My second pregnancy ended at 21 weeks.
I don’t know that I have ever heard more devastating, heart-crushing words than “Your baby isn’t developing the way that she should be.”
We had no clue that anything was wrong since every appointment leading up to the anatomy scan showed a happy little baby. I felt her move all the time. But we were told things didn’t look good, and darkness filled my world.
Then just like that, it was all over. She existed, and then she was gone. Moving on with life seemed impossible and unfair. Time passed and others around us moved on, they stopped asking how we were, and I found myself asking, “How the hell did that happen?” over and over. I eventually came to a crossroads where I could let the darkness be all-consuming or I could work hard to regain some of my life back. I chose the latter, but let me tell you, that’s not an easy path and one that I will likely walk for a very long time to come.
I don’t have all of the answers of how we push forward, go back to our old routines and face the world after ours was destroyed. But there are some things that help me.
Yoga has been a huge part of my self-care process. You don’t have to be able to do headstands or tie yourself in a knot to be able to reap all of the benefits. Yoga provides a mind/body connection, lets you feel strong while also reflective. And it helped me to stop hating my body for allowing things to go so wrong.
Therapy was something that I pushed back on when people around me said I needed to go. I was angry, in fact I am still angry, but I found myself wanting to hold onto that anger and dwell in it. My rational self knew that wasn’t healthy and it was time to get professional help. It can be costly but if you or your spouse has an EAP, you can get some sessions for free. Baby Center also had boards for every type of loss, and I have found a lot of support from those ladies who went through the same exact thing I did.
I changed up my diet. I used to be the takeout queen, and now I cook every meal with fresh, whole foods and I just feel better overall because of it.
Lastly, give yourself as much time as you need to grieve and heal. There is no timeline for how we get through these things, you just try your best each new day.
Lisa is a mom of two little girls, but is working on mending her heart since learning that her second would never get to come home.