Jessica Miller-Merrell | , , , ,| By
It’s every parent’s fear and that is losing a child. And yesterday, I received the most awful news that is the worst fear of every parent and grandparent. It happened to me. We went in for our 2nd visit to our OB since learning I was pregnant with our second child and everything went as planned until the doctor couldn’t find a heartbeat on the doppler so they sent me immediately to get an ultrasound. Our family drove silently to the ultrasound offices with my 5 year old in tow. She’s particularly interested in the fact that we are having a second baby so much so that she asked Santa for a little baby sister for Christmas. You can probably understand why my heart would really be breaking.
Mourning Those You Never Knew
We arrived at the ultrasound and the technician went to do his work, and I knew right away it wasn’t good. There was no heartbeat. Our baby was gone at 11 weeks. Even before we left the doctor’s office I leaned on my besties texting the group and asking the social media community to send me good vibes which they did, but it wasn’t enough. Fate had intervened.
Yesterday, I spent most of the afternoon curled up in a ball hoping that sleep would take this horrible reality away and transform it into a dream, but it wouldn’t be that way. Most people struggle sharing or exposing their own weaknesses, sorrows or vulnerabilities. I am no different, and I admit that while I wanted what happened to be a bad dream, I had an equally hard time sharing such a private and personal matter with my social media community. I was surprised to learn that 1 in 5 women will experience a miscarriage. It’s not a number that I would have likely believed until it happened to me especially when I only know a couple women personally who have shared their personal story for me. This is what drove me to share with my community the news of our miscarriage in the hopes it would help with healing, learning and sharing not just for myself but also other women and families who have been impacted by their own personal tragedies.
Since starting this blog, I’ve written about the birth of my first daughter and tweeted about her arrival. I leaned on my social media support group just six months later when my father passed away unexpectedly. Just two years ago, I asked for support from my Facebook and Twitter family as my family made the 6 hour drive to see my mom who coded and was placed in a medical coma. I attribute the support through social media and my blog on her full recovery.
I know my family and I will get through this. We are already so blessed to have an amazing 5 year old daughter who I love even more and learn from every single day. It’s amazing to me how someone I’ve never known but known better than anyone else has forever shaped my life. I’m missing someone I’ve never met and it boggles my mind and hurts my heart at the same time.
This post is for the women who have lost a child they’ve never known or known for a moment like me. Since sharing our news on social media yesterday the overwhelming outpouring of support, phone calls, messages and emails has been amazing. I’m equally overwhelmed by the number of women and men who have shared with me confidentially that they went through the pain and horror of losing a child they never even knew. While there are few who share their losses so publicly please know that there are hundreds, thousands if not millions more who understand the hole in your heart and the pain that you feel in losing a loved one that you wished you knew. What hurts more are the memories that I don’t have to give me comfort. Instead I can only imagine and dream what those memories might be.
I’m mourning the loss of those you will never knew and my baby.