1 in 4 women has a miscarriage.
1 in 4.
Something about that 25 percent statistic makes the tragic loss of an unborn child seem normal or even expected.
But there’s nothing normal about the pure soul-crushing aftermath of losing a child, no matter how far along you are.
So many women struggle with whether or not they are allowed to feel discouraged, distraught and downright broken over the death of someone they never even met. But whether you’re eight weeks or eight months into the pregnancy, no measure of time can dictate the depth of love a mother has for that little miraculous being growing inside of her.
Miscarriage may be common, but the topic is still rather culturally taboo. It’s something you’re expected to internalize, deal with and move on.
No mother could understand that better than Emily Christine, whose vulnerable Facebook post is now striking a chord with thousands who have felt her same pain.
Unafraid and unashamed to bear the raw truth about her traumatic experience, Emily shares the rarely addressed reality of miscarriages that the doctors don’t tell you. Her heartbreakingly beautiful message is now infusing hope and healing in moms all over the world:
I had to pee so badly but they wouldn’t let me go. They said I needed a full bladder because it’s easier to see the baby during the ultrasound. I remember feeling so frustrated not only because of my full bladder, but because I had to fill out what seemed like 50 pages of paperwork before I could empty my bladder and see the baby I’d been waiting to see for 8 weeks.
I finally was walked to the back room where I was greeted with a smile from everyone because the happiness from carrying a baby was contagious. The ultrasound began and I saw the images right in front of me. My heart was beating out of my chest. This was exciting!
This was a day my husband and I had been waiting for, for over a year.
But these images were different than the ones I’ve seen on Facebook that all my girlfriends had posted, something was wrong.
I saw nothing because my body was just hours away from miscarrying.
My ultrasound tech was quiet and I just knew. She left the room and my husband quickly assured me that “everything is fine.” But don’t tell that to a girl who has seen hundreds of ultrasound photos, who has searched Instagram for the hashtag “8weeks” to see what her baby now looked like.
I knew it wasn’t right and it wasn’t.
I remember being afraid to cry. I didn’t feel as if I deserved to cry because “I wasn’t that far along,” and “this happens all the time.”
I remember holding back the tears with every ounce of my being and not being able to look my husband in the face because I knew his pain would break me.
I was sent home to let my body naturally run its course and it did. I felt everything but had nothing to show for it. My doctor didn’t let me leave without warning and she was right about everything. But what she didn’t warn me about was everything that would happen after the initial heartbreak and pain.
She didn’t tell me I was going to be reminded for weeks to come because my body was going to take that long to “clean out.” She didn’t tell me I was going to have to watch my husband weep. She didn’t tell me how hard it was going to be to tell my mom what had happened. She didn’t tell me that my body was going to continue thinking it was pregnant for weeks to come. She didn’t tell me how hard it was going be to tell people I was fine when I wasn’t. She didn’t tell me that this was going to make me a jealous person over-night. She didn’t tell me how much harder the question “when are you having kids?” was going to be. And she didn’t tell me that it was going to be so hard losing someone I had never met.
But she did tell me it was okay to cry and she did tell me that I wasn’t alone.
Miscarriages are SO real and so common, in fact, one out of four women experience a miscarriage; but don’t let that confuse you into thinking it hurts any less. As large as this statistic is, I still felt alone and I have finally figured out why: because no one talks about it.
It wasn’t until I started talking about it to my friends and family that I slowly realized I wasn’t alone. That my mom, my aunt, my sister, my sisters best friend all have experienced this heartbreak and pain, a heartbreak and pain I wouldn’t wish upon my worst enemy.
People may wonder why I choose to talk about this after months have passed, but it’s the harsh reality that time really doesn’t heal all wounds so I am hoping sharing my story will help with the healing process. I am not looking for pity and I am not looking for answers. I am sharing this so that maybe one less woman will feel alone and use this as a reminder or message that there is hope after this heartbreak.
This is my hope for you…
I hope that you won’t feel alone.
I hope that you let yourself cry.
I hope that you will see the light at the end of the tunnel.
I hope that though your faith will be tested, you will be strong.
I hope you find peace.
I hope you won’t be afraid to try again.
I hope that you don’t blame yourself.
I hope that your friends hug you a little tighter.
I hope that you give someone else hope through your hardship
I hope that you are a light in the darkest of time.
…and I hope that you celebrate that baby’s life as much as you celebrate the next because no matter how short a life, all life deserves to be celebrated and all loss should be mourned.
Feel free to share if this spoke to you or you feel as if it might speak to someone you know.”