Pregnancy Loss: Miscarriage, Ectopic Pregnancy, and Healing After Feeling Broken

I have gone back and forth about being vulnerable and sharing my story of feeling absolutely broken from my multiple pregnancy losses this past year. I think when we share the things that make us broken we connect with others and learn their broken stories. We can lift each other up, mourn, and comfort one another with our stories. Then the healing can really begin. October is also national pregnancy and infant loss awareness month. If my story can of pregnancy loss can bring awareness and healing to anyone else, I wish I would have been brave enough to share it weeks ago.

Pregnancy Loss: Miscarriage, Ectopic Pregnancy, and Healing After Feeling Broken

 

I had my first miscarriage in between my 2 children. It had extra complications including nearly bleeding to death and needing 2 units of blood. It was awful, but I made it through. The super raw emotion that is a part of pregnancy loss makes it so difficult to talk about. I think pregnancy loss also brings a sense of shame even if it’s there only for a moment while you’re grieving, and it is an awful isolating thing to experience. But I have found comfort in finding other women apart of this unwanted club with the simple sad statement of “I’ve had one too.”

Miscarrying Again

I am so blessed to have such beautiful babies, but I have ached for just one more. I miscarried for a 2nd time earlier this year. It was awful and I felt like I had already been down this road before. I had already gained entrance to this pregnancy loss club that I wanted no part of the first time, and I didn’t need to experience it again. My heart once again broke as I cried and mourned, but I started to heal. I know nature has laws, not every pregnancy can make it to the end, sometimes genetics don’t match up, and 1 in 4 women miscarry. I remember being shocked by that number after my first miscarriage.

Woman taking pregnancy test

I was terrified to try again for another baby. There is nothing like the fear of being pregnant again after having a miscarriage. The beginning of August, at 5 weeks pregnant I started bleeding again. I was immediately hysterical with emotion. I don’t think I have ever cried so hard and felt so shattered by one moment. I just kept thinking, “I can’t be doing this again, and twice in 6 months.” I have a wonderful doctor who monitored my HCG hormone blood levels. My hormone levels weren’t what they needed to be and no pregnancy was to be found so it was ruled a miscarriage. The next 3 weeks I would have my blood taken dozens of times, I did two rounds of medicine to try and pass any pregnancy on my own, 5 ultrasounds, and 1 ER room visit because of how much pain I was in. My arms were a bruised mess, the physical pain kept getting worse, and emotionally I was exhausted. My HCG levels kept rising and no one could find any sign of a pregnancy through ultrasound.

After 3 weeks of pain, sobbing, confusion, and frustration my pregnancy hormone levels continued to rise. I felt like my body had betrayed me. I went to the hospital for a D&C to find and remove what might be a pregnancy. We had to find the reason my body still thought I was pregnant. I was so emotionally raw and ready for everything to be over. That morning I felt a strong peace that I would be ok, and that God was aware of me. He knew my heartache and I would be ok. A string of tender mercies fell together and minutes before my D&C surgery the hospital’s head of ultrasound found my pregnancy. The pregnancy was in my left fallopian tube, ruptured, and I was bleeding out into my belly. I had an ectopic/tubal pregnancy the entire time and no one knew. An ectopic pregnancy is a pregnancy that has developed outside of the uterus, typically in a fallopian tube. It can also occur in an ovary, cervix, and abdominal cavity. Things changed super quickly and I went into a totally different kind of surgery procedure.

Ectopic Pregnancy

I left the hospital completely different from how I thought I would. My entire left fallopian tube was removed. A pregnancy that could have been a perfect, healthy little baby was just in the wrong place, there was not enough room to grow into what could be, and my entire left tube was obliterated. Ectopic pregnancies occur in one out of every 50 pregnancies, which is just 2% of pregnancies. It is extremely rare and it has been hard finding people to relate to. Grieving my ectopic pregnancy has been different from my miscarriages. I have both grieved the loss of my pregnancy, but also the loss of my left fallopian tube. It was a long, awful, frustrating drawn out process. I was left traumatized, and shattered. Grief is such a fluid process. I have moved in and out of sadness, anger, bargaining, and then back to sadness trying to work through everything. Never did I ever think I would have an ectopic pregnancy.

Starting to Heal

Now being on the other side of it and physically being back to “normal” I wish I could say, “and now I am pregnant” or “now I have another beautiful happy baby.” But I can’t, at least not yet, and maybe not ever. I am still struggling with my pregnancy loss and I am working towards being totally healed. The past year has been super traumatic and emotional. I still can’t bring myself to look at my surgery pictures. Somedays the grief comes back and my thoughts consume me. Sometimes pregnancy announcements make my heart ache. I don’t know what the future and God has in store for my family and I. I do know that I can take one day at a time, that I can be kind to myself, let myself grieve, and try to help others going through similar struggles. I do know that God’s timing and plan for each of us, is perfect. That He has a perfect love for all of us. That if I do my best He will make up the difference where I fall short. I know that I can be happy and have joy even in the middle of something super hard and painful. I do know that I am blessed beyond measure. That day of my surgery went seamlessly and was perfect for what it needed to be. I easily could have died but I didn’t. More tissue and organs could have been damaged but they weren’t. I am healthy. I have a wonderful, and supportive husband who has been my rock through everything. We have grieved together and walked through this experience together. I have 2 beautiful, healthy, and amazing children. I have a wonderful family and so many friends that were more like angels who sprung to action helping my family during the past few months. I have seen specific moments of God taking care of me.

Pregnancy Loss: Miscarriage, Ectopic Pregnancy, and Healing After Feeling Broken

Finding the Light

It is hard to find light when you’re in the middle of deep consuming heartbroken darkness. Especially if you feel like you have been shoved into it and with no warning. This adventure of life can be brutal, and as women, we are so extra hard on ourselves. We are critical and can be left feeling broken from all the ways we fall short, our weaknesses, the way life doesn’t go as planned, and the unfulfilled expectations we had for our lives. We all have something we are struggling with. Maybe you have been through a pregnancy loss or many losses. Maybe you are mourning a child, a close family member, or friend. You might be mourning and aching for what could be, I know lots of mothers are still left with empty arms and tearful yearnings. The pain of every day may seem crushing from anxiety, OCD, depression, postpartum depression, etc. Sometimes day to day life is also just really hard and can leave us feeling heartbroken. Whatever you might be struggling with I know light will come and it will get better!

Making Broken Things Strong

After you have been totally broken you get to put yourself together again. With all the extra knowledge and experience you have gained you can put yourself together again stronger and be better for it. My miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy completely shattered me in every way. But those experiences have helped me learn so much and I have a new perspective on lots of things. I am so totally different and will never be the same. I am learning and becoming a stronger better version of myself. Hard things happen to bring the best out in us. Then we can help other people in the middle of their own heartbreaking stories in ways we wouldn’t have been able to do before. We can be a hand to hold in the darkness, or a shoulder to cry on. Sometimes we can completely pull each other out of the darkness and show each other how to rebuild after being broken. All the heartbreak can be for our good and a way to love someone else.

In total, I have had 2 miscarriages and 1 ectopic pregnancy. If you have been through a pregnancy loss like me, I see you! You don’t have to feel alone. Whatever you might be struggling with hang in there. I am not perfect and I am not completely healed yet. All I can do is one day at a time, remember my blessings, and by doing my best, I will get there.

For more information and support for ectopic pregnancy, I have found The Ectopic Pregnancy Trust website to be a wonderful resource. 

About Megan

Megan loves being a stay at home mom to a busy boy Hayden (8) and sweet girl Halli (4). She has been happily married to her ridiculously good looking husband for 9 years. She also enjoys blogging, trying new recipes to cook or bake, girls nights, fashion, and reading. You can also find her on twitter and instagram @megan.hamilton28



Comments

  1. I’m sorry to read about what you’ve been through. I can’t imagine but do have empathy. It’s good that you have a strong faith in God, who will see you through.

  2. vickie couturier says:

    I am so sorry you had to go thru that experience,several times,,i was lucky to not have to go thru that, but as a Nurse who worked ob/gyn wing at a hospital and doctors office,,i understand how painful that is,,my Mom went thru this too,,she actually had aset of twin boys that were still born in the 1956 and the next year she miscarried a set of twin boys again,,,she was heartbroken

  3. Amanda says:

    aww Megan I am so sorry, I have had two losses as well and they were not easy to get through. Somehow after time the pain was less but there always was that empty hole. I will be praying for you and your family.

  4. JulieK says:

    I’m so sorry. I have felt this same pain and sense of loss – I’ve also had an ectopic pregnancy and the loss is surreal b/c it was so early I couldn’t even be excited to be pregnant (mine was literally the doctor saying “You’re pregnant but something’s wrong and it’s probably not going to be viable” – at week 4)… Mine was also in the tube, and it ended up scarring and closing off that tube, rendering me even LESS likely to conceive again (we never did, even though we tried IUI and IVF multiple times after that.
    SO many blessings on you for sharing this – it is indeed so helpful to find other people who have walked this road. I don’t think I have come to a point where I can write about it on my blog yet…
    So… big hugs and prayers for continued healing – I am nearly 3 years past mine and I still think about it and wonder, but I finally have a sliver of peace that we’re a “family of 4” and moving on to enjoy the boys God gave me! 🙂

  5. Kimberly Matlack says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. I carried a baby 38 years ago and had a polyp on my cervix. The doctor that was in for my doctor on vacation performed cryosurgery. It made me go into labor and I lost my baby. Back then they didn’t have the technology they have today and he never had a chance. I was 6.5 months pregnant. I still think about him often. You never forget that loss.

  6. I’m so sorry for your losses. I have felt your pain. I see you. <3

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