The time after my ten-week
miscarriage is hazy in my mind. I spent the immediate weekend after trying to
figure out how
the weekend after that pretending everything was OK at a family party. (I'll
never do that again.) I do remember snippets and pieces, though. Like a
montage in a very, very sad film.
I remember explaining to another
friend with fertility problems about my shock. "But we had a heartbeat!" I
said, telling her about the seven-week appointment, and how three weeks
later there was none. She nodded sympathetically, having had a first-trimester
miscarriage of her own. But she did not look shocked.
Suddenly I was reminded of my
dating days. How in the beginning, when I was young and innocent and I'd have a
great date—one on which I was on cloud-nine from—and then the guy didn't
call. I'd talk to all my friends, telling them about what an amazing time it
was and how I was sure he had an amazing time too, and how could he not call? I
sort of hoped that maybe he got hit by a bus or kidnapped, because that's the
only way he wouldn't be calling. It couldn't be that he was "just not that into
me"—a shocking term, when I first heard it, although in retrospect it made
so, so, so much sense. But that was only later, when I got jaded from too many
bad dates or great dates that never happened.
But later on in the dating game, I realized
that was par for the course—sometimes it seems like everything is perfect and
then it's not.
That should have prepared me for infertility, IVF, pregnancy and miscarriage. You finally get pregnant, see a
heartbeat, and then poof, it's gone. A few years into it, I wasn't shocked by
anything, just like in dating.
"That's what happens," my friend
said. She'd been in the game longer than me.
I wished someone could help me. I wished I wasn't feeling so alone. I wished people understood. I wantedthatbaby, the one I just lost.
I hadn't told that many people I
was pregnant, so I didn't have to tell that many I wasn't, but when I did I got
some bad reactions.
"It probably wasn't a healthy baby, anyway," one person
said. (It took me a while to find out that it was.)
"I guess a few years does
really make a difference," said another, who had known I'd been with my husband
for almost two years by this time.
"I have a friend who…" I tuned out for the
rest of this because this sentence never ended well. It was either, who went to
a healer/psychic/miracle doctor….etc. and lived happily ever after. I wondered
if anyone ever said, "I have a friend who had a miscarriage and never had a kid." Which
is what I was afraid of.
I wished someone could help me. I
wished I wasn't feeling so alone. I wished people understood. I wanted that baby,
the one I just lost. Not another. I wanted it not to be my own fault. I wanted
to go back in time to that ultrasound where we heard the heartbeat. I wanted
someone to understand me.
"No one is ever going to say the right thing," my friend told me.
And there it was. The one piece of
advice that carried me through the next few years and miscarriages until I had a kid:
No. One. Is. Ever. Going. To.
Say. The. Right. Thing.
Once I heard that, I felt better.
No, not exactly better, but my
expectations were lowered. I didn't expect as much from people—loving people
who probably wanted to help—and then I didn't get disappointed. And it helped
me stop looking for someone to say the