Quiet, that’s how I will always think about this pregnancy, quiet.
I would have been due in November.
It began quietly with a barely-there pregnancy test. And it took three more days before we were really convinced that this child existed.
It continued quietly with twice-daily heparin injections and a feeling of contented gratitude.
One of the things I learned from our last pregnancy was that this was an eternal gift that was already given. It could not be taken away.
Whatever the outcome of this pregnancy, we were already parents to our thirteenth child. A quiet child with his own unique personality. So I enjoyed each day.
For the first time I truly understood that a miscarriage wasn’t a waste, it was simply a gift that’s shorter only in it’s temporal duration. And I worried less.
Quietly my doctor tracked my progesterone and HCG levels and we waited, thankful that everything was progressing well.
We had an ultrasound. It was too early to see a heartbeat, but everything looked good.
Then a few weeks later and without any symptoms, my HCG levels dropped and we prayed, begging for life, for a beating heart. A few more days and those HCG levels dropped again. (HCG should never drop in a healthy pregnancy. Numbers may rise slowing or not rise at all and it still be a healthy pregnancy, but dropping numbers are not fine.)
My doctor said that a continuous drop over a 5-day period was pretty definitive of a miscarriage.
We grieved for a week and then we went in for our scheduled ultrasound ‘knowing’ that we would see what we had seen once before, a ‘non-viable’ pregnancy.
Instead we cried, great wracking sobs of relief and surprise when we saw a tiny, growing baby with a lovely, strong heartbeat (148/min).
We rejoiced in a miracle. The miracle of life and a beating heart.
And then at another ultrasound a week later, we grieved as we watched that small person float silently with a quiet heart.
Quietly, with no fanfare, our precious baby had entered into eternal glory.
As our OB said, “All miracles on this side of heaven are temporary.”
Miscarriage is hard. This time is no less hard than last, but it is different. A friend, who has walked this path, explained it this way, “Each grief is different because each child is different. We love them differently; not more, not less, differently and so we deal with their loss differently.”
This process is hard and the grief is hard, but we do not grieve as those who have no hope. We’re dealing with eternal souls and THEY are worth much more than I’ve been asked to give.
I’ve had two pregnancies and said goodbye to two babies within the past 4 months. This has been a time of learning and growing, a time that has really pushed me to trust and rest and be content with His plan, because this was not my plan.
My plan was to be holding a newborn in November. My plan was being pregnant on what would have been the due date for our last child.
I wanted that, oh how I wanted that!
I am still grieving that loss, but His ways are higher than my ways and His thoughts are higher than my thoughts and so I am learning to believe and to trust the God that I love. I’ve been learning that my whole life, but it’s a life-long lesson and so I know that I have more learning to go.
I understand the thought, “I would rather not be pregnant than to miscarry again (and perhaps again).” But my take is different. I’m thankful for these children, both unique and different from the other one, how can I wish that they did not exist. How can I think that my physical and/or emotional comfort is more important than the lives of those two children? Joy and sorrow, weeping and dancing it’s still intermingled. Thankful for the gift, heartbroken over the loss.
I will always think of this 13th pregnancy, our 13th child as quiet and I will be forever grateful for the privilege of being his mother.