What you’re supposed to be reading today is three months worth of posts about how Emory was going to welcome a little brother or sister into the world on February 3rd, 2010 and how his mother and father were elated that their family of three was going to become a family of four. That’s what was supposed to take place this week. Instead, you’re reading about how on Monday morning we went in for a 12-week sonogram only to discover that the fourth member of our family didn’t make it.
Three months ago.
A little over 10 weeks ago, I peed on a stick and found out I was pregnant. We were trying so it wasn’t a surprise. We were so happy.
The next couple of weeks seemed far too easy. I continued following my normal routine. I even worked out regularly. I didn’t feel pregnant and therefore worried. I wrote post after post asking where the nausea was. Where was this pregnancy? Why did it lay so dormant? With Emory, I didn’t get sick, but I knew I was pregnant immediately and felt pregnant the entire time. But this pregnancy was very different. I even wrote that I would probably come to regret wishing for nausea. And as I entered the sixth week, that’s exactly what took place.
The nausea hit me so hard, it literally knocked me to the couch 75% of the day for almost two months. I became totally useless. I wasn’t able to clean or cook or care for my family. I barely showered. Toby Joe took on every role from cooking and cleaning, to working and paying the bills, to playing with Emory. I could barely get my son out the door to make sure he got some much needed sunlight and playtime. I was so sick.
Naturally, I wrote things on here—unpublished things—that, due to the outcome of this story, I will probably regret for a long, long time. And even if I delete those entries now, I can’t erase them from memory. My sickness was so intense that during my darkest moments, I regretted the pregnancy.
Writing that down now makes my chest feel as empty as my uterus.
Week 8. The Heartbeat!
I visited my OBGYN on June 24th and 8:30 AM. Staring back at me from that monitor was the strongest and tiniest heartbeat ever. The room filled with smiles. Mine was the biggest.
I called Toby immediately to tell him the good news.
The next couple of weeks moved along very much the same way. I was sick all the time, laid up and I whined constantly. We took the week of July 4th off to head to my parent’s house so that we could relax together as a family. Toby played with Emory the entire time as I crawled around alongside them.
I can’t say it enough: I was so sick.
I started to outrgow my clothing around week 10. I’d heard that this happens quicker with second pregnancies, so I didn’t let it bother me too much. I packed up my regular pants, and pulled out some old maternity clothes, sweatpants, and elastic skirts. I even went shopping! I bought some really flattering maternity clothes. I wanted to enjoy this pregnancy to its fullest, that meant dressing like a pregnant mother, enjoying the greatness of my belly because this was to be our last child, and therefore my final pregnancy.
Last week, I pulled safely into week 11. I saw the end of my first trimester on the horizon and hoped for a nausea-free period. We spent last week anxiously awaiting our twelve-week sonogram, but the nausea never let up, not once.
I’m not sure if things were getting worse for me physically, or I was becoming less resilient, but this past Saturday was brutal. I woke up and moved from my bed to the couch where I stayed all day and night. That day was by far my worst. (Although I had said that a dozen times prior to Saturday.)
Saturday night out of nowhere, I began sobbing uncontrollably. And you see, that’s the thing; prior that day, I hadn’t experienced the usual mood swings associated with being pregnant and I had them pretty intensely with Emory. I know all pregnancies are different and perhaps that was my body’s way of giving me a break, but I felt pretty solid emotionally the last 3 months.
But on Saturday at 8:30 PM, all of that mental stability hit a brick wall going 1000 miles per hour. I was suddenly devastated. I simply could not stop crying. I read stories that made it worse. I read a story about someone losing a premature baby at 24 weeks, that it had died in their arms. I sobbed harder. I fell to bed that night sobbing. I woke Sunday at 5:30 AM still crying. That lasted several hours. By mid-afternoon, I had gotten control of myself again and all of us went for a walk.
Looking back, I think—and I know this might sound crazy—but I think that’s when the baby’s heart stopped. And I think that my body knew it.
Monday morning had come and I felt better, excited about the sonogram. I could not sleep past 4:30 AM. I got up, fought through the nausea, showered and prepared myself mentally for what was to be a wonderful day. I packed a bag for Em to take to the doctor with us. I put on one of my nicest outfits, jewelry. I even wore make up! My husband would see his second child for the first time. My son would see his future brother or sister. It was going to be a great day.
We arrived early. I drank 24 ounces of water and nearly peed my pants while in the waiting room. My name was called. We walked in, answered a few questions and took our seats. A monitor hung from the ceiling above. Toby Joe told Em where to look.
And you see this next part? It’s the part I keep playing over and over again in my head and it makes me feel desperate, like a trapped animal. We were blindsided by what happened next, totally blindsided. I did not expect them to tell that the baby’s heart had stopped. I had prepared myself for other things, but not that. We had just entered our 12th week of pregnancy. Even the pregnancy application I had on my iPhone stated: “Congratulations! You’ve entered the 12th week. The chance of a miscarriage drops substantially this week.”
The technician measured my uterus first, checked it out for abnormalities. I saw our baby immediately, arms, legs, a back and head. Even the slight outline of a profile.
Then the air in the room changed. I think it happened when every muscle in the technician’s body tensed up. She took the sonogram device and bounced it up and down on top of my belly.
“I’ll be right back.” She said.
“Is everything OK?” I asked, knowing everything was not.
“I have to get the doctor.” She answered.
We waited. I suggested that something was very wrong. Toby Joe, forever the optimist, said everything was fine. He told me not to panic.
The technician walked in with the doctor. The doctor asked permission to look again. Fighting back tears, I asked her if something was wrong.
“We’re not seeing a heartbeat. But I want to double check.”
I covered my face and began sobbing. I heard Emory’s voice next to me, “Mama? Mama?” He was worried. My 2-year-old was concerned for me.
There was no heartbeat. I had had a miscarriage. It had happened sometime very recently as the baby measured an easy 11 weeks.
We were told to go home and mourn. I felt bad for us, sure, but I can’t imagine being a doctor having to break that sort of news to someone especially when they’re so filled with joy.
When we got home, my OBGYN called.
I was given three choices: I could schedule a D&C and have the baby removed at the hospital by her colleague; I could have the baby removed at a clinic where viable pregnancies were also terminated (and I’d therefore have to fight through a line of protesters); or I could wait it out at home.
The clinic surrounded by protesters was out of the question. The option of having it at home worried me sick because of how far along I was. My doctor informed me that what was about to happen was not at all subtle and that having it at home was going to be very difficult. (Translation: I would have seen hands and little feet, the start of a nose, mouth, a profile. And I’m crying again.)
I chose to have the D&C. But had to wait for two days.
Those two days were equivalent to what I imagine purgatory might feel like if surrounded by hell on both sides. We were zombies. We tried to play with Em, hide the pain on our faces. It was hard. But I think we did OK considering, Toby Joe more so than myself.
I spent the majority of Monday crying on our rooftop overlooking this great big city, flipping between two songs by the The Rolling Stones. Toby Joe, bless his heart, worked on damage control and sent out an email to all those I had told about the pregnancy. (I sent out a few as well.) By evening I had the worst headache imaginable. I took two Advil. Because I could. I ate sushi. Because I could. I had a Guinness. Because I could. I fell to bed crying. Because I could. I barely slept. Because I couldn’t.
Yesterday morning—Tuesday—was horrible. I woke up at 5 AM, still feeling very pregnant. The fetus was no longer alive, yet I had every last bit of the nausea I had had all along. I cried into my caffeinated cup of coffee. I deleted over half my contacts on Facebook, leaving only certain very close friends, people I know in real life, and family for reasons I’m still unsure of and will likely regret. I deleted paid for pregnancy iPhone applications, threw out the congratulatory “New Baby” folder I’d been given by my doctor, and wiped out my entire iCal through next February. I wanted to retreat from everything I had known, redirect my life, look to the genuine.
I looked outside at the falling rain, a fitting backdrop, and wondered why the story unfolding was making its way into my history.
Later, I walked to the drugstore to get a prescription that would soften and prepare my cervix for the following morning. As I walked down the street in the rain, passing happy, oblivious people, I thought, “I’m carrying a dead body inside of me. I am carrying our dead baby inside of me and no one here knows.” I imagined stopping one of them and saying this. I imagined the look on their face, what their response might be for a crazy person. And if it weren’t so damn tragic and true, it might be darkly comical.
By afternoon I gathered my strength. My mother was arriving and I had to focus on what was to happen the following morning (today) at 6:30 AM. This baby had died because it was never going to be viable—bad math, not meant to be, genetically problematic, whatever the reason—it was not viable.
That night, I inserted one of the pills I had picked up earlier from the pharmacy and fell asleep in my husband’s arms. I woke up two hours later in labor. Let me tell you, going into labor when there’s no living baby to welcome at the end is a heart-wrenching experience. I called my doctor at 12:30 AM to ask her how much pain I was supposed to feel. She informed me that as long as I wasn’t bleeding, I should wait it out.
I woke up the following morning (today) at 5:00 AM after a pathetic night’s sleep.
This morning, I had our baby removed at the hospital, which was an experience in that of itself. (For now all I’ll say is I will never be able to listen to “Wonderwall” the same way ever again.)
I will write about the D&C eventually, after I let it sit for a few days. Right now I am terrified of suffering from PPD again. I don’t have a new baby to hold in order to make it a little easier this time.
There is a great deal of mourning still to come our way, a great deal of pain to experience. I know this.
Today I feel as OK as anyone who went through this might feel. Physically, unfortunately, I still feel very pregnant. It’s better—the nausea—but it’s not gone yet. And the horrible taste in my mouth that’s been haunting me for months is still very prevalent.
Nature is cruel.
The sorrow I have felt over the last two days is sorrow I never knew possible. I searched for stories like my own online and found a few but not nearly as many as I yearned for and many dated back four years or more. Maybe this sort of thing is just too personal. Maybe women need to mourn alone. After all, I’ve never felt this alone before. I’ve never been so afraid of what the next minute might bring. This is why I wasn’t going to share my story at first.
But then I pictured a woman going through something like this one day soon. She’s inexplicably sad and in search of a little company. She is in search of comfort. This imaginary woman forced me to write today. Someone needs to try and be there for her should she come looking.
I’m not in the clear yet, nor is my husband, who is suffering as well. For all I know, I’m still feeling the effects from the anesthesia and drugs as I write this, but at least now I have a little bit of closure. I’m most definitely more empty than I was yesterday, but I’ve opened a new book up to a brand new page and I’m hoping the next story will have a much happier ending.
I am truly sorry for your loss
I am so sorry you are going through this. I have been there and it sucks.
A friend told me this and it helped me get through the days when I thought I couldn’t go on:
One day, it won’t hurt as bad as it does in this moment.
I am so very sorry for you and your family. That you could share this will help someone someday and that is admirable. Take care of yourself and know people are thinking of you.
I am so so sorry for you and your family.
i’m so so sorry for your and your family’s loss.
Thinking of you today. It’s brave of you to post this, but I do believe that you’ll help someone else with their own grief because of it.
I’m so terribly sorry for your loss.
Wow. I’m so proud of you and so grateful to you for posting this. I haven’t been through this but have two friends who have in the last year and I am so relieved to hear more people speak up about their losses.
I’m on the fence about telling you this but I sit here, 38 weeks pregnant, after a much, much rougher pregnancy than my first. It was so hard. Sickness until 20 weeks, unparalleled anxiety, red flags for more testing for me, a mama who likes to do things the natural way without interference. But we’re here. Your losing a baby doesn’t minimize that difficulty that you experienced over the last three months, it heightens it. It is now officially your suffering for another person you never got to meet.
I am just so so so sorry for your loss. I saw you quote the Doors on Twitter and wondered what was behind it. I know so well the feeling of going through those motions in your life while the world passes you by completely unaware of your longing, devastation, secret, or sorrow. So surreal.
A beautiful post that will most certainly help many many many women who are searching for a real, thoughtful perspective similar to their own struggle to cope.
I hope you find peace sooner than you think you will. I wish I could give you something you need: a hug, a shoulder, a cup of coffee and silence, a good cry, a funny movie, I don’t know. Heal well.
I have been reading you for almost 2 years now. My son is only a few months behind your son’s and I loved reading about every milestone you accomplished with him. Now, as I am TTC, I am scared. But, you have to embrace the things that happen for a reason. One of my gf’s had the same thing happen, but she was at 18wks. Just seeing her, I hope you can trust that things will get better. All things happen for a reason. And, it was wonderful/terrible to hear something from you so deep and profound.
I am so so so sorry for your loss and suffering. The fact that you chose to write this so that it might be helpful to someone else down the road….I am floored by that gesture. That you are able to look past your own devastation and think of someone else, well that speaks greatly of your character. You are a wonderful human being, mother, writer, and wife. Feel better, please and know that there are many internet arms out here embracing you as warmly as we can muster. Much love, darling lady.
My heart hurts for you. I hope you stay surrounded by loving hearts and compassionate souls during this time of mourning and healing. You were very brave to share your experience.
I am so very sorry for your loss.
i am so sorry to hear of your family’s loss. the pain must be so immense – i cannot even begin to imagine it. opening your heart here i’m sure will help many someones with their pain.
I am so sorry for your loss, and your family’s loss. Your post is a beautiful gift to the women who will find solace in it, and I hope it served as a catharsis for you in some way as well.
I am so glad you wrote about this because there are so many women out there who are experiencing this that are basically encouraged to forget about their baby and move on. I had a D&C 3 years ago after finding out my baby had died. I was also at 12 weeks, but my baby had only developed to about 8 weeks. I was devastated as this was to be my first child. I had to wait in a hospital wing for an ” available opening” for my surgery, and lo and behold the maternity wing was right next door, so all day as I waited I was forced to watch fully pregnant women in labor waddle past only hours away from meeting their babies, while I was only hours away from saying good-bye. It was hard, and I am sorry you had to go through what you did. Ignore the people who say ” don’t worry you will have other babies” because they do not and will never understand that having a different baby will not erase the loss of this child. After 3 years I have had a daughter who is now 18 months, and I can say that it does get easier, but it still stings every so often, and still somedays I think to myself…what if?
I do not know you personally but I have been reading your posts since I was pregnant with my daughter and you seem to be to a genuine, loving, and all together wonderful person, my thoughts are with you and your family.
I am so, so sorry.
But thank you for writing about this. About a year ago, a distant cousin had a miscarriage and felt comfortable enough to tell the extended family. Prior to this revelation, I had no idea that other women in my family had also suffered miscarriages. As was their right, they had not told anyone. But as it turned out, each of them, in their turn, had suffered through their own losses on their own, never realizing that they had sisters or cousins or aunts who had gone through something similar and were there to offer support and some measure of comfort. If not for my cousin coming forward and speaking about her miscarriage, none of us would have known about any of the other difficult losses the women (and men) in our family had gone through. There were many, many heartfelt conversations held after that. And those of us who had had miscarriages felt less alone.
I’m so sorry. I’m sending much love and healing thoughts to you and your family…
Also, I’d like to thank you for having the courage to write this. My mother had three miscarriages before she conceived me (her first). Reading this makes me better understand the pain and sorrow my parents felt during that time, the pain that other women and families feel all the time when a wanted pregnancy is lost.
I know that one can never truly understand pain like that until it broadsides us and shatters our emotional spines, but you have done an incredible job translating it here.
I’m so sorry this happened to you. I lost a baby at 11 weeks in 2006. It was due October 28th, exactly one month after my birthday and exactly two months after my husband’s. How cool would that have been?
I had nicknamed it Poppy. I was sure it was a girl. I had crippling nausea as well and had no forewarning that it had passed when I went in for my 12-week checkup.
I sobbed. A lot. I, too, opted for a D&C and had it scheduled for the next morning. My legs kept shaking, I couldn’t will them to stay still. They kept giving me more and more drugs until I was finally able to relax.
Afterward there was so much blood. When my husband came in, he had to hold back a gasp.
I would cry randomly for weeks afterward. I knew it was for the best, that Nature knew best, but still. Then I decided to join my mom on 777km walk across Spain called the Camino de Santiago. It took us a month to finish. I carried a stone from my local California beach along with me and at the designated spot, I added it to the pile of thousands of other stones.
The idea was that by dropping the stone I would let go of the grief. And it worked. I was able to whisper goodbye and look toward the future.
A year later we tried again and now I have the most darling little girl. I will always wonder what Poppy would have been like, but I can do so with wistfulness and just a tiny sigh of resignation for what will never be.
You will be able to as well someday. Hang in there. You will get through this.
Oh god, I’m so sorry. Sitting in my living room, not far from your neighborhood, crying.
It’s the worst fear for a new mom. And nature really is, as wiser folk have said before me, a bitch.
If there’s anything you need — baked goods, dirty jokes via Twitter, you name it.
I’m so sorry for you and your family. I’m sitting in my living room here in Chicago crying hard for what you’ve been through. I will be thinking a lot about you in the coming weeks.
I am so, so very sorry for you and for TobyJoe. I’m sorry for your family. I wish you all the best, and I wish you peace. Know that there is a mom in KS who is crying for you tonight, wishing there was something she could to do help you.
The pain is real, and so is your loss, but I hope that you can find a sliver of comfort in the knowledge that many have gone through “Nature’s mulligan” and subsequently managed to bring another life into this world.
Many miscarriages have a genetic component, certain allelic combinations are simply unable to produce a viable offspring. It’s not your fault, or Toby’s, it’s just…fate.
So very sorry for your heartwrenching loss. Hugs to your entire family during this difficult time (((((Mihow, Tobyjoe, Emory)))))
I am so, so sorry. I wish I could do something, anything to help right now. If I could reach through my computer and hug you, I would. If I was in New York, I would be at your door with food and an ear and the willingness to watch Em if you guys needed it.
Instead, I am here, with my sympathy and my thoughts and my own tears, for all of you.
I am so sorry for your loss. My thoughts are with you and your family in this difficult time.
Honestly, you are braver than I’d ever be. Thank you for being so open, honest and frank about what you’ve been through. It is that honesty that keeps me coming back to you and your blog through all the joys and the pains of parenthood.
I know some parts of life stink right now, but things will get better, a little brighter as time goes by. Thinking of you….
I’m so sorry, Michele. The docs couldn’t stop my sister last year from delivering her baby girl at 24 weeks due to a major blood clot problem and it was just awful. I know it helped her to focus on her other kids, if that might help you at all. Thinking of you and Toby.
I’m so very sorry. I know how overwhelming the grief is — and that there is nothing to do but feel it. Please treat yourself kindly and know we are all thinking of you.
I am so very sorry for your family’s loss. I know that doesn’t sound like much but I hope all of the words of support do offer you, Toby, Emory and Murray (other cats too) some comfort.
Oh, Michelle. I’m so sorry. I’m thinking of you.
I’m so sorry for your loss. I’m not very good with moments like this, I’m bad at getting my thoughts across. I will say though that I honestly hope you find peace when you are ready to and thank you for writing your story.
I have been through this, too. It was one of the most heartbreaking things I ever experienced. I was at a similar point and I made the same choice you did.
I felt broken and beaten down and nothing, at that time, could make it better. Some days were better than others, and eventually, with a lot of support from my husband and my family I was able to accept it and process it.
Just remember, some days are good, some are bad and eventually, you will find peace.
I suspected you were going through a difficult time; it was something you had written on Facebook, and Twitter, then I saw you disappear from my friend list…I’m so sorry to hear this, Michele. I know no words I can say will erase this pain you are feeling right now. I’m just sorry.
I want to address this: “My sickness was so intense that during my darkest moments, I regretted getting pregnant.”
You’re not alone in that. I had extreme hyperemesis (with a PICC line, TPN and lipids, and a zofran pump) that persisted into my 7th month of pregnancy with Adeline. During that period there were numerous times I had the same thought.
I know you probably know this on a realistic level, but it bears saying anyway: you did not wish your baby away. You did not cause its death. The outcome would have been the same even if you never had those thoughts. When you’re feeling badly about thinking or feeling that, please remind yourself of that fact. You and Toby Joe and Emory are in my thoughts.
I can feel your pain right now as I think about what you wrote. I, just like you and unfortunately many, many others, went through a miscarriage and a D&C. It hurt so much, physically and emotionally. I can honestly tell you that the pain did not lessen until I gave birth to my daughter 18 months after the miscarriage. I look at my daughter and think that she would not be here if I had not suffered that miscarriage, and somehow knowing that makes me feel better. I hope that you feel better soon.
Oh Michele. Oh honey, I am so sorry. I know it’s the hollowest thing in the world, other people’s sorrow for your pain, but I cried when I read this, because I know how difficult it must have been to write, let alone live through.
I am so, so sorry for you and Tobyjoe and the only sliver of comfort is that you two are there for each other and there for Emory, and you have a support network around you that’ll be strong when you can’t be.
If you need anything, even just to cry in a beer with internet friends, let us know.
Oh, Mihow. I’m so sorry. I have a few friends who have had late miscarriages (12 weeks plus) and I think of them often. I think the worst part is that in some ways they can never take future pregnancies for granted (not that you would, but you know). I’m so sorry this happened to you guys and am wishing you well.
Michele. i am so sorry for you and your family. The pain must be almost unbearable. You are very brave to share your story. I know several women who have gone through this and it is a horrible thing…worse if for some reason she has to bottle it up and not tell anyone. I hope that in time you will find peace and a return to happiness. (((hugs)))
I am very sorry.
I’m so very sorry. Sending warm thoughts and hope, hope, lots of hope for the future of your family.
I cannot begin to tell you how very sorry I am for all of you. I have been through this twice although it has been quite a long time ago. I will not suggest that you will forget but the memory becomes bittersweet. Now, 20 years later, I remember the dates and I remember the loss and I feel a pang of regret but not the wrack of sorrow that followed immediately after. That is my story and maybe it helps you a little. I hope.
From the other side of the world I sit here with tears pouring down my face. I can’t begin to imagine the pain you and your family are feeling right now, but I want you to know that your words have touched me to the core.
I have followed your posts since I was 35 weeks pregnant and stumbled across your entry “35 weeks pregnant. Holy crap”. Knowing that someone else felt like me made everything seem just a little bit easier, and I’m sure that sharing this very sad time in your life will make a positive impact on someone else out there.
My little girl will be getting extra special cuddles tonight as I think about you and your family at this difficult time.
I’m so sorry, Michele. My sympathies to you and TobyJoe. Out of the deepest pit of grief, you’ve written something amazing that will undoubtedly help other woman who have the misfortune to lose someone they wanted so much. Your generosity in sharing your story is a gift. I hope your openness enables your heart, body and soul to find healing in due time.
Oh, Michele. My heart goes out to you, to Toby, to Emory. I am so very sorry for your loss, and for the pain you are so clearly experiencing. You are loved – please know that.
I’m so sorry, Michelle. I am sad for you. My sister had a miscarriage a couple years ago. It seems they are much more common than people realize. Not that it makes it any easier. Nature really is cruel sometimes. Peace.
I am so sorry. I don’t know what else to say, but I am just so very sad about the loss you and your family have experienced.
I remember thinking the same thing about carrying a dead baby when I went to Target to buy pads before my D&C with my second miscarriage. I’m so sorry and hate that anyone has to suffer this type of loss.
You are in my thoughts.
I’m so sorry! My thoughts and prayers are with you, Emory and TobyJoe.
So, so very sorry. I’m glad that you’re treating yourself kindly and hope that Murray is in the mood for cuddling.
Sweetheart, I am so so fucking sorry. Much love to you and TJ and Emory, and Murray too.
I’m crying with you. I’m so so sorry, Michele.
You’re in my heart today. Much, much love..
I don’t know what else to say except that I love you guys, and we are here for you.
I am so sorry for your loss.
I’m so sorry. You and your family are being thought of, take care.
my heart aches for you. you are such a strength and inspiration to share this pain.
I am so, so, so sorry. :-(
You will get through this. Feelings are terrifying but they’re real and okay and I send nothing but raw encouragement that you just let yourself feel them.
You will be okay. There’s not any way that someone as awesome as you could not be.
I’m so sorry for your loss. I went through a miscarriage in October 2008. Good luck trying again.
I have no words….this is so heartbreaking. I’m so sorry for you and your family.
oh… my heart is breaking for you and your family… i’m so very sorry.
I am so sorry Michelle. I am crying for you right now and even though I don’t know you, I will be thinking about you all day, and probably days to come; we are trying for #2. There are no words to make you feel better right now, so just know you have a lot of love and support out in the internet universe. Many sympathies to you and your family.
Hugs – I’m so sorry. Loss of a baby is such a terrible and tragic thing, especially when you don’t know the why or what. Take comfort in your friends and family, and mourn together.
I’m sure that no number of sorrys are going to change how you must be feeling right now, especially from a stranger, but I really am truly sorry.
When you have been reading about someone’s life for a number of years you begin to really care about what is happening to them and their family. Your blog has become a favourite of mine and my husband’s and our thoughts are with.
Take good care of yourself.
Much love to you, Toby Joe and Emory from myself and my husband Matt
Still thinking about you this morning, Mihow. (I know your name is Michele but I just like the ring of Mihow. Mihow!)
Hang on. Things truly will get better.
I’m crying. This is so sad. Thinking good thoughts for you. Take care.
I’m so sorry for your loss. You’re very brave for posting this, and I think you’re right that your words will help someone else going through a terrible time. My heart goes out to you and Toby and Emory. I know there are no words that can really help, only time, but you’ve got a lot of people here on this site, thinking of you and hoping the pain eases up a little soon. Take care of yourself, lady.
I just wanted to let you know how sorry I am for your loss. My heart was heavy reading your post today. I’ve also lost a baby – even earlier than you and even then… it was very difficult. Will be thinking of you and will pray for you for comfort and healing.
When I read your twitter post yesterday, having no idea what was wrong, I was so worried for you. I am so sorry for your family’s loss and you all are in my thoughts and prayers.
I am so so sorry for your loss. I know words don’t really help – you just need time to grieve, but I will be thinking of you & your family during this time. And I wanted to say how brave you are for posting your story – I believe it will help others and that is a gift from you even in your terrible time.
Michele, Toby Joe and Em,
I read this sad news from you after seeing your tweets on Twitter. Knowing all that you have gone through brought tears to my eyes and I wanted you to know that I am so sorry for your loss.
I hope you find solace in having shared this with the many people that obviously care for you a great deal. You will all be in my thoughts.
In the practice I have been apprenticing at we have had several women miscarry, for one reason or another which we will never truly be sure of. It is incredibly difficult for women to share their stories and find the support that they need. Thank you so much for sharing your story.
You are an amazing woman.
Oh your post just made me cry for you. We’ve been trying for our second and have suffered two losses now, the last one was to be due 2/16/10. I know there aren’t any words to make it better but I certainly know how you are feeling and sending hugs your way.
People will try to offer kind words….”at least you have Emory” or “you can always try for another” but it doesn’t help bring this baby back that was very much alive in your belly. That mother’s connection happens immediately and it’s very hard when you just need to grieve and everyone else seems to get on with their life so quickly!!
The due date is the hardest but hopefully you’ll be pregnant again by then to help lessen the hurt. In the mean time take it easy and it does get easier though it changes you forever. Xoxoxoxoxoxo
Thinking of and praying for you and your family during this hard time.
I’m so sorry that this has happened. I do hope you start feeling better physically…I believe that will get you on the road to overall good health. I know it will take time. Stay strong.
i’m so terribly sorry for what you and your family are going through michele. my deepest condolences…
I’m so sorry for your loss. I hope that the outpouring of warmth and support both above and in real life help you find comfort.
I went through a similar experience a little over a month ago. I’m still trying to deal with the loss even though the rest of the world has moved on; I’m starting to think I may need some help getting through it.
Thank you for sharing your story with us; it’s a small comfort to know how many of us are out here in our own pockets of sorrow and loss.
Oh, Michele, I am so so sorry for your loss–my thoughts will be with you and your family…
michele, i am so sorry to read about this. you and your family are in my thoughts, i wish you well
You are a brave soul. Everything will be okay, but for now, just know you are brave.
[…] then…someone else had her heart broken. Reading her words, her pain, it all came flooding back. Maybe my Dad was keeping it all at bay for […]
So very sorry for your loss. You are so brave to share your story. Wishing you and your family love and peace…
My heart is heavy tonight and my thoughts are with you and your family. I wish I could hug you right now :(
Michelle- I am so, so sorry for your loss. Whenever I hear stories such as yours, my mind (and eyes) is flooded with the memories of my own loss. It was over four years ago, but I remember it like it was yesterday.
I have no words of wisdom other than to just let yourself feel the way you feel. Don’t listen to people who tell you it was “for the best” or “not meant to be.” Those people don’t know what to say and think they are being helpful, when it’s actually the worst thing anyone can say.
I will be thinking of you. Stay strong and stay close to your family.
My heart goes out to you and your family.
Oh no. I am so very, very sorry.
I am now crying over my cup of coffee. It’s a terrible loss and I am so very sorry.
I’m so very sorry for your loss. You’re all in my thoughts. *hugs*
As you can see by your comments this happens to many women. Still, every time I hear or read about this happening to another woman, I cry.
I’ve also got a story that is similar and you are right, these posts need to be up here so other woman can find them when they come looking.
I have never read your blog before today but I am so very glad I did. A few years ago I went through this, twice, in one year. The first I lost at home at 14 weeks, the second several months later at 9 weeks. My experiences were much like yours…totally unexpected…labor…the whole nine yards. The losses of my babies were the two most heart wrenching experiences of my life. I am so very happy to say that after my body got some much needed down time, I went on to have two more healthy pregnancies that resulted in two beautiful girls. I think I can safely say that unless you have been through this, you do not have the capacity to understand the enormity of it. It is devastating and deeply personal. I am so sorry for your loss and all I can say now is that you will start to feel better. It will happen…even though now that may not seem possible.
wow Michele. Thank you for your honesty.
As unfortunate as this is, I think it’s important to note that you already have a beautiful son and a loving husband. I think as a family, you’ll certainly help each other through the pain you’re all feeling.
I come here to visit you by way of Miss Zoot. She said she sent you an email with a link to an article, and I want to echo how much that article has helped me as well. Also, how much Zoot’s writing about her losses has helped me.
Thank you for writing this. I know it was hard, but it was beautifully done, and you are right – it will continue help women who find it and need to have sisterhood in their losses.
My first loss was at 12 weeks as well. It was devastating.
I am so very sorry for your loss, your family’s loss. I hope that you find a little peace each day – more and more each day.
I linked you to my archive where I wrote about my first loss. Just in case it might help.
I, too, am sitting here crying. I am so sorry for you and your family. Thank you for telling us your story. You’re right – when I had a miscarriage, I trolled the internet for woman who’d been through it, so I’m sure your story will give someone strength and help them.
i’m so sorry.
i thank you for sharing.
i know you will mourn and recover but you will never forget.
i have been pregnant twice.
and i have miscarried twice.
it’s the worst feeling in the world.
you are not alone.
I am so very sorry for your loss. That you have written such a profound and articulate post in the middle of such a wrenching experience is completely impressive and amazing. I hope your gift to others in such circumstances magnifies back to you some of this strength you have shared.
I am so, so sorry.
I wish there were something better to say than “I am sorry.” It seems a poor, unsubstantial weapon to hand you, as you battle your grief. It’s the only one in my arsenal, though. Unfortunately.
I am very, very sorry. For all of you.
I am so so sorry, dear. Hang in there. I am keeping both of you in my thoughts. This might cheer you ever so slightly: Jaz was looking for help with some strays on her block, and I told her about ECC (which I learned of from you!) They came and got the cats – TNR’d the adults, and are adopting out the kittens. Jaz took one of them, too. Anyway, lots of love, Michele.
I am so very sorry for you and your family. My heart is breaking for you. I wish I could give you a hug.
I know that you know by now that you’re not alone, just as I know that even knowing that doesn’t diminish the pain. We had our son and then had 2 blighted ovum’s (google it). We had our daughter and then had an ectopic.
It never gets easier.
You never forget.
But it does make you appreciate the children that you already have.
I just found your site through Miss Zoot… there is nothing to say besides I’m so sorry. I know the loss and emptiness you are experiencing. I had a miscarriage with my first pregnancy and it tore me up. It’s o.k. to be sad, you lost your child. Just know, many people understand your pain and will be thinking of you during this difficult time. (Oh, and ignore people who say stupid insensitive things… it’s bound to happen. Sometimes people just don’t know how to react).
Oh Michelle, I’m so sorry about your miscarriage. I’m sending healing thoughts to you and your family.
Oh fuck. I’m so sorry.
I am so so sorry. You are brave and have done a good thing by writing this post.
I am so so sorry for your loss. My thoughts are with you all.
I wish I had something profound to say – something that may ease your pain, if only for a second. But I don’t.
I am truly sorry for your loss.
A beautifully written piece about such a tragic event. You are truly a gifted writer. So sorry for your loss.
I am so sorry, Michele. I hope all the kind comments bolster you a little bit. The Internet can be good like that. Take it easy on yourself.
I am so sorry for your loss. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers as you recover. Hold onto one another. Sending love and hugs.
I’m so sorry. Thinking of you and your family.
I have been where you are. It’s a horrible experience to lay on the table expecting good news, only to hear the worst possible thing. It’s even worse to have to tell people who were so happy for you that the reason for that happiness is no more.
It will be worse still when one of those people you forgot to update stops you in the grocery store to ask about the baby.
I have two daughters now, but had no kids when this happened. I was convinced that was it and I would never have another chance. I was wrong. I know it seems dark right now, but it does get better.
I know we don’t know each other, but now I feel sort of a connection, so I’m sending you a big hug. I’m so sorry for your loss.
My gracious, I am sitting at my desk with tears pouring down my face for you and your family. It’s not fair, it’s just not fair. I have no words of comfort except to say that the internet is holding you all in their thoughts. I’m a complete stranger, but I’m going through a torrential time myself and I have found that the complete strangers are the ones that help me get through the day. Surround yourself with family and friends and love love love on that little boy you have there. My wee one is the sunshine in my life and he makes it easier to pick my head up off the pillow every day.
I’m so sorry about your loss. Your story was very well written, and were so brave to share it. Hang on to your family tonight and know that all things get better, even when it feels like they won’t.
I’m so sorry. Holding you and your family in my thoughts.
You don’t know me at all, and this is my first visit to your blog, but I wanted to say how sorry I am for what you are going through.
Sending you healing vibes… This post really touched my heart, thank you for being strong and sharing this.
My sincere, heartfelt sympathies to you and your family on the loss. We suffered through a miscarriage — twice (turns out we had twins) — before our firstborn came along, and it was one of the darkest times of my life, and I didn’t even expect it to hurt as much as it did, but I was devastated. And they were only 7, maybe 8 weeks along, so there was nothing really physical to see; I can’t imagine those who have already seen a profile or, worse yet, can actually hold the baby afterwards.
Know that many good thoughts, wishes, and hearts beat in your direction and hope for healing for you and yours.
I am so sorry for your loss and I hope it gets better for you. I’m going to go cry and smoke a cigarette and wish I could do more than just type this collective sorrow we all have for you. take care of yourself and yours.
I’m so terribly sorry. I can’t imagine how difficult this must be. Love and hopes for you and your family. All of you are in my thoughts.
I’m so sorry for your loss. Thank you for being so open and generous with your feelings and details. It’s very brave and hopefully helps you heal and possibly helps other women in the same or similar situations.
We’re so sorry for your loss. You were such a help to me when I was pregnant with my baby, you were a few months ahead of me, but I feel like we’re raised “our” boys together. Unfortunately we’ve gone through the same thing as you, a few times since we had our lil one (he was born 2-5-08). My heart truly hurts for you. I wish I had the courage like you to blog about the experiences, I always thought it might be helpful to do so for others who might be going through it, but i never had the courage. You may not know this but I’m sure alot of women are benefiting from reading about what you have gone through. As painful as it is, (and it is mentally and physically) you are helping others with your raw way of sharing your life. Thank you for that.
Hearts and prayers are with you and Toby and Em (and all the kitties of course).
You are a brave, brave woman for sharing your story and for a good friend who recently lost twenty month old twins I thank you for being a hand to hold.
I hope you find peace again soon.
I am so sorry. I’ve been there, too. My prayers are with you and your family.
I am so sorry for your loss. If I were there, I’d hug you and tell you that eventually, you can breathe again without it hurting all the time. I am sorry. Reading your post reminds me of the freshness of the pain at the beginning.
Just a stranger passing through and hoping for peace for you and your family. I had never read your blog before, but it is good that you wrote this, for you and for other mothers out there. I’m sorry for your loss.
I’ve been there. It hurts like hell.
All I can say is that, with time, the pain dulls. It doesn’t go away completely, and it never will, but… it lessens.
When it happened to me, I couldn’t find stories of others who had similar experiences, and it seemed like everyone I knew just brushed it off as a minor thing, saying “It wasn’t meant to be” or some other trite platitude. Sharing your story will help other women know that they aren’t alone. Thank you.
Wishing you peace.
I am so sorry you are going through this but I thank you for writing this. A friend of mine just went through something similar and I’ll be sharing this with her.
Peace and healing to you.
I’m so very sorry for your broken heart. I know you’ll never be the same, and it’s always so sad to see someone go through pain like this.
There’s nothing anyone can do, but listen and love you.
This is very sad, and I feel for you.
I had 3 miscarriages, and the comments were so painful, things like “Oh, well, you can try again,” and “it was just a bunch of cells anyway..” and “thank God, becaue it must’ve had something wrong with it, be glad it’s not born.” Yup. People can be cruel.
For now, nurse your heart, and don’t rush the grief. Do not let the length of your baby’s days be the measure of the worth of his life. He was your baby…and always will be.
I cant pretend for a second to say that I understand the pain you feel. I am so sorry for your loss and so sorry that you and your family are going through this tremendous shock.
Thinking of your family at this sad time. May time make the days easier to get through.
It is your honesty that I love about your blog.
I am so sorry for your loss. I experienced a miscarriage back in 1993 (pre-internet/blogging days), and I agree that it was one of the worst memories of my life because I wanted that baby so so bad. My heart goes out to you.
So sorry to hear about your loss. Wish you recover soon from it.
i’m so sorry for your loss.
sending hugs to you & tj. xoxo
It is so important that we share our miscarriage stories, because it seems to be a taboo subject in our society, and that’s just messed up. Thanks for sharing yours, and I’m sorry that you’re going through this. Mine was at about 10 weeks. I had the D&C too. That baby would have turned two in just about two weeks from now, so I’m feeling it again. You of course never forget. But the intensity of the grief does lessen over time, after the rollercoaster of the first year. I know you’re in those worst first days right now though, and I’m so sorry. It’s f#@$%ing awful.
If you want to read my account, it is here:
You are so brave and so kind to share this here. I found you just now via Dooce and Blurb’s Twitter. I’m 10 weeks pregnant and feeling very unsure about this time around. It feels so different…and I keep reading that so many women who say this experience a miscarriage. I’m glad that I found your post and I’m sending you my best wishes for recovery.
I am one of the “imaginary” women who you have comforted with this post. I sent an email. Thank you.
I’m sorry for your loss. I’m sure that you writing about it will help other women. It is a kind thing that you are doing.
I’ll keep your family in my thoughts.
I am so so sorry for your loss. But thank you for sharing your story. I admire your strength. You and your family are in my thoughts.
you just wrote my experience. word for word. this happened to me last september. at 12 weeks. my daughter at the time was 9 months old. i had/have similar feelings of guilt because i, too, had at times wished the pregnancy away. i felt awful… i wasn’t ready… i barely had the energy to take care of the baby i had… but i never in a million years actually wanted any of those wishes to come true.
is a horrible, horrible thing to go through. the days and weeks after that were some of my darkest. but take solace in emory. he is beautiful and healthy and he will bring you back. and that hole you feel now will fill. and things WILL be okay. take it from someone you have never met but knows this part of you very well.
I am so sorry. And also thank you for sharing. I miscarried at 9 weeks after having an initial ultrasound with a heartbeat. And it was the first time I was ever pregnant. That was 10/06. I now have a 20 month old and a 5 month old. But that first pregnancy and baby are in my thoughts every day. And as happy as I am now, there’s still a twinge of sadness left from that loss that I’m sure I will carry forever. And I had a hard time sharing and dealing with others and looked online for similar stories – I wish I had had yours then.
But as others have said – love and kiss and cuddle with Emory and Toby. Together you will find a way heal enough that you can and will be able to cope. And as scary as it will be when & if you decide to try again, don’t let that fear hold you back – Emory is proof of the good work you do!
I’m sorry for your loss.
I am so sorry for your loss. I also wanted to thank you so much for this post. I am one of the woman you were hoping to help as I just miscarried at 7 weeks this past Saturday. I have been searching the internet for days for a “why” and am finally realizing that I probably won’t find one, but can at least find comfort that I am not alone in the feelings that have been hitting me. God bless you and your family.
I am sorry sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you and your family.
My heart aches for you and your family, please accept my sincerest sympathies.
I have a Son who is just a few weeks older than Emory, And last June I had a miscarriage at thirteen weeks. I never understood, fully, how devastating that could be. How very real a death a miscarriage is. For weeks I couldn’t bear to get out of bed or even open my eyes because I would have to be awake and face that horrible grief. I know how bad you feel and I am SO, SO, SO sorry that you have to feel it. The good news here is that 9 weeks ago I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy after a perfectly normal pregnancy. This baby certainly doesn’ t replace the baby we lost or dull that pain any; though time has gone a long way in helping to heal. I know that if you choose to try again everything will work out for you too.
If you stopped me on the street and told me your story, I would have given you the biggest hug and let you cry and punch me. You take all the time you need to feel what you need to feel. You *are* going to be OK.
I am so sorry. Miscarriage is so very lonely, even with the support of a wonderful husband. Some people will get it and others will say awful things. The hardest thing for me was dealing with people. From the untelling of friends and family to the nurses and receptionists who didn’t look at why I was in the office for blood tests every other week for 3 months. There is no advice I can give you based on mine that will actually help because your grief is so specific. A miscarriage is a death, but unlike most deaths only a couple people will really feel the loss, everyone else will move on and you will still be suffering. I’m glad you are writing about it, it happens to so many women but hardly anyone talks about it, and I think that makes the shock and pain much worse. I think you will come out of this stronger, it may take some time and it may suck a lot, but you will find your way out.
Don’t be concerned about being depressing, please! You’ve gone through a heartbreaking experience–one it was kind of you to put out to the public so women with a similar experience can find some comfort. Thank you for that. I am very sorry that this happened to you and your family.
[…] my all-time favorite blogger, Mihow wrote probably the most heartbreaking post I have ever read. Her son is very close in age to Lukas and I always can really relate to a lot […]
I am so sorry. In my first pregnancy, we discovered that the baby had died just after we saw the heartbeat. It was truly devastating. I send love and light your way. It is so hard.
I don’t have any experience with anything like this personally, but I’m so sorry for you and your family.
I saw this linked from Miss Zoot’s blog and I’m so thankful I found it. I am 11 weeks and 5 days and was supposed to hear the heartbeat for the first time today. My doctor couldn’t find it. When he did the sonogram, I knew it was all over the instant I saw our baby on the screen. He was the same size as our 7 week appointment and there was no tell tale flashing heartbeat. Apparently our baby died after hitting the 8 week mark, which coincides with when I caught the swine flu. My doctor thinks it’s no coincidence. I am completely devastated and was wondering if I should write about my experience on my own blog and you have inspired me to do so. Thank you for sharing your story. It touched my heart.
I’m so sorry. I’ve been there and it sucks.
Here’s a list of too many other women. It saved me. http://stirrup-queens.blogspot.com/2006/06/whole-lot-of-blogging-brought-to-you.html
[…] – As Tears Go By and My Miscarriage – “And just as I closed my eyes, I pictured a little boy with him […]
I know I’m reading this late, but I know that I read it for a reason. A friend of mine had a similar experience just this week. I am going to share this with her because I think she won’t feel so alone. Thank you so much for sharing your story.
I was sent this link by a friend who thought I might find it useful.
Thank you for sharing your story and for making me feel less alone. I am so, so very sorry for your loss.
Thank you again.
“But then I pictured a woman going through something like this one day soon…”
Thank you, from the bottom of my lonely, broken, miscarried, yet somehow hopeful, resilient heart.
I’m deeply sorry for the loss you experienced. it’s been a long time since I’ve visited your site which is why this post is so late in the coming. I wasn’t going to write anything till I got to the part that you explained how you searched out stories like your own.
Mine isn’t quite the same and I couldn’t imagine going through what you did dealing with what was to come for days, but I deeply feel that every miscarriage experience whether 5 weeks, 12 weeks or 20 weeks is just as heart breaking and painful as every other.
I miscarried at 20 weeks, 2 days after a normal healthy sonogram. I will spare you the details except to say that I ended up going through all the stages of a full blown L&D and had to be taken to the hospital by ambulance which attracted the attention of most of my neighbours.
Afterward there was no explanation as to what had happened despite an autopsy and all the blood work you can possibly imagine, and my relatives assuring me that “nature knows best” offered little solace.
It took three long months for my body to reset itself, and by the grace of Mother Nature three months for me to get pregnant again.
I am now 28 weeks pregnant and neither my husband or I can bring ourselves to share this news with anyone but our parents and siblings. I’d like to tell people but I can’t get that little voice out of the back of my head that keeps saying “what if….”
It sounds like you are well on your way to emotional recovery, it must help to have your son to focus your energy on. I think a little part of it will always be there, but that’s ok. I haven’t read if you are trying to conceive again, but whatever path you have chosen I wish you and your family the best of luck and happiness.
Thank you, thank you for writing this and sharing it.
You are right – losses are deeply personal and difficult to express. I haven’t been able to put any of mine into words yet.
Having experienced 1 premature stillbirth and 5 miscarriages, the last one being twins, I SO VERY much appreciate women who are forthright with the difficult facts.
Thank you for sharing your story. I found out at my 12 week appointment on Monday I had a missed miscarriage and had to take medicine to induce the miscarriage Monday night. I am still grieving, but it helps to know other women have had similar experiences. Thanks for posting.
I’m coming to this very, very late, but I wanted to tell you that I, too, had a miscarriage last year (May 19, 2010 – five days after my daughter’s first birthday), and even though I’m now 26 weeks along with a son, I still hurt for that lost child. I just read some of your current posts as well about the new baby (congratulations!) and your conflicted feelings about not feeling as attached to him in utero as a result of your loss. I SO know exactly what you are talking about. When I was pregnant with my daughter, I fell in love with her completely, wholly, irrevocably – long before she was born. This time, I think I’m scared to be too attached to my baby, even though I’m well beyond the point when I lost my baby last year. I hope, with all my heart, that things will change once he’s here, and I will be able to love him without fear.
My heart goes out to you.
I really needed this – I’ve been reading your site for years and years, and remembered that you wrote about your miscarriage. I’m just about to go through such a painful choice, at 19 weeks pregnant and we have just been told the placenta isn’t functioning properly.
I am so glad that you wrote this, and kept it, so that I can read it and feel, and try to be prepared, because right now I can barely imagine what is about to happen.
Oh, kater. I’m so sorry to read this. I can’t fathom what you must be going through right now and the pain you’re feeling or are about to feel. But I will offer this because it’s true. And while it may not make you feel better, you need to know that you WILL survive this. It will change you forever and there will be moments where you wonder if you can go on, but you will be OK. In time, you’ll be ok. Changed, stronger even, but ok.
I wish I could give you how you’ll feel in years from now so you’ll take some solace in that, but I can’t. You’ll be ok. You’ll be ok. That’s what I do know.
Please email me if you want to talk. I’ll even call you if you want.
I am so sorry.
I’m so sorry, Kater. So, so sorry.
I’m so sorry for your loss. You write beautifully and touch on how we truly feel in our innermost selves – so many women will relate to this post and I hope they get to read it and feel heard and validated and not alone in their dark days following miscarriages. I also think you are so lucky to have such a loving family! your husband and son sound AMAZING and I can tell you appreciate them and honor their place in your life. treasuring them will get you through this. I am very pragmatic and I truly believe that a miscarriage is nature’s way, our body’s way, of dealing with, as you say, bad math. we trust nature so much with our bodies so though it’s tragic and questionable now, try to trust it. I know a successful pregnancy is in your future! I just know it. And finally, never EVER blame yourself for dark thoughts. those thoughts can’t cause what happened. you were sick, like really really really sick by the sounds of it. I’m sure you know this but sometimes it’s nice to hear. I wish you all the best in mourning your loss in your own time and way.
Yours in motherhood.
Sending love, strength and good wishes to kater and all those who care for her.
Kater, I am so sorry. I can’t offer any more than anyone else except to say that I too know you WILL make it through this.
And wallow if you need to. Feel what you feel because eventually you will feel better. Eventually. Thinking of you and sending strength.
I guess I’m that woman looking for a little company and am grateful you wrote this because today it’s helping.
I am so very sorry to read this, Mar. It gets easier, but it’s a painful, horrible thing to endure. My thoughts are with you. Please feel free to email me if you want to talk. I am always around.