Jessica shared the story of the loss of her daughter Emily back in August. Here, she details what life has been like after her miscarriage.
Once we got the miscarriage diagnosis , I learned life doesn’t stop moving – even for the death of your sweet baby. I still went to work and told coworkers (who had no idea I was pregnant- let alone had a miscarriage). There were moments of sadness to be sure but life keep going so you wipe away the tears and tackle the next project on the list.
We visited my sister in Atlanta in March shortly after, which was healing. Once of her roommates was pregnant and the room that my husband and I stayed In had all the baby stuff. It didn’t bother me as much as everyone thought it did because I was literally 8 weeks pregnant when I had my miscarriage – we hadn’t bought anything so that was just interesting to see people trying to care for me in that way.
Mother’s Day was hard. We skipped our normal family gathering, skipped church, grabbed coffee and walked a park on a very cold Mother’s Day. It looked like winter was dying but spring hasn’t made her appearance yet (Minnesota weather). It was kind of beautiful to see nature hadn’t turned quite yet and I didn’t need to be fully healed in that moment either.
The summer went along as normal and then September hit.
As soon as September came, my anxiety came back online because I was supposed to give birth this month. Instead, my body had no baby in it.
My husband and I started trying again in the summer. I had been tracking my cycle which hadn’t been consistent since the miscarriage. Suddenly, I was late – I got up the morning my period should have began and no blood to be found. I grabbed a pregnancy test from under the sink and said “I’ll take one and hopefully it negative so I can get on my with my day.”
I took it and saw that it was positive. After freaking out for a couple minutes in the bathroom I quickly told my husband the news. We prayed immediately and made a plan.
I called the doctor on my lunch break and begged them to check my levels to confirm the pregnancy. They agreed to do one test on Friday and one test on Monday (in order to be pregnant your levels needed to double between the two dates) the Friday test didn’t scare me – Monday did. If it rose I was pregnant – if it dropped or stayed the same, something was wrong. This is what ultimately determined my miscarriage. To say that weekend I was scared was understatement. I was freaked out and literally had no control over it. I went in Monday, got the blood work and went on my day.
My results on Friday were 350. In order to be pregnant, I needed at least 700. Monday results were 1300. When I got the email I was driving and called my husband. We knew then this pregnancy would be different. We wouldn’t wait the 12 weeks to tell people – we wanted the support early – the support that got us through the miscarriage back in February.
We told close friends and family, it felt there was an army now actively praying for this little one.
We made it past some scary milestones, past the 6 week mark when we lost our precious Emily back in February.
We made it past the first ultrasound sound at 9 weeks where we saw the body and heartbeat where I cried because it suddenly was real. There was a baby in me.
We made it to 12 weeks, into second trimester for the first time.
We made it to 20 weeks, we found out is it a girl (just like we wanted) and she let us knows she is alive by moving and refusing to let me sleep.
We just made it to 24 weeks. If you are in the baby loss community, you know this is viability week. Our little girl could survive on the outside (though I would really prefer if you stayed inside. Also I literally have nothing for you – please stay put baby girl – just until May).
Pregnancy after loss makes me sad that I should have a child here already. But then there are moments with this new little one that remind me that I’m blessed. I blessed to carry a child, to be her home and her safe spot for now. I’m glad that’s what I was for my pregnancy and I’m super glad that’s what I am for this new little one. I pray for everyone who lives with pregnancy loss because it something I don’t wish on anyone.
To my new little one that is moving and making it very hard to sleep – thank you. Thank you for your strong heartbeat, all your movements, all the times you have made me throw up. Thank you for being an awesome gift from your big sister. I can’t wait until May to meet you face to face and tell you all about your big sister in Heaven.