One in four pregnancies will end in miscarriage. In this fact is a raw reality: many women, more than you might think, are walking around with a loss in their history. I want to honor and support them by sharing my story and make space for others to share theirs.
Just over 3 years ago, I finally went to a new gynecologist with a specialization in pain management. For months, I had waited on a period that never came. My stomach was bloated, tender, and I felt sharp pains shooting through my torso. I prepared myself for the worst - cancer, sterilization, imminent death. My new doctor was much less concerned - after some blood work and an ultrasound, she confirmed a diagnosis of PCOS. PCOS, or polycystic ovarian syndrome, is essentially a hormonal imbalance - and it's the leading cause of infertility in women. It comes in many varieties, with a range of symptoms.
Hearing this diagnosis - "you'll probably have trouble conceiving" was worrisome. Some of my family have struggled with infertility for years, and I was concerned that I was closer to 30 than 20. We hadn't started trying to have children but I felt the ticking clock of my biology. Except now, it seemed to be less of a clock, and more of a time-bomb. Could I conceive? Could I carry a child to term? Was I even ovulating?
I changed my lifestyle drastically. I started eating Keto, which is an incredibly helpful tool when you have any hormonal issues that cause weight gain. In a matter of weeks, I dropped about 15 pounds and noticed I wasn't experiencing twinges of pain anymore. My period came back.
And then the baby that was showed up, in the midst of chaos and layoffs and family weddings. In my imagination, she was a girl. And she was, until she wasn't.
The first time I ever took a pregnancy test and it grinned back at me with a huge plus sign, I laugh-cried by myself in my in-law's guest bath for ten minutes. That baby was immediately loved and wanted and welcomed. I told Stephen hours after I took the test, and we kissed and cuddled until we fell asleep. We were imagining a new future full of the fruits of our love.
This baby was, until she wasn't. A few weeks after we found out about her, I started bleeding. One of my friends shared that her son was diagnosed with a terminal disease. These two events created a vortex of hopelessness. I sobbed for hours, knowing that something wasn't right but not wanting to admit what was happening. Eventually my blood work confirmed that I had miscarried.
We were rocked. I called off work at a new job and stayed home in bed sobbing. No one even knew that I was pregnant (except Stephen). And now I was alone, mourning the loss of some person that I knew but never met.
357 days later, I gave birth to a beautiful, sweet, perfect baby boy. After we named him, Stephen and I looked at each other and wept for the baby we didn't have. My OB squeezed my ankle in recognition of our loss - and of our baby that was.
How has miscarriage touched your life? Where were you when you had a miscarriage? Have you ever been diagnosed with PCOS? Tweet @pi3sugarpi3 and tell me all the things!