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Miscarriage: One Woman’s Story, Part 3

 

Candace BakerClarksville, TN **Editor’s Note** This is the final installment of our series, written by Candace Baker, sharing her recent miscarriage and the grief and sadness of this event.  She wanted to share her story in hopes of helping other women who have been through the same experience.  Clarksville Online thanks Candace for her willingness to share her story with our readers, and for her courage to come forward.  We share her hope that we’ve been able to help others who are grieving the loss of a loved one.  Now, in her own words:

Putting this event into words, has been incredibly therapeutic. My husband initially encouraged me to get used to verbalizing my feelings, the fact that I had a miscarriage so that I can get used to the reality of it.

Candace Baker and her sons

Candace Baker and her sons

When this first happened, I could not bring myself to actually say “we lost our child” without completely falling apart emotionally. I began writing, because I just couldn’t say the words.  It helped to email one of my closest friends and type the emotions, type what happened. It was a way of saying everything without trying to talk past the tightness in my throat when the subject would come up.

The more I typed, the more I had to analyze my feelings and then I could read and process them without having to feel the depth of the emotion each time. It became easier to just say, “I’m sad. I am not okay, but I will be.”

My friend emailed me back that I should consider publishing what I wrote to her to not only help myself heal, but to put my words out to possibly help someone else.

I can say that the more women I talk to who have miscarried, the more they have given me a sense of validation and a connection that I didn’t realize I needed.  I needed to hear other women say, “I understand” and “you have the right to grieve.”  To stop feeling like I needed to preface everything I said to my husband with “is this normal”, “is this weird”, or “am I the only one”.

His words of reassurance helped me so much, but these other women solidified in my mind that our experience, however unique, was still a loss that had the right to be mourned deeply. My husband told me that we will find out who are friends and family are during this time, and he was right. He is always right, which is one of my favorite things about him.

The family we have built here in Clarksville proved to be family through thick and thin, because I can assure you, this was a thin time for us emotionally. I would like to give that feeling of reassurance or understanding to someone else. Someone who may not have the incredible support system that I have, or maybe does but like me, still needs to relate to someone who went through this loss as well.

A miscarriage is common, but nobody talks about it.  It can be isolating. 

I have read that a miscarriage does not affect every person the same way and I can understand that.  I don’t think it is in any way related to the length of the pregnancy, but the value the mother and family place on the baby. I valued my baby immeasurably, so this loss affected me in ways I still haven’t been able to accurately express.

Ultimately, I don’t think there is any one way to heal or help someone heal after this type of loss. The only things I know are from my own experience, which I’m still going through. I can tell you that no matter what, if someone you know goes through this experience, give them support.

This loss is not easier than a neonatal birth or stillbirth, because this is still the death of their baby.  Do not ignore the mother or father. People brought food, called to say they were praying for us, and made sure we had what we needed.

To all of you, thank you.

You can’t just assume there will be another baby, to “replace” the one you lost.  To say that “something must have been wrong” still doesn’t validate the miscarriage.  It’s still a death in the family, but I also realize that most people really don’t know what to say.

It is hurtful to assume that the family wouldn’t have wanted the baby even if there had been medical issues. Love doesn’t wait for a perfect baby; the love is there from the very beginning. Being able to tell my friends that I am depressed and then explaining the depths of my emotions was cathartic.

If you’ve experienced this type of grief, don’t hesitate to reach out to your pastor, your Army chaplain, or a grief counselor.  You MUST talk about it.  

I found a few websites that might be helpful to you.  

www.throughtheheart.org and http://americanpregnancy.org/pregnancy-complications/miscarriage/

I googled everything I could about miscarriages to try to understand why this happened, and the truth is that I will never know. Talking about it, praying about it, reading about it, and writing about it have been my saving grace. 

To contact Candace, email her at; 

Links to the Series

Miscarriage: One Woman’s Story
Miscarriage:  One Woman’s Story, Part 1
Miscarriage:  One Woman’s Story, Part 2
Miscarriage:  One Woman’s Story, Part 3
My Two Cents: The Backstory


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