As many of you know October is an awareness month for a lot of different causes. We are all very familiar with this month largely being dedicated to Breast Cancer Awareness, but there are many other health awarenesses that fit into these little 31 days of October. *Such as: Down Syndrome Awareness, SIDS Awareness, Domestic Violence Awareness, Spina Bifida Awareness, and Physical Therapy month…just to name a few. One topic that tends to slip through the cracks, which is one that most women can relate to, is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness.
* via HealthLine
October 15th is the official remembrance day for pregnancy and infant loss and it’s fascinating to find that this day comes and goes without much mention or thought; especially compared to the amount of press and advertising that goes towards benefitting breast cancer research. Although breast cancer affects a large percentage of women, I was shocked to see just how many women are affected by miscarriage or other types of pregnancy/infant loss in their lifetime. According to Baby Center (my trustworthy resource for all things pregnancy), 10%-20% of known pregnancies end in miscarriage and 80% of which occur before 12 weeks.
I am a part of this statistic.
In March of this year my husband and I were excited to find out that we were pregnant for the very first time. It was completely unexpected and although we weren’t preventing it, we weren’t necessarily trying to conceive either. I had gone on a surprise visit to VA to spend the weekend with friends and it happened to be right around the time my period was expected (who doesn’t like traveling with Aunt Flo?). That weekend came and went and no sign whatsoever of my period. A few days after I returned home, I decided to take a pregnancy test because it had almost been a week that I was late and I was never late. My husband had gone off to work that morning and I awoke a few hours later to get ready for work myself. I decided to take a home test then jump in the shower. Once I slid the door open I stood there staring and trying to process the PREGNANT 4-5 text on the screen of my digital test. I immediately began to cry and praise God for this blessing and new adventure my husband and I were about to embark on.
However, that joy quickly turned to sadness and heartbreak within the week.
At our official 5 week mark I had noticed spotting that turned to a heavy flow along with severe cramping. I remember I kept trying to tell myself that it was only implantation bleeding and that I couldn’t be possibly losing the pregnancy. Although I held on as tight as I could to that thought, I finally accepted the inevitable: I was miscarrying. I quickly made an appointment with our doctor the next morning for an exam and blood work, which confirmed our worst fear. Luckily we didn’t share the news with too many friends and opted to wait and tell our families until we were ready to openly talk about it.
Although that experience was one of the most difficult I’ve personally had to go through to-date, surprisingly my husband and I were able to come out of it not only having a stronger marriage, but a more solid understanding that we were both ready for parenthood. My husband was my rock and although he was hurting right along with me, he stood strong for the both of us. He was there for me through it all and for him I’ll be forever grateful. Miscarriage gave us a bigger purpose and I knew that one day we would be blessed with a baby. It may not have been right away or even when I wanted, but God always provides.
Today I sit here writing my story at 20 weeks pregnant. Officially the halfway mark until we get to finally meet our healthy little boy. The irony of it all, and a notion I keep close in my heart, is that our baby is due in March of next year. An anniversary of sorts and reminder that God is indeed good and will always present Himself in our times of trial and challenge. It was through this particular trial I had learned a deeper meaning of God’s presence in my life and how He has revealed His plan for my family and I.
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us”
I share my story (and you can read my original post about miscarriage here) in hopes that it not only brings awareness, but it provides hope and sense of community for all of us who are unfortunately bound together through this unpleasant experience of miscarriage. However, I can say that I was able to find strength in my own circumstance through others who bravely shared their own personal stories of loss and to those women I thank you.
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