I was pregnant on three separate occasions in a 12 month period.
Yes. You read that correctly – three separate times. I also had a pregnancy-related surgery between pregnancy #2 and #3. The surgery involved a pregnancy complication and did not directly involve being or maintaining pregnancy. To note: I hate the word miscarry / miscarriage / miscarried because what does it even mean? Especially when you are in the thick of it. The word miscarry implied that I failed to successfully carry a child to term. It ultimately implies that I was unsuccessful in having a child. Well, I disagree. I lost a child – I didn’t “miscarry” the child. I lost a pregnancy and a child – suffered a loss seems more appropriate to me. Don’t even get me started on spontaneous abortion – dumb. In my opinion, medical terminology should remain in the chart for documentation, and we should get back to humanity on this one. Struggling with and through infertility is hard.
We learned so much about infertility and the many layers that come along with that journey. We learned with each pregnancy. Our first pregnancy and loss lasted well over 20 weeks. Our second pregnancy was much shorter than the first. Our third pregnancy resulted in our rainbow baby Evangeline. I am not really sure when we knew we would have a successful pregnancy. We prayed. We went through a range of emotions. We asked people to pray. We said novenas. Everyone prayed. We are so immensely grateful for God’s love and so deeply honored to be parents. We prayed so hard for you sweet girl.
Hardest Parts of our Journey
The most difficult part of our journey wasn’t the prayers or the waiting. The hard stuff was the conversations outside of our home. It was extremely difficult to tell people that we were no longer pregnant. It was hard to get an ultrasound to confirm either pregnancy or loss. It was hard when asked how many times I have been pregnant and even harder to answer. I still hate this question when going to the doctor. I understand why this is asked; I am a medical professional. I get it. It is still hard. There were several painful conversations that left me speechless – if you know me then you know – I am hardly ever speechless. After a group run at The Tap Room (I miss these sooooo much), a fellow male runner said to me “There’s never a right time to get pregnant you know.” I had recently suffered a loss. I was told things like:
- “You aren’t getting any younger.”
- “We are waiting until you tell us.” “
- “Do you not want any kids?”
- “It’s selfish to not have kids.”
- “Are you guys trying?”
My husband has never been asked these questions. Ever. Prior to becoming a mother (outside of our home), I was often asked and badgered about becoming one – by all groups of people – women, men, young and old. The weight of our struggles felt like it was on full display all the time. It still feels like women are dealt the worst hand so to speak. Not only are there the struggles – the grief, the worry, the shame, the learning, the highs and the subsequent lows – the weight of our journey became heavier on me even outside of our home. Infertility doesn’t equate to inadequacy of the woman. This journey is and was hard. Stop asking women about their womb. Normalize minding your own business. Your thoughts and beliefs about our journey ain’t our business. It really isn’t anyone’s business, but it for sure shouldn’t land on our laps.
What matters most
What is and was important were the thoughts, prayers, and love. We sincerely appreciate everyone who prayed for us. We cannot begin to list all of the people who have been and are still with us now. It is not lost on us how much our family prayed for us – even if you never told us, we knew. I remember a friend who called just to pray with me. Gosh. If you are struggling with anything, get you a praying friend or a praying crew. Our journey was hard for us. It is still hard. We grieve our losses while loving our precious and most perfect gift from God. We thank him every day.
To all of the families who have and are still struggling with their infertility journey, we see you. We are praying with you. Never stop believing. Ask Him again and again and again. He knows your desires. He sees your heart. You are worthy. You are loved. Trust Him.
If you ever need to talk, cry, call, etc. Call me. Feel free to join Maddie’s Footprints and sign up for counseling if you need to – the resources in this town like The Family Tree and Maddie’s are so good. They are here to help.