Surviving A Miscarriage

On August 29, 2016 mine and my husband’s hearts were broken with news of a miscarriage. After one year and eight months of trying to have a baby, we had finally succeeded, just to have our little miracle taken from us. Surviving that is something that was unbelievably difficult and something that I turned to others in the same circumstance to for advice on how to cope. It is because of the help that I received as well as the questions I see many other women asking right now that I am creating this post. Below are the things that helped me to cope with my miscarriage.

  1. Realize that your spouse is feeling pain. When my husband and I lost Riley, I didn’t think of how my husband was feeling at first. All I could feel was the weight of my grief. My husband had been ready to start planning a family since the day we had gotten married and I insisted that we wait a couple of years before beginning to try. I knew that he hurt, but he shut down on me. He did not want to talk about it when I really needed to talk about it and I mistook his reaction for a lack of care. This wasn’t the case, however. My husband was hurting just as much as I was, he was trying to hold it in though so that he could take care of me. Since I did not realize his pain initially, there was a great deal of miscommunication and hurt feelings from both sides for the first month after we lost Riley. If your husband has shut down, he may need time to process what has happened or he may be trying to hold it together to tend to you. Be patient with him and be there for him. Tell him that it’s okay to show his emotions to you.
  2. Find support. It is very likely that your husband may  not be able to talk to you about what is going on for a while due to him processing the loss. This is a common observation among women. Give your spouse the time he needs and find another woman to talk to, someone who has been through what you are going through. Your OBGYN or doctors office may be able to direct you to a support group for women and couples who have experienced a loss. You can find someone to connect with and talk to that way. If you choose to tell your family of your loss, you may also be able to find a mutual connection that way. I was able to find a couple of connections in that way and just one conversation made a world of difference for me. That conversation helped me to realize that the things I was feeling was nothing to be ashamed of and it was completely normal. Don’t be afraid to use your app. Some of you going through infertility may be using an app to keep track of things. If so, many of them have online communities that are anonymous and you may be able to find someone to talk to anonymously.
  3. Don’t become overwhelmed and address the emotions you are feeling. This is something that is easier said than done. Experiencing a miscarriage is easily the most difficult loss I have experienced. Some of the emotions I felt were fear, betrayal, loneliness, I felt heartbroken, and one of the worst feelings was emptiness. I felt broken and empty because a child that I had already made so many plans for was gone. I let my grief overwhelm me to the point of nightmares and anxiety. I was blaming myself for our loss but I was not at fault. When I finally began writing down what I was feeling and being more open with the exact emotions I felt, I began feeling a lot better. I encourage anyone reading this who is going through a miscarriage to write it all down. Get yourself a journal and just write. You can be more honest with yourself than you most likely will be with anyone else and it can be very therapeutic.
  4. Get in your Bible and pray. This is something that I wished I would have done sooner. Praying also brings me a great deal of comfort. best thing about praying is your can pray anywhere and God will hear you.  When it all hits you at once,  just pray for peace.  I do have a page under Photo Gallery labeled Bible Verses for Infertility that is full of Bible verses that I find very comforting when I struggle.
  5. Talk to your family. You may be surprised to learn of other members of your family whom have had a miscarriage as well as the amount of support you receive. For me, having my family recognize that we had lost a child helped me. Sometimes it feels as if a miscarriage is downplayed by people with hurtful comments. The support and recognition helped.
  6. Name your baby. No matter how early your loss may be, naming your baby can really help. This is something my husband and I decided to do after reading several of articles that suggested it. It was sad trying to pick a name our for someone we would never get to meet, a child that we had so many plans for, but it made a world of difference. Instead of referring to our child as the baby, we have a name. Riley. A name that has meaning and a name to show that Riley is a part of our family.
  7.  Take a day or two off of work. When I got word that I had a miscarriage, I was still having the miscarriage and I was still having symptoms of my pregnancy, but I no longer had Riley. I was in shock. I was walking through as a zombie almost. I tried to go to work but was not able to stay more than one hour. As soon as I walked out of the doors I was overwhelmed with tears and I just went home and cried. Take a day or two off. Give yourself a couple of days to try and come to terms to what has happened.
  8. Talk to your husband.  I know it was previously said that your husband may not react in the same way as you,  but he will react.  It just may take him more time to be ready to talk about it.  This is something that many other women I have spoken to agree with.  It took my husband about a month before he was ready to open up and when he did,  it was a time that I was feeling a little stronger.  We were both there for each other when the other needed it most.
  9. Cry. There is no shame in crying- this goes for you men out there too. You have experienced a loss and it is okay to cry. Let it out, just don’t let it overwhelm you.
  10. Remember your child. For my husband and I, we have no ultrasound pictures, we didn’t get to hear a heartbeat, and we never got to feel our baby. What we do have is the stuffed animal that I surprised my husband with when I found out I was pregnant. We wrote Riley’s name on the foot and wrote the date we found out we were pregnant. That animal sits on a dresser in our bedroom. My husband also got me a charm for my bracelet. It is a beautiful heart that says “you will always be in my heart.”

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