Speaking Your Truth.
The past week was a big one. Busy working on a slew of custom orders, turning 40, the boys' games and all of the usual hustle and bustle of an average week.
But there was one other thing. It was 4 years ago this week that we miscarried. I was getting close to 12 weeks along and went in for a routine ultrasound. The technician and I were chatting it up about the Colts, the weather and my 3 boys.
And then I saw it. The look in her eyes. She stopped talking and looked at the screen as if she was searching for something that she couldn't find. She asked me how I'd been feeling. I told her my nausea had been a bit better...why do you ask? My heart sunk and the tears welled up. I just knew. She looked away from the screen and directly at me.
"I'm so very sorry, Sarah. I can't find a heartbeat. I'll go get your doctor, sweetie." She left the room and I was alone in my silence. Just me. It was all a blur. I was in shock. I couldn't think straight and felt like I might get sick.
In the next few minutes, when she returned, she told me that the baby had stopping growing around 10 1/2 weeks and the doctor would be in to talk with me and likely schedule a D&C tomorrow and would I like to call anyone. Am I okay? Do I need anything? And as the tears began to flow even more, she said, "Oh honey, this is the worst part of my job. It's not your fault sweetie. Sometimes it happens. It's going to okay."
"You're going to be okay."
All that was resonating with me were the words "I can't find a heartbeat."
They couldn't find her heartbeat.
I say Her, because I knew it was a girl. I just knew. And her name was Adelyn Grace. A name I'd loved and sketched in my diaries when I was young saying it would be my little girl's name.
The next day as we walked into the very hospital that I'd delivered three healthy baby boys, our hearts sank. Before the surgery, I cried and cried some more, I prayed and prayed to understand what all of this meant. Was it my fault? Had I not done enough? What did I do differently from previous pregnancies? And my husband and I held each other as we started the hardest day of our lives. My heart was breaking. We had lost our baby.
She was going to be so loved and doted on by her brothers. She was already loved by her daddy and I. I began to mourn all of the things that we would never get to experience with her. We'd call her Addy for short. She'd have curly blond hair like Liam had when he was little, with big brown eyes. She would be a Tom boy and prefer rubber farm boots over dress shoes. She'd love football and IU basketball like her brothers. She'd love to read--and I'd read all of the Anne of Green Gables books with her, because they're my favorite! She'd have a strong personality like her brothers which means at times stubborn, but fiercely independent and silly and passionate and have a spirit that lit up a room.
In reality, I know that I don't really know who she'd be or what she'd be like. But I DO know that once you write or speak something from your heart, it is your Truth.
And THAT is all that matters.
I no longer feel sad when I hold tiny babies, but rather feel such Joy as I get to hold a precious new life. I no longer dwell on the Why's or What Ifs. And I get so excited when I hear the good news of friends & family who are expecting.
And we are now at a place in life where I am so content and happy with our little family and loving being a mom to three big kids. A lot has changed over 4 years. A lot of soul-searching, prayer and journaling, that has led me to the place I'm now at. My heart breaks for those who have lost babies and experienced this multiple times. Whether due to miscarriage, still birth, illness--loss is loss.
I remember well-meaning people at the time said things like: "well, at least you have 3 healthy boys"; and "God just needed another angel"; and even "well at least you didn't get to actually meet him or her, because it would be been so much harder." Because none of that helps, it just makes you feel like you're being silly for feeling what you're feeling.
But grief and loss aren't the same for all. Grief. Loss. It is different for everyone. And we need to be sensitive to that. There's no wrong way to grieve. And no time limit on how long is appropriate.
For friends of ours who are trying to conceive but can't. For friends who miscarried once or multiple times. For friends who lose a child to cancer or illness or an accident. They don't need hurried words or "at least" phrases. They need love. They need prayer. They need hugs. They need to know you're there, even if you don't understand. We all need to be able to listen and share and comfort those who just need someone to listen to our sadness.
So as I was journaling last night, all of the above came out. And I struggled of whether I should share it all. But you know what, when I wrote it, I know it was my Truth. And my story. And it's part of me and who I am now. And you guys should know by now that I can be an over-sharer at times(!).
If you've experienced loss of any kind, my thoughts and prayers are with you. And know that what you are feeling doesn't have to explained or justified to anyone. And more importantly, know You Are Loved and that God's got this and you in the palm of His hand. ❤️
(This post was originally posted in September 2016)