Yes, Please, Ask Me How I’m Doing

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I feel like I should get a t-shirt with that title emblazoned across my chest…

 

If you don’t follow me on Facebook, or you didn’t happen to read between the lines on Twitter, you might not already know:  We found out yesterday that our fourth baby no longer had a heartbeat.  I was ten weeks pregnant.

 

I’ve never dealt with miscarriage before and, from what I’ve been told and from what I’ve seen, every woman deals with this horrible loss differently.  For some excellent tips on what to say/not say and what to do/not do, I would point you in the direction of Donielle’s What You Should and Shouldn’t Say to Someone Who Has Lost a Baby or Jessica’s Helping Those Dealing With Pregnancy Loss.  They both offer spot-on suggestions.

 

For me, personally, I’m feeling so hollow and lost and alone, my friends.  Here I am, at my house, just waiting– waiting for my body to no longer be carrying this precious child of ours.  I have no idea what to expect or when and it’s mental and emotional anguish for me.  And I am realizing, beyond a shadow of a doubt, I am NOT one of those women who prefers to mourn in private.  I can understand that preference, but it is just not mine.

 

And, through tears, I selfishly implore you…

 

  • Please talk to me.
  • Please ask me how I am.
  • Please don’t send me emails that totally ignore what’s happening to me– it doesn’t make me forget, it just makes me think you don’t think my pain is significant.  That hurts more than talking about it, to be honest.
  • Please let me tell you about our baby… about seeing that little heartbeat and the sheer joy we had mere weeks ago.
  • Ask me questions that prove you recognize the life I carried– when was I due? (September 20th.)  Was I feeling okay?  (Exhausted and queasy, but so, so excited.)  Did I have any feelings about whether I would have a boy or girl?  (I had a vivid dream we had another girl.)
  • Accept words like “hollow”, “lost”, “numb”, and “terrified” as replies to the question, “How are you?”  I can’t come up with better right now.  “Fine” would be a lie.
  • Please don’t fixate on things like my age (35) or the size of our home (3 bedroom)… know that neither of these mattered one whit to us and this baby was already cherished and wanted.
  • Let me cry.  Let me eat Lucky Charms or Count Chocula.  (Man, I wish I had some Lucky Charms right now…) Let me let my house fall into disarray while I numbly watch my three wonderful blessings play together.
  • Hug me.  Tight.  Don’t let go until I do… I feel like I’m drowning and I’m so desperate for a life-line.
  • Don’t forget that I’m not the only one who lost a baby.  I struggle to know how to support my husband as I flounder around in a sea of tears.  I wish desperately someone would offer him a hand, too.

 

I don’t know if I’m going to blog more or less in the days to come… I don’t know if I’ll find it painful or cathartic.  I can promise you that the “My Story…” series will continue and there will be some reviews (I’m sure you’re thrilled about that. ;))  But, if I’m not around here much, you can find me on Facebook or Twitter.  I can be reached through that “contact” tab on the top.

 

Please don’t ever be afraid to talk to me.

 

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34 comments to Yes, Please, Ask Me How I’m Doing

  • Julie

    Oh honey, my heart hurts deeply for you. I too have been through this and the grieving process is brutal. Please know I’m praying for you. All I can do is cry with you and offer you my prayers and understanding knowing none of it fills the emptiness for you. Just wanted you to know.

  • Love you, my friend. The Lucky Charms are on their way! :)

  • JessieLeigh, I’m so relieved to hear you say that you like when people ask you how you’re doing. I didn’t want to seem like I was prying or that I was being nosy — I truly wanted to comfort you and let you know that I support you. I’m so incredibly sorry for your loss and I pray for strength for this difficult time. You are loved :)! Thank goodness God hears prayers no matter how far apart we are :).

  • Words escape me. My best friend in the world has lost two angels. Both at around 9 weeks. To watch her pain was so hard. We had a talk just last week about how much she hurt. She is 13 weeks preg with her little blessing. She told me that if (God forbid) something would happen. She would not be “fine.” If I ask her and she says fine, she said for me to tell her to stop lying and talk to me.
    I am praying for you and your husband. May the arms of Jesus give you peace in this storm.

  • Terri

    I’m so very sorry. I have lost a baby and I understand those feelings you named. I wish I could hug you. May the Lord bring you to peace in His time.

  • Laraba

    Oh Jessie Leigh, I have tears in my eyes for you right now. I am so very very sorry. I’ve lost four to miscarriage and the first was the hardest. We had never had a problem before and to learn that our sweet baby whom we already loved was gone, it broke our hearts. Please take time to grieve. Take time to mourn. Don’t just “keep on keeping on”. You are right that many people don’t know what to say and many will say the WRONG thing. I think that’s where Jesus has to step in and help us forgive. If you are a reader who does well with books about loss, I recommend “A Grace Disguised” by Jerry Sittser. It was very helpful. I also was in therapy for a couple of months as the depression after our first miscarriage was profound and I needed a place to focus on it. There just aren’t words to say to really comfort you but please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.

  • Laraba

    One more thing and that’s about your husband…I think men get even less support than women. My husband was deeply grieved and depressed when we lost our baby, but the sympathy we received was generally focused on me instead of him. There aren’t simple answers. And remember that you and he are not identical and will not grieve the same way. I will say he found some of the loss books helped him walk through it. I’ll pray for him too.

  • I love you, beautiful girl. I don’t know the pain of miscarriage, but I grieve with and for you.

    I read this post yesterday and I don’t know if this kind of delivery is your plan, but it might help to read it. http://mamaandbabylove.com/2012/01/31/my-natural-miscarriage-story/

    Jessie

  • Lori

    I understand exactly how you are feeling. I have been through this 3 times and it doesn’t get easier. Take time to grieve because you lost a baby. What I found helped me the most was talking to my husband. We were the only ones who really understood what the other was feeling. I tried to keep it to myself at first but I got depressed. Talking to him helped both of us heal.

  • Still praying for you, my friend.
    I do not understand those mourn in private people. My girlfriend from college had FIVE miscarriages in a row in secret all the while from the moment she said “I do” I was always asking “So when are you guys going to start having kids?” since I was still single and baby desperate. What a big turn I felt like asking that not realizing they were trying and losing baby after baby. UGH.
    I’m so glad you are comfortable sharing and have modern social technology available to let your friends shower with love and support.
    Give your hubby a hug. I hope he can feel the blog love too.

  • Kelley

    I am very sorry to you and your family for your loss. I have experienced this and I can relate and understand what you are going through. Although not exactly because all situations are unique. I will keep you in my thoughts. Well wishes.

  • Susie

    Oh, Jessie Leigh, I was so sorry to hear this :-(
    I can’t imagine the heartbreak. Praying for your sweet family

  • I am so sorry. I have been there and know very well the pain and difficult time it is. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  • Lindsay

    I am so sorry for your loss. I like to think that there is a special place in heaven for angels that were born too early. I lost my first child at 19 weeks, and I was never the same. I am not the type to grieve silently, but no one around me thought it was appropriate to talk about a “simple” miscarriage. My husband was my rock, but I constantly worried about the support he was getting. It turns out that he was secretly going to his male friends at work to talk to them, and it helped. Maybe your husband is the same way? You will be in our thoughts and prayers.

  • Kathy

    Thank you so much for your insights. I have never been in your situation but have been one of those people wondering what to do to help those in your situation. I am currently trying to help a co- worker who is 22 weeks pregnant and has been told her daughter will only make it minutes after birth. We talk daily about her daughter and sometimes about the day she will be born. I am so glad you said that you want to talk about it. My friend wants to tell you about her daughter and also tell you how painful it is knowing she will only be with them for minutes. God bless you and your family and thank you for your candid comments.

    • We have friends who endured the same horrific event. At their routine 20 week sonogram they found out that their daughter wouldn’t live. Sweet Giana lived for 30 minutes or so after birth. My friends are now spending MUCH time “coaching” and comforting others who go through the same situation. I’d be happy to put you in touch with them if that would be helpful.

  • Love you. Hurting for you. Wishing I could take the hurt away. Keep talking…

  • Oh, JessieLeigh I am so sorry. Do whatever you need to do to get through and don’t let anyone tell you that you are doing it wrong. I hope you are ok. I’ve lost one child and have had one miscarriage, all within 6 weeks of each other and it’s hard. Thoughts and prayers are with you and your sweet family. ((Big Hugs)) to you mama.

  • Ellen

    Just wanted to say I am sorry for your loss.

  • Nicole

    I wish I could cook you and your family dinner and bake you cookies. I wish I could bring you with me to adoration and hold your hand and pray the rosary with you. But living 3000 miles away, I cannot. Just know that you and yours will be in my prayers. God bless you.

  • I’m so sorry for your loss. I’ve lost 2- one at 10 weeks and another at 9.
    VERY few people know about the latest one, but those that do know have been so supportive and amazing.

    Everybody knew about our first loss, and no one talked about it- or totally disregarded it..making me feel so isolated and empty.

    Praying for you to have peace.

  • Shannon

    Jessie, I’m so sorry. All I can do is send up a prayer and positive thoughts your way. I hope you can feel them.

  • I’m so sorry. It is horrible and devastating. Eat all the lucky charms you want. Do whatever you need to do to get through this. I will keep you in my prayers!

  • {{{Hugs}}} and love to you!

    Miscarriage is so hard. Keep talking, sharing, and grieving. Your loss and hurt is real, I still feel the hurt a year and a half later. It will get better, but for a lack of better terms it just sucks.

    Prayers for your heart, spirit, and body.

  • Laraba

    You said I could ask — how are you doing? You don’t need to reply but please know I am praying for you. I got a bad stomach virus early Sunday morning and spent some of my unhappy awake time praying for you and your husband.

    Just to let you know what has happened with me…my first miscarriage would not complete on its own. We had 3 ultrasound to assure ourselves the baby was gone (she was a blighted ovum pregnancy so didn’t develop long) but I finally had a D&C. My 2nd and 3rd miscarriages happened “naturally” at 6.5 and 9 weeks, and my 4th miscarriage I bled for 6 weeks but couldn’t complete it so I had another D&C. Every miscarriage has been different for me and we’ve had to pursue different medical treatment for each one, really. I don’t know if that helpful but you said you are waiting…waiting is wise for a season but at least in my case, I needed intervention 2ce.

    • Thank you, for asking. I very much meant it– I’m one of those “needy” sorts who craves people checking in on me, I guess. I’m struggling, to be honest. Very scared, very hollow, and very worried about the “wait”. We learned yesterday that my hormone levels are climbing so my doctor is calling me today to talk about some stuff. I’ve not yet decided if I can emotionally (and perhaps even physically) handle a wait of a week or more on top of this already. I really appreciate you sharing your stories– no two women or situations are the same and it’s helpful to me to hear various experiences. I hope you’re feeling better!

  • ~M

    I am so sorry for you and your family. I know how much you wanted this baby. You’re in my thoughts.

  • Laraba

    JL,

    I would urge you to make sure you get another ultrasound JUST in case. I mean, you are sure she is gone and I’m sure she is too, but of course you want to be absolutely positive. The climbing hormone levels…well, that might mean a lot of things. I know your dr. is discussing it. I am glad that my OB has always been very cautious about ordering the D&C, not allowing it until we were both positive beyond a doubt that the baby was gone. I know how AWFUL the waiting is…with my first mc, I felt sick on and on until we finally had the D&C, and that was especially tough as I knew she was gone but I still felt terrible. Those were some of the hardest weeks and months of my life, surviving that miscarriage. Physically I didn’t have any trouble with the D&C and aftermath, but emotionally it was absolutely devastating. What you are feeling is very normal. It’s been a long time and I don’t cry (much) about our lost babies but it is still very sad. I am thankful I’ll get to meet them someday, but I want them here now.

  • Katie

    I’m so sorry that you lost your baby JessieLeigh. I wish all of us readers could jump through your blog and offer a hug and prayers to you in person. I’ll be praying for you and your sweet family.

  • Cynthia

    I am so sorry for your loss. The best thing I did after I lost my fourth child at 9 weeks (we had seen the heartbeat as well) was to allow myself to grieve loudly and for a long time. It wasn’t my style – I was uncomfortable with grief and sadness and typically tried to hide it – but it was the best thing I ever did. I think I owed it to that sweet baby to honor his life by feeling his loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  • I’m also sorry you lost your baby. It’s heartbreaking. I lost my first baby nine years ago (had only just found out I was pregnant) and I was devastated. As part of the grieving process, my husband and I named her and ordered her a little name card with the meaning of her name on it, buried the positive pregnancy test, and cried a lot. I also remember my baby’s birthday (April 7th) and sponsored a child through World Vision in her honor with the same birth date. I’ll be praying for you and your family as you grieve. I know that everyone grieves differently, and I’m glad you are allowing yourself to grief as you need to.

  • Molly

    I’m so sorry. I have no idea what to say, but I have goosebumps of sadness for you, and I am sending happy thoughts your way.

  • Amy

    I happened to be checking my email this morning. A random blog that I joined about motherhood had a link to your blog. Although I don’t have time to read your stories this morning, I found myself drawn in and can’t help, but read them. You brought me to tears. I wish I could reach through the computer and give you a hug. Though our stories are infinitely different and I have not gone through what you have, I feel the need to share my love with you. Also a love that our Heavenly Father has for you individually. I know without a shadow of a doubt that you will see your baby again and be able to hold it. I know that families can live together forever…for eternity. Life is hard, but just know that you are loved. I have been “slacking off” in my prayers, but now I know I need to pray. And I will pray for you and your dear husband and family. Consider yourself hugged!

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