Two years ago, this week, I found out I was having a miscarriage. Isabel was 9 months old. Of course, it was a very difficult time for Tom and I. What made it especially difficult for us was how quick everything had happened. I had the blood test telling me I was pregnant on Friday. Of course we were ecstatic. We went to a baby fair that weekend (it just happened to be in town). The next week, after I received my referral, I called to make my first appointment and asked about some bleeding that seemed to be getting heavier. Without getting into too many more details, I was sent for some blood tests to get hormone levels the following 2 Fridays. In just over 2 weeks, we went from "Yes, you're pregnant" to "Not anymore." It was horrible. The week after finding out we were pregnant, we sent cute little notes announcing the news to our parents. They got them the first weekend we knew there might be a problem, so obviously when they called to congratulate them, I didn't want to talk and Tom had to tell them what was going on.
I had no idea how to handle any of it. My doctor, as great as I thought she was, was so very clinical about it all. I guess it was, unfortunately, just routine for her. Part of the job. I looked up miscarriages on the net, trying to make sense of it all. I tried to find comfort in the theory that my body was doing what it was supposed to because there was probably something wrong with the baby. Of course, something was still not right in how I was dealing with it. I was bringing my pain to God, but I didn't really know what the pain really was that I was bringing to Him or what I was really asking Him to do.
That year, Easter was in mid-April, so I just tried to surround myself with people to distract myself. My aunt was in town, and we asked some friends over to celebrate the day with us. We didn't tell anybody what had happened. The only people who knew were our parents and the few they might have said something to, and our best friends. I, to this day, still don't know who knows. I guess a lot more now, after reading this :) Of course, not telling people made it difficult when people would announce their pregancies. When one couple told us about their baby, about a month later I think, I was crushed because I was hurting and also because I wanted to be happier for them. They had no idea though, what we were going through. I thought this was the best way to deal with it. And our best friends ended up waiting a long time to tell us they were expecting again. And for whatever complicated emotional reasoning, I think I was more upset they waited so long to tell us. But I understood. Obviously, I was not handling the pain very well.
It didn't take too long until I was pregnant again. Of course, we were nervous. But as you know, that pregnancy went well and 9 months later, Alexis was born. The same week, 1 year later, that I found out that I had lost my baby. Isn't God amazing?!?!?! We were so full of joy with our new little girl, we didn't have time to dwell on the pain of the sorrowful anniversary. A few months ago, this all dawned on me. I still can't believe it sometimes. It is just another example that God knows what He is doing, even if we don't or can't understand it.
So how am I doing with our loss these days? Much better. Last summer/fall, I reconnected with an old friend. She is a saintly woman who God brought back into my life at the perfect time, of course. She recommended that I read Kimerly Hahn's book Life-Giving Love. This book changed EVERYTHING! It helped me get my head wrapped around what had really happened to my baby. Part of why dealing with the loss of my baby was so difficult is because I didn't know what I should be feeling. Surely, I couldn't be as devastated as parents who had lost their baby in their last trimester, could I? But between the book and my new (old) friend, I began to realize that a baby is a baby no matter if it's 1 week along or 40 weeks along. I was valid in feeling what I was feeling. It all made sense now. I would say I have always been pro-life, but I had never really been put in a situation where it mattered. Now my eyes were opened to what being "Pro-life" really meant.
I'm starting to get frustrated with my lack of properly writing what is in my heart to say here, but I hope I've made a glimmer of sense. I've been waiting a few months to write this post, and I think, if anything, just writing it has helped me. For those of you who made it this far, thank you for taking the time to read my words, as clumsy as they may be.
And maybe, you could take a moment to say a prayer for my baby who is no longer with us.
God bless you!
Daily Gospel Reflection for February 19, 2018
6 hours ago