I’ve been putting off posting new content for a few weeks now for several reasons. The first reason being that I have been feeling a mite under the weather. I’m exhausted and have had a rather upset tummy. Second, there have been MANY appointments and activities. From parent-teacher conferences and fall parties to doctors our schedule has been quite full. And the last reason I’m going to list is I haven’t been able to focus on much of anything. 24/7 my mind is filled with anxiety and fear and maybe a tad bit of excitement. I’m sure you all are wondering what has been keeping me so occupied. If you hadn’t already guessed…
Impatience, Doubt & Fear, Oh My!
To many, this is a very exciting time but for a mom who has experienced a miscarriage, or in my case 5 miscarriages, this is a time of many mixed feelings.
I know I ought to feel excited about the new life growing within me but instead, I feel fear. Fear that there will be blood the next time I go to the restroom. Fear that the little twinge I just felt will soon turn to full-fledged cramps. Fear that if I announce this pregnancy to everyone I will soon be having to (once again) let those same people know that this baby is not to be after all. Fear that I will have to learn to survive yet another loss. It all comes down to fear of another miscarriage.
There’s this feeling of indifference about me. Like maybe if I don’t really acknowledge this pregnancy it won’t hurt so bad when this little one joins the others in heaven. Past experience tells me this won’t be the case and it will hurt no matter what but it’s there all the same.
I have been told by my OB and the Maternal Fetal Medicine doctor that baby is doing well but there’s still this lingering doubt. I’ve heard that line a few times before and more often than not it was soon followed by a miscarriage.
While I’m on the subject of doctors, each appointment is approached with apprehension. Is this going to be the time I find out something is wrong?? I know that the doctors tell us the good stuff, the baby is doing well, the lupus is in a quiet period, etc.. but they are also the bearer of bad news.
Impatience has become the norm for me. Time seems to drag by. I am anxiously awaiting the time when a fetal doppler can pick up that tiny little heartbeat to reassure me that baby is still ok. I am counting down the agonizingly slow weeks until I can feel those first flutters of movement. I know that if I can hear a heartbeat or feel movement then baby is still ok for the time being.
Seeing “normal” pregnant women can bring out that little green monster called jealousy. Why do they get to have everything come so easily? Whether it be an easy conception, smooth pregnancy or complication-free delivery, having an autoimmune disorder makes all of the above difficult. Being pregnant with Lupus automatically makes this pregnancy be considered high-risk and having multiple miscarriages just adds to that status. This means I have to be monitored much more closely. I have more doctors, more tests and I go into this pregnancy knowing that the likelihood of me being able to avoid a hospital stay before it’s even time to deliver is not so great. Now I wouldn’t wish this life on anyone but sometimes, when I’m sitting in the waiting room next to a 15 year old girl who isn’t even sure if she wants the baby, life just doesn’t seem fair.
The Good In Spite of the Past
So it may seem that I am only experiencing rather disheartening feelings due to the previous miscarriages. I’ll admit at this moment they still seem more numerous but there is some good.
I am hopeful that this is “the one”. This baby has stuck around longer than most of the little ones I’ve lost. I have made it to 11 weeks and I’m starting to feel a little more optimistic that I will actually get to hold this little one.
The kids are excited about having a baby around next summer. Hearing them talk about getting to hold the baby or teaching him/her to do one thing or another makes it hard to NOT feel that little spark of anticipation.
I would like to be able to write that excitement has set in. However, that one is going to take me a little longer to get to. And that is OKAY! There is no right or wrong way to feel during this time. I know that my heart will always feel slightly broken for my angel babies but I have a lot to look forward to in the coming months and years.
I pray constantly that we have a healthy and thriving new member in our family come May. If you have experienced a pregnancy after a loss I would love to hear from you! What helped you stay sane during this time of such mixed emotions?
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