My Rainbow Babies
Stories teach us many things and as we are in the month of Mental Health Awareness, ones that are very near and dear to our office are postpartum and mood disorders. That being said, women also have another moment in time that can really take a toll on our mental health, and that is after a miscarriage. We see lots of moms after miscarriage, still birth, and postpartum and we experience all the struggles with them.
Because of our deep devotion to health, our office loves and supports two organizations which represent a large population of our patients. They are “Supporting Mama,” and “Jenny’s Light.” These two organizations realized the emotional trauma that exists after the loss of a child or the sometimes hormonally driven time that is post-partum. We encourage all people to support women deeply as they go through these life transitions.
In my practice I see many women that have miscarriages and I try to speak openly about miscarriage and postpartum so they never feel alone and will hopefully realize it is something many will go through. Today I am going to share my story about my own miscarriage journey.
When my husband and I decided it was time for us to try for children, I geared up in my mind to have a 3-6 month trying period since this is the medical average time. Well during the first month of trying, we were blessed with a pregnancy. I got the results and at work with all the charm I could manage, I told my husband, “Oh, my.. I am pregnant!” My husband stood there in our office and looked at me stunned asking, “This is how you choose to tell me?” I blankly looked at him and said, “Oops!” It just popped out. As the weeks proceeded, I told my immediate family only because I knew all too well that the average women will miscarry at least once. But I wanted to have support if I did miscarry as well, so I always recommend that at least one person knows you are pregnant. I didn’t go to the doctor yet since I also knew that the most common miscarriage time was 7-10 weeks, so I wanted to wait this out. Well, week 10 came and I was having some very painful cramps and light bleeding. I rested at home and didn’t go to church. Later that morning, I miscarried. I un-emotionally called my mom, dad, and sister in law to tell them, and my sister-in-law cried. It kind of hit me after that. I guess my doctor brain simply said, “Miscarriages happen and it is usually easier to get pregnant right after one!” I was melancholy and a little disappointed but very logical and still grateful that I did get pregnant. So about 1.5 months later, we were pregnant again and this time I went to the doctor more quickly since I wanted to know if there was a heartbeat at all. At this visit I saw the heartbeat of my daughter Zara (my first rainbow baby). It was magical!
After Zara was born and was heading to 1.5 years of age, I got pregnant again and went to the doctor around 8 weeks. On this visit, the doctor found a spot on my cervix that looked like cervical cancer. This was a difficult moment and I was sent home to decide whether I was going to do more checking for the cancer, or wait on having my baby. When I went back to the doctor on Monday, the decision was made for me, as the heart beat had stopped and I had lost another baby. This moment was quiet a whirlwind, since they needed to do a local procedure (DNC and biopsy) to determine if I had cancer. I remember feeling really alone and sad I and wondering if I would see my daughter Zara grow up, or if it wasn’t cancer, would I be able to get pregnant again? Well the surgery revealed that I didn’t have cancer, but only time would tell if I could get pregnant again. Time gave me my second rainbow baby, Allegra, and she was born later a healthy baby girl!
I share this story during this special month as our office gets ready to run the Jenny’s Light race (a race that brings awareness to postpartum and mood disorders) which I first started volunteering at when I was very pregnant with Zara. Thus, 8 years of Jenny’s light has taught me to try and be open with the struggles of postpartum and the emotional pain of miscarriage. Miscarriages do happen, but having support and love helps us heal. I am forever blessed by my two sweet rainbow girls, Zara and Allegra!