Tips For Healing From Pregnancy Loss
For anyone who has experienced pregnancy loss, I want to start by saying I am so sorry and I know what you are going through. It is the most heartbreaking and traumatic experience I’ve ever had.
It’s been 2 years since my pregnancy loss and I feel ready to share my experience in hopes that it will help others in any way.
When reading this post, I want you to remember that there is no right or wrong way to heal. What brings comfort to some may not be helpful at all to others.
My hope is that you recover in a way that works for you.
In this post, I will be sharing my own experience of pregnancy loss along with methods that helped me cope during that time.
My Story of Pregnancy Loss
I found out I was pregnant for the first time on April 20th, 2020. Seeing the word “pregnant” on my test was the most amazing feeling I have ever felt. It’s something I’ll never be able to describe, but it’s a feeling you know when you experience it.
I scheduled my first prenatal appointment, where I was estimated to be at my 8 week mark. At this appointment, I measured 6 weeks but it wasn’t a concern. Sometimes the calculation isn’t always accurate.
I was able to hear the heartbeat and went home with my first ever ultrasound pictures. Everything about this experience felt exciting and I was still in shock that I was going to be a mom. I dreamt of this day for so long and it was finally here.
I was told to return 2 weeks later when I would actually be 8 weeks. Due to covid, my husband wasn’t able to come into the ultrasound room with me, so he waited in the car during this appointment.
As the ultrasound started, I asked if I could record the baby’s heartbeat. Things became uncomfortable really fast with the woman who did my ultrasound.
A lot of this was a blur, but she told me that I was still measuring at 6 weeks. She never explicitly told me there was no heartbeat, but it was obvious that something was wrong.
We ended the ultrasound and I was told to wait for the doctor in another room. I don’t remember how long I waited for the doctor but I know it definitely wasn’t a short amount of time. And the fact that my husband wasn’t allowed to be with me made this experience even more heartbreaking.
The doctor walked in and said “I’m so sorry. There was no heartbeat.”
I have never experienced anything more traumatizing. In that moment, I genuinely couldn’t believe this had happened to me.
Having a miscarriage was one of those things that I never, ever thought would happen to me. It NEVER crossed my mind that I would potenitally go through this.
Leading up to this appointment, I had no cramping or bleeding. I had zero idea that my baby passed on. When I look back, I realize that I really had no symptoms. I had thrown up one time, but aside from that I felt totally normal.
Now that I’ve actually gone through pregnancy a second time, I am able to compare how I felt. Even though I wasn’t far into my first pregnancy, I now know what small symptoms I should have been feeling. But at the time, I figured I wasn’t experiencing much because it was so early on.
I had what was called a missed miscarriage and was given three options: 1) wait to see if my body would naturally pass the tissue 2) have a procedure done to remove the tissue or 3) take pills that would pass it.
I decided to take the pill option. I picked up and took the pills the following morning. The day I took those pills was even more heartbreaking than that appointment.
It was a full day of being mentally and physically worn down. By the end of the day, I knew I had passed everything and felt a small sense of relief.
I knew I was still going to be dealing with the emotional aftermath for a while, but I was relieved to get the worst of the physical trauma out of the way.
From that day forward, I took very small steps to return to normalcy. I made sure I gave myself grace and didn’t try to rush my recovery. This loss taught me how to slow down and truly take everything one day at a time. The following are ways that I coped with my pregnancy loss.
RELATED READ: How to Support Somone Who Experienced Pregnancy Loss
Tips for Healing From Pregnancy Loss
Before I talk about what helped me, I want to give a gentle reminder that everyone’s recovery will look different. What was helpful for me may be different for what would be helpful for you. Speak with your doctor and loved ones to guide you in moving forward.
1) Talk It Out
Talk with as many or as few people as you want to. But it’s SO important to not keep those feelings bottled up.
As hard as it was, I called and spoke to immediate family to tell them what happened when I got home from my appointment. It sucked and I was absolutely miserable the entire time. But I knew it was something I just wanted to get out of the way.
Again everyone is different, so you might not want to tell others right away and that is okay. I would highly encourage talking about it with your partner, family, and/or a close friend at the very beginning.
The reason I encourage this is because you are going to need a strong support system. Those closest to you can’t be there for you through this process is they don’t know what’s going on. Having family and friends to reach out to on that day meant everything to me.
You can decide later if you are comfortable talking about it with more people.
2) Continue Taking Care of Yourself
Even if it’s doing basic things like taking a shower, brushing your teeth, or eating a meal. Don’t fall into bad habits and continue to take care of yourself. This will help the healing process tremendously. Your body will go through a lot and it’s important that you still nourish it the best you can.
3) Find a Sense of Normalcy
You may not want to go out and do things, and that’s okay. Take it one step at a time. As the days pass, try to add on at least one thing you would normally do.
Eventually, you’ll work your way up to your normal routine. Go for a walk, make low key plans with your friends, run an errand.
I personally felt ready and wanted to see my friends several days after my miscarriage. I was in a place where I felt ready to get out of the house and didn’t want to stay cooped up.
See what you’re comfortable with and take small steps to normalcy.
4) Let Yourself Feel
To this day, I still have times where I think about my miscarriage and I get really emotional.
I managed to feel okay for a while but months after it happened, there was a point where almost every night I found myself thinking about what I had lost and dreaming of getting pregnant again.
I would let myself cry and feel those feelings. It was only a short phase, but I needed to let those emotions out.
Even though I was “fine” for months, it didn’t mean that I was permanently healed and okay. You may find the emotions come in waves and you shouldn’t force yourself to suppress them.
5) Talk to Your Doctor
In the moment, you may not know what to ask. For me, all I wanted was to get through it. But as time went on, I realized a lot of questions came up.
Jot down your questions as you think of them and when you’re ready, reach out to your doctor about next steps if you know you want to try again.
Final Thoughts on Healing From Pregnancy Loss
I didn’t realize how common pregnancy loss was until I went through it myself. I found comfort in listening to other stories because it made me realize I wasn’t alone in what I was going through.
There are other women out there who understand what it’s like and that is why I wanted to share my story in this post. I hope you have found the same comfort knowing that you aren’t alone, either.