As I wrote about in this post, we were excited earlier this year to learn that baby number 5 was on the way. Unfortunately, I miscarried in early May. Today, November 23rd, was my due date. It has been very very hard, despite having 4 other wonderful children to keep me busy.
So, for the record, these are my thoughts, 6 1/2 months later on my due date:
- One thing I have learned having 4 children is your heart grows with each one- making it possible to love each and every child with your whole heart. I can understand totally how someone could have ANY number of kids and love them just as much. We loved this one just as much. This one was just as real.
- Even 6 months later, it still hurts. I still long for that baby and think of her often. I wonder if/when the longing will go away. I had a miscarriage before the twins. It didn't stop hurting until I conceived the twins and that pregnancy was successful.
- I still feel a stab when someone announces they are pregnant- especially if it is for a 5th or beyond. It is hard to control the selfish thought of "Why is it so easy for them and not me?" (though I have been fortunate to have 4 children without fertility, at the same time, it has not been easy. We went through fertility testing, long waits to get pregnant, and of course, two miscarriages).
- With this as well as other trials the last few months, I feel I have teetered closer on edge of depression- if not fallen all the way in- then ever before in my life. I cry over everything, have no energy, very exhausted, loss of interest in some things, forgetfulness, withdrawal and more.
- I keep a lot of this to myself, even within family and close friends, because I don't want to bring everyone down and I feel most people just don't understand. I know for a fact that many close to me think we were insane for trying for a 5th anyway. Also, I don't want people to mistake my sadness for being ungrateful for the 4 I have. That can not be farther from the truth. I really do thank God every day for my 4. I know many do not get this blessing and I have been so deeply blessed. It is just that, well- a loss is a loss and it hurts regardless.
- I do not know what it is like to have a miscarriage BEFORE having children, but I did once hear someone say it is just as hard if not harder to have a miscarriage AFTER you have other children because now you know what you are missing. Yep- that describes it.
- I have kept this day close in my heart as it approached. I knew for a fact that no one else remembered it- not even Aaron did, though many knew it was nearing. I didn't really expect anyone to- really, there was no reason for them to. I was shocked though to find one person did, and it really meant a lot.
- I never knew my heart could swell with happiness and love and joy while breaking at the same time. That is how I felt these last two weeks as I held my new baby niece that was just born. I was so excited to find that both my sister and I were expecting-and due within 10 days of each other and I envisioned our babies growing up together. I am so happy for my sister and I love my niece. Considering this was her first and probably only, I am thankful that this happened to me and not her. I just mourn that I don't have a baby that would grow up with her. As baby Claire grows, I will always remember my own- knowing they would have been the same age.
- And that is just the thing with miscarriage that makes it hard to heal that people don't understand. Sure you mourn the loss, but you also mourn the future that you envisioned. For nearly 3 months, I had a vision of the future and it is still hard to know that future won't happen.
- And that is just the thing too. The world doesn't really give us the chance to mourn- we have to pick up and move on the next day. Of course, it is not the same as losing a child that had been born. I honestly can not imagine such a tragedy. Of course that is infinitely worse. But, because of that, many minimize how much this in itself hurts, even if not as bad as losing a born child. I am expected to cry for a few days and then suck it up and move on. So, on the outside, and even around my family- that is what I have tried to do.
- Ultimately, I know I will be able to move on for real- whether that is with another child or not. I crave and pray for that peace.