All Hallows Eve
Today is the 13-year anniversary of my first baby’s death.
I should say miscarriage because to say death implies a birth and that sadly was not the case. My miscarriages both happened in October and they bookend my fertility journey. I had my last miscarriage 7 years ago after having had 2 children.
When the Halloween decorations go up, an ominous feeling starts to brew. I am constantly caught out by a desire to withdraw when the pumpkins adorn the porches even while I am dressing up to take the children out trick or treating. October comes around and I never give myself the break to just sit and cry.
In fact, I have noticed I have stopped crying about sad things that happen to me. I can listen to music and cry and watch people attain great things and cry, but those life tears have dried up. At 47 I have emotionally hit a plateau, which I fear confuses my family into thinking I am unemotional. I’m not.
I have a high tolerance for physical pain, I can go to that place of zen stillness and focus, particularly when I was miscarrying and thankfully during both of my children’s labors. Maybe it’s not surprising then that through the anniversaries I just do that very British thing of putting a brave face on and making a brew; strong no sugar.
Today, however, my instinct is to talk and share. Perhaps all I needed to do was to cry and stay silent. Loss is confusing though, isn’t it? As I look down next to the bed now I see a feather. Is it my angels with me comforting me with their presence? For a while it feels this way…
You see, I wonder what my daughter, Iris would have been like as an older sister and a middle child. I wonder whether we would have still gone to the US. I wonder if it would have been another boy or girl, what their name would be, if they would have dark hair and various other questions as to how life would be different as a family of 3. Then I feel guilty for not saying 4 because my first ever baby’s miscarriage I am strangely thankful for as it allowed me to have Miles, for he would never have existed had I gone to term. Therefore, I do not talk about my miscarriages because to admit to the sadness and confusion of loss would feel like a rejection of the blessings that have come our way in life; two beautiful, remarkable children.
Surely, today though is the day when I should speak out, if only in support of others who share the experience of pregnancy loss, but just like others, I tend to say nothing. 1 in 4 women will experience a miscarriage but I don’t hear of anyone who is enduring the pain as it is not largely spoken about. Particularly by those who have children. We would feel too guilty moaning on when we have progressed in our pregnancy journey onto bearing a healthy child.
October is the time of year, I think about the wonderful nurse, who administered pain relief and held my hand though the tears and thinking what an angel on earth she was. I reflect on the consultant squeezing my foot in condolence when telling me pragmatically that there was no heartbeat and I should give myself 6 months. I did. I remember the fireworks dancing in the sky through the hospital window whilst I was contracting high on morphine. I remember how amazing my husband was and how in that moment I couldn’t have loved him more for being at my side.
Ironically, October is Miscarriage Awareness Month and yet I have not been aware of many voices speaking up. Perhaps because others have felt largely the same way as I did, that it is a personal loss one needs to endure privately and that time should have lessened the grief. Well, it does of course, yet in so doing, it feels like a betrayal to your babies you so desperately wanted.
According to Iris, Halloween or All Hallows Eve was when we should leave food out for our dead loved ones to show them that we still love them, as on this day their spirits are able to cross over from their realm into ours -the line between is thinner or something? It sounds like she’s been watching Stranger Things, but how lovely would that be? Instead, we will do what most people do on Halloween, dress up, parade in our costumes and scare people into giving us sweets.
This anniversary, I took my mother to tea. We talked about 13 years ago for the first time since it happened. My throat 5th chakra, got tighter and sore from the familiar feeling of loss. I swallowed the sadness down with my cuppa where it will stay for another year. Tomorrow is another day.
If you are experiencing a recent loss of pregnancy I feel deeply connected to your situation. I would like send healing to take away your pain but not to diminish the memory of your child’s significance. The anniversary is evidence that this happened, that it mattered and that they existed.
Today, I am thankful for that.
11/4/2017 02:31:57 am
I found this very moving. My mother miscarried twins before me and cried on New Year's Eve every year for 18 years until we spent New Year's Eve with some friends and it seemed to break the cycle. I also lost my first baby, though very early on. When I went to see the doctor to say I had lost this blob, he was very dismissive and just said not to mind too much as the body often expelled the first one, giving no reason why. I was gutted. However, I conceived again shortly afterwards and went on to have my eldest son. The same thing happened again the second time and then I had another son. Maybe I don't feel quite so sad because it was within the first couple of months and it was also a long time ago but I think the further on with a pregnancy you get, then the worse it must be. Most people who fall pregnant have done so out of choice, so the baby is wanted, so to have something you want taken away is awful. I also have firm beliefs that these little souls develop in heaven instead. I have seen a medium who has told me about the two I lost, a boy and a girl, and was even able to give me the name I would have given a girl when I was pregnant with my second son. How could she have known that? Stranger still is that she told me the first one was called Oliver, not a name I would have chosen, but nice enough. When I told my mum this, she gaped and reminded me of the time when my eldest was playing at nursery, aged two, with an imaginary friend called Oliver. So, I think it entirely possible that lost children do pop back and see you and their siblings. I'm sure Mum's twins were around and the same medium told me I had a brother and a sister in the spirit world, the brother particularly keen to come through and pass on love to me and Mum. I always wanted an older brother, so in a strange way, I have one. I think it's very good of you to have shared your feelings and I'm sure it will touch people in the same position greatly. We don't talk enough about painful things and, I , for one feel talking about them is therapeutic. We shouldn't shove everything deep down inside and pretend it does not hurt. Sending love and blessings your way. x
10/7/2022 03:15:47 am
Program recognize oil letter these. For way consider close. Similar source arrive memory.
Leave a Reply.
Hello! I am Caroline, an actress, children’s author, reiki master, astrologer, mumpreneur, painter, runner, yogi, mother, wife, daughter, friend and finally … a blogger!