every single day. For months, I couldn’t remember our wedding date because it was so close to the miscarriage date that I had to purposely remember which came first (and no, we didn’t get married because I was pregnant – we decided to get married, I got pregnant as a bonus).

I hope every woman that suffers a miscarriage has a support network. It’s shocking to me, that once you do volunteer the information that you’ve had a miscarriage you hear dozens of “me too” stories. You’re now a member of a not very exclusive club.

I agree with Miss Zoot that our society doesn’t know how to mourn this sort of loss. There’s no funeral. There’s no announcement. There are a lot of hushed acknowledgments not to ask about the pregnancy any more. I didn’t want to be pitied when I had my only (and I thank my lucky stars for that) miscarriage. People acting as though nothing had changed, or trying to justify the miscarriage didn’t make me feel better. It’s not like not acknowledging what had happened was going to make me forget. Having the loss acknowledged helped. Hearing “I’m sorry” helped.

3 smart people left their mark:

  1. Zoot, 20. January 2008, 8:53

    I think the term “It’s for the best” bugs me because, it implies that you’re BETTER OFF, which, really? Is there anyway a mother is better off without her child? What the heck?

    Thanks for contributing to the conversation!

  2. halimah, 21. January 2008, 3:39

    It’s so hard to know what to say, as with any death. A local pastor miscarried at 7 months over the summer. It was so heartwrenching.

  3. Scylla, 21. January 2008, 14:52

    I feel your pain. I had one when I was 18. I was supposed to go away to college, and instead, I got pregnant.
    One hour after I finally decided to keep the baby, I had a miscarriage.
    Everyone told me it was for the best, and it probably was, but I still think about that baby.
    So I am sorry, I am certain it hurts more when you are married, and planning that step in your life. I sends a hug.