It still feels unbelievable to type. We lost the baby.
One in four pregnancies end in miscarriage. “Isn’t that so fucking cruel?” I said to Rob through muffled sobs. I imagine that this statistic can ignite a range of emotions for different people. Some find solace that miscarriage is so common, and that they are not alone. Some feel guilt for experiencing grief. If it is so common, should I be mourning this severely? For me, it just brought anger. It is hard to understand why it has to be that way.
The moment I found out I was pregnant, my eyes swelled as the overwhelming sense of joy overtook me, followed by the inevitable wave of anxiety. Having a predisposition for anxiety and not feeling comfortable taking my normal medication, I just sat in it as it flowed over me week over week. I educated myself with facts about miscarriage. The risk of miscarriage goes down to just 5% after you hear the heartbeat, which can usually be detected at week 8. I was currently at the end of week 3 but great, after week 8 I’ll feel safe. Miscarriage is usually caused by chromosomal abnormalities during cell development and is rarely due to something the mother has done. Not loving the lack of control, but okay, it won’t be my fault if something happens. I prepared myself for the possibility, telling myself, “If something happens, that wasn’t meant to be my baby. We will just pick back up and try again.”
It is devastating how wrong I was.
It was 4 in the morning when I held his tiny body and wept for the baby that was meant to be my baby. The baby who is and will always be my baby. Rob held me as I collapsed on the bathroom floor, and we cried for our child that we lost. And we didn’t stop crying.
We cried as we laid silently in bed, curled up into a single ball. We cried as we decided to honor his short life with the name Finn. We cried as we compared white magnolia trees against each other to choose which tree would be his tree. We cried as we buried him with the baby blanket my mother had crocheted with him and with notes declaring mommy and daddy’s everlasting love. And we cried as we tried to carry on with normal life.
I don’t think I will ever not cry when I hear Dedicated to the One I Love by The Mamas & the Papas. I hope I never not cry when I hear Finn’s song.
It’s hard to understand why it has to be that way, but if it had to happen, there is a lot for which I am thankful. I cannot begin to express how lucky we are to have the overwhelming support of family, friends, bandmates, coworkers, and most of all each other. To see Rob step into his role as a husband and father has been simultaneously heartwarming and heartbreaking. I am amazed by his ability to know when to lift me up and when to sink into sadness with me. He chooses me every day. In our seven years together, we’ve never had a tribulation like this, and I feel really thankful that Finn gave us the gift of strengthening our young marriage.
I have also been thinking a lot about the women who have a miscarriage after years of trying to conceive, those who lose their baby late in the pregnancy, and the couples who are suffering through infertility. I can only imagine the pain they feel, and I hope to stand in their pain with them. All grief is valid, no matter the stage where the loss occurred. While their experiences do not diminish my grief or my experience, I feel thankful.
I was challenged by a close friend who said “You do not have to learn from this experience. You can just experience it.” But I also can’t ignore that little Finn taught me to live in happiness instead of anxiety, fear, and control. Throughout my pregnancy, I thought I was preparing myself for loss, and yet, it still hit me like one thousand bricks. I wish I had let myself feel the joy and excitement of his presence. I announce my pregnancy by saying, “I’m pregnant! But it’sstillreallyearly and alotcanhappen.” I could fill a notebook of the things I wish I had done differently, but I am going to choose not to go down that rabbit hole, and instead look to the future with hope.
Thank you, my sweet baby boy, for being in my life. Your life was powerful and important and taught me so much. You’ll be a part of our family forever. Mommy and Daddy love you always.
While I’m far away from you my baby
I know it’s hard for you my baby
Because it’s hard for me my baby
And the darkest hour is just before dawn
Each night before you go to bed my baby
Whisper a little prayer for me my baby
And tell all the stars above
This is dedicated to the one I love
(Love can never be exactly like we want it to be)