“I’m sorry, there’s no heartbeat…”

“I’m sorry, there’s no heartbeat…”

The words ring in your ears. Everything around you slows down and blurs. The words feel heavy on your skin as they sink in. You can feel your heart beating fast and loud and your chest begins to hurt. Your eyes swim with tears. You feel a slow numbness creep up your body from your toes, until you can’t feel yourself anymore.  You’re hot and numb.

It seems like you are rising up from yourself and looking at the scene from above. You are laying on the bed in the ultrasound room having your first pregnancy scan. Your husband is sitting down to your side, holding your hand. You feel his grip tighten, he’s stroking your hand now. The sonographer with the kind face is talking to you with a sombre expression but you feel as if you’re under water, you can’t quite hear her, but can see her lips moving. You want to scream & shout, even shake her but you are numb. You can’t move. You are laying there, hot tears running down your cheeks as you slowly start to realise you won’t be having a baby in 6 months time after all. The crashing realisation of what is happening engulfs you.

Your mind is racing with questions. Why is this happening to me? Did I do something wrong? Eat something wrong? Was I too stressed… did I do too much physically? Am I being punished? You glance at your husband and the look on his face makes you want to sob. You see your disappointment and anguish mirrored in his eyes. He puts an arm around you as the sonographer explains the next steps.

The sick pain in the pit of your stomach remains as you walk out of the ultrasound room. You’ve been asked to empty your bladder for an internal scan, just to be sure. You leave the room and it seems though everyone in the waiting room knows, they can see on your face that it isn’t good news. You look around at the happy, excited and expectant couples, all waiting for their own scans. You wish it was happening to them, not you. You’re jealous of their happiness. Why don’t they realise it’s not always a happy ending?

The vaginal scan confirms the same, as you knew it would. You see the consultant to book in your follow-up scan. The sheet of paper you are clutching in your hand reads ‘missed miscarriage?’ and you wonder how you missed this happening to you? Did your symptoms change? You question yourself over and over, and blame yourself for not being a good enough mum to this baby. Your body failed.

You leave the hospital, feeling exhausted, drained, and your head hurts from crying. The numbness remains. You’re walking and talking but you’re empty. Your husband doesn’t quite know what to say. You feel bad that he feels bad.

You find yourself waiting around for a week waiting for the next scan to double-check, just in case your dates were wrong. You know deep down that they are not, and that the next scan would not bring a miracle. You feel sick a the thought of living for a week knowing the baby inside you is not alive.  The plans you’d been making for this new baby have all been snatched away from you, in that one minute that you heard the words. You feel as though your whole life has changed now. This isn’t what was supposed to happen. It’s not fair. Why me? Why us?

In the days following, everyone tells you the same things over and over. It’s not your fault. It’s nature. It’s ‘one of those things’. It happens to lots of people. 1 in 5 pregnancies end in miscarriage. Some people ask if you will ‘try again’. You don’t want to try again. You want THIS baby. The baby you’re carrying. They don’t understand.

But the more you talk to others, you hear the comforting words: “It happened to me too” and you suddenly share an understanding with other women, who have been there, and had their hopes and dreams crushed too. You can’t believe how many women this happens to. You take comfort speaking to these women. They get it. They understand your pain & they have been in your shoes. You feel like people expect you to be ‘over it’ quite quickly and you feel bad that you are most definitely not over it, and won’t be for a long time. If ever.

Now, 3 years on. I still remember. I’m lucky to have my rainbow who is nearly 2. I feel lucky every single day that I have had 3 healthy babies. I’m grateful that my loss was very early on, so grateful, words can not explain.

I’ll always think of the baby I didn’t have though… it’ll never leave me.

For anyone who has been there, hi, and I’m really, really sorry that it happened to you.

For anyone who is experiencing this right now, please please talk to others who have been in your shoes. It’s completely OK to feel how you feel.  I personally found lots of help, advice and support on this online forum on a website called BabyCentre…  please go and take a look and talk to others who have been there.  It will help:

http://community.babycentre.co.uk/groups/a180235/coping_with_a_miscarriage

Sparkles & Stretchmarks Sunday Best

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mother knows best… doesn’t she?

Mother knows best… doesn’t she?

When you have a baby, usually it’s because you are in love with someone and want to produce little mini humans to share your life, hopes, dreams and family with. Sometimes you find yourself pregnant by surprise, and you aren’t sure you want a baby, but you decide to go ahead with the pregnancy and have a baby. Some people try for years to get their bundle of love in their arms, experiencing heartache, loss and many tears. Some fall pregnant easily. Some people adopt. Some have a baby via surrogate. Whatever your situation, however you found yourself here – you now have a new role that you’ve never had any training in (even if you think you have!), being a ‘mum’ means all of a sudden you are the whole world to a tiny person, who needs you, every inch of you. Being a mum isn’t a job you can quit from, you can’t call in sick, and lunch breaks are few and far between.


Babies are hard work, we all know this. They need feeding, comfort, love, changing, cleaning and constant care. When you have a baby you think this stage lasts forever, it feels like sleepless nights and nappies never end. Oh the crying! You are trapped in a cycle that means you put someone else’s needs before your own. You’re exhausted. It’s gotta get easier right? WRONG!
Then your baby grows, becomes a toddler (see here for my views on them at the moment:My Toddler is an asshole!) and the hard work continues, just in a different way. The toddler grows again, into a child, and all of a sudden, there’s a LOT of questions. The child questions you about the big wide world, how did we get here, why does this and that happen, and you start to realise you might not actually have all the answers. You in turn question yourself. Why don’t I know the answer to this? Should I? Where’s the mum manual? I don’t know all the answers! Help! Am I cut out for this?

 

There’s so much pressure to do things one way or the other. Are you a gentle parent? A routine based parent? Strict?  Rewards/naughty step? Attached, comfort, love, no punishments? Breastfeeding/bottle feeding? Weaning early/BLW? Is your child allowed screen time? Are you an outdoorsy mum? A craft mum? Football mum? How are you going to shape this child into being a decent, loving, happy, rounded, emotionally stable human being…. when you’re not even sure that’s what YOU are at the moment?

 

Well the point of this post (I’m getting there slowly!) is that yes you are the mum and you do know best for your own child. Trust your instincts. Of course ask for advice if you need it (we all need it!), but you are the BEST person to care for your child because no-one else loves your child like you do. No-one else has their interests at the forefront of their priorities like you do.  You are absolutely the best mum for your child/ren. You know best. Doubting yourself is part and parcel with being a mum. That mummy guilt that niggles at the back of your mind with every decision you make is only there because you care. Do your research, ask people but ultimately YOU know what to do. Even if you think you don’t!

 

Also, with this in mind, and on the flip side. You are allowed to not have all the answers. You are the mum but you are not the information central of the world. You may have to sneakily Google stuff, we all do (thank you Google!) How did my mum survive without Google? But it’s OK for you to not know everything. I’ve found my Big Boy doing stuff in first year Junior school that I didn’t do til Secondary. I can’t remember some of this stuff! But that’s okay. *

 

So this is sort of a shoutout to mums (and dads of course, but I’m a mum!) everywhere. You are amazing, you are exactly what your child needs and you are the best parent for your children. If you have the awful guilt or the constant worry about things then it just means you care and you want the best for them. Don’t beat yourself up for the little things, no parent is perfect. Even the ones that seem to be. Just be yourself, try to do your best every day. Some days you’ll shout, cry or want to run away. That’s okay, everyone feels this way at some time. Some more than others, but everyone is different, no two children or families are the same.

 

Trust yourself, give yourself the credit you deserve, and try to keep a positive attitude. Motherhood will be the hardest thing you ever have to do. But it also will be the best thing.

 

Please share this post with a mum who you think needs to hear those magic words:

 YOU ARE A FANTASTIC MUM!!!!

Disclaimer – I need to remember all of the above myself, as I am the worst for thinking I suck at this job. But today I’m giving myself a pat on the back. I am a mum and I am the best mum to my three demons darlings.

*Please note I have no idea on the trials that come with having teenage or older children – my biggest is 7 and this is hard enough! Here’s a nod to the mums of teenagers, you did it this long! Keep going! xx