I think the hardest part of having a miscarriage is not being able to know why it happened. I’m doing my best to stay out of my head and not feel weighted by guilt, but it’s hard. Having a concrete reason for why this happened–why the baby stopped growing–would provide so much closure for me.
But those answers just aren’t there.
When I first found out that there was no heartbeat, they told me the gestational age of the fetus, which gave me an approximate time range for when the baby had actually died. I did what I think most people do: I began raking through my brain for every. single. activity I did that week. I had a lot of time laying in that horribly uncomfortable hospital bed in the middle of the night, so I went through my phone calendar with a fine tooth comb trying to figure out what I could have done wrong that week. Was it the stress from work? Was it from shoveling my driveway? Was it from carrying P back to bed? Was it from my Osteopath appointment? Was it from lack of sleep? Did I worry too much about keeping up with the house and not rest enough? Did I not eat well enough?
The rational part of my brain knows it’s not my fault, but the emotional part can’t help but wonder if there’s something I could have done (or not done) that might have made a difference. I eventually had to try and shut off my brain and stop wondering as really… there are no answers to be had.
After I got first got home and the hormones hit me like a truck, I had a moment where all these questions came flooding back. But this time, a memory came with them that has since brought me so much peace.
I have always been a vivid dreamer. More so when I’m pregnant, but I dream about people and things and can usually remember dreams in detail when I wake the next morning. Last summer my uncle passed away quite suddenly. It was unexpected and quite a shock, and it was like the world suddenly felt a little dimmer without his laugh and wonderful, kind spirit in it.
The night after I learned of his death, I had a dream that was so vivid I can still close my eyes and see it. For years and years until her death, my Grandmother’s home was our gathering place. It was where our family–immediate and extended–came together, and there was so much love there. Some of my most treasured memories are from her dining room, where we would all sit and visit for hours (once the chores were done, of course). If I close my eyes I can still see Uncle J watching soccer on his laptop at the table while poking fun at my Grammy with a twinkle in his eye… and I can almost hear her laugh and say, “Oh isn’t this fun!”.
To me, being with my family around that dining room table was about as close to heaven as you can get.
After my uncle passed, I dreamed that I was back in her house (which has since been remodeled and sold). Everything was exactly as it was–the clock chiming on the wall with the decorative plates all around it, the china cabinet in the background full of her dishes, plates of tomato slices, pickles and cheese on the table and the glow of the chandelier warming the room. I was there, but not there. It was like I could see in, but no one could see me. At the table were family members who have all passed on–my grandmother, Uncle F, my Gumpo… and that night, Uncle J was there too. They were all sitting around the table talking and laughing–like old friends who hadn’t seen each other in far too long. They were all sitting in their regular seats, and I could just feel the love radiating everywhere in the room. It just brought me so much peace. I remember waking up crying, but just knowing that this is what heaven will be like.
As I was at a low point last week, the memory of this dream came back and flooded my mind… and as I despaired not having an answer to why this happened to us, I just suddenly felt so sure that even though this little baby is not in our arms… she is in theirs. I can just imagine her at that table… ready to earn brownie badges and go for french fries with Uncle F, hearing stories and adventures from Uncle J, and just completely wrapped in love in my grandparent’s arms.
I’ve been clinging to that through my low points these past two weeks, and it’s helped somehow. I know I’ll never really have a reason for why it happened, but it’s helped me stay in a better place.