How I Survived Miscarriage and Infertility
My quest to become a mother was fraught with complications. I suffered years of miscarriage and infertility problems and thought I would never realize the dream I’ve had since I was little, to one day be a mother. This is not something that I’ve shared with many people because the pain was too great, and because I’m not really someone who opens up about their emotions with other people very easily. But recently, I wrote a guest blog about ways to get through miscarriage and infertility as a couple (read it here), and it helped me to understand that I really do need to open up about it a little more in order to move past it.
It was a typical date night, and my husband and I were out watching a movie at the local theater. The movie turned violent, and one scene suddenly had me in tears, like full on bawling my eyes out! My husband gave me a concerned look as I am not a crier, and I wiped my tears away quickly, embarrassed by what had set me off. I didn’t understand what had gotten into me! As the movie progressed, it slowly dawned on me what was going on, and as soon as it was over I excitedly asked my husband to stop by the store real quick so I could grab a test. I was pregnant!!!
A few weeks later, I was at the office getting ready to leave for lunch when I felt like I was about to start my period…only I was 8 weeks pregnant at the time. Panicked, I went in to the bathroom and discovered that I was spotting blood. My heart sank and I had the sick feeling of intuition of what was about to happen. I went out to the front desk gal and she noticed the worried look on my face and asked me what was up. “I think I’m having a miscarriage!” I blurted out. She was shocked and I was too, but I didn’t know what else to do. I told her to let my boss know I wouldn’t be back that afternoon and I drove myself home.
A few minutes after I arrived home I started having painful contractions; I was scared and distraught over what was happening to me and my baby! I sunk down to the floor and screamed and sobbed and called my dad to see if he could come take me to the hospital since my husband could not answer his phone while at work. My dad took off work early to come get me, but before he arrived, I miscarried my baby alone in my house. The physical pain was intense, but short lived. The emotional pain continues to haunt me, and the biggest thing that still gets to me is that I never got to find out the sex of my baby.
For the next two years, I tried everything I could think of to try for another baby. I talked to doctors, read all kinds of advice articles on how to get pregnant, used apps on my phone to track every aspect of my fertility and my sex life, and I took test after disappointing test. I was in despair! I felt like a failure, like my body was letting me down, and like God was punishing me for something. IVF was not an option for me because we just didn’t have enough money. The same went for adoption. I became sensitive to anyone asking me when I was going to start having kids, and anger and shame would boil inside of me any time anyone mentioned it.
I was also sad most of the time. I tried to put on a happy face when I was around other people, but in my own home I felt exhausted and overwhelmed by the constant performance. My husband frequently told me that he thought I was depressed. I didn’t feel like I was depressed though…I felt broken. I felt like part of me was missing and no one around me really understood just how much I was hurting.
I prayed about it a lot, and finally after many months, I came to the conclusion that maybe God had something else in mind for me other than motherhood. That was deeply painful to accept, and I continued to pray about it and tried to envision what my life would be like if my husband and I remained a family of two. I talked to my husband about this idea and he seemed agreeable, so I started going about my life with the plan that my husband and I would just remain a couple. We talked about traveling the world and going on adventures instead of becoming parents, and I did my best to set my dreams aside.
This idea is what eventually led me to plan a trip for the two of us to New Orleans about 2 years after my miscarriage. My husband is a huge foodie and loves Cajun style cooking, so I thought it would be a fun way for us to reconnect and start filling up the travel journal that he’d gotten me for Christmas. I booked our tickets a few months in advance and made reservations at a B&B, and we were looking forward to the trip.
Then one night, about 8 weeks before our trip, I started crying out of no where, and instantly I felt the crazy feeling of déjà vu as I realized what was happening with me again. I was in complete shock, and I took a test in private to confirm: I WAS PREGNANT AGAIN!
I kept the secret to myself for a few weeks, scared to tell anyone should I end up jinxing the whole thing. But on the inside, I was relieved and elated and so so thankful! God had not abandoned me, and my dreams that I thought had been set aside forever were now instead becoming reality. I finally realized that I had needed to give my thoughts and my dreams up to God in order to become what I truly wanted all along. And now, I was going to be a mommy!
Eventually, I did tell my husband and our families and friends, and our trip to New Orleans turned into a sort of “babymoon” for us. We were elated at the thought of becoming parents!
While the next few months of my pregnancy were less than ideal, and set off a new wave of anxiety for me, this story certainly has the happiest of endings! Read more about my pregnancy here, and about the birth of my daughter here.