Miscarriage has touched our SPB community again. We grieve with the aching hearts of those families. There is no way I know of to erase that pain, regret, constant questioning, the loss of a dream of the new child that was supposed to join the family. The only thing that has eased the pain for us are the sands of time.
We suffered a miscarriage in 2006. We hardly ever talk about it. We do not want to scare people, especially our students, or worry them unnecessarily. Most pregnancies will proceed to a healthy mom, healthy baby birth journey. BUT, the reality is that “most” is matter of numbers. 80-85% is greater than 15-20% (reference HERE). In real numbers, that is one out of five! If there are five girlfriends in your circle…then one of you has probably had a miscarriage.
I am one of those five – “we” are, really. The Sweet Pea Kids know about it – they noticed that there was a bigger space between birthdates between Puma and Night Owl, and asked about it, as children will. Bruss and I have never really “talked” about it – I guess we are both okay as we are going to be now. Maybe I should ask him.
We did go on to have three more children after our miscarriage, for which I am extremely grateful. As much as I would like to say that I stopped worrying about having a miscarriage again after our "rainbow" baby, it would be a lie.
It is something that hung over me with every pregnancy afterwards. Hoping the floor was not going to fall out from under me again. Praying fervently every night that this baby would be okay, breathing a sigh of relief when the dawn broke and I was still pregnant.
The only thing that helped me start to heal was to the trust in design. I wrapped my mind and my heart around the idea that for some reason, this baby was not "okay" and was not developing well. In her wisdom, Mother Nature changed the plan.
As it turns out, the mantra I created for myself out of that idea is actually backed up by the evidence. One might begin their own healing journey with this fact: "Most miscarriages are caused by chromosome problems that make it impossible for the baby to develop. Usually, these problems are not related to the mother's or father's genes." (quote from this article )
YOU didn't DO anything wrong.
As with most things pregnancy related, the more I have learned, the better I can support others. I encourage you not to suffer alone. Loss and grief are isolating in our culture, where only happy, shiny thoughts are shared and encouraged. Now, thanks to the age of the Internet, I have been able to find resources to share with the families in our community.
And, if you ever want to an ear to listen, please feel free to call or write me. I can be an ear to listen, or beyond that, go to a support meeting with you. I would be happy to sit down for a cup of tea with you – whatever I can do to help would be an honor.
Here is the resource list – some are local to Phoenix, others are national organizations, and of course some social media groups as well. I am also listing some books for those of you that process through reading – most are available as e-books as well.
Putting this at the top of the list since most of students in this situation have at least one child already ~ available HERE*
"A children’s book told from a young child’s perspective about the excitement and dreams of a coming baby, and the disappointment and sadness of a miscarriage. Beautiful ink and watercolor illustrations."*
Support Groups & Online Communities
Arizona Perinatal Loss Bereavement Resource, Banner Desert Medical Center
1400 S. Dobson Road, Mesa, 85202
Provides a network of support for those experiencing a pregnancy or infant loss. This resource gives parents a statewide network of support, current bereavement literature on a variety of topics, educational opportunities and resources in the community, state and national level.
Banner Health Warm Line – Support for parents who have suffered miscarriage or infant loss
RTS Bereavement 230-CARE Line, (602) 230-2273
HAND Helping After Neonatal Death
HAND is a resource network of parents, professionals, and supportive volunteers that offers a variety of services throughout Northern California and the Central Valley.
M.E.N.D. Mother's Enduring Neonatal Death
M.E.N.D. (Mommies Enduring Neonatal Death) is a Christian, non-profit organization that reaches out to families who have suffered the loss of a baby through miscarriage, stillbirth, or early infant death.
The M.I.S.S. Foundation provides immediate and ongoing support to grieving families through community volunteerism opportunities, public polic y and legislative education and programs to reduce infant and toddler death through research and education.
SHARE Share Pregnancy and Infant Loss Support, Inc
The mission of Share Pregnancy and Infant Loss Support, Inc. is to serve those whose lives are touched by the tragic death of a baby through early pregnancy loss, stillbirth, or in the first few months of life.
Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep
They offer the free gift of professional portraiture and remembrance photography to parents suffering the loss of a baby. “The NILMDTS Foundation is there for parents and families to help aid them in their Healing, bring Hope to their future, and Honor their child. It is through Remembrance that a family can truly begin to heal.” They feel that these images serve as an important step in the family’s healing process by honoring their child’s legacy.
Bereavement and Support Website for Care Providers and Families
A Christian site for baby loss:
Glow In The Woods
This website deals with all kinds of baby loss. There is also lots of helpful advice for things you may have to deal with depending on the stage of loss like stopping lactation, planning a funeral, and how to help others going through a loss.
Empty Cradle, Broken Heart
The heartache of miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant death affects thousands of U.S. families every year. Empty Cradle, Broken Heart offers reassurance to parents who struggle with anger, guilt, and despair after such tragedy. Deborah Davis encourages grieving and makes suggestions for coping. This book strives to cover many different kinds of loss, including information on issues such as the death of one or more babies from a multiple birth, pregnancy interruption, and the questioning of aggressive medical intervention. There is also a special chapter for fathers as well as a chapter on "protective parenting" to help anxious parents enjoy their precious living children. Doctors, nurses, relatives, friends, and other support persons can gain special insight. Most importantly, parents facing the death of a baby will find necessary support in this gentle guide. If reading this book moves you to cry, try to accept this reaction. Your tears merge with those of other grieving parents.
A purpose of this book is to let bereaved parents know that they are not alone in their grief. With factual information and the words and insights of other bereaved parents, you can establish realistic expectations for your grief. Empty Cradle, Broken Heart is meant to help you through these difficult experiences by giving you things to think about, providing suggestions for coping and encouraging you to do what you need to survive your baby's death. Whether your baby dies recently or long ago, this information can be useful to you.
An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination: A Memoir
"This is the happiest story in the world with the saddest ending," writes Elizabeth McCracken in her powerful, inspiring memoir. A prize-winning, successful novelist in her 30s, McCracken was happy to be an itinerant writer and self-proclaimed spinster. But suddenly she fell in love, got married, and two years ago was living in a remote part of France, working on her novel, and waiting for the birth of her first child.
This book is about what happened next. In her ninth month of pregnancy, she learned that her baby boy had died. How do you deal with and recover from this kind of loss? Of course you don't--but you go on. And if you have ever experienced loss or love someone who has, the company of this remarkable book will help you go on.
With humor and warmth and unfailing generosity, McCracken considers the nature of love and grief. She opens her heart and leaves all of ours the richer for it.
About What Was Lost: 20 Writers About Miscarriage, Healing, and Hope
“In this intimate anthology, twenty writers explore the grief and sadness—and hope—that living through a miscarriage can bring.
Featuring such notable writers as Pam Houston, Joyce Maynard, Caroline Leavitt, Susanna Sonnenberg, and Julianna Baggott, among many others, About What Was Lost is the only book that uses honest, eloquent, and deeply moving narrative to provide much-needed solace and support on the subject of pregnancy loss.
Today, as many as one in four pregnancies ends in miscarriage. And yet, many women are surprised to find that instead of simply grieving the end of a pregnancy, they feel as if they are mourning the loss of a child. Taken aback by their sorrow, they seek solace in similar perspectives—only to find that a silence and lingering stigma surrounds the topic. Revealing a wide spectrum of experiences and perspectives, this powerful collection offers comfort and community for the millions of women (and their loved ones) who experience this all-too-common kind of loss every year.”
The material included in this blog is for informational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The viewer should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation. Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided. This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained in this video and on our blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.