When we ‘lose the baby’, what do we really lose?
We lose hope. Hope for the future, for a child in our arms.
We lose plans. Plans for a life, for a family, for happiness.
We lose faith. As our bodies seems to fail us, we lose the most faith in ourselves.
We lose security. We lose a sense of trust that things will be okay. That blissful ignorance that it won’t happen to me. We lose innocence. What happens if we try again? We risk losing a connection, a happiness, excitement. We risk losing all these things we deserve.
Sometimes we lose friendships. Often, in the midst of a cloud of grief, we have among our circle, one or two friends who cannot face that darkness. We find them drifting, avoiding, absent. We lose one more person in our lives.
We lose confidence, we lose ease. We lose the comfort we once had to face the world, to talk to others, to be honest. We lose the safety we once knew in everyday situations, now we live in fear of triggers, of those moments, like a quick, sharp slap that knock us down again.
We lose time. Time between now and when we have a family. Time spent in bed, in tears. Time from work. Time from life. Time that was once dedicated to relationships, that can often now only be spent soaking up all that hurts in our hearts.
We lose face. The world sees us broken, wounded, lost. The world sees the cracks and scars on our skins, and casts pitying eyes. The world sees weakness.
We lose freedom. The freedom to talk about our babies. We hide away ultrasound photos, reply, ‘I don’t have any kids’. We don’t speak their names, we don’t tell the world how much we miss them. We lose the chance to be called ‘mother’.
We lose a fragment of ourselves, having already dedicated the whole of our hearts to a tiny unborn life. We lose our strength. We find ourselves unable to lift our bodies from our beds, to lift our spirits from the darkest depths. We lose control.
We lose a tiny heartbeat.
We lose ten fingers, ten toes, a smile, eyes, nose.
We lose a tiny life.
We lose the power to choose, we discard, flush, abandon. If lucky, we can bury, memorialize, acknowledge, but so often we are caught unawares, and we literally lose that tiny body. Lost to a place unknown.
We lose a baby.
We lose a child.
Perhaps we can gain strength as our journey progresses, gain a circle of women who understands. We can gain a voice in the darkness to call out and ease the pain on the next burdened soul to stumble in, bleary eyes, clutching at her empty womb. We’ve gained a resonating love that permeates our world, though it aches and burns at times, this love has changed us. Sometimes we gain words, the power to speak our stories and to call out our babies’ names to a community who understands. Often, we gain perspective, shaky legs finding footing, we cling to the things in life that really matter, and we find ourselves buried in the rubble, we dig out towards the sun. We can gain a view of our lives we may otherwise have missed.
True, there are gains. There are moments in life that shape who we are and help us to become the people we are, though maybe never planned to be. And often, we gain character, we gain boldness, we gain an undeniable honesty about ourselves.
I try my best to be thankful for those gains, those strengths I could’ve gone on oblivious to, I could’ve lived much of my life without. I have gained gratitude.
There are gains.
But oh, there is so much lost.