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[Comments] (6) Miscarriage: Let's Talk About it: Women don't talk about miscarriage. They don't! Well, I'm going to.

I had a miscarriage. There, I said it. (Well, wrote it.) The first time in my life I can recall hearing those words was when I called my doctor with a question the day after we discovered our baby no longer had a heartbeat. The nurse I talked to told me her personal experience. The second time I heard it? From the anesthesiologist prepping me for a D&C. The third time? The nurse in the surgery center. And yet, 15% of documented pregnancies end in miscarriage - that's pregnant women who have already been to the doctor! Here's our story.

My first doctor appointment was at 10 weeks. Everything looked great. At 14 weeks, the nurse was unable to find a heartbeat with the monitor so she tried on the ultrasound, then called in the doctor. Obviously, by then, I suspected something was up. The doctor was able to find the baby's heart - not beating. The measurements indicated the miscarriage happened very shortly after my first appointment. This type of miscarriage - where your body doesn't immediately abort - is called a missed miscarriage. I had no idea that could even happen! Not only that, I spent another FOUR WEEKS waiting to miscarry naturally. I should have known; neither of my other babies came out on their own. During this time I continued to deal with morning sickness and none of my clothes fitting. Eventually I could tell I wasn't growing, and stopped "feeling" pregnant.

Since we are going on vacation this weekend (and I have good health insurance now), I finally scheduled a D&C (a surgical procedure to clean everything out of the uterus). Days before, I finally noticed a little bleeding and cramping, but not much. On Monday, my doctor performed a D&C. I'm still very tired, but I haven't really had any pain. This seems to be the way to go.

On to the emotional aspect of this. Things you shouldn't say to people who are grieving (and I'm not just talking about miscarriage):
You can always try again.
There must be something wrong with it.
It's part of the plan.
Your baby's smiling down on you.
You'll see her again.

The only thing worth saying is "I'm sorry." I may think those things. John and I may even say those things to each other. But don't impose beliefs or possibilities or happy thoughts on me. Just say you're sorry. (John talked about this also)

I actually laughed at Leonard when he called. He said he was sorry and then there was silence. I told him it was perfect. There's nothing else to say. We chatted about it a few days later.

Leonard: who thinks saying that kind of thing will make you feel better?
but they keep doing it. when dad died and then again with mom
me: people who haven't experienced loss I guess
Leonard: maybe
people who say what they think they're expected to say

Now, let me clarify that if you have had a miscarriage and are willing to share your experience, feel free to mention that. But don't launch into your horror story without permission.

I'm one of those people who likes to keep pregnancy to myself (and my hubby of course). I waited for 12 weeks, and after my first doctor appointment before I told anyone, other than our family. And it didn't do any good! Sneaky.


© 1999-2021 Susanna Chadwick.