My Missed Miscarriage And The Lessons It Taught Me

On holiday in Morocco at 7 weeks pregnant (June 2018)
As I lay looking at the monitor, I knew what I was expecting to see. I knew that our 12 week old baby should've been the size of plum, because I had all the pregnancy apps. I knew that even though I wasn't able to feel anything yet, our baby was moving around inside of me. I knew that my stomach was growing and my body was changing. I knew all of that and more, but what I didn't know was that my body had been lying to me, because as I lay looking at the screen, all I saw was darkness.

July 19th was the day of my first scan. It was a Thursday and I was exactly 12 weeks pregnant. That was the first time I ever heard the term "missed miscarriage".

We found out I was pregnant two days before my birthday. By then I was just over four weeks pregnant. My partner Omar and I were so excited. We were expecting our first child! It was the best birthday present I had ever received in my life.  Finding out I was pregnant felt like such a blessing; I felt so grateful. From that moment, I became a mum. I was carrying our baby and every single problem or fear that I had ever felt in life suddenly disappeared.

The weeks seemed to go slowly as I eagerly counted down the days, waiting for new updates on our babies development on my pregnancy apps. With each hospital appointment and midwife visit, it began to feel more and more real. As much as I was excited, I also felt a lot of anxiety. It just seemed really strange to me how I was supposed to be 100% relaxed until the 12 week scan. I just wanted to see what was going on inside of me, kind of like some reassurance, I guess. I literally couldn't wait for that day! We would finally be able to share this huge secret we'd been keeping and we would finally get to meet our baby.




When that day came, I remember sitting in the waiting room looking at all of the pregnant women, all at different stages of their pregnancies. I'd been broody for the longest while and here I was, surrounded by motherhood, and I was finally a part of that. As we sat there, we spoke about how many scan pictures we would get afterwards, how excited our parents were and about how we were going to tell our friends. I still felt a bit nervous, but I was so excited.

The nurse called us in and I lay on the bed holding Omar's hand tightly. This was it.

As the nurse performed the external scan, she then informed me that she'd like to try an internal one. I tried with every fibre of my body to stay positive. We were looking at the monitor, but we still couldn't see our baby. Omar and I looked at each other and my eyes started welling up. He gave me a look of reassurance, but the more questions she started asking me, the more my eyes filled up. She kept speaking to me, but all I wanted to know was whether or not our baby was OK. After what felt like a lifetime of silence, she said these words, "I'm very sorry, but there seems to be no heartbeat."

I was so confused as I stared at the dark screen with tears streaming down my face. I didn't understand how that could be. My body was telling me that I was pregnant! That's when she went on to explain that I had experienced a missed miscarriage. A missed miscarriage (or a silent miscarriage) is when your body still thinks that you're pregnant, as you haven't yet showed any physical signs of a miscarriage, such as bleeding or cramps etc. But the reality is, your baby may have stopped developing any number of weeks in-between. In my case, our baby had stopped developing at around 6 weeks old. It was like my body was latching on and didn't want to let go. I felt so heartbroken. How could this one day that we'd been waiting for for so long, turn out to be the worst day of our lives?

As she left to give us our privacy, we embraced each other, both in total shock. I couldn't even find the strength to put my clothes back on. We walked back through the waiting room of pregnant women and I tried to hold myself together. One minute I had a baby and now I didn't? I couldn't make sense of it. As we made our way home, I saw a woman carrying her young baby and I cried. I felt so ashamed. What was wrong with me? Was it my fault? What happens next? On top of all the hurt I was feeling, I felt scared and lost because no one had prepared me for what was about to come next.

The next morning I woke up with mild stomach cramps, and as soon I got out of bed, I started to miscarry. I had never seen so much blood in my life. It just wouldn't stop. I'll never forget the pain I felt that day. Luckily, I had Omar with me, but we were both in total shock. I wasn't aware that this would happen so soon, or how it would come about. The only information I had, had come from my night of googling "what happens after a missed miscarriage?"; no one had warned me of the next stages. As I continued to miscarry throughout the morning, I received a letter in the post for my 16 week midwife appointment. I just wanted the ground to swallow me! The bleeding continued throughout the day and got so bad that I ended up going to A&E. I spent the rest of the day in hospital and just like that, I was no longer pregnant.

Being pregnant was the best feeling in the world and this experience has been more than heartbreaking, but it has reinforced that you need to try and find the blessings in all situations you go through in life. I'm not writing this post for sympathy, but for anyone who has gone through a miscarriage or knows someone that has, in the hope that it will help someone.

When I went through my miscarriage, I felt so isolated because I didn't realise how many women had experienced the same thing I had. I felt like our future plans came crashing down in the space of two days. Miscarriage isn't something that's really spoken about, but when I started speaking about my experience, it became apparent that this wasn't so "rare". It gave me comfort to know that there were other people who understood my pain and could relate to how I was feeling. If this is something you are going through or have gone through (as a mother or father), just know that it's OK to feel how you feel and you are allowed to grieve for as long as you need to. Please just try to channel that energy into something positive, as it is so easy to fall into a dark space, but that place isn't somewhere we want to stay.

I feel eternally grateful to have an amazing partner and family and friends who were so supportive and understanding. But it's so important to just talk about these things, because it's happening to women every single day and not everyone may feel that it's even possible to share such a story, and it should be.

I want you to know that no matter when you miscarried in your pregnancy, your pain is valid, you are not alone, it wasn't your fault and you are still a mum/or dad.

It's now been five weeks since my miscarriage and I still cry for our unborn baby, but more than anything I'm so grateful that our baby chose me, even if it was for a short time.

I hope you find some comfort in knowing that you are not alone, if this is something you have experienced.

Thank you for reading this far and feel free to share your own experience, if you'd like to

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