I Am One In Four - Part Two by Heather Hughes
(If missed the first part of this guest post, please scroll back to read Part One from last week)
Based on all we had walked leading up to her birth, all the doctors' reports, I was positive she would be an only child. Because honestly, there was no medical reason for her to be here. She was truly a miracle baby. I became pregnant again. There were also issues early on in my pregnancy and I was put back on modified bed rest. At this point, even before we knew if I was carrying a boy or a girl, my husband and I decided this would be our last child.
Pregnancy was too hard and it was emotionally exhausting. When we found out we were having a boy, we were thrilled. We were going be a family of four. This was way more than we expected back in 07. At this point my husband and I were on the same page. We felt a peace about being done having children because of all we had walked. Our little boy came after we had experienced the Nashville Flood of 2010 and a summer that broke long standing heat records. When I looked at the picture of the four of us, I was honestly content. The Lord answered major prayers and had blessed us with two healthy children.
Little did we know the Lord would give us one more blessing. My husband and I were not trying to get pregnant. In fact, we were trying to be careful. We found out we were expecting again soon after we brought our new son home and we were in shock. While a part of me was thrilled, I knew what I had walked with our other two children and wasn't sure I could walk it again.
The first ultrasound with our third brought another heartache. When we looked at the screen there were two babies. I was pregnant with twins! I was ecstatic. The tech then looked at me and said "Baby B has no cardiac movement."
Her tone was harsh and I was again crushed. The tears started and stayed for most of the rest of the day. Based on what the radiologist saw, we were told I was carrying identical twins. We lost baby B due to a chromosomal abnormality.
I can't tell you the anxiety that came with the rest of that pregnancy. I had similar issues to my other pregnancies, but now there was uncertainty about the health of our baby. I carried my anxiety in private. I never voiced anything to my OB or my husband. Our child was a planned c-section because my daughter had been an emergency c-section and our older son had also been born vie c-section. Even though we had been told he was healthy, I still carried concerns of unknown issues until he actually started school.
Our journey to parenthood was anything, but easy. All three of our children are walking, talking miracles. I still mourn the loss of our other four children. I often wonder what they would have looked like. What would their personalities have been? What would their interests have been? I try to imagine myself as a mother of seven.
Miscarriages and infertility issues caused struggles in my marriage and my faith. I can't say I handled it with grace and dignity. There were many nights where I would cry myself to sleep. I stopped going to church on Mother’s Day and Father’s Day because it was just too hard. I would send gifts to baby showers, but I wouldn't attend.
Please know, as long as you are not causing harm to yourself, there is no right or wrong way to grieve your loss. Again, miscarriages are real losses to be grieved. We all handle this type of loss in different ways. One way for me to find closure and peace with the loss of my children was to name them. While I only know for certain the sex of one of my four, I feel in my heart that I miscarried one girl and three boys. I had several friends who reminded me that even though my children weren't in my arms, I was still a mother. You are still a mother!
Please don't walk this path alone. Reach out to your inner circle. Find a group of women who have also walked this path. I was blessed with two incredible friends who were there through all of the losses, as well as a church choir who surrounded me with prayer. I was also blessed to find an online group of women who had losses around the same time I did. I am still friends with these women today and I have had the privilege of meeting a couple of them.
Remember, you are not alone.
Heather Hughes is a wife, mother of three and on staff at The Glade Church. She has been blogging for several years and has a book in progress. Heather's passion is to speak into the lives of women, assisting them to build authentic relationships with the Lord and those around them