The Hard Stuff.

Last year around this time we were pregnant. Actually, I've been pregnant twice this year. It's been a difficult time. This is the stuff we don't write about in the family Christmas letter or on Facebook. But it's the stuff that you need people to know about...if you're me, anyway. I don't know why people--women--don't talk about miscarriage. It was helpful for me to talk about it with the small group of friends that I did tell. The support means a lot. And at the time, both times, I was scouring the internet for other women's stories, just to find some peace of mind and comfort in the commonness of it all. If it is something that happens so frequently, then I can have less to worry about. Many go on to have healthy babies after 1, 2, or more miscarriages.

But I didn't find many of those stories. Not because it doesn't happen, but people don't want to talk about it. But how can you heal yourself without the people around you knowing what is going on? I don't know.

The first time I miscarried, we were 8 weeks along. We both went in on a Friday for my first sonogram to hear the heartbeat. When the nurse pulled up the screen, I knew immediately something was wrong. The nurse wasn't saying anything. I could tell from the colors on the screen that something wasn't right. She went to get the doctor.

Heartbreaking, and such weird timing. We were a few days out from our road trip to Marfa, in the middle of buying a house, and I was 2 days away from interviewing for a promotion. I actually went to work on Monday, dressed for the interview. I couldn't do it. Luckily I had a very understanding employer. We did, however, continue onto Marfa for what was supposed to be an artistic retreat, but mostly turned out to be a therapeutic trip for me. We still had our artsy fun, but under a veil of sad disappointment.

I didn't know what to expect when I finally miscarried. I went in blindly. It was physically painful...I expected cramps that I could handle (I get bad cramps during my period) but it was worse. It's just a weird experience all around. Our bodies are so strangely (thankfully) adept at taking care of us. That little being was not going to make it in the world, and my body took care of it and me.

The second time I miscarried, we were on our Texas road trip (we've had some unfortunate road trips this year, obviously). This time I didn't need the doctor to tell me what was happening; it was happening. I was barely pregnant. I had only known for about a week before we lost it.

Twice is not enough times to be tested for fertility issues. So, hopefully the third time's a charm, as they say. Luckily, we get pregnant really easily. (TMI? Sorry mom.) I go back and forth between wanting to push for answers and solutions, and then quietly accepting whatever life has in store for us, kids or not. I am very lucky and grateful to have a stepdaughter, since she was 3, with a mother who is willing to share her with me and let me feel like I can be a big part of her life too.

I don't know why I chose now to share all of this. I guess I have just been thinking about it a lot lately. I don't mind people knowing about it. I like the support. I need it. Also, Kennedy does not know about the pregnancies. Some discretion is appreciated.

April Hopkinslife2 Comments