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Thoughts on pregnancy after miscarriage

My first pregnancy, I never considered the first trimester as anything fragile or worrisome.  I didn’t realize that 10-25% of pregnancies end in miscarriage.  I breezed through those weeks.  I didn’t hold my breath during the heartbeat checks.  I didn’t notice every twinge or cramp. 

My second pregnancy, again, the idea of loss never crossed my mind.  At 15 weeks, I thought I felt movement.  And at 15 weeks, the heartbeat was not found.  I felt so tricked by my body.  Betrayed.  I had no warning.  No signs.  The shock was devastating.

So, here I am, experiencing my third pregnancy.  I’ve spent the last months in a tentative dance–“embrace this life” cheek to cheek with “refuse to engage.”  I started out saying, “I’m going to take it day by day.  God will bring beauty regardless of the outcome.”  Then a week later, I found myself taking my temperature every morning, wondering about progesterone cream, and starting chasteberry supplements.  Then one morning, my temp dropped below my coverline.     I picked up the phone to call my acupuncturist at least 7 times but never followed through.  It is hard to explain but I felt if I tried to do something to prevent loss, the grief would be worse than if I approached it stoically.

And the anxiety of noticing every single twinge or cramp was consuming.  I think I was terrible to be around.  Calling a friend with questions like “What are the chances of a hydatidiform mole?”  “When would I know I had an ectopic pregnancy?”  Googling searches like “statistics for secondary infertility” and “chances of repeat miscarriage.”  I came close to buying a doppler.  Scott remained a rock of positive words and peace.

For Christmas, we wanted to surprise our parents with the news.  Even as my parents opened their gift–a tiny baby hat I had knitted–I wondered if this baby would ever wear it.

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Finally, I stopped all the striving.  I stopped taking my temperature.  I stopped taking herbs.  I tentatively made a prenatal appointment on the 1st day of my 12th week.  We estimate that Leaf stopped growing no later than 12 weeks so this was my milestone.  Knowing it can sometimes take a while to find a heartbeat this early, I braced myself for the wait.  But the heartbeat sounded loud and clear almost right away.  And my anxiety melted. 

I mourn the weeks I didn’t connect with this baby.  Still, I think the remainder of the pregnancy will be all the more precious for it. 

So, here we go!  It is dangerous when a doula is planning her (likely last) birth.  Oh the choices!  Oh the possibilities!  Stay tuned these remaining months…

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11 responses »

  1. i love you so! no matter how inconsistent your emotions during your wait, you appeared graceful, genuine. i am so excited that i almost feel like i am pregnant right alongside you. 😉

    Reply
  2. Julie I love how you can express so much in your words. IT brings the tears and then the joy right back again!If 12 weeks was the begining of Jan. Doesnt that make you due in the first part of July?? Blessings to you and your little one!

    Reply
  3. So excited for you. I will pray for you as you continue in your pregnancy! ANd love those smiley pics of the labor. when we are all well, we shall see you again at babywearing or cloth diapering group.

    Reply
  4. Aw…a sweet heartbeat! I’m happy you and the baby are doing well and I can’t wait to see you again! So you and Jenny are due around the same time, huh? Neat!

    Reply
  5. Oh my word, congratulations on your pregnancy!! I pray that the remainder of your time with baby before he/she enters the world is a peaceful time of bonding! 🙂

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  6. Denise, I’m due in early August. The 12 wks is from LMP; not gestation.

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  7. August 8th would be good day!!

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  8. I’m so envious! Pete and I really wanted to try this January-but alas! Life happens. I’ll get those clothes over to you before it gets warm. And I want all of your musings on nursing with problems, I just never thought about it being anything but latch and/or stress,bless my heart.

    Reply
  9. Dad and I could not be happier! I cannot believe that Norah kept a secret from us…come to think about it, I can’t believe that YOU kept a secret for a month!
    I love to hear Norah question whether the baby is “a boy or a djrul”!
    I love you, babe.

    Reply
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  11. Congrats Julie and Scott. Tim and I are expecting again the end of July. I, too, am preganant again aftera miscarriage. I have to remind myself daily to trust God and seek the peace that only He can provide. Looking forward to reading about your journey!

    Reply

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