Abena’s Story

On August 28, 2020, I found out that my husband and I were expecting. I was so shocked that I called my parents and told them the news before telling my husband a few moments later. They were ecstatic because they had been wanting to be grandparents for a while. Being that this was my first time, I could not help but share the good news with my parents, my in-laws, my cousin, and a few close friends.

I was nervous but excited at the same time. I was going to be a mother!!! I just kept thinking, “Wow! This is finally happening!”

Both my husband and I were overwhelmed with emotion. Everything in my life was coming together. I had the guy, the dog, the house, and this seemed to be the perfect time to expand our family. So, we started planning and preparing. You know what they say; if you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans.

I scheduled an appointment with my OBGYN, but I learned the appointment would be for another two months . I was able to get an appointment on October 2, 2020. Seeing that I had some time before my schedule appointment, my mom suggested finding a way to verify the pregnancy besides the pregnancy test.

I consulted with a friend and she was able to book me an appointment with Baby Bungalow. This clinic was able to show me an ultrasound of my little one at five weeks gestation. I was indeed pregnant! This was happening.

I left the clinic and entered planning mode. I am a firstborn with Type A tendencies. I like to have a plan as it helps me to stay organized. The thought of something ever going wrong never crossed my mind. As far as I was concerned, in nine months from now, I was going to be bringing home our little bundle of joy. For the most part, the women in my life were able to bring healthy babies into the world, and no one ever previously came forward stating they had infertility issues, let alone lost a child.

Fast forward to the week leading up to my appointment, I started spotting. Again, I went back to my mom and a few friends, and they all assured me not to worry because sometimes that happens. I made a mental note to tell my doctor at the next appointment.

As I headed to the appointment by myself seeing that my husband was at work, and besides with the new Covid protocols wouldn’t permit him inside.

I walked in the clinic and waited to be seen by the doctor. I went back to the exam room and answered all the nurse’s questions. She updated my medicine and checked my blood pressure. Shortly after, the doctor came in to see me. She too had some questions for me. I answered all her questions, and then told her that I was having some issues with spotting.

She had me lay back on the table and checked my cervix and noticed that I was still bleeding. She pulled out a fetal doppler to check and see if she could hear the baby’s heartbeat. She was not able to, but she told me not to worry.

The doctor booked an emergency transvaginal ultrasound at a nearby clinic because the technician onsite was not in the building. I headed there in search of answers.

Something felt wrong, but I tried to remain calm as much as possible. Again I waited to be seen.

The technician conducted a transvaginal ultrasound. She took several scans and it seemed to last for such a long time. She left the room and returned with the doctor. He told me that he was able to see a fetal pole and that the fetus was growing but they could not determine the one point that the fetus stopped growing. He attributed it to chromosome abnormality. He kept talking but time stood still. Everything he said was going in one ear and out the other, until he said the pregnancy was what they call a “missed abortion,” and the pregnancy would no longer be viable.

Tears slowly started streaming down my face, but I quickly brushed them aside. I was pregnant but no longer pregnant. I left the appointment and finally let the tears fall as I made it inside my car. I cried and cried and cried some more. I wanted to be a mom so badly, I did not realize just how much until I was told that it was not going to happen how I had originally thought.

October 14th, I would go on in giving birth to death. October would forever have a new meaning for us. I did not se this coming. Why did God allow this to happen to us? What lesson did I need to learn from this situation? So many thoughts of shame and guilt started to overtake my brain.

Did I do something wrong?

Is there something wrong with me?

Am I inadequate?

Why does it have to be harder for me than it is for some others?

I was so excited at the prospect of becoming a mother that my heart felt like it was being ripped out of my body. I was absolutely devastated. My baby existed even though it was only for a moment. That baby has forever changed me and how a view bringing a life into the world. Bringing a life into the world is truly miraculous. Even after death, life keeps going. Time was standing still for me, but life was happening all around me.

I learned that October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. One in four women have experienced the same things as me. They too have received the news, “I’m sorry there is no heartbeat.” I found comfort that I was not alone. I found people who understood what was going through. They listened without judgement and gave me the best suggestions on how to cope with the loss.

They reminded me that it is okay to not be okay. Sometimes we must embrace the suck. It is here to teach us, allow us to grow, and to share our story with others so they too can also heal. Grief comes and goes. It does not get easier; you just learn how to manage it better. I will always have footprints on my heart. Why? Because my baby existed. It does not matter how briefly.

Sending love to all those who are healing from things that they have yet to discuss with anyone. I still want to be a mother, someone once told me delayed does not mean denied. I may have to change my plan, but that does not mean that I must change the goal of becoming a mom. Be intentional for fighting for your dreams and always remember why you started in the first place.


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