Like becoming a widow, losing a job you love, or countless other heartaches, having a miscarriage grants you instant admission into a secret club. It is a club, of course, that no one wants to join and it’s one with a lifetime membership.I never expected to in it. (Letting His Hands Mend My Heart). I was already in the club of secondary infertility. A strange place to be when I had two kids more than seven years apart and another through fertility treatments.
I had dreams of four kids, homemade casseroles, and being barefooted all day long. We went through fertility treatments again after Tori grew out of her baby stage. When these methods didn’t work, our only option became IVF which was no option at all.
Another baby? Was it possible to hope too much? It was…until I found out about Alex one hot, July evening.
But something was different about this pregnancy. I knew it. I felt different–life felt different. The minute the stick turned positive, it felt like the clock was ticking and I was waiting for the other shoe to drop. We had just learned about our oldest daughter’s autism and I was scared. Afraid of another child with disabilities, too scared to really be happy about this baby.
Finally, the impact happened, sucking the breath right out of me. Loud and forceful– it reeled my thoughts back to “Is it possible to hope too much?” And then…
“I caused this. If only I wasn’t so scared of this baby having autism. If only.”
Today, she would have been two. As my youngest entertains herself with a restlessness that only a five-year-old can do when her mama is distant, I think about where I would be in this crazy messy home, fully overrun with all things toddler and preschooler. No doubt, I would be counting down the moments to nap time as I watched my youngest two play with a tired mother bliss.
As Tori tears her fort apart, I wonder if Alex would have been chubby-cheeked and fussing at her sister. I wonder if my feet would still be bare and dishes still in the sink. And I wonder if any other mother has moments like this.
Is it still okay to have moments of grief over a miscarriage? Can you compare a four week miscarriage to one at twenty weeks? Is it okay to feel like something is missing? Is it okay to remember her birthday?
Can you compare a 4 week pregnancy to a 20 week pregnancy?
The next moment, my phone chirps and I’m tempted to tell a friend, “Today, Alex would have been two.” But I don’t, I’m not sure if she would get it–if anyone would get it. And even then, do I want to bother her with this heavy thought?
Then I remember going through a friend’s recent miscarriage, we ate pizza I bought as soon I heard the news. I told her it was okay to cry and she didn’t need to be strong. We ignored the hopeful words of the doctor, “Don’t worry, you can get pregnant again next month…” Instead, we stayed in her moment, grieving this pregnancy, this could have been.
So I question you with this:
Could you be that friend?
The one who grieves right along with me, the one who doesn’t say, “you should be thankful for the kids you have,”
“It’s God’s way of telling you, you have enough.”
Could you be that friend who brings a meal, sends a card of encouragement several months later, or sends flowers on the baby’s would have been birthday?
What if you could be the friend who understands a baby is a baby, a life no matter how many weeks. It’s a dream, a moment pulling us forward into the future as our empty wombs remind us of what once was?
Could you be the friend who understands a miscarriage is a forever loss?
Forever into the future, little moments like today’s date will remind us what might have been and maybe…just maybe you could be that friend who hugs us on days like today and says, “What might have been…”
P.S. I stumbled across this blog post, a great read if you aren’t sure how to grieve a miscarriage.
P.P.S. Would you be brave enough to share your loss?
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