Story by Emma
I never thought I wanted children until I met my partner. I was too busy having fun with my friends. I still don’t regret waiting until later in my life to start a family.
We decided to start trying for a baby in 2017. We were extremely lucky to fall pregnant straight away. We were ecstatic but extremely nervous. I even questioned if this was what I really wanted. A thought I feel so terrible for thinking now.
We started considering names and talking about what our baby would look like. Would it have my eyes and your nose? We planned where we should live so our little one could have the best chance in life at a great school. I got excited when I thought I was starting to show a tiny bump.
Then I started spotting at around 7 weeks. I was so nervous but was told to relax. I didn’t have any cramps and the spotting came and went. But I still felt anxious.
On Sunday 19 November I started bleeding heavily. We went straight to A&E and they told us they couldn’t do anything. I had to go home and wait for the Early Pregnancy Unit to open on Monday morning. I knew my baby had died.
“I had to wait in a room with pregnant women and babies, until I got called in. I lay there, sobbing, knowing the worst was about to happen.”
Hearing the words ‘I’m sorry your baby has no heartbeat’ was probably one of the worst things I’ve had to hear in my life. I was nearly 10 weeks but my little one had stopped growing at around 7 weeks. My body didn’t want to give them up.
I was taken into a room with the midwife who started reeling off my options. I just wanted to go home. I felt numb, angry, devastated. I asked myself so many questions. Why me? Was it my fault? Did I eat the wrong foods? Is there something wrong with me? Why couldn’t my body do the most natural thing in the world?
I decided to have the operation to complete my miscarriage hoping it would help me grieve sooner. I hadn’t been in hospital since I was a little girl and I was so scared. The nurses were amazing and put me at ease.
“I went to sleep with my baby, and I woke up empty. I’ve never felt so heartbroken.”
I was able to go home the same day and was sent on my way with my discharge letter and a pamphlet about miscarriage. That was it. No numbers to call, no warning of how I would feel afterwards or who I could turn to.
After my miscarriage, I’d never felt so alone. I didn’t know anyone who’d had a miscarriage. My partner, friends and family were so amazing. They looked after me as much as I let them, but I went into a deep dark hole on my own and did not want to leave. The pain after baby loss is indescribable. I’ve never felt so empty in every sense of the word. I would cry day in and day out and I completely lost who I was. I couldn’t stand being near pregnant people. I felt like I was surrounded by babies and everyone got to keep theirs, but I wasn’t allowed to keep mine. I became obsessed with being pregnant. That’s all I wanted. At the same time, I didn’t want to have sex because I was scared of being pregnant and losing my baby again.
It took me a year to feel anything kind of normal. I still wasn’t ‘me’, but I found the days in-between crying were getting longer. I’d found huge support in online forums talking to women who’d been through pregnancy loss. I don’t know what I would’ve done without them.
In July 2018 I was ready to try again. Once again, I fell pregnant the first time trying. This time there was no excitement. It was more of a ‘let’s see what happens’.
I felt it was almost inevitable when I ended up having a spontaneous miscarriage exactly 5 days after we found out we were pregnant. I was devastated.
In February this year, we became pregnant again. This time, it felt different. I had strong pregnancy symptoms quite early on and I loved it. I looked after myself, ate all the right foods and all was going well. I was so happy.
However, at work one day, I saw the tiniest spot of blood when I wiped. I rushed home in tears knowing it was happening again. I went back to the hospital and my biggest fears were confirmed. The nurse explained that I’d had a complete miscarriage and quite possibly already passed my baby.
I’m now the 1 in 100 who suffers from recurrent pregnancy loss. I still have days where I struggle, but I have to pretend everything is ok. Life goes on, nothing stops.
“I often find myself thinking about the babies we lost. Would they be talking now? Would they be walking? What would their first word have been?”
We’ve been seen by the recurrent miscarriage clinic and I was told it was ‘unexplained pregnancy loss’ and ‘my age’. We paid for a private consultation and were told the same.
We’re now privately seeing a doctor who has a high success rate with women who’ve had recurrent miscarriages and, for the first time, I’m feeling hopeful. I trust him and he listens to me. I cannot describe how happy that makes me feel.
I think about my babies every day. That never goes away. I wear their birthstones on a necklace, so I have them with me always. When people ask if I have any children, I say yes. Because I do. Just because they’re not with me, does not mean I’m not a mother. I just hope that next year we’ll finally get to meet our little one.
You can follow Emma’s journey on her Instagram, @Freddie_Mercury_Saved_My_Life.