I Blame Myself For My Miscarriage
I’d been looking forward to having a baby for a very long time. Since childhood, I’d wanted to get married and have a baby. After I got married to Dan, ‘we’ (reluctantly on my part, I wanted to start on honeymoon as I was ovulating), decided to wait to try for our first baby as we wanted to go back-packing around India first.
On the last day of our trip around India, Dan was like, “fuck it shall we go for it now”? But I said that we couldn’t due to the anti-malaria meds and the travel vaccinations we’d had. I wanted to make sure we’d given it enough time after having to take any pharmaceuticals to prevent risking our baby’s health.
A few weeks after we got back, we had another short holiday, just a week down to the Dorset coast in England. I’d never been and being a lover of the sea, I was looking forward to going. This was a special trip as it was when we were going to start trying for our family.
It was so exciting, yet nerve-racking trying for a baby. We felt like naughty teenagers not using contraception.
During the holiday, I went horse-riding a couple of times, I was an avid rider as a child, starting at 4 years old and getting my first pony soon after but as an adult, I didn’t get much chance to do it.
Not long after the second beach hack, I began to get strong pains in my uterus. Something wasn’t quite right. I wasn’t sure if this was normal as I’d never had unprotected sex before.
During the trip, my redundancy was finalised and not wanting to leave me alone in our apartment after we got back, due to me feeling low, I went up to Liverpool to stay midweek in the hotel with Dan, as he was working up there at the time.
The pains in my uterus continued.
At night, every time Dan moved even an inch in bed, I’d cry out in agony and shout at him to stop moving. I’d never experienced this type of pain before.
It was like my whole uterus was throbbing and I could feel every inch of it.
The following week, I stayed in our own apartment while Dan went off to work in Liverpool as I had a couple of job interviews. On the way home from one, I popped into a supermarket to pick up a pregnancy test. I just knew all of these feelings must be down to something happening in there. The supermarket didn’t have any tests in stock.
As I was leaving, I went to take the lift down to the basement car-park, normally, I’d use the travelator, but as I was wearing high heels, I didn’t want to risk getting my heels stuck on them. As soon as I stepped into the lift, it made a weird noise and jolted. I immediately turned to get out but the doors slammed shut on me. The lift then dropped about a foot, as it jolted again and I was left trapped inside.
I pressed the emergency alarm repeatedly but no one from the lift company answered. I shouted for help and no one came. Unbeknown to me, the camera in the lift showed the office staff in the supermarket that I was trapped and one woman came to talk to me through the doors.
By this stage though, I was having a panic attack, hyperventilating. I couldn’t breathe, I not only felt trapped, I was trapped.
The member of staff told me to press the alarm, I told her I had and no one was answering.
She could hear the panic and fear in me.
I heard her talking with the manager and he was telling her it was company policy to wait for an hour after I’d been trapped before calling the lift company. She pleaded with him, she was telling him how panicked I was and he was adamant that I should remain trapped and that the lift company should not yet be called.
Thankfully, she was persistent and she got her way and they called the company. During the wait (that felt like forever), she talked to me to try to calm me, she asked me questions about myself, trying her best to distract me from the situation I was in.
I was crying, sobbing, my mouth dry, I had no water.
Eventually, the lift guy opened the doors, I stepped up and leapt out and embraced the female member of staff who’d been talking to me. I was in tears, my legs like jelly and my hands shaking. She was so kind and caring, she took me to the in-store cafe, got me a hot drink and sat with me until I felt ready to leave.
On the way home, I called at another supermarket, one that didn’t have a lift, to grab a test.
The following morning, the lady called me to ask if I was OK, I told her I was.
However, later that evening, I started having severe pains in my uterus, much worse than before and I started to bleed bright red blood.
The following day, we were playing a hockey match, as we did every Saturday, I was team Captain, so had to be there. It was a home game. I was in so much pain and bleeding heavily. Before the game had even begun, one of the team started moaning to me about not getting enough time on the pitch, I explained that had she told me by the deadline four days previous and not just the night before that she wanted to play the match, that I’d have incorporated her into my match plan.
She really pissed me off.
I know she didn’t know that I was in the process of losing my first pregnancy but at that moment, I just thought “for fuck sake woman”. So I took myself out of the line up and put her on instead of me. It was the first match I had sat out but with the pain, the bleeding, and not being in the ‘here and now’, it was probably a good thing I didn’t play.
After the match, I sat in the clubhouse and talked to a friend, I didn’t tell her what was happening but she knew I was upset about something. She offered me comfort.
It took less than a week for the bleeding and pain to stop. Because baby would have been tiny, “a bunch of cells” as some people describe it (I hate that term), I never got to see my baby leave my body.
I know it was an “early miscarriage”, but it didn’t mean it was any less upsetting for me. I knew from our holiday in Dorset that I’d conceived. I felt it in my uterus.
I then started analysing every last thing. Was it because I went horse-riding? Was it because I got trapped in the lift? Was it because of the redundancy stress? Was it because of the anti-malaria tablets?
Why did I lose my first baby? What did I do wrong? I still blame myself, thinking, if only I’d not done this or that.
The thing with miscarriage though is that rarely we ever get answers as to why we have lost our babies, especially with early miscarriages. And because we never get answers, sometimes we feel we cannot get closure and continue to blame ourselves.
I fell pregnant again quickly after. Sometimes I feel guilty to the baby I lost for that. I know that if I’d been further along in the pregnancy that I couldn’t have tried again so soon. So I felt like my baby might think I didn’t love him because I tried again so soon. That’s not true though.
Even though my baby was never born, I still think of him. Then I think, if the pregnancy had been successful, I wouldn’t have my first born child, so feel guilty for thinking that.
It’s hard being a Mum, we often overthink things, wrack ourselves with Mum-guilt. Blame ourselves for anything that goes wrong.
What we should really do is cut ourselves some slack and remind ourselves that sometimes things happen for a reason outside of our control.
We need to drop the guilt, and be kind to ourselves.
If you’re reading this and have suffered a miscarriage, I’m sorry.
I feel your pain, your upset, your hurt, your grief, your loss.
Be kind to yourself.
When your baby dies
When a baby lives only a short time or dies before birth due to miscarriage, stillbirth or a painful decision to end…