Pregnancy is an amazing feat. For the body to create a new human is beyond magical. I’ve always thought it was incredible that so much goes right with pregnancy and with this creation process. Smart bodies, smart cells.
With pregnancy there is a sense of fullness that arrives fairly quickly. It’s not just the belly that swells, the whole body becomes involved. That glow people speak of? I believe it comes from this fullness. You suddenly have more blood in your body, everything is working overtime for the purpose of growing a human, best behavior is required of your entire system to make this go smoothly. You have a VIP visitor and the body isn’t holding much back. In a very strange way your body takes on a mind of it’s own, sending unrelenting messages and cravings to the stomach as different needs arise and forcing a slowing down, a resting as energy is diverted.
And when the body recognizes that something is not going as it should, that growing isn’t happening perhaps, or some of those chromosomes just aren’t viable, or maybe a virus intruded and changed development in a way, then it often shuts down the factory. This also is amazing to me. Our bodies, they are so, so very intelligent without much help from our conscious minds.
With this recognition, though, also comes a certain deflation. Those birthday balloons that are left tied outside just a day too long, still full but sinking to the ground? That is the feeling. It can be so subtle. And you might get some raised eyebrows as you describe the changes and feelings to others. But the deflation is there.
Going through this whole process has been incredible. I wish the pregnancy had not ended, but also am at peace with it. My body is far more intuitive than I am, and I’m sure it recognized a problem going on.
The interesting part to me has been the aftermath. When you get pregnant, that magic number of 12 weeks lingers above your head. Don’t tell people until after your first trimester! And yet you are wearing down a path to the restroom every 5 minutes, you’ve become a total bloodhound and can smell a tuna sandwich from two buildings over (unfortunately), you can’t stand to have anything pressing on your poor queasy stomach so have taken to wearing flowing clothing long before they were needed, and you are ravenously hungry all day long… it’s all exciting and amazing, but you aren’t able to really share with many people during those early days. And then things go wrong, you have to unexpectedly work from home, take a sick day, fall behind on everything, and people start to ask questions.
I debated at first. But then decided that I needed to be open with some people to process all of it. And it has been therapeutic beyond belief. Every single person I have shared with has come back to me with stories of their own miscarriages, or those of their friends or family members, and many had a success story to follow closely behind. For me it didn’t take away from the loss of a baby we wanted (and I use the “b” word loosely, I know it was only at the embryonic stage), and it doesn’t take away from the pain of the procedure, or the stress of the 6-hour emergency department visit that my sweet parents endured while my partner was traveling. But it does normalize all of it. I’ve created this little community around me. “We’ve been there, too, you will be okay.”
I needed that net. I needed to see the knowing nods, the fleeting look of sadness, but overall the look of toughness. People go through this all the time. And sometimes many times. And it’s okay. For now I choose to thank my body for being wise, and to keep up hope that our time will still come.