31 year old fiercely independent, rational woman. I have no children and am not an emotional person. I’m strong because I have had to be my whole life.
I have done everything ‘right’, everything ‘by the book’. I studied hard in school, went to college, worked hard to do well and hoped to do better, financially, than my parents. I graduated, got a job (although not a career). Things have just been difficult though. It seems I cannot catch a break. I had endured the utterly devastating death of my father and felt unfulfilled in my job. I had done everything I was supposed to do. There are no rainbows and unicorns in reality. Was I wrong to think that hard work is the route to success?
Finally my boyfriend of many years proposed! This leads way to great hopes that things will begin to turn around for me. Fast forward to buying our first home. Conversations of our future began - conversations about starting a family soon. It was during the most stressful month of my life, when gathering/preparing paperwork for the purchase of our first home, that we discovered I was pregnant. Complete shock. You see, my husband and I have always been careful but never really used protection. Traditional birth control really did a number on my body. I was a hormonal lunatic so much so that I couldn’t handle being on it even after 3 attempts with three different medications over the years. I was beginning to worry that perhaps we wouldn’t be able to have children since we haven’t had a surprise after all of these years. Imagine my relief upon finding out that that was not the case! Things really are turning around!
While I was excited that we were expecting I am not going to lie, I was terrified. We were months away from moving into our new home. There was moving to schedule now since I wasn’t going to be able to help (I would be 5 months along). There was the painting that needed to be done that I wasn’t going to be able to do. Not to mention that fact that home ownership severely depletes your bank account and now a baby on top of that - panic. I was excited and terrified all at the same time. I bought baby books and even began ordering maternity clothes online.
Then it happened. 23 days past ovulation, I miscarried.
That first miscarriage started the realization that pregnancy is not always rainbows and unicorns. I soon discovered that miscarriages are incredibly common. Why hadn’t I know this? No one talks about it. Why not? I seemed to remember a few whispered conversations among my family about aunts and cousins experiencing a loss but only really after they announced the next pregnancy.
I was still full of hormones, dealing with my emotions and still handling the business of buying a home. I didn’t have time to be upset, to dwell on the loss. I accepted that this pregnancy was not meant to be. It was for the best. Something was just not right with the chromosomes. We have so much work to do in the coming months. Dare I say I was almost relieved? I treated this miscarriage as a sign of fertility. I am able to get pregnant. That is good news. When the time is right we will try again. My doctor assured me that next time everything will be okay. “It was just bad luck”, she said. The odds of having two recurrent miscarriages are low. Fewer than 5% of all women will experience two consecutive miscarriages (internet source). Fewer than 1% of all women will experience three (internet source). I carried on thinking about ‘what if’ and had a seemingly quick recovery. Being busy with the house certainly helped.
A strange thing happened to me after my miscarriage. I became obsessed with having a baby. This was strange because I was never in a rush before but since I had a couple of weeks to think about the idea of impending parenthood I was extremely excited by it. I researched what prenatal vitamins to take, what not to do. I started preparing for next time. I was optimistic.
Five months later we tried again. I was astonished that on the first try we were pregnant. I attribute this to the fact that I had charted my basal body temps in the past, prior to the first miscarriage and that I used an OTC ovulation test. It was well timed, not luck. My husband was dumbfounded. I was overjoyed. I wasn’t nervous about the pregnancy. Everything was supposed to be ok. When I had any nervousness I simply reminded myself of the statistics. Statistics are in my favor. The odds of recurrent pregnancy loss are low. I made an appointment with my doctor for an eight-week checkup and went about my business of being extremely fatigued, just like the first pregnancy.
Then it happened. 22 days past ovulation, I miscarried.
DEVASTATION! My hormones were far more out of control this time. I am beside myself with grief. This wasn’t supposed to happen. It feels as if someone had pulled the rug out from under me. My life hasn’t been easy; I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that this isn’t coming easily either. The statistics. It feels like I just won a bad lottery. There must be something wrong with me, I thought. My body has failed me. My poor husband just doesn’t understand. He wants to be rational about it. I try to talk to him about my feelings of devastation and hopeless and at the same time my thoughts that my body has failed me - and he wants to be scientific about it all. He says the odds are still in our favor. I don’t want to hear another word about odds ever again. He doesn’t get it. I’m irrational and HORMONAL and he wants to be scientific?! That conversation did not end well. Thankfully he quickly came around and I am so grateful for that.
My doctor. Oh my doctor. She gave me the EXACT same ‘it was just bad luck, it won’t happen next time, we don’t need to test you for anything, you are young’ speech she gave me last time. Sensing I was not satisfied with her answer she offered to test me for a few of the major things that could be wrong which did provide me a little relief until she had to then add that ‘most of the times these things are maternal so your husband doesn’t need to be tested for anything.’ Are you kidding me?! Thanks for pointing all of the blame on me! Unbelievable! It’s funny that you read online that ‘it’s not your fault – you didn’t do anything’ yet here I am in my DOCTORS office being blamed for my miscarriage. (For the record I know she wasn’t blaming me but that is how it feels when you are in this situation) This was incredibly hurtful and considering that my hormones were out of whack I was not my ordinarily stoic self. I so rarely cry that my husband still after more than a decade together has no idea what to say or do about it since it happens so infrequently. Poor guy.
After a couple of weeks my hormones were back under control. I am still obsessed with having a baby and now I feel rushed more than ever because I would like to have two children. I need to get this figured out so I can have the 2nd before I’m 35 because of all of the other issues that can come along with being over 35 and trying to conceive.
Now, here I am, 32 years old and trying to get pregnant again. It has been months since the last time we were in this place and it is a much different experience. I am not even sure I am pregnant but in the back of my mind I am worried about having another miscarriage. The two week wait is the most torturous of times I have ever had to experience. Once I find out I’m pregnant again it will be yet another tortuous wait to see if the baby will stick past the point of my last 2 pregnancies. I have never wanted strong pregnancy signs so badly before. Symptoms are relieving. Unpleasant symptoms are welcome here. Bring on the nausea please!
Pregnancy 1: I was in a world of rainbows and unicorns blissfully unaware of the fact that miscarriage is quite common.
Pregnancy 2: Statistics are on my side, I thought. Statistically speaking this one will stick. Hopeful. Excited.
Pregnancy 3 (updated): The rug was pulled out from under me when I was informed that I was having another miscarriage despite negative pregnancy tests. What a delayed roller coaster ride of emotions as a result!
I will never have that same feeling of joy I had during those first two pregnancies. There are no rainbows and unicorns here for me. I will be nervous, anxious and neurotic until the time when the last two miscarriages occurred. I will probably be a nervous wreck throughout my entire first half of pregnancy. Yet here I am trying, persevering and remaining hopeful that I will be a mommy soon. There are many ups and downs in this process but thankfully I have not wanted to give up yet. I am hopeful that the right egg and sperm will connect and find a nice happy place to settle into my uterus soon.
33-year old dependent, irrational, baby-obsessed woman. I have no children and am now an emotional person. I’m strong but fragile.