Beginning around age 12 and continuing for about the next 15 years, I kept a journal. It was what I turned to during intense emotional pain. I wrote things I couldn’t talk about. Somehow it just always flowed better on paper than in conversation. Or if it didn’t make any sense at all, that was ok because nobody needed to understand it. And sometimes it was just a written prayer, crying out to God for help. I don’t journal anymore. My husband has taken its place. But this is one experience that I have found hard to put into words. I thought perhaps writing would once again relieve me of the emotion I don’t want to keep pent up inside.
Our baby is gone. Less than a week after my first checkup where we heard snatches of a heartbeat for the first time. Just when we were beginning to feel the danger was passed, because most miscarriages occur during the first trimester. Only days before, a couple of friends had brought me bags of maternity clothes they no longer needed. I had just spent the previous week deciding on a floor plan and color palette for the baby’s room. Then, Thursday night, my husband held me as I cried so hard I couldn’t speak because I knew….. everything just felt wrong and I knew what was about to happen. By Saturday night, it was all over.
My husband bought a Dr. Pepper for me when he stopped to pick up a few groceries. He thought it might cheer me up because I haven’t had one in 3 months. It sat in the fridge for 2 days. I couldn’t bring myself to drink it. I hadn’t had a drop of caffeine since the day I found out I was pregnant, and he had promised to let me have a Dr. Pepper next weekend to celebrate the end of my first trimester. My mind was associating Dr. Pepper with celebration. I just couldn’t do it. It felt almost blasphemous.
Today has been hard. I’m starting to feel better physically, the pregnancy symptoms are going away. Before we got out of bed this morning, I almost cried when my husband draped his arm across my stomach and it didn’t hurt. I threw away my pregnancy diary today and filed away the paperwork and info from the midwife. Then I sat down and cried over it. Then I played a few mournful-sounding songs on the piano (one of my favorite methods of emotional release). Now I feel like going on a junk food binge….. chips, cokes, candy bars… everything I haven’t been eating. Because I’ve been so careful of what I eat the past 3 months, doing it for my baby, and now it doesn’t matter anymore. I want to throw away the bottle of prenatal horse pill-sized vitamins that I’ve been choking down 3 times a day for the past 3 months. I want to mow the yard, do some exhaustive deep cleaning, go on a long shopping trip… everything I haven’t been able to do because it was too strenuous or I had no energy.
My brother’s wife just gave birth to a beautiful baby girl 2 weeks ago. The thought of holding her scares me. I’m afraid of what it will do to me emotionally. I cry just thinking about it! I have 4 friends who are due close to the same time I was. What is it going to do to me when all those babies begin to arrive?
I guess it’s probably natural to try to figure out what went wrong, why it happened. I keep thinking, “But I did everything right!” Sometimes there really is no explanation……..