"Nobody Understands That I'm Still Going Through It" - One Her.ie Reader Shares Her Heartbreaking Experience Of Miscarriage
It is estimated that approximately 14,000 women suffer a miscarriage in Ireland every year and for many, this can be a lonely and isolating experience.
In a searingly honest account, one Her.ie reader opens up about the heartbreaking loss of her first child, her struggle to come to terms with the aftermath of miscarriage and the importance of breaking the silence.
"Last summer, I sat in my bathroom waiting for my fate to be revealed.
Not for one second before I took that test did I believe I was pregnant but there they were, the two pink lines that would change the rest of my life. I was only 20.
I laughed and cried but soon welcomed the idea of motherhood into my heart. Fast forward to 11 weeks pregnant and there I was, on a sunny Thursday morning, sitting in the waiting room to see my baby’s scan for the first time. I was unbelievably excited.
By this time, my family had shown full support and the father had decided he had no interest in his child. A nurse came in and took me down to the room. She asked many questions but soon, she was squeezing gel onto my belly.
I held my breath. I thought I was going to burst with excitement. As she scanned, she went quiet.
I could see my baby and make out its head and little arms and legs. But I felt uneasy. I was waiting to hear a heartbeat. It felt like a long time before the nurse asked me to get myself ready for an internal scan, as the baby was too small to be 11 and a half weeks.
I was then told that my baby, my beautiful little baby, had no heartbeat and had died at seven weeks gestation.
I couldn't understand it. How could I not have known for the last four weeks that my baby wasn't alive? Why didn't I miscarry myself? I was hysterical. Devastated.
I was booked in for the procedure a few days later. I still showed no signs of miscarriage. I begged and pleaded with God to give me a miracle. I went through two heartbreaking weeks of being in and out of hospital due to complications and I was so physically and emotionally drained.
People came to see me, relatives and friends. Nobody knew what to say, but their presence was greatly appreciated. My niece was brilliant. She didn’t understand the situation at three years of age but she knew I had been in hospital so she tried to look after me. She cracked jokes and danced and sang for me. She brightened up the worst days of my life by just being herself.
A few friends disappeared and some showed their strong loyalty. It was hard. I wasn’t easy to be around. A few weeks later, I realized that everyone else was ready to move on, but I wasn't. I went on my first night out but I was home by 12 and cried myself to sleep.
I got frustrated when people wanted me to do normal things. I didn't want to feel normal. I just wanted to be stuck in my cocoon of grief. I had my good days and really bad days. I could go from being really happy to sad to angry in seconds. I could act out over nothing just because of what I was feeling inside. In fact, I still do.
Christmas was hard. The worst part was sitting at the table on Christmas Day, knowing that I should have been just three weeks away from giving birth. I was so heartbroken.
Then came January… and my due date. I was miserable but kept myself busy in between floods of tears. I cried myself to sleep. That's if you could call it sleep.
It’s two weeks after my due date now and I feel so empty. I should have a newborn baby but I don't. I'm alone and nobody understands that I'm still going through it. No matter what they see on the outside.
I'm writing this because I'm sick of people treating miscarriage with less importance than any other loss. A loss is a loss. A loss of what the future could have been. A loss of all the plans I had made. A loss of part of me.
It’s my baby and I refuse to keep quiet just because other people want me to. I refuse to let others talk down about miscarriage just because they don't understand it, or feel uncomfortable with it. I'm so done with taboo.
It’s true what I said at the start. Those pink lines will change the rest of my life. I want the world to open their minds and their arms for all the women that lost their babies and for all the babies that deserve recognition. They were here too. A life is a life, no matter how brief. I want to speak for the women who feel they can't.
Support each other.
Break the silence."