While browsing miscarriage support forums yesterday, I discovered that a Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day exists.
As if it were perfectly timed, it is today: October 15.
I have been overwhelmed by the kindness of my friends, family, and even strangers following my loss. What surprised me even more was the flood of messages from other women, many of whom I know in real life, who came forward with miscarriage stories of their own.
Today, I feel as if I hit a turning point in my mourning period. Because today, I received a message from a friend who announced that she is pregnant, and is planning on sharing the news publicly – including on Facebook – next week. She wanted to tell me privately first because she had suffered two miscarriages in the past, and knew that seeing pictures of babies and ultrasounds, reading pregnancy updates, etc may be tough on me.
“I felt like I needed to give you a heads up to give you the chance to block me or remove me as a friend [on Facebook].”
Reading her message, I fully expected myself to feel jealous and a bit angry at her for sharing the news with me so soon after my miscarriage. As such, the first thought that popped into my head as I read the above sentence came as a complete surprise:
“Oh, heck no!”
This was the first piece of news I had heard all week that brought a big, goofy smile to my face. I was 100%, genuinely excited and happy for her and her husband. My eyes even teared up in joy. I immediately wrote back to her with a huge note of congratulations and told her that I would be honored to live vicariously through her until I get pregnant again. I wrote that I fully expect frequent updates from her, and I quickly said a word of prayer for her, her husband, and the baby growing in her womb.
My heart is still swelled up in joy at this news, and for the first time since my miscarriage, I feel true hope and happiness.
In commemoration of this day, I wanted to share a video that never ceases to bring tears to my eyes. I’m sure that many of you have seen this video already, but I wanted to share it one more time as a reminder that in the face of tragedy, there is always hope.
Many may view the story of 99 Balloons as a tragedy, and I admit that I did too when I first watched it. But now I see a story of hope, faith, and love.
Will we be trying for a baby soon again? I am not so sure. But I do know that when I get pregnant again, I will not hesitate to share the news again with the public as soon as we find out.
Some may say that I will be setting myself up for disappointment and despair if something goes wrong with the pregnancy. Some may strongly advise me to keep the pregnancy under wraps until we are certain that the baby is healthy and growing well.
But I disagree. As cliché as it may sound, it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. This miscarriage has sent me to hell and back. I never thought I was capable of such pain and anguish. Despite the joy that my friend’s good news has brought me, I am still hurting, and I know that I will continue to hurt. However, I know that the love and delight that Tater Tot brought me in its short period here on earth more than makes up for the heartache brought on by the miscarriage.
There will be those who will roll their eyes and think, “Here we go again…” when I announce that I are pregnant again, I am sure. And if I miscarry again (knock on wood), they will wonder why I bothered to make the announcement again so soon.
But as the story of baby Eliot can attest, hope avails. Even though Eliot’s situation has brought much heartbreak to his parents, friends, and family, it brought to millions worldwide a story of hope and love. And I’m sure that it brought to his loved ones great comfort in sharing their grief with the world.