Remembering the Joy
When I found out I was pregnant for the second time, I sobbed. My husband and I didn’t know if we wanted a second baby and, as with our first, this pregnancy was a surprise. Once I spoke to my husband and we were on the same page, I finally allowed myself to feel elation. From May 22nd, 2017- May 28th, 2017 I felt elation and excitement. And even when I started bleeding, I told myself to think positively and that by doing so and keeping hope alive, I would keep my baby alive.
When you lose a baby or pregnancy, we are all expected to mourn and grieve, but rarely are we allowed to feel joy in those fleeting moments. Of course not everyone will feel joy in the days after their loss, but in my 6 days of confirmed pregnancy, I had epic amounts of it.
I excitedly texted my best friends and told them the news. I took a video of my daughter (just 18 months old) pointing to my stomach and saying, “Baby” even though she didn’t understand what it meant. I decided what the nursery theme would be and talked to my husband about the possible plans of moving our daughter’s room or using one of our spare rooms for it. I went to Joann’s and picked out some fabric for a blanket I’d ask my mother-in-law to sew. I purchased a shirt and wrote “Red, White, and Due” with my calculated due date. I bought my daughter a “Big Sister” shirt. I even got a set of blank puzzle pieces, writing our current family’s names and year of birth; finalizing the empty piece with “Completing our family, 2018.” I realize that for being only 7 weeks pregnant (and only 6 days into a confirmation), this sounds like going overboard. However, I had an easy and uneventful first pregnancy and thought this would be just the same. I thought that friends and family members that had lost pregnancies just had bad luck. That it could never happen to me.
So even in the moments when I started bleeding and went to the ER and before receiving the results of my ultrasound and blood test, I chose to feel joy and hope, right up until I heard the words, “Your hCG levels are at about 200.” I remembered my first blood test showed the levels at 1100, so I knew, even before the doctor that it was a miscarriage.
It is very easy to look back on that time and see only sadness. But today, I’m making the extreme effort to find the joy.