I found out I was pregnant December 31st, over a week before I would even miss my period. I couldn’t believe it so over the next few days I took over 5 tests, seeing them get darker each time. I finally took one that simply said pregnant so it was even more real. 5 kids – we were going to have FIVE kids. As soon as the shock wore off the excitement and love set in.
I have always loved being pregnant. I say God put me on earth to do a lot of things, but the greatest is to be a mom. Normally we share the news early because I always figured whatever the outcome we would be open about it. With our last two, we waited a little longer. January was full of appointments and clearing out my brick and mortar boutique. We were super busy and distracted, but I loved the happiness and joy of being pregnant during such a huge change – I had owned my brick and mortar business for over 8 years so the transition away from it and toward blogging scared me.
Then I heard your heartbeat at 7 weeks. It is one of the most beautiful sounds. I saw the flicker on the ultrasound and cried like I always do. Tears of relief, because usually hearing the strong heartbeat and getting a due date is so reassuring. September 15th was your due date. I thought of what summer would be like with a baby belly, and having you in the fall. I thought about Luxiana becoming a big sister and how I really needed to get her sleeping independently and not cosleeping anymore. I wondered how I would transition my business and do what I love while balancing my passions. I was so excited to experience my first pregnancy without the pressure of being a brick and mortar business owner. All I have every known with my last 3 was the hustle of having a baby but not being able to shut off my entrepreneur brain. I thought about Dean praying for a baby brother and Ahrielle’s excitement.
We told the kids with an early Valentine’s gift and an ultrasound picture. They were trying to guess who the picture was of and didn’t guess until I said “it’s a picture of someone you haven’t met yet” and held the ultrasound to my belly. My daughter Ahrielle’s eyes got big and said “mama are you pregnant? Is there a baby in your belly?” Dean was instantly excited and said he was praying it was a baby brother. Anivia just shrieked a general 3 year old excited scream and cheer. I said “Luxiana you are going to be a big sister!!” Even though she was too little to understand she threw her tiny arms in the air and said “YAY!” We told our family and friends. I bonded with friends who were in similar stages of pregnancy. I love sharing pregnancy with friends.
I borrowed a doppler from a friend just for reassurance like I did with my previous pregnancy. I found it quickly on night 1 and the kids loved hearing it. The sound still plays in my head. The next 4 nights I couldn’t find it. I tried so hard not to worry, and told myself most people aren’t even checking at home and that I was stressing for nothing. Each night I put my hand over my growing baby like I always do and prayed everything was okay. I thought maybe I don’t even want to know. Enjoy each day that you are still pregnant. The night before my 10 week appointment the kids were in bed so I was trying to find the heartbeat while laying on the couch. Dean heard and came out and asked if he could massage my legs – and then was listening with me. He told me how much he was hoping God hears him and that the baby is a boy. My heart broke as I held my breath, I shut off the doppler and prayed.
The appointment was a blur but since I had trouble at home we dove right into finding a heartbeat. When we couldn’t find one we went to ultrasound. I was alone and trying so hard to have faith. The moment I saw my baby my thoughts flew – “why isn’t baby moving?!” “maybe it is just sleeping, it has to be sleeping.” “no no no this isn’t happening” all within .2 seconds. I turned from the screen and saw the US techs face as she shook her head I and said “I am so sorry.” I immediately started sobbing no, why? Are you sure? Why? In that moment I wanted to disappear. I wanted to crawl in a hole. I didn’t want to be in my own body. My baby is gone but it is still there perfectly? No cramping, no bleeding, like my body was holding on. Everything developing as it should, but stopped growing at 9 weeks 1 day.
I went into the parking lot and cried so hard. I still just wanted to disappear. My best friend came to find me so I wouldn’t be alone and she just hugged me. The school called because I missed early out and when I want to pick up the kids I was still an absolute mess. They were both crying until they saw me. All I could say was, the baby died. We all cried. I have always been open with them about life and emotions and we walked through it together. Sometimes we don’t know why, but God always has a plan. Mama is okay, just very very sad. I told them it was okay to be sad, mad, and cry.
How did I not know? The moment your heart stopped beating – how did I not know something was so heartbreakingly wrong? What was I doing when your heart stopped beating? Was I sleeping, or playing and laughing with your brother and sisters? Did you know how much I loved you? Did I do something wrong? Was it the caffeine? The turkey sandwich I ate knowing I should avoid lunch meat? How can this be happening, I wish I would wake up from this horrible dream. The kids wear their heart on their sleeve and had to share with their classrooms. We talked about gentleness and how to share that we lost our baby. We talked about how a lot of families experience this and you just never know.
Days went on and my body still did not recognize you were gone. I would put my hand over where you were and just pray and cry. I prayed so hard to have faith. I was faced with a choice of waiting, medicine to help my body, or surgery. How do people decide? Here is where I want to write a disclaimer that I am going to share my experience in detail, because I pray that it even helps one woman going through miscarriage.
I decided to take the medicine. I think my body would have held on for a long time, and the thought of that was too much. I didn’t want to have to mask up and go alone for a procedure either. I know women who have had a D&C and that was best for their closure and healing. I think everything comes down to truly doing what will help you cope and heal best. I have past trauma and experience that led me to my decision of wanting to be home to process what was happening.
I miscarried my baby Saturday morning, February 20th. I had no idea what to expect but through everything going on I could see my baby. It was tiny, with perfectly formed little hands and early forming eyes. I screamed and sobbed when I saw it because I didn’t picture my baby so detailed at 9 weeks 1 day. I held the tiny 2.5 cm baby in my palm and just sobbed and sobbed. The sun was rising and I listened to Oceans by Hillsong United. It was the song that comforted me when my dad passed, and was also on my playlist when Luxiana was born. I listened to Details by Sarah Reeves – and it was exactly what I was feeling. The details of this tiny 9 week baby…it was just evidence of God and his detail and love for us. If anyone has ever doubted life early in pregnancy, I am here to tell you my baby had life. It was a baby, not just cells or something else. It had a beautiful tiny beating heart that just stopped beating. I felt everything so deeply in those moments that it brought me to my knees. My heart shattered into a million pieces but I found closure and healing processing it the way I did. My amazing husband was the biggest support to me, I can’t imagine how it felt for him to have no control over the loss or suffering he felt or watched me go through.
We buried our tiny babe in a planter with hydrangeas and will replant it in the spring with a tree that can bloom and grow each year. If you have made it this far, and have any judgement in your heart for how I processed it, I am glad you don’t understand. I hope you never miscarry, or have to hold and see your miscarried baby. If you have experienced loss I am so sorry. My email is always open to talk. Talking about it with my family and friends is what has truly been so healing for me. My pregnancy and my baby were real. It is now a huge part of my heart and who I am. I can’t imagine trying to go through this alone. My sweet neighbor brought a beautiful card and comforting gift, my best friend brought us food that first day, and another amazing friend brought over comforting treats. Feeling loved and supported helped me to keep going.
I am so glad we shared our pregnancy. I am thankful for the 7 weeks of knowing and carrying my baby to 10 weeks. I am thankful for the bonding, celebrating, loving, and planning for baby. It’s heartbreaking but truly reminds you how precious and delicate life is. With every ounce of sadness I am also thankful my body knew if something was wrong and baby couldn’t grow and survive. I’m thankful for my amazing OB doctor and the others who cared for me through the process and each tear filled visit. I don’t know what the future holds but I do know I will live a little bolder and more fun filled in honor of my baby. I will try my hardest to be a light for God and have courage in sharing the hills AND valleys of our life.