Tuesday, October 6, 2009

October is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month

Over the course of almost 17 years, and 2 marriages, I have unsuccessfully tried to have children. I have had 7 (known) miscarriages and 1 ectopic pregnancy, from 1992 - 2008. I STILL cry over each and every child I have lost. I have learned to cope, but it is a very real pain that will stay with me for the rest of my life.

During those dark times, I have had to suffer in silence. This is mostly due to people not knowing what to say when something like this happens.

I will acknowledge that it can be awkward, trying to find something to say. People tend to NOT know how to respond with a miscarriage, especially in the 1st trimester, because typically, the mother isn't showing and there is usually no body to have a funeral for.

I have had some pretty callous things said to me during the times when I have miscarried:

1. Don't worry, you're still young, you have plenty of time to have babies.
2. Well, at least you didn't get attached to it.
3. Count your blessings, it was probably deformed.
4. It wasn't a real baby yet, why are you so upset?
5. You've already mourned over hearing the news (from the doctor that my baby had died), all you have to do is just pass the cells now right? So you shouldn't be so upset now.

And the list goes on and on.

So, my friends, if you know someone going through the terrible, heartbreaking ordeal of a miscarriage here are some suggestions to help:

1. Offer to run errands, watch her children, cook dinner, clean her house... these are the last things on her mind

2. Cry with her, hold her hand or just listen if she feels like talking

3. Say APPROPRIATE things to her; "I am SO sorry for your loss", "What can I do to help", "I am here for you"

4. Send flowers or a Thinking of You / Sympathy card.

These are just a few things that can mean so much. The point is to validate her feelings of loss and give her time to mourn.

Something else you can do:

Organizations across the globe ask that you take part in the "Wave of Light" by lighting a candle on October 15th at 7pm, in your local time zone. Please take a moment on this day for reflection, and remembering our lost children by lighting a candle at home, in groups and gatherings, or calling someone close to you who has experienced this loss. No matter how recent or how long ago, every parent would love to know that someone is remembering their angel child.

Much love and Peace,


The Head Eagle said...

Thank You for posting this! I think its important that we be more aware and sensitive to these sorts of things. Thanks Again!

Nonna Beach said...

This is a very heartfelt post. I had 1 miscarriage and I still wonder "what if" I have never gotton over it.I was told some of the "WRONG things to say" on your list and they still sting...the worst one was, "You have enough children already so why bring more into the world ?" My Mom said that to me !

My heart is so sad that you have been through so much and I'm sorry.

wendy said...

Oh Tammy, that is so sad that you have had to endure all those miscarriages and for someone who has NO idea what that would be like, thanks for sharing some things we "can do and say" that would be acceptable.
I truly would just cry with you.
Life is so hard sometimes. One should never feel like they are alone or not loved during their "hard times".

Shane and Michelle said...

Tammy, I found your blog through Yvonne's. I liked this post a lot and I really feel for your situation. This kind of trial is gotta be one of the toughest trials a woman could experience. Thanks for sharing your heartfelt thoughts. I've had a miscarriage myself and they are extremely hard on a person physically and emotionally, (naturally) so i can NOT imagine having them over and over. You're a trooper. I admire your faith. I am thinking of you and praying that you will get what you want soon.
p.s. I hope you don't mind if I put you on my blog list of friends so I can visit your blog, and our family blog is: http://shanemichelle.blogspot.com, xo

Motherboard said...

I wish I would have known about this... I've had a miscarriage and I still get emotional over it. It happened three years ago on Halloween.

What a wonderful organization!

R Max said...

As the friend of a friend who had five miscarriages, I can relate to this post.

At her last miscarriage, I treated her the same way she treated me when my husband died. Death is death and grief is grief.

What did we do? Went shopping. Went on a picnic. Talked and cried. Thought of names for the baby. Made a birthday cake.

About Stacey said...

Hi! I'm a medical student that recently lost my very first pregnancy after a looong struggle with infertility. I'm doing a poster for Oct.15 at my hospital and I was wondering if I could steal your Awareness graphic for the poster? Thanks!

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