I’m so thrilled to kick off my first Write for me Wednesday with a guest post from Valerie from Atlantamomofthree. For those of you who don’t already know, let me start by telling you that I absolutely adore Valerie. Her posts are always very honest, informative and are never judgmental. She takes the time to comment on other posts and respond to comments and she regularly brings bloggers together by hosting blog parties and inviting guest bloggers to write some posts for her to put up on her own blog. Today, she has chosen to share a post on her miscarriages and how they have changed her for the better.
Wow, that’s quite the title, I know. And it’s a phrase I certainly never thought I’d be saying, but it’s true. There are reasons I am thankful for the three miscarriages I’ve had. But let me back up a bit…
When our daughter was two years old, I became pregnant again; I didn’t know it at first because the home pregnancy tests were coming back negative even though I was a week late (which I never was, back then). I went to the doctor when I was finally two weeks late. It was there that I found out about the new baby. The nurse said it was a “faint” positive, but it was positive! Two days later (and I won’t go into more detail here), I miscarried. The lines had been faint because I was already losing the baby.
I was devastated. Truly heartbroken. I knew what it was like to have a beautiful, healthy child and the idea that this one had died was just too much for me to take. But take it, I did. It took a long time for me to heal.
A year later, I had a healthy, uneventful pregnancy with our son, aside from the fact I was scared of miscarriage in the first trimester. Boy, I didn’t know how blissful it had been while pregnant with our daughter, because it had never crossed my mind that a miscarriage was possible for me!
When he was two, I had another miscarriage. It was early and I had, again, just found out before losing it. This is why, for a long time now, I have only tested once I am at least two weeks late.
Two years later, I had my third miscarriage, at 8/9 weeks. This was a rough time for me. I felt like my body was failing. That there was something really wrong with me. It also caused me to have a lot of problems in my relationship with the Lord (but I’ll save that for another post).
We stopped trying for another baby for a long time. It was too painful and I was so scared of it happening again. But then, in January of 2011, we found out that (even though we’d been “preventing”), I had conceived and was six and a half weeks along.
I was overjoyed and terrified at the same time. I could not, and would not, let myself become attached to this baby. Not for a long time. When the doctor felt my uterus at the first appointment some weeks later, and said it was the perfect size, I cried. I wanted this baby so badly. At the first ultrasound, the following week, my husband and I watched as our baby rolled and flipped. The technician said she guessed it was a boy. “He” was perfect and active and looked healthy. I was happy but I still couldn’t allow myself to relax. I felt on alert all the time. I was constantly in the bathroom checking for blood.
There was a change in my thinking when I started to really show. By the time I was twenty weeks, and I had already been feeling kicks for a few weeks, I began thinking that we might actually get to meet this little one. It was a boy after all, and his name would be Samuel, which means “asked of God.”
He was born a few days shy of his due date, as healthy and beautiful as our older children. His birth helped me to heal from the miscarriages in a profound way. He didn’t replace them, but his presence is such a blessing in our lives that it’s easy to feel nothing bad ever happened before.
So, why am I thankful for the miscarriages?
* I have so much more empathy. I understand loss now and am able to be a help, comfort, and encouragement to others. This is a gift!
* I am enjoying motherhood in a whole new way this time. I take nothing for granted and I don’t feel hurried for him to grow up at all. I imagine the same would be true had we gone through fertility treatments or the adoption process.
* I see all of our children as a true blessing from God. It is quite obvious that my body needs a helping hand in producing healthy kiddos, and we have three. Praise the Lord!
* I’ve gotten to see the love and support from my husband in a way that I might not ever have seen if we’d not gone through so much loss together.
* Our family rocks!! lol What I mean is that the age differences between our children may seem uncommon and possibly difficult, but I’m telling you – our big kids adore their little brother and he is getting to be raised in a family of four people much older than him who love him to pieces! Lucky kid, eh?
Would I ever want to experience another miscarriage? No, it would surely break my heart again, but I am certain that there are blessings to be found even in heartbreak.