I never knew I would have a miscarriage.
I never knew when I went to my routine 12-week appointment, I would be forever changed. I never knew how common miscarriages are. Twenty-five percent of pregnancies end in miscarriage. One woman in four has had a miscarriage. Someone you love has had a miscarriage. And suddenly, that statistic became me.
I never knew that at 11 weeks, my baby’s heart would stop beating. At 11 weeks, the baby is almost 2 inches tall. Still so tiny yet it is almost fully formed. And it’s already moving its tiny arms and legs. And it has fingernails. And at 10 weeks, mine still had a beating heart.
I never knew that in many cases, the body won’t recognize a miscarriage, leading to continued pregnancy sickness, weight gain, sickness, pregnancy hormones, and, oh yes, sickness. I never knew I could have a still fetus inside me and yet feel so incredibly empty.
I never knew that a D&C (dilation & curettage or evacuation) could be so awful. The actual procedure went as expected, but when you wake up everything once inside you is gone. No closure. You simply pack up and go home. And you can’t help but think, ‘What if they had checked the ultrasound one more time? Would they have seen a tiny beating heart?’ You know the answer, but can’t help wondering.
I never knew that less than one percent of women who get a D&C have to have a second one. I guess I like to beat the odds.
I never knew that after it’s all said and done, your hormones would be more of a roller-coaster than when you were actually pregnant. I didn’t feel like the same person.
I never knew that I would never stop wondering why it died. Why why why? Apparently, most miscarriages that occur before 12 weeks most likely had chromosomal abnormalities. This means the egg or sperm had the wrong number of chromosomes and cannot develop normally. I never liked that explanation. It’s too scientific.
I never knew that not one day would go by that I didn’t think about that baby. And according to my mom, even 30 plus years after a miscarriage, you’ll still think about it every.single.day. Will the baby be mine?
I never knew any of this.