This week was meant to be very different.
I should be nesting. Struggling to tie my shoes and cursing the cold weather as there isn’t much point buying a maternity coat with only two weeks left. Our family of 4 should soon becoming 5. And I’m so heartbroken that it’s never going to happen.
In a cruel twist of fate, all of this is falling during Baby Loss Awareness week, so stories just like mine are everywhere for me to see. I feel like I’m in an ever decreasing room and I can’t find the door. My worse nightmare came true and now it’s plastered across every news outlet as far as the eye can see. We need to talk about it, we need to remove the taboo, but I just wish it wasn’t this week.
I’m a walking, talking statistic. 1 in 3 pregnancies end in a miscarriage. I had two healthy babies and failed at attempt number three.
Seeing ‘pregnant 3+ weeks’ flash up on the test my mind ran away with itself. This was my boy. I was sure of it. I didn’t even know how much I longed for a son until that very moment. A mummy’s boy. The bond my husband had with his mum. That enduring love. My boy.
The baby that will never be.
I ran and told my neighbour as soon as I got off the phone to Mr L. Hands shaking as I showed her the photo of the test on my phone, no words able to come our of my mouth other than ones I cannot repeat on here. I worked out I would be 6 weeks, give or take, and kicked myself that I might not be able to ski when we left for France the next week. I said I’d keep it quiet for a while, until the sickness kicked in, I liked the idea of it being our little secret.
That didn’t last long. I had told two more people by the end of the day. And then a few of my good ‘mum friends’ at the school gate the next morning. I’m glad I had really, it made telling them the bad news easier somehow.
I woke up at 6am in pain. I remembered the same feeling, adrenaline tearing through my veins and an uneasy taste in my mouth, from going into labour with the girls. I knew then what was to come.
I did the school run with a smile plastered on my face, but I think my glazed over eyes gave me away. I had to stop the car twice on the way home when the pain got too much. As I fell through the front door I was rushed to A&E.
No heartbeat. Low HPG levels and a grey area around my tubes on the scan. As the words Ectopic bounced around my head I began to panic. I knew the risks. In trying to give the girls a bigger family I had inadvertently put my life in danger. The guilt I felt in that moment hurt more than the pain my body was going through. I hated myself. I was a selfish mother, who deserved exactly what was happening to her.
All I wanted was to go home. I wanted my babies. I needed my babies. I longed for my own bed.
Right in that moment I could have crawled under the covers and never came out again. It was the lowest I had ever felt. Everything was black. My heart as empty as my womb.
I did the only thing I could. I took a shower, got the suitcase out the loft and packed for skiing.
By the Friday I was given the all clear, I wouldn’t need surgery, my body was dealing with this on its own.
We went to France and I cried inside my ski goggles everyday.
Things have got easier. I still cry a lot when I’m on my own. Mainly through grief; at a life we will never know, but through guilt too. Guilt that I couldn’t look after that baby like I did my other two, and then guilt that I’m crying over a baby I never knew when I have two beautiful girls asleep upstairs. The guilt of a miscarriage is endless.
Pregnancy announcements have been hard. There is more guilt there too. I’m so happy for my friends, but it hurts me all over again. Like picking off a scab and watching the cut start to bleed again. I smile, hug and ask excited questions – but then when I’m on my own and it all sinks in, the tears fall. I hate being the person people are scared to tell that news to.
A door had closed on us, and we are just too scared to open it again.
There is a chapter of my life that is over now. And that is hard to come to terms with.I will never watch my body change, feel that first kick or meet my child for the very first time again. There won’t be more presents under the tree at Christmas. There won’t be an extra name in my Mothers Day cards.
I just have to keep going and not look back. If I stop and think for too long the pain may rip me down from the inside.
He will always be a part of me, the baby that will never be. A piece of my heart missing that can never be replaced.
But that is the life I have been given, and we must look at the positives now.
I’m alive, I’m loved and I’m strong.
And I will get through this.