Miscarriage One Year Anniversary

It’s hard to believe but a full year has gone by since losing my little one. I don’t know about you, but it has been a crazy one full of emotions, stress, confusion, and lots of tears. It has been a year that in many ways I want to forget, but I can’t. I can’t erase the image of the ultrasound where there was no heartbeat. I can’t forget my husband taking me in for the D&C. I can’t forget having to tell people that I lost the baby. And I can’t seem to heal my heart all the way.

But I have learned a lot about myself and those around me. I have learned who my true friends are and how strong my family circle is. And my relationship with my daughter and husband are stronger than ever. Without this year I wouldn’t have that. I hope you have seen those types of blessings too, Dear Reader.

Are you like me and just celebrated your one year since your tragic loss? Sometimes you don’t know what you want to hear, but this was how it went for me.

My family went to a theme park on the day of the anniversary and it was a blast. We had such a great time as a family and I didn’t even cry once the whole day. It wasn’t until a few days later that it really hit me when my sister went in for her twenty week ultrasound. That was when I felt a piece of the scab over that hole in my heart flake off and a few drops of blood leaked out.

I thought that I was going to be okay with other people having babies, but I guess I personally have some healing to do. That scab is still very tender and fresh, and, when it flakes off, that pain in my heart of hurt, loss, and desire come back. Do you get what I mean?

Many people have tried to tell me that the pain will go away, but they have never lost a child. Only people who have lost a child and a miscarriage specifically know the that the pain doesn’t go away, but you just get really good at hiding it. After a year you are probably just as fet up as I am with the sad looks and the ‘I’m sorry’ messages to last a life time. I just want to be able to be normal again. I want to be able to enjoy other people’s babies and not be jealous because I miss my own.

It is not a fun feeling, but you do learn to live through it and hopefully I will be able to overcome it. I hope so. I know I have come such a far distance from where I was a year ago and I am still moving forward day by day.

I know you will too, Dear Reader. You are strong and can do anything. How do I know that? Because you are still standing here today after the most devastating experience. If you can live through this then you can live through anything.

God has a plan for all of us and I pray that His hand of fertility stays on you even though it did not stay with me. I have my miracle and am thankful for her. She is why I live and my husband too. He is my rock on this earth and the arms of Jesus when I need it most. He has shown such strength and vitality when I know he just wanted to break down and cry most days. I am so thankful for him as well.

So hold tight to what you do have and see the blessings around you. I know that sometimes sounds hard but I know if I can do it, so can you. Take care Dear Reader and God bless.

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Why Not Adoption?

   If you have been going through infertility, there is a really good chance you have been asked why you don’t just adopt a child, right? My husband and I have many times, and the answer is pretty simple. We cannot afford adoption. It’s killer expensive both foreign and domestic. It’s sad, but foreign is a little cheaper but not much. If you want a special needs child, the odds of being placed are higher, but that was the reason my husband and I stopped trying was due to chromosome issues.

   I know it sounds heartless but it’s the truth. I have been through so much with my infertility problems that I don’t need anymore drama in my life. I can get plenty of that from my three year old. But when researching adoption, I just shook my head at all the fees there are to call a child you’re own. Why so much? And then you turn around and people try to guilt you because there are so many kids in foster care. I am sorry to say it can’t go both ways.

   One website said that my husband and I have to have a monetary net worth of $80,000 to qualify. Are they crazy? I don’t know anyone with that much worth right now. Oh but then on the same website they are asking for donations because they are overrun. Once again, you can’t have it both ways.

    So if you are thinking about tackling the area of adoption, I applaud you. You are a super hero because I don’t think I could do it. Like I said, my three year old is a handful at times and then awesome at others. I don’t need any more babies to have my life full of joy. Do I want another baby, sure, but I don’t need to put my family through unneeded financial and emotional stress to get one. We have already done that trying to have our own.

   Of course I am not saying that if God decided that we were going to adopt a child we wouldn’t listen. I mean God is God and when He decides you have kids, you have kids. I am just saying that I wish that people would keep saying we should adopt a child like it is as easy to go adopt a puppy. It’s not and most families can’t afford it even if they have the room. And foster care is a whole different story where we have personal experience of the State going over the good of the child and enabling the horrible parents. Once again, not worth it for me to have more children.

   Are you in the same boat as me or are you going to go for adoption? Let me know below and also tell me your success stories since there is more negative than positive out there about adoption. Because I think adoption is amazing. I just wish that is was more easily accessible to more families.

6 Things Never Say to Someone with Secondary Infertility

   I know that there are people out there who only have the best intentions at heart, but all it take is one misplaced word to not feel like it. How do I know? Because I was surrounded by them who thought they were helping and I had to teach them what I needed to hear and when. The topic I want to talk about is what to NOT say to a friend, or even spouse, that is going through secondary infertility.

   Here is what you don’t know about what’s going on in their head. They feel broken, insufficient, second class, crazy, misunderstood and FRUSTRATED. So the last thing they need right now is for you to make them feel worse even if that isn’t your intention. So here is a list of things that made my situation worse and you should avoid.

1. “You will get pregnant if you are just patient.” I hated this one because my husband and I have dealt with secondary infertility for two years before he finally got a vasectomy to finally end the misery. No, if you are patient it won’t always happen. We tried and tried and tried and, you know what it got us? More heartache. If your friend has been talking about doing something permanent about their type of infertility (mine was chromosomal so the baby wouldn’t develop properly and ending in miscarriage) then NEVER, once again NEVER, say this. You might not know how long they have actually been trying. In your mind it has only been a few months that they have been public about it, but they could have been trying for a year before they announced it.

  • So what should you say instead? “I understand and I am here to listen to you.” All your friend needs to know is that someone will listen to them. I know that was what I needed the most. My doctor wouldn’t listen, and no one else believed me since I didn’t always get a positive pregnancy test, but it would have been the best thing. And if you don’t feel comfortable then listen to the best of your ability and softly suggest they find a professional to talk with. We cannot be everyone’s counselor and sometimes we shouldn’t be. So if it is too much to handle, then suggesting some help isn’t off limits.

2. “Well you have a baby, so you should be thankful.” I am going to tell you what this means – heartless! This is probably one of the most heartless things someone could say to someone who is going through secondary infertility. If you think that they are not thankful for their child, then you are out of touch. Your friend isn’t upset about not being able to have more kids because they are not thankful, but rather they are grieving the death of a dream. Do you have more than one child? If so, then why did you want more children? Shouldn’t you have just been thankful with your first child? Ridiculous right? Well this heartless saying is like a knife to the heart.

  • What should you say instead? “You have a beautiful child (or children), but I understand your natural desire to want more children.” It is 100% natural to want more kids so, when you can’t, it’s hard to accept. If you make them think their desire needs to be invalid just because they already have kids, then you are missing the point of their pain. Because they have kids already is why they are the most frustrated. They get to stare at their fertility every single day, and it is painful to wrap their heads around why they have been barred from having anymore. So don’t discount the desire or make them feel bad for wanting more kids.

3. “God has a plan.” If they are religious (even if they are super strong in their beliefs), don’t throw God in there right away because frankly those going through secondary infertility are probably also having a tough time with their relationship with God. There is nothing but confusion on why He would allow this to happen to them, and there is also A LOT of anger. This was true for my husband and I and it still is a sore spot when a trigger happens. It’s something that will take years to get over. So DO NOT just throw this out there just because you have nothing else to say. It will do more harm than good.

  • What should you say instead? Honestly, feel it out. I would suggest you wait until they bring it up. Don’t be the one to bring it up first and DO NOT just throw Bible verses at them about God’s love and plan. Like I said, this might do more harm than good. God does have a plan and we cannot see it. The problem is that your friend might not be able to see past the next day let alone a year from now. So just listen and be there even if you don’t say anything and just sit there in silence while your friend processes.

4. “Pull up your boot straps and get over it. There are people out there worse off than you.” Now if you ever say this to a friend going through secondary infertility, know that I am smacking you over the head right now. When was the last time you got some terrible news and needed time to process? How would you have felt if someone had just come in and told you to pretty much stop caring about your loss and get over it? You might be in a really good spot right now, but your friend isn’t. They need to be validated and understood. Not told to just get over it because they can’t and in some ways they never will. Really, when you are told you can’t have anymore children, you don’t get over it completely. Instead you just get really good at faking it. What you, as the friend, don’t see is your friend’s heart over the years crumble a little bit more every time someone else announces they are pregnant or simply see a cute baby in the market and the mother is doing nothing but complaining about motherhood. Your friend would take that baby in a minute if they could because they know the pain of not having one.

  • What should you say instead? “Take as long as you need. I know this is a really hard thing, and I am here with you.” If your friend knows there is going to be someone there who knows their story and is there for them they will be more comfortable. Maybe talk about their triggers as time goes along and be there for them when one is triggered. They need to know that people understand this isn’t the same thing as a gold fish dying where you can just go to the pet store and buy a new one. This is a life time issue and it won’t go away. Like I said, we just get really good at faking it since we know that our family and friends don’t want to hear about it all the time. So we stop talking which isn’t good either, but we don’t want to always be miserable to be around. If your friend is starting to close up, then this is where I would really suggest they get help from a professional.

5. “If you just relax it will happen just like it did for me.” NEVER, I say NEVER, compare your story with your friend’s. I understand that our personal story is where we get our experience, but every story is different. If you dealt with infertility and things worked out for you then great, but that doesn’t mean it will work out for your friend. Also your friend doesn’t need you smearing your success in their face. I know that isn’t what you are thinking when you say this, but it’s not a thing of encouragement.

  • What should you say instead? NOTHING. Nothing about your story unless it is completely relevant to your friend. What do I mean? The same. You can try to be encouraging, but it doesn’t always come across as encouragement. So when in doubt, say nothing.

6. “This too shall pass.” This is not true. The pain might fade to a dull ache, but that ache will be there forever especially with having kids first. If external triggers aren’t hard enough, there are the internal triggers as well. Nothing hurts worse than seeing your three year old rocking her baby doll and tell you she is putting her baby sister to bed. Talk about a shot in the heart. It is hard enough having to deal with others outside the home, but when the other kid(s) start asking for a sibling and you know you can’t give them one then there is nothing to make that pain go away.

  • What should you say instead? “It will always hurt, but it will get easier each day.” I know this sounds counter productive but it does help. Why? Look at the first part. You validate their pain and the second part is the encouragement they need. Because it is a day by day process, and there is no way to speed up the process.

   So there you have it. What not to say and what to say to your friend who is going through secondary infertility. It’s a painful process that will probably last a life time so please be patient and just be there for them. Be their hero and their support as they try to move forward and learn what their new life is going to be. Things will get easier for them, but it is going to take some time.

Second Hardest Day of My Life

   So today is a hard day for me because it was supposed to be my baby’s due date. I was supposed to be making hospital plans and having to pee every five minutes due to a growing baby using it as a trampoline. I was supposed to have a new nursery all prepared and have read my daughter books on how to be a big sister. But none of those things are happening for me and my husband. Instead of it being a day of accomplishment, it is a day of sadness at what we should be doing. Also tomorrow we are going to urology to make sure that we won’t lose another baby, Lord willing, ever again.

   But even though I am sad that we won’t be able to be like our friends who are about to deliver their babies or just announced they are expecting again, I am trying to find joy in what I have been blessed with. I have this beautiful miracle child who is more than enough for us to handle. I have the most wonderful and supportive husband to go through this with. And I have a loving support system who have prayed and supported me through these tough nine months. I thank everyone who has been there for me and my husband as we have gone back and forth with what is best for our family. I honestly couldn’t have done this without knowing that there were people out there praying for us and interceding the devil to not get us down. Thank you all again.

   So what is the next step for us? Well, my husband isn’t going to have the best Memorial Day Weekend this year that’s for sure, but he and I think it is best. Are you a woman or man in out position? Are you wondering if you have had enough? It’s okay to say that something like a Vasectomy is the best thing for you and your partner. There is nothing weak about it. Ask the male partner. He will never say that a vasectomy is a weak man’s decision. I don’t know one man who would honestly raise his hand and say “yes, I want a vasectomy”. So it’s not the easy way out by any means.

   I am actually a little nervous because someone else will be in my husband area and I have to say I am very protective of him. I mean, who wouldn’t be? So not only am I having an emotional day with it being my baby’s due date, but I am also a little stressed out with it being the final day of us trying for a baby and someone else messing with my husband’s junk.

   Now, I know that vasectomies fail all the time which I hope doesn’t happen since we don’t want kids 4-5 years apart. So I pray that his won’t fail because I don’t know if I could handle another loss or, by some miracle, another child who is 4-5 years younger than my daughter.

   Then there are all the good things that I have to remind myself there is when it comes to only one child. We get to go do more since we only have to pay for one child, I get to have some me time because she is now at an age where she can play by herself and I go do thing like take and shower, and I will only be 39 when she graduates high school so my husband and I will have many years to be together and be young enough to enjoy it. These are just a couple of things but they are enough for me right now to keep my mind in the right place when it wants to go to the dark place of grieving.

   So there is so much good life ahead of us and I look forward to experience it. Now that we have finally gotten to today it will be easier. Then after tomorrow we will be starting our new life. Our daughter will love to have her parents back and we will be able to enjoy her to the fullest. So this isn’t the end, but just the beginning.

   Hope you have  a great day, and feel free to leave a comment and let me know what are some things you are looked forward to have enjoyed since deciding to stop trying for anymore children. 🙂

How to Serve Others While You Hurt

If anyone is like me, then you have had some hurt in your life. I have had quite a bit in the last year especially with losing all my possessions and four babies. Talk about a hit to the heart, but there is always a choice when it comes to grief. You can turn into yourself and become nothing but a shell or you can use your grief as a gift to help others. It took me a long time but I decided that it’s worth it more in the end to help others than to only concentrate on myself. One of ways I do that is through my Etsy Shop.

Why do I love it? It gives me a chance to create and produce something productive when I feel like nothing is good in my life. You can’t help but smile at something you have made yourself. The extra money is nice but you will notice that I have one item in my shop that is more than the rest. I happen to love to make baby blankets which seems odd right from someone who just lost four babies right? Why would I make something that someone else will buy for their baby when I have just lost mine?It doesn’t make much sense does it I know, but I see it as a way to look outside myself and bless someone else even if I don’t feel blessed right now.

The other thing that I would suggest is to engage with people who are going through the same thing that you would like to be doing. I know, this sounds even crazier than the first thing, but it is true. One of my best friends and I were pregnant at the same time. Our babies were actually due two days a part. When we found out, we were so excited because there is nothing more fun than being pregnant with a best friend (I have many by the way). When I lost my baby, it could have really ruined things with my friend and I because she was nervous about what she could tell me  or not about her pregnancy. I didn’t want her to cut me off so I made the decision to be there for her and engage with her pregnancy even though I had lost mine.

Can you see where I am going with this? I was able to be a blessing for my friend and experience her pregnancy with her because I was able to come out of myself and see those around me. And it has been fun going on this journey with her. If I hadn’t taken that step, I would have missed out on something really great. Now, I will not sit here and tell you it has been easy reading her texts about her baby moving and doctors appointments. I am not perfect in any way. I have to fight jealousy everyday and that isn’t something that is probably going to go away soon, but there is a way to be jealous and happy for someone else at the same time. you just really have to keep your heart in check.

My next big test in this area is coming up soon since her baby shower and I am going to it. I have no idea how I am going to react. I could be all tears or I could be all smiles. Her shower is actually a week before my husband’s vasectomy which is going to add a whole other layer to the day. It’s the last week that my husband and I can decide whether or not we are really going to go through with making him sterile. Hard right?

So I have to keep myself busy and I have decided to go full bore into her gift to be a blessing to her instead of pining and dreading the day. No one likes a person like that for sure. I don’t want to be angry my whole life. I want to have the joy of the Lord shine through me and to show that my hurt doesn’t define who I am or what I can do. Also, the projects are really fun and turning out super cute. I can’t wait to due a post about it. This one item is so cute, I just might make on for me.

The point being, don’t let your hurt keep you from serving others. I might sound like I have it all figured out, but there are still many days where I have to just sit there and and say over and over again “God is good” because at that moment it doesn’t feel like it. I have a whole other post planned for that topic so I won’t go into it now. But just keep your chin up. Things will get better.

How to Deal With Pregnancy Announcements When You Can’t Have Babies

Tis the season. It seems like right now everyone I have on Facebook in childbearing years is either preggers or just had a baby. Good for them really, but it still stings a little the closer to when I should have had my baby. I should be able to be in the same club, but I am not and I won’t be again. I want to cry whenever I see people comment on the announcements that so-in-so will make a great brother/sister since my daughter would have made a good one too. I just have to keep scrolling or I will go into a depression and anger of why God has made it that we can’t another healthy baby.

He is the one that gives life, but not to us. He has given us one healthy daughter, but He won’t give her a healthy sibling. Everyone else gets to have one for their kid, but I don’t and it’s a sore spot with me with God. Now I am not going to walk away from Him or anything, but it’s a sore spot. We are a wonderful home for a baby and we can’t have a baby meanwhile some girl goes for a one night stand and gets knocked up and pops out (if the baby is lucky) a healthy kid. Why? I wish I knew, but I can only trust that for some reason we are meant to parent a singleton instead of the two or more my husband and I planned to have.

But this post is about how to deal with those announcements and not go crazy.

  • Admit that you are not yet healed and give yourself a break. It can take years to get over the fact that you won’t be able to have more kids, and if you still get upset when you see a pregnancy announcement, then you are not done healing.
  • This might sound harsh but, if you aren’t close to the person, you can ignore it. You are not obligated to like or comment on a person’s announcement. You can just check it in your heart that you are happy for them and keep scrolling.
  • Go spend time with the kids you have (even if it’s a four legged one). Not being able to have more or any kids shouldn’t take away your joy for what you do have. And don’t count out pets because they are family too. If you can’t have kids and your baby is your dog or cat, go play with them and get a smile on your face.
  • Spend time with your husband. He has these moments just like you do but men hold it in differently than women do. We tend to wear our pain on our sleeves and men bury it. Spend time together and talk about your infertility. The more it’s treated like a giant elephant that no one can talk about the odder it becomes.
  • Go for a walk. Because it’s the best medicine to clear your head.
  • Pray. I know how hard it is to have a relationship with God after losing babies and having to make the tough decision of not trying anymore. You feel betrayed and deserted, but it isn’t true. It’s not because God doesn’t love you that you can’t have a baby, and He is the only one besides your husband that truly understands your pain so pray and keep talking with Him.
  • And finally, look to the future. Your infertility is in the past, and you have your whole future ahead of you.

I hope this has helped you. I am still going down the road to recovery and I will be kind of glad when my generation is done having kids so I don’t feel left out anymore.

Leave a comment and let me know how you are doing on your journey.

Still Missing My Baby and Trying to Heal

Today was a really great day, but it now seems like it is ending in tears. Not because anything bad happened (actually something really great happened) but because it shows me that I still have some healing to do. I have been doing really well moving on with my life after my miscarriage going on two months ago, but I have to patient with myself and now that it’s only been two months since we said goodbye to our baby.

So the good thing that happened is that I got to see one of my best friends who lives about eight hours away, and we had a great time.  This friend just happens to be pregnant and our babies were due two days apart. Praise God that her pregnancy is going well and life is good for them. We laughed, talked about their baby, and other thing s that are going on in both our lives since we last got together.What the hard part was that after they left, I started having those physical feelings of being pregnant. My breasts hurt, I was nauseated, and I was hardly able to keep my eyes open. All of my main symptoms with my last pregnancy, and quickly was followed by tears.

How was this all possible when I am not pregnant? Simple, your hormones are very powerful and they can sense things around you and mine picked up on the fact my friend is pregnant and it misses being pregnant. The symptoms are finally now wearing off thankfully since my husband and I made the decision to not try again due to the results of our baby’s pathology report so it wouldn’t like we would be really excited if I was pregnant so soon after a D&C. It would be heartbreaking since the odds of it ending the same way as our last four would be rather high. It would be a thing that would be a stress and worry and not a thing of joy and happiness that a new baby should bring.

What it just proved to me was how much I miss my baby and how far I have left to heal. Someday I will be healed but right now the wounds are still there. If you are same place, we are in this together. It doesn’t happen over night and God is with me every step of the way. I still don’t understand why this has happened to us and I probably never will this side of heaven. All I know is that I have to keep the faith and enjoy the family He has given me.

God bless!