Child Loss & Grief

What I wish I’d known before – my process for dealing with recurrent miscarriages & secondary infertility

Kate Nash  |   2 Oct 2023


A heartbreaking reality of being part of the ‘Trying to Conceive Community’, is having to live through miscarriages and dealing with the loss of a baby. It can be a really lonely experience. At The Ribbon Box, we want to share peoples’ stories so there is more baby loss awareness and you can feel some comfort in the fact that you’re not alone. Therefore, we reached out to Kate, to tell us her story of multiple miscarriages and secondary infertility (struggling to conceive after already having a child).

Over to Kate Nash…

www.mrsmeaks.com | @mrskmeaks 

Miscarriages

Something I have unfortunately become really good at the last few years. Sadly baby loss has become part of our lives and it’s a grief I still struggle to process. Along with all the IVF, it’s another dimension to our infertility journey. Our first was a missed miscarriage after our only natural pregnancy. We went for a scan at around 8 weeks and unfortunately there was a placental home but no baby living in it. The pregnancy had stopped growing around five weeks and six days. That very silent empty scan is still very much etched in my mind.

Our next few losses were chemical pregnancies after IVF and the short-lived excitement is crushed so quickly, it is hard to process. One pregnancy joy lasted a mere 24 hours before the bleeding started, something extremely cruel to have taken away before you’ve even dared to dream of meeting the baby you so desperately want.

Read More – Baby Loss Awareness – What not to say to a Woman who has a Miscarriage

Spontaneous Miscarriage

On another occasion, a scan at our fertility clinic (at almost six weeks) showed everything as it should be, only to be hauled up in A&E 48 hours later and, once again I was bleeding heavily. I found the loss of a miscarriage at six weeks particularly hard, because that scan had given me hope and I had stupidly allowed myself to believe we would actually meet our baby.

I have so many due dates racked up in my mind that sometimes I feel guilty when I miss one. Is that me forgetting about that baby or just self-preservation against the pain of another loss of a baby, another dream that has vanished? When people ask how many miscarriages we’ve had, sometimes I have no idea. There have been so many I genuinely lose count.

I am grateful with each loss there has been no medical intervention required, something my body seems to do miserably well: end a pregnancy. It can be easy to be angry and resentful sometimes, but I feel nothing but proud of what my body has endured. It has also held a pregnancy so perfectly for nine months then delivered our miracle son, so maybe the frustration lies more with the fact it can’t seem to repeat what it managed with such ease before.

Read More – Secondary Infertility – A Story to Open up the Conversation

Pregnancy Tests – Fat Lies

The positive test does not mean I am having a baby. It means I am pregnant, but there is a good chance I won’t ever meet my baby. How sad is that? I am insanely jealous of anyone who sees two lines and genuinely gets excited. Maybe there should be a neutral one that displays a big question mark? I hate the lie most pregnancy tests have told me and my family.

Beyond all this pain and heartache there is HOPE, huge hope that keeps me going, that keeps me believing that one day we will complete our family. There is no right or wrong way to process the grief but I have learnt that diving into another round of IVF after baby loss isn’t always the right thing. I understand my desire to move forward quickly but I have also learnt the physicality of a miscarriage needs time too. People don’t talk about what happens after a miscarriage; bloating after a loss takes time to fade. My boobs are often sore and full of veins preparing themselves to feed a baby that no longer exists. Those physical aspects of loss are quite a stark reminder of what your body was preparing for. I have learnt to give my body time to recover too.

The elusive rainbow baby is always in my mind. I still dream of holding another baby, that my son will have the sibling he so desperately craves and right now that dream is what keeps us all going. That dream is what we hold on to.

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