all the things · miscarriage · motherhood

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day

 

Today, Jessie would have been 2 months old. I can’t help but be acutely aware of her absence as this new little life grows within me. And while we Americans are in turmoil over the upcoming election, there are women everywhere going through sudden, unanticipated loss.

On Monday, January 18, I walked into the doctor’s office full of hope and anticipation. We left devastated.

I never knew I could feel so broken. Phone calls had to be made. Texts sent. Prayers requested. There was still a small glimmer of hope, all resting on a blood draw, but it was slim.

That Wednesday afternoon, we were broken again. My HCG levels had dropped markedly.

Decisions had to be made. My body had held onto this pregnancy for 4 weeks after Jessie had stopped growing.

A miscarriage is a “spontaneous abortion or pregnancy loss”. The vocabulary surrounding this type of loss is horrible. On top of that, I had a missed miscarriage. My body had “failed” to recognize Jessie’s death.

We decided to have a D&C that Friday. My insurance paperwork and billing statements all say the word abortion on it. I had my procedure on the anniversary of Roe vs Wade.

Because of that procedure, we were able to do genetic testing. We discovered that tiny sack of cells, the embryo that stopped developing had DNA, a gender – female, and an extra 16th chromosome – Trisomy 16. That is why she passed.

And that is why I can call her my baby. She may not have formed on this earth, but she has identity. She was known before I knew her. The loss of her life before it truly even began taught me the importance of grief, of community, of trusting in a Savior and not this earth.

I lament not being able to hold my daughter. Not being able to bury my daughter. But am grateful that she is still part of my story and I can talk about her like the proud mama that I am.

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