Today, November 4th, would have been my due date. I had imagined that on this day I would be sitting at home (im)patiently awaiting a baby’s arrival; instead I am sitting at work, patiently awaiting the arrival of my next client. No shows, on both accounts.
My pregnancy ended almost as soon as it began. I was just getting to the point of excitement about another child when we learned I was having a miscarriage and that the pregnancy was ectopic. It would never, could never be viable.
Healing after this loss has been hard. Harder than I ever imagined it would have been, mostly for reasons I didn’t anticipate. Just saying that you’re okay doesn’t make it so; just trying to will yourself intellectually back to “normalcy” doesn’t change the reality of how you feel. Thinking that you don’t need to grieve, or that the grieving should be over by now is one of the biggest disservices you can do to yourself. Hearing words intended for comfort but now feeling how they can bring sorrow, emptiness, and minimization of experience. Knowing that I have used these sentiments for others without a second thought. Understanding that making my ability to be happy and whole again contingent on ideals and future events that may never come is guaranteed to leave me more of a shell of myself than when I started. Searching for the strength to keep trying, month after month.
I thought that sharing my story would help me sail through the grief into happier times. In sharing, I am also forced to confront the pain and emotions that I would rather ignore. I can’t imagine how hard this would have been without the out-pouring of support I still continue to receive, had I not shared my story. My only regret is that I still occasionally admonish myself for feeling a little torn up over the loss.
I’ve learned that for me, the pain of pregnancy loss is in the dissolution of the hopes, dreams, and love I had for the child to come; I have no tangible artifacts or reminders. I’ve learned that there is no time limit on grief: the more you suppress, the longer it will haunt you. I’ve learned that in grief the best things to say are “I’m here for you, I love you, I’m so sorry”. I’ve learned to let go and accept the circumstances I have. I’ve learned that I can and am happy again.
At first I thought I would dread this day, I thought my heart may tear apart all over again. I spent a good deal of energy actively avoiding making any significant connections to this day, and by all accounts it has largely worked. Eight months have come and gone and not until last week did I find my thoughts moving back to this day and what it might mean to me. Today, the day has come and gone and I am really, truly okay. It is not just another day, but it is not a bad day. It is what it is, and like every day before and after, it too shall pass.