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My story: Dealing with Miscarriage and Fears of Infertility.

This week I will be focusing on miscarriage and loss as I think it is so important to talk about these issues rather than just pretend they don’t happen. As I have had personal experience with miscarriage I thought I would start by sharing the story of my journey through miscarriage and fears of infertility.
We  had been married for around 18 months when we starting thinking about the right time for us to start a family. Tim was studying full–time at Bible College and I was working full-time so we knew it may be financially difficult but we also knew that we did not want finances to dictate when we started our family. We could not see any real reason not to start trying so we decided to go for it. I had started taking the pill a few months before we were married and stopped a few months before we were ready to start trying in the hope that it would be of my system by the time we were ready.
We tried the first month and my period returned which we guessed was pretty normal, then the second and the third with no success. In hindsight three months is not very long but during this time my friends seems to “accidentally” fall pregnant and here was I still waiting. 
To our absolute delight I was little late the fourth month and a pregnancy test confirmed (with a very faint line) that we were pregnant. We were over the moon with excitement. We went to the doctor that afternoon to confirm the pregnancy and came home and told all our families and some friends the exciting news. That was the Sunday afternoon and I headed off to work on Monday with a big smile on my face and excited plans in my heart for this little person which was growing inside me. On the Wednesday I was at work and went to the toilet to find a slight amount of spotting and my heart sank. I read every book and looked up the internet to see what it might mean but nothing could tell me whether my baby would be ok. The spotting increased and I also had an ultrasound (where the people were super rude to me asking why I was even there so early) which showed no evidence of a pregnancy. It later turned into a miscarriage which was also confirmed by blood test results.
We were heartbroken, our baby was only a few days over 5 weeks old and we had only known for 5 days but we had already invested into this pregnancy and to us it was more than a collection of cells it was our baby. I remember just laying on the bed crying, wondering why it happened. Was there something wrong with my body? Did I do something wrong? So many thoughts went through my head but the hardest part was knowing that our little person had died and we were no closer to holding a baby in our arms. We also found telling our friends and family difficult and we got a range of different responses. One of the worst was someone telling me that “if we hadn’t been so on the ball with it, we might not have even known”. That comment hurt me because it made me feel like I had no right to grieve as it was so early, that I should not have even known I was pregnant.  Other unhelpful comments were those which dismissed the pain I was feeling such as “it was probably for the best”, “there was obviously something wrong”. I just wanted people to say it really sucks doesn’t it and give me a hug.
Another four long months passed and my cycles were confusing and I was not sure what was going on. We tried using an ovulation kit but later found a website called fertility friend where I could determine my ovulation by taking my temperature and recording other signs. I did find this helpful (when I was not obsessing over it) and it was able to tell me (without the need for a pregnancy test) that I was pregnant again. We went to the doctor as I was already spotting a little bit and a blood test again confirmed that we had miscarried again. 
After this happening twice at a similar stage, I began to become more convinced that something was wrong. Would we ever be able to carry a baby to term? I convinced the doctor to send us to a fertility specialist who gave us both tests and everything came up clear and he said to us that we were likely to look back in a few years and have lots of little people running around. He was a wonderful doctor and we felt comforted by the fact that there was no obvious reason why it was happening.
We continued trying for just over three months with no success. It was coming up to a year since we started trying and we were both exhausted from the trying, the waiting and the disappointment. I remember it was the day after Mother’s Day in 2008. I thought I may be pregnant but we had not been taking temps so it was hard to tell. I did a test and it came back negative so I was again feeling the disappointment of another month passing. I went to work that day feeling pretty low. Part way through the day a girl I sat next two pulled her chair in closer and told me that she needed to tell me something. She knew we very having trouble conceiving but knew she had to tell me that she was 9 week pregnant before it became public. I know she found it hard to say and I appreciated her being concerned for me but it was still hard to hear. That night I came home and told Tim how hard my day was while he was caring for me and comforting me the phone rang. It was his sister, she was calling to tell us they had fallen pregnant (She also struggled to tell us as she knew how hard it would be and was very considerate and caring towards us). I was so happy for them but I was also devastated it just seemed so unfair. They had not even been trying and had been blessed with a baby and we a year later were still waiting and still feeling the pain of two miscarriages. I was at my lowest point ever. I wondered if life was worth living. I was angry with God and knew that his plan may not been for me to have children and I hated the idea of that.  
A couple of days later my period still had not arrived and so we decided to get a blood test which amazingly confirmed there was a little person inside me. It was an easy pregnancy as I was not sick and had no other issues but the whole time I was so fearful that something would go wrong. We did have some spotting at six weeks but it came to nothing and in January 2009 after a super long but absolutely amazing labour our beautiful Emily was born.
Our Emily..worth the wait
We will never forget the pain we felt following our miscarriages as I do believe that there are two little souls hanging out with Jesus until we are united again. I look forward to meeting them and thanking them for even the tiny amount of time they spend with me. Sometimes I feel like it was silly to be so upset by miscarriages that occurred so early but I wrote this post to say that it is painful no matter what stage it occurs as the desire to have children is there, as is the pain of knowing that you will never hold that child in your arms (and potentially may never have a child at all).
I wish I had never experienced miscarriage but I know that God has used me so many times to talk to and comfort others who are experiencing infertility and loss. It has also opened my eyes for the need to be praying for these people. For the past two years I have been praying almost daily for a couple (along with a list of others) who were struggling for six years to fall pregnant. What a joy it was to hear recently that they are in the second trimester and everything is going wonderfully. God heard the many people praying for them and blessed them with a child. However sadly, sometimes despite faithful prayers and hopeful Christian couples wanting to have children it may not be in God’s plan which I can only imagine would be heartbreaking.
I hope that by sharing my story I have been able to help someone reading this who has struggled with miscarriage. Please also share this post other others who may benefit from reading it. If you yourself have not suffered a miscarriage then be thankful but also be mindful of what you say to those who have. Acknowledge their pain, let them talk about it and be careful with your words. 
Deb from Aspiring Mum also has experienced miscarriage and the loss of a baby. Her post on her experience also gives some really good ideas on caring for people. It is worth checking out.
Please also read my upcoming guest post from Amanda Axelby author of Grief and Grace: A Journey through Pregnancy Loss
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Comments

  1. We ARE on the same wavelength – I think it is important to get these things out in the open. When we had our miscarriage, I was amazed at how many ladies at church said the same thing had happened to them. I had never known about anyone having miscarriages before…In the struggles, God still blesses us with others to lean on.

  2. Thanks for the link Lisa. It's great to hear your story, and it will no doubt bless and encourage others. So many women go through this, yet it is still such a silent issue. I think it's also important for those who haven't gone through miscarriage to be informed as to how they can approach/help someone who has. This might prevent some of the off-hand remarks that people say that aren't in any way comforting for someone who is grieving the loss of a baby.

  3. We lost our babies very early like you and I often felt guilty for my feelings of loss when I met people who had still births and late term miscarriages, few people knew of our losses. I already had a little boy and I thought my body was turning against me.The thing is every miscarriage is the loss of your baby, the loss of your hopes and dreams for that baby. Interestingly enough it took 9 months for us, from the first oops pregnancy and subsequent loss of 2 babies before I got pregnant with our daughter. Off hand remarks will always happen, family members will have babies and the pain never really goes away, (our babies would be teenagers now) but we can share our stories and let others know that they are not the only ones on the sad walk of loss.

  4. Wow! Thanks for sharing your story. You're very brave to speak out about this. You've given great advice and your girls are gorgeous :)Naomi x

  5. Thanks for all the lovely comments and emails. It is a really hard subject to talk about (although it gets easier the more you do it). I am always encouraged to hear that my story allows others to share their story too.

  6. we lsot a baby at 16 weeks pregnant. that was 2 yrs ago. it's so true what you say about no matter how far you are you still have the right to grieve. I'm attempting to blog my experience but could only get as far as the few days leading up to it and now emotionally am stuck.i came back to God after our loss as i just want answers. haven't found any and jsut can't figure it out at all

  7. Bloggingmumof3 – Thanks for affirming the right for someone to grieve at any stage. I do hear stories like yours and think how much worse it must have been for you but we all experience things in our own way. I hope you can get your thoughts down in a way that helps you and others but it is hard. I have had to share my story many times and in public so it was easier to write it this time. I don't really think there are answers this side of heaven other than it is a world that is tainted by sin and therefore bad things happen but if it can draw you back to God then at least God is taking something terrible and using it for good. I am happy to chat more by email if you would like to.

  8. It's amazing how similar a story can be to your own. When you love someone so desperately even though you've only known about them for a few days. It doesn't make the hurt anyless. I too am looking forward to the day I get to meet my little found baby. Lost to my life on Earth, found in the arms of Jesus. Something to look forward to. Great finding more Christian mummy bloggers!

  9. Hi Lisa… stumbled across this through your sidebar. I know this is an old post, but I just wanted to reach out and tell you how much I can relate to your story. My first direct experience with grief was also through a miscarriage. I suffered an early miscarriage like you and went through a long journey before we finally had a successful full-term pregnancy and birth.I know the difficulty faced with dealing with such an early miscarriage. The whole experience is so fleeting that it gets so easily brushed aside by the world. But is is REAL… even before conceiving we are already hoping and praying and dreaming… and in those very early days, I remember already praying and talking to baby, telling him I am doing my best to eat the best foods for him and doing what I can to stay healthy for him.Even now I can’t help choking up and crying as I read your post and remember my own experience. There is so much I want to say… that I know… I know about the 2-week-wait, the silent tears, the trying not to care or hope too much when it’s just impossible not to.{"Nobody speaks of the tiny little souls lost, too small to hug and too small to say goodbye to. They are but a whisper on our breath."}

    • For some reason this comment only just was published but I read it when you wrote it and was really touched by your words. It sounds like you understand what I went through (your own version of course). It has been lovely following your wonderful blog recently. Thanks for your comments

  10. Thanks for sharing your story – I so understand all your emotions. We have been trying to have a second child for a year ow, and have lost five, and it's a heart breaking journey.It always helps to know I am not alone xx

    • Hi Wendy, I have been reading your blog recently. I feel those emotions again when I read your posts. I will be praying for you. I have a very good track record for praying for people to have babies :) Two IVF babies on my score card. It really is in God's hands though. Hugs to your and your family.

  11. Thank you so much for sharing this! I have felt so lost this past month after having a miscarriage in August. I keep blaming myself even though I know there was nothing I could do. I was about 5 weeks along and only knew for 8 days when I found out I was miscarrying. I also heard if my husband and I wouldn't have been trying we would have never known. The hardest part is how many people are announcing pregnancies around us. Most of them have no idea we lost a baby, but it still really hurts knowing they are having one while I lost mine. I am praying God's plan will take away this pain and that there will be at least one child in my future. I want to thank you again because it is so nice to know I am not alone in how I feel. Every feeling you mentioned I have felt. My husband and I are going to continue to try, but I have no idea what the future holds. It's wonderful to know that others have gotten a blessing after going through this same thing.

    • I'm terribly sorry to hear you are having to go through this. It really hurts and no one can really understand what you and your husband are going through. I am glad that my blog post has helped you feel that you are not alone and that it is totally right be be heart broken at ANY stage of pregnancy. I will pray for you that, like me, you will have little people to love very soon. Big hugs. It is a hard road but it is worth it. xx

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