I have contemplated for what feels like an eternity on how I was going to write this post. I had dreamed up cute and funny ways in which to announce our news to the world. Our news that we were pregnant, we were going to have a baby. Never in a million years, did I think it would be like this.
I want to share our story in the hopes that it may help others going through the same thing. I’ve read so many stories and it has helped immensely to know we are not alone in this awful thing called miscarriage. It happens to so many, yet is so rarely talked about. 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage. I knew the statistics, though I still couldn’t imagine it happening to me. I know people personally who have gone through this, they suffered and I knew they suffered deeply, but I just didn’t quite understand how horrific it really is.
When I first saw those two pink lines that confirmed that there was a little tiny life beginning to grow inside me, I was overjoyed. Terrified…but so so happy. I remember that I was shaking as I said the words to Connor;
He pulled me into a big hug and in that moment, we couldn’t have been happier. We wanted this so much and from that very moment, we loved our little baby with all our hearts. We became ‘mummy and daddy’ and it was perfect after a really tough start to our year.
Over the next few weeks, I felt that everywhere I went there was a voice inside me saying, “Oh my god, I’m pregnant. I’m going to have a baby.” I wanted to shout it from the rooftops but at the same time it was our little secret.
We started thinking of names and about moving house so that baby could have their own room with lots of lovely things. My body began changing; my boobs were suddenly SO sore all the time, I was feeling sick and so tired! I’ve never felt so tired in my life, but I would do it all again. I started constantly looking at my belly in the mirror just to see if our little bean was growing enough to make my belly bulge. I was taking the vitamins, eating the right things, being careful with what I carried etc. All the things you’re supposed to do. I wanted to look after my baby the best I could.
Although I was worried about showing, we were too excited to keep the news to ourselves and so we told our parents and a few other family members. It felt so good to share and we were well aware of the rule that you “shouldn’t until after the 12 week scan”, but we couldn’t keep it in and it felt so right. I knew that no matter what happened, I wanted to have their support either way.
So now 7 weeks along, we went to our first midwife appointment. It felt like a lifetime waiting for this appointment. I was so nervous but so excited. It was a long appointment, where we were asked lots of questions about health and family history. I had bloods taken and got weighed. I was told that my pregnancy was high risk due to my IBD but not to worry, this just meant that the doctors would be involved alongside the midwifes. I remember leaving the hospital with my maternity notes and my pack full of books and leaflets, feeling so overwhelmed and anxious about the future. We went on a big walk and talked about the way in which our lives were going to change dramatically. It was crazy to imagine that in a few short months, we would have a little mini us.
The next few weeks were filled with anticipation of the upcoming scan. I was googling maternity clothes, even though I knew it was too early to buy. I had started thinking of ways to make a nursery in our wee flat if we weren’t able to get a house before baby arrived. We were both anxious to find out that our baby was okay. I had been checking for blood when I went to the toilet, just in case. There never was any and so I assumed that meant everything was fine. My sickness started wearing off and I was a little worried but felt reassured that is normally the case leading up to the second trimester.
13th of June comes around, our 12 week scan. I remember waking up that morning and resting my hand on my tummy; “I get to see you today, little one.” All morning at work, it’s all I could think about. Connor picked me up and we headed to the hospital.
I was feeling extremely anxious but as soon as I lay down on the bed, it changed to excitement and anticipation. The sonographer asked how far along I thought I was; 11 weeks and 5 days. “Perfect,” she said. She told us to look up at the screen as that’s where we would see our baby. She put the gel on my stomach and began to glide the doppler over my abdomen. When our little baby appeared on the screen, I could tell something wasn’t right. Too tiny. I felt like the world had stopped. “Are you sure of your dates?” “Yes,” I managed to choke out.
What felt like a lifetime later, waiting anxiously in the silence, she said, “I’m so sorry. There’s no heartbeat. Baby’s measuring at about 8 weeks.”
It’s all a bit of a blur after that. I remember balling my eyes out and clinging to Connor, hoping this was a nightmare and I was going to wake up. We were left alone for a while and then taken to another room. The nurse came and got us and took us up to the Early Pregnancy Unit. We met with the midwife who came to talk to us about our options. I don’t really remember what she said but she gave us leaflets to take home and said we had a week to make a decision and that they were there if we needed anything. We were told that I’d had a ‘missed miscarriage’ where the baby stops growing but your body doesn’t recognise that the pregnancy is no longer viable. I just couldn’t believe it, I had no bleeding or pain and still feel very much pregnant. I think this made it harder to believe.
We then headed out to go home and I asked for the pictures of our baby. Such a tiny little bean.
I felt so numb yet so broken at the same time. I don’t remember getting home. It was such a sad day as we then had to make phone calls to family members that knew. It was heartbreaking as they joined us in our sadness and disbelief.
I then had to make the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make. I chose to go for surgery as it had already been around 4 weeks since our baby had died and my body was still clinging on to the pregnancy. I didn’t think I could go through with the waiting and unknown of when or if it would happen naturally. I phoned the midwife the next day and got booked in for the following Friday.
That was the longest week of my life. I was struggling to believe it was even true as I still felt pregnant. It was so frustrating. It was awful knowing that I was still carrying a baby inside me and had been for weeks without knowing that it was no longer alive. I felt so guilty, did I do something wrong? Was it because I was so stressed out and anxious all the time? Why didn’t I know? I should’ve protected my baby, that’s what mothers do, right?
I couldn’t believe that everything we wanted and were so happy about had just been snatched away from us. It was so unfair. The next few days I prayed that they’d got it wrong, I willed our baby to live but I knew in my heart they were gone.
The day of the surgery was so hard, I was in a lot of pain from the pre-meds and felt devastated that this was what we had to go through. I didn’t want to let go or say goodbye. I wanted more than anything for my baby to stay with me. The procedure went well though and physically, I am recovering well. I’m still in a bit of pain and am just exhausted. Emotionally though, I don’t know when I’ll start to feel better. Grief is a funny thing, it just hits out of nowhere and there I am again sobbing on the floor.
We were given a lovely memory box from the hospital and it meant so much to have something to remember our little angel by.
It’s not just that I’m not pregnant anymore, my baby died and all the hopes and dreams I had for this little life got ripped away. As soon as I became pregnant, I became a mum. I began planning our life around this little baby. Sometimes I forget and catch myself holding my tummy. I know it will take time for my hormones to level out and get back to normal. I need to have patience but I feel so frustrated with my body. It feels like it’s failed me but at the same time I know it hasn’t. It clung onto this tiny life for so long trying to protect it. I know there is nothing I did to cause this or could’ve done differently. It just happens.
What I’ve learned in this horrific time is that support is everything. Connor and I are so grateful for the support we have had from our families and friends. I’ve joined support groups and talking about it has been like therapy for me. The support from the hospital staff and midwives has been so incredible. They have been there any time we needed to call for advice and gave us the best possible care.
I’m still struggling on a daily basis but I know that this will change us as people and will hopefully make us stronger together. We want to celebrate the beautiful little life we created together and hopefully one day we will have our rainbow baby.
To Our Little Angel, you were so loved from the moment we found out about you and we will forever carry you in our hearts ❤
Resources to help if you or someone you know is going through a miscarriage:
You are not alone and there is so much support out there.
- The Miscarriage Association
- Saying Goodbye Book by Zoe Clark-Coates (This book has been helping me process everything in the last few weeks.)
- Saying Goodbye: Support for miscarriage and baby loss
- NHS page on Miscarriage
Love and Light,