It was six years ago and I can remember it like it was yesterday: I couldn’t believe it was happening — again. Why did my body fail me? Why did my body have trouble doing what it was designed to do — grow, nurture, and protect this small baby?
It was another miscarriage.
Miscarriage happens to so many families, but if you have not experienced it firsthand, it’s hard to understand the scope of pain. The experience of miscarriage is so much more than just a week of painful cramps and having to “try again.” It’s more than a medical thing that happens to other people.
A miscarriage is the loss of a baby, of hopes and dreams, of firsts and lasts.
It’s the start of grieving, of triggers, and anxiety for that “next time.”
It’s a time of million questions, concerns, and confusion, and for me, it was the catalyst in a year-long struggle to reclaim an important relationship in my life that was changed due to miscarriage and grief.
When you’re in a relationship where it doesn’t feel like both parties are pulling their weight, it can cause a lot of strain. If your partner does not show up when you need them, clouds hang over your relationship. If a friend continues to leave you waiting deciding not to show up or call — you would probably see less and less of them.
And when it’s your own body who continues to let you down, to not come through when you need them, without showing any signs that things will change, it can have that same negative impact.
After experiencing miscarriages multiple times over, I doubted whether my body would cooperate the way nature intended – in the way others’ bodies seemed to pull off so effortlessly.
Every time my pregnancy abruptly ended before a healthy baby could be placed in my arms, I felt the important relationship with myself fade faster and faster.
I started to hate my body. I hated it for being broken, for losing children. I hated my body for putting my husband through loss after loss. For making me feel embarrassed about its inability to mother a growing baby inside me. I had no love left for my body and I knew that was something I needed to work on.
We’re told forgiveness is good for the soul and that’s what I needed to do – to forgive my broken body and learn to love it again even after all it had put me through.
The first step: find out the why. In my process of learning to accept what my body had been through, to forgive, and learn to re-love, finding out what was going on made a huge impact.
I know that so many women and families are told, “We don’t know why it happened” when they try to find out the cause of their miscarriage(s), and I was thankful we understood what was going on — a mix of hormonal problems and a blood clotting disorder. With the why, we were able to find out the how to help facilitate a healthy, full term pregnancy.
But the biggest part of my healing process was to change my perspective. When someone lets you down, it can be really challenging to see past the negatives. But there was a reason you were once married or friends, or in my case, there was a time where I respected and loved my body — so there was a way to get back there.
I had to focus on the positives; what my body had given instead of taken. I had my health, my body gave me signs and signals trying to tell me the why, and it worked in so many other important ways. Focusing on those aspects, instead of the negatives, allowed me to learn to re-love.
It was a hard road of many emotions — learning to re-love my body after miscarriage, but sitting here now in the present, I can finally say I have. I no longer place blame and I’ve found a way to forgive my body. It took time, but ultimately I was able to heal.