Miscarriages are something that’s not often mentioned. They’re a touchy subject that everyone tries to avoid in attempt to not hurt anyone’s feelings. In the Hmong culture, especially, miscarriages are often frowned upon by the elders because it is portrayed as a sign that the woman is unable to bear children.
There are very few people who know about the miscarriage I had. It was a surprise to Jeffrey and I when we saw the positive pregnancy test and it completely shattered our hearts when we were forced to say good-bye.
My miscarriage happened back in January 2014. Jeffrey and I had been married for about six months. We were not actively trying to conceive at this time, but we were not preventing. During this time, I was started on birth control pills to help with my anemia. I was only taking it for about three weeks when I decided to stop due the side effects I was experiencing. The pills caused me to have terrible and unbearable migraines. As a result, my menstrual cycle was thrown off. I started feeling a little “off” so I took a pregnancy test just to be safe and to our surprise, it was positive!
Jeff and I were both stunned, excited, and scared. Were we ready to be parents? I felt a whirlwind of emotions all at once and cried.
People say to ‘be cautious’ about announcing your pregnancy since the chances of miscarriages are much higher within the first few weeks. I shared the news at dinner that night with some the girls since I had to decline a drink. And to top it all off, I puked in the middle of dinner. Fortunately, I made it to the restroom first!
After getting over the initial shock, Jeff and I started soaking up the thought of being parents. I setup my first OB appointment and calculated my due date based off of my last menstrual period.
I retook a pregnancy test just to be sure that I really was pregnant. I’m estimating that I was probably around 5 weeks when I had first found out and I set up my first appointment to be around 7 weeks in hopes of being able to see and heart beat.
About a week and half after the big news, I started cramping and noticed a little spotting. I didn’t think much of it after reading up on possible implantation bleeding. Within the next few days, the spotting turned into what could have easily posed as a regular menstrual cycle. By then, I knew something was wrong. I went to see my OB asap and got the confirmation on the miscarriage. My pregnancy test came bag negative and the ultrasound showed an empty uterus. I was having a ‘natural’ miscarriage. Had I not taken the pregnancy test, I probably would have never even known.
The thought that there was a chance I could never be a mom or that I was incapable of adequately growing a baby inside terrified me. I always dreamed of one day being a mother. And this was not a very promising start.
I cried for the next few days, trying to still feel hopeful but ultimately feeling completely defeated. It was hard coming to terms with everything. I couldn’t figure out what caused my miscarriage. Was I not fertile? Was my uterus inadequate? Was I not healthy enough? Strong enough? The questions constantly flooded my mind.
It’s unfortunate that miscarriages are not talked about enough. I felt like a complete failure as I went through this miscarriage. My husband was there supporting me, but this was something new to the both of us and we had no idea how to deal with it.
To those who have had a miscarriage, I feel for you. I’ve been there. I know how crappy it feels. But know that you are not alone. There are so many of us in the same boat. Don’t be afraid to reach out for a shoulder to cry on. No words can accurately describe that feeling you have when you find out you miscarried and no words need to. We understand the silence, the tears, and the heartache.