11 January 2019

The first time it happened it hit me like a ton of bricks. “I just need to nip to the loo quickly” I told my husband ahead of our lunch date—the day that we were going to tell my in-laws our news. And then I saw the blood. I remember the shock like it was yesterday, the audible gasp escaping from my mouth without warning. I sat in the bathroom for what seemed like an eternity, dreading having to walk down those stairs and say the words to my husband. In all honestly I can’t remember what I said, not that it probably mattered—the tears streaming down my face told their own story anyway. For a moment, and after a frantic Google search, we attempted to rationalise it, desperately hoping that this may just be a normal, albeit alarming, feature of early pregnancy. Over the next few hours, however, it became clear that the fear that I wasn’t even aware of having had come true, I’d miscarried our much longed-for baby.

The miscarriage happened on a Saturday, so I spent the weekend resting at home and privately trying to come to terms with a loss that we couldn’t share with anyone else. As Monday morning arrived I began my morning routine as usual and went into work. The usual chit-chat about our weekends felt strained but I managed to suppress the sadness and my colleagues were, initially, none-the-wiser. However, as the day progressed so too did the pain, and I made the decision to tell my manager what had happened. I am fortunate to be blessed with fantastic colleagues and so, as expected, I was immediately told to go home, take as much time as I needed, and to let them know what, if anything, they could do to help.

Over the next few months my husband and I entered a period of limbo. First came the wait for my period to return to normal, and I was lucky enough that after a couple of months it did. With that came the downloading of the fertility app that I’d so hastily deleted when I had found out I was pregnant. And then we began the wait to see if we had been lucky enough to conceive again. Prior to falling pregnant the first time we had been trying to conceive for about 10 months, and so I tried to remain rational about our chances of falling pregnant again. It was hard though, and each month that the tell-tale back pain and cramps arrived I was left devastated that we still weren’t pregnant.

And then the unimaginable happened—I fell pregnant again. I can’t quite explain how I felt at that moment. Of course there was complete and utter joy, but it was tinged with an overwhelming feeling of apprehension—a trepidation that surrounded every conversation about the pregnancy. All of our “when’s” turned into “ifs” and we tried to simply carry on as normal, utterly terrified to become too attached to the idea of a baby.

The second time it happened I felt, not a ton of bricks, but my world tumbling down around me. It was so completely unexpected. Just like the first time, there was no warning, and a trip to the bathroom ended in the worst possible way. Tears immediately coursed down my face and, as I began the familiar walk downstairs, knowing that I had to again break the news to my husband, I battled against the desire to rationalise the bleeding. There was no denying it, I was miscarrying again.

As we sat together, completely numb, I dreaded what was to come in the following days. The physical pain, the ache in my heart at losing another baby, and the sense of loss, despair and isolation that comes with early miscarriage.

Five days on I am exhausted. I cannot imagine going through this again but equally we cannot imagine giving up on the baby we long for so much. I chose not to tell my employer this time, or take any time off work, and so the last few days have been particularly difficult. My days have been spent in pain and trying to conceal what’s going on, and have been followed by restless nights as I try to process what has happened again.

I feel a little bit broken at the moment and I don’t know what the future holds for us, time will tell, but for those who are going through this please know that you’re not alone.

This year I will try to turn these negative experiences into something positive and will focus on myself for a little while.

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