I won’t go into the story, as I think there are so many; some similar, some different and traumatic, and some are just personal. We found out at 8 weeks that it probably happened days after we found out we were pregnant.
We learned that telling a few close friends and family make for a great support network when the symptoms present themselves, and even more-so when they are confirmed.
Health professionals will tell you not to tell too many people that the stalk is coming to visit. This is the first “beware” message you will receive, the first instance to instil doubt usually. I have to say I disagree with this. We planned to tell our immediate family, but a few friends found out as I wasn’t prepared for circumstantial events. Therefore, at a party I told a friend who was trying to talk me into jelly shots, and anyone who knows me knows I don’t mind a cocktail or two at a party, another friend I told as she was trying to offer me painkillers for a headache and found it odd I refused when I struggle with migraines and always like to get on top of them early. I also told a nurse I work with when I found out at work that I was pregnant, and another friend at work later that night as I knew she would be over the moon, and she was. My husband told a friend at work as he was initially stressed about it, and of course, we told our siblings and parents.
We were initially wary of how many people we told, to the point that when my husband found out I told a few people at work he was worried we had gone too far. However, you have to think about your support groups, who would you turn to if the worst was to happen? The people we told were the people who would be the ones to comfort us, support us and that we would talk to when we needed a distraction, and who we have called when we needed help. For instance one of the friends I told was the same person who drove me to the emergency department while my husband was working, and who has been a great support to both of us since. My husbands’ mother and two of my friends have all experienced miscarriages also, which has made them great supports because unlike other friends and family who try to empathise, these people know how it feels and seem to know what to say and expect.
We learned that no matter how well you prepare for the worst, you will still feel disappointment, emptiness and grief.
We knew for at least a week that things were not looking great, I had looked at bloods, constantly, thought about the previous ultrasound results, and talked to other expecting mothers to be on discussion posts and made my own thread previously thinking I was overreacting. All of us coming to the same conclusion. Just waiting for a health professional to admit it in writing so we could have some kind of closure. Being nurses we had long known, but that didn’t make it any easier. I thought I was prepared, I’m not sure how hubby was really, he just kept saying he was flat but ok.
On my own a few times I felt sad, lonely, empty and like I didn’t know what to look forward to anymore. I teared up on my own in the car a few times, at home on my own, and at work twice. Now I am still a little lost, not sure how I should feel or what I should be doing. We would like to try again but hubby is worried about putting me through this again, and I imagine afraid of the grief of going through this again.
We learned the world does not stand still for you to figure out how to cope and come out on the other side, but it may provide some leniencies if you are lucky enough to be surrounded by great people.
When you lose someone it feels as though the world and time may have lapsed. This is not the case. Day turns into night, daily life as we know it moves forward as it always has, everyone goes to work, there are meals to prepare and bills to pay and bosses to answer to. However, you feel like everything else has fallen away momentarily, like all there is, is this great loss that happened, something significant, that has briefly caused a shift. Life continues, and you fail to realise.
I called in sick for two days, but hubby had to continue working as he recently started a new job. I tried to go back but I was unwell and emotional. I took the rest of the week off, we filtered through the people we had to tell, I attended safe social outings that I felt ok with, we had visits from family, texts and calls, and as a couple we spent hubby’s days off together watching tv, reading and chipping away at day to day tasks.
We learned how lucky we are.
We have had such amazing support, getting messages most days and phone calls checking on us. Flowers and cards bought and sent, visits offers of help for anything. And most of all, we have been lucky to have quite a bit of time to be together, to talk, or not to talk, for hugs and to make the shortfalls for each other. We haven’t argued or lashed out, we have had a really supported time together. Hubby got the shifts he needed at work to come to my appointments even if he couldn’t get the time off, and my manager was great, the way she always has been for me, waiting for me to let her know when I am ok to return.
The biggest thing I have learned isn’t the coping, the emotional or physical stuff, it’s that there is always hope. Before a rainbow, we must endure the storm, in my life all the good things have come about after something terrible, but always something greater comes along. There is always something to look forward to, we just never know what it is or how it will come to be.
We don’t know what that will be so far, it’s all still very fresh, but we are waiting a little longer and will make some plans to give us something to look forward to in the meantime.
Most importantly we learned, the best is yet to come!