"The energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued;Brené Brown - "The Gifts of Imperfection"
when they can give and receive without judgement;
and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship."
Shameful Confession: When I was in my mid-20’s, a co-worker suffered a miscarriage. No one had known she was pregnant. In fact, she had just recently returned from maternity leave. When I heard the news, I incredulously remarked to another co-worker “Are you serious? She needs to take three days off over a miscarriage??? But she JUST had a baby! What is there to be so upset about?!”
I am utterly ashamed to admit that I acted so insensitively. I’m horrified at my lack of compassion. But I was young, stupid, and clueless. In my ignorant mind, losing a pregnancy or even a baby, was like losing a jacket. If you already had another jacket, then there was nothing really to be so upset about. And if you didn’t own another jacket, you could just get a new one…Until I lost my own baby through miscarriage and suddenly I understood.
It turns out a miscarriage wasn’t just a miscarriage. Maybe for some it is, but for me it was life-shattering. It wasn’t just the loss of a pregnancy. It was the loss of my son; the loss of my dreams for that baby; the loss of my hopes of mothering that tiny bundle; the loss of my plans for the future with that child. I lost a piece of me. The loss was the deepest pain I have ever experienced and I felt the most alone I have ever felt in my life.
As the weeks went by, my friends and loved ones grew tired of my depressive state. They didn’t know what to do with me. They didn’t know what to say to make me “all better” and “back to normal”. Some thought I was seeking drama; thriving on the attention; being difficult; overreacting; not getting over it quickly enough. I felt disconnected from most of the people in my life. They simply didn’t get me.
I knew there were others out there like me. I spent countless hours, night after night, on baby loss websites and message boards where I was able to express my grief with other bereaved mothers. But the greatest blessing of all came when I discovered Healing Hearts, a local Pregnancy and Infant Loss Support Group.