Why Miscarriages Never Get Easier

miscarriage

 

Hmm, where to start. 

I honestly really debated writing this post. We haven’t told many people and it’s obviously something very personal to us. However, I have tried to be as open and honest about our fertility struggles as I can and I feel like avoiding sharing the lows along with the highs would do the story no justice. 

After going through IUI, IVF and really any fertility struggle a woman will often hear ‘My friend got pregnant on her own right after XYZ…‘ You can fill that in with any type of infertility you wish. I think it’s a way for people to put a positive spin on something unfortunate but can often serve as an annoying reminder of the uncertain future. 

When people would mention this to me (all the time) I would often shudder at the thought of getting pregnant on my own. One, it had never happened—the first miscarriage was a result of IUI and two, I didn’t want it to. See, despite getting pregnant on our first round of IVF the struggle does something to you. I no longer trusted my body to do what I had always hoped it would and thought if it did ever happen, I would panic. 

After having Zain, I like most women went quite some time without a cycle. I was breastfeeding so I’m sure that delayed it but shortly after I started pumping exclusively, it appeared. I had consulted with my doctor and decided to stay off any medical form of birth control. I didn’t want the added hormones and although my chances were very slim I knew there was a tiny possibility I could get pregnant, medically speaking. I hadn’t been paying much attention to my body since I was taking care of Zain and keeping busy with work but while we were at my parents house over Thanksgiving I mentioned to Trevor that I felt a little off. I didn’t know what that meant, I was just a little queasy. He asked if I thought I could be pregnant and I laughed out loud. I mean, no.

Since we were headed to a friends house the next day for cocktails Trevor thought I should take a test and I begrudgingly agreed. I mean I didn’t need to, I wasn’t pregnant. My cycle has always been regular but I had just started a cycle post baby so I didn’t exactly think it would be on time. 

At 4:30am the next morning I woke up, quietly snuck into the bathroom and took the test. I left it sitting on the sink and got back in bed. I was really just taking it to appease Trevor. He must have woke up somewhere in between and got up to go to the bathroom (I hadn’t even woke him to tell him I was taking it because no big deal, right?)

He came walking back from the bathroom and placed it in front of me. I rubbed my eyes and couldn’t believe what I was seeing. This couldn’t be. 

In disbelief, we hugged and even cried a little. Were we anywhere near ‘ready’ to have another baby? No. Did we love Zain more than anything and thankful we wouldn’t have to go through a grueling fertility process to have another child? Yes. 

After the shock and panic set in, we talked and reminded ourselves not to get too excited. We had been down this road before and with so much still up in the air I knew we still had a few hurdles. We decided to take it one step at a time and call the doctor first. In the past, I have been counting the days till I could test. This time, I was well past my missed period and they wanted me to come in as soon as I got back to Chicago. 

I went in to have my blood drawn and Trevor and I fully expected them to call back and say it was a fluke and I wasn’t. I waited patiently for the call (having a child keep you busy during this waiting period makes it much easier than before…) and when she told me my HCG and progesterone were consistent with a healthy pregnancy, I couldn’t believe it. 

We waited a little while and went in for my first doctor’s appointment. By this time when I was pregnant with Zain, I got to hear the heartbeat so I was excited for that and for Zain to be with me for that special moment. I laid back for the ultrasound and for some reason all of a sudden felt panicked and scared again. The doctor said ‘Wow, you are really early’ 

I knew something was wrong. 

Since this was a natural conception, she said timing could just be off but I knew what was happening. My body was failing me again and I left the office stunned with tears streaming down my face. Again, I had to wait a week to return and confirm what I already knew. There was indeed no growth and no heartbeat.

Last time, I opted to try and miscarry at home since for some reason I always have ‘missed miscarriages’ but this time was different. I had Zain to take care of and couldn’t afford to be on the couch for days at a time. 

My doctor was amazing and came in after her surgeries to do my procedure so I wasn’t left feeling like this over Christmas. Just like that, my pregnancy seemed to have come and gone in a flinch. The D&C was fairly easy but heartbreaking. Again, I had been let down and was now having to be put to sleep for a in patient procedure. 

Of course the risks are low, but I now have Zain and felt so much anger and frustration that this had happened and was taking me away from him. Trevor did such a great job listening, encouraging and feeding me Sweet Mandy B’s cookies after the procedure but I would be lying if I didn’t say it’s been a slow healing process. 

It’s certainly made me even more grateful for my sweet baby and family who provided so much support and love for us. As quickly as it came and went, it still hurt. A lot of times when women talk about their miscarriages I think it can be easy to gloss over or assume it get’s easier as time passes but sometimes it doesn’t. It’s a loss that you feel in every part of your being and something I will forever carry with me. 

I shared this experience not for sympathy or sadness but as a reminder that this stuff is hard, it never ends and fertility issues are a continuous battle. I still have tons of hope for our future and definitely make sure to squeeze that boy of mine so hard these days! 

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32 thoughts on “Why Miscarriages Never Get Easier

  1. Stephanie A

    Zain is so lucky to have such great parents – you two are a special couple and I will forever be thankful for our friendship. I cannot imagine the struggle you have been through but i am always amazed at your strength!

    Reply
  2. Danica

    Thank you so much for sharing your personal journey!!! I can’t imagine it was easy to do so, but know that it will help so many women to be reminded that they are not alone. Sending you many hugs and prayers for future brothers/sisters for Zain!!

    Reply
  3. Britney Crawley

    Shaheen, thank you so much for sharing this. I personally have not struggled with infertility or infant loss but I know many who have, including my own mother (I was her rainbow baby). Putting myself in that position, I would even think each miscarriage is more painful than the last. My heart goes out to you and Trevor for your losses.

    Reply
    1. shaheen khan Post author

      Oh you are so kind! My hope is just that, it’s such a lonely road and I hope that changes sooner than later. Know that you can reach out at any time and I am always here! Thinking of you!!!

      Reply
  4. Farzana K

    Shaheen, bravo for being able to survive this twice.We will be starting IVF soon and the thought of failure is what scares us the most.

    Reply
  5. Jamie

    So many women have been in the same boat but don’t ever talk about it – thank you for being a voice for those who have gone through infertility and/or loss! I personally have never lost a pregnancy, but I have walked the path of infertility. Like you, it ended happily for me and I have an almost 3 year old, but there is always the question of what’s next? Will I have to go through everything all over again if I want to have another? Will it actually work for me? I was fortunate enough to have a doctor that told me “don’t reinvent the wheel” and sent me back to my fertility specialist for a try at baby #2. But that doesn’t mean you don’t get the chatter about how it might be sooooo easy the second time around!

    Reply
    1. shaheen khan Post author

      I totally agree and hope it becomes easier to talk about as time goes on! I am so happy to hear about your 3 year old but totally relate to you on the unknown future. I think we try to avoid it as much as we can because the thoughts of failure seem to creep up again!

      Reply
  6. Briar

    Wonderful post- my heart is with you. I wish more people would open up; it happens SO frequently, yet a big part of our struggle is that it’s passé to talk about. As a mom of a baby born still- now ready to welcome our rainbow babe any day- it’s my hope that someday we can all talk freely and honestly about these real life struggles without feeling bad for making the person we’re talking to uncomfortable.

    Reply
    1. shaheen khan Post author

      I totally agree with you Briar! It seems to make people very uncomfortable and hopefully will become easier the more people talk about it. I had no idea you were pregnant and am so happy for you and your family! I know the path has been hard for you all and I hope you are feeling well!

      Reply
  7. Annie

    Thank you for sharing your experience! I really appreciate your honesty and openness to share. This stuff isn’t easy and hearing more real Moms talk about it can help others cope and not feel alone. Zain is so lucky to have loving parents like the two of you. He is the most adorable!

    Reply
  8. Alexina Gosh

    I’m so sorry for your loss and your pain, Shaheen! Thank you for being so vulnerable and sharing. As someone who also struggled to conceive the first time I know that the worry never goes away (and the jealousy/resentment towards those who get pregnant without trying/on the first try doesn’t either). You’re so lucky to have such a supportive husband and Zain such a great daddy to look up to!

    Reply
  9. Liz

    Shaheen, I’m sorry that you are going through this again. I know how hard it is. We have been trying for a second since August. We have had 2 failed IVFs and another IVF cycle that didnt even get to the transfer stage, I’m also doing the histeroscopy outpatient surgery next week. Miscarriages are so hard and as you said, they don’t get easier. I thought that things would work faster on baby number 2 because we knew how to fix the problem with our experience getting pregnant with Lucy. I was very wrong. I’ve been having different issues this time that have caused these cycles to fail. I just want you to know that I’m here for you in this tough journey and I love you!

    Reply
    1. shaheen khan Post author

      Aww, Liz I hate to hear that! It’s so frustrating to think you already went down this road once and are back to square one. I think about that all the time! I will be thinking of you guys and hope that this next cycle is a success! Reach out if you ever need anything and I love you and am thinking of you guys!

      Reply
  10. Gina

    Thank you for sharing this and I am so sorry for your struggles. In October I found out that I miscarried our first baby, after trying for a year, and went through with a D&C as well. I can so relate to your experience in the ultrasound room, having that sudden feeling that you knew something wasn’t right. That experience made me realize that a “mothers instinct” is a real thing. Its comforting for me to hear you say that it doesn’t always get easier with time. I find myself counting each month that has gone by thinking, shouldn’t I be over this by now? I feel silly for still feeling hurt and sensitive about the entire thing when it happened months ago. When I went through all this my sister gave be a book by Jaclyn Pieris called “A Loss Misunderstood”, I would definitely recommend it when you’re going through this. It really helped me understand my feelings while having hope for the future.

    I really enjoy following you and seeing all your posts of you and your adorable little guy!

    Thank you for your bravery in sharing your story ❤

    Reply
    1. shaheen khan Post author

      Gina, thank you so much for sharing! It means so much to me. I’m so sorry to hear about your loss and am in the same boat with you – I think everyone heals in their own time and that’s okay. I am definitely going to check out that book, thank you! Thank you so much for your love and support <3

      Reply
  11. Katie Kochenour

    Man Shaheen, we are living parallel lives 🙁 so sorry to hear you had to go through this, we just did too only we did an IVF transfer that ended not long after. It makes it easier having a healthy, busy little boy but that feeling of frustration and sadness does linger doesn’t it?? Praying that it all works out for you guys, Zain is absolutely adorable!!!

    Reply
    1. shaheen khan Post author

      Ugh, Katie I hate to hear that 🙁 Yes, it does! I think it’s like an awful little reminder of all that frustration from the first time around coming back and not going away. I’ll be thinking of you guys and praying for a successful transfer!

      Reply
  12. Kristin

    Thank you for sharing this journey with us, Shaheen. You are not alone on this journey — we are in this together. My heart still aches after my miscarriage in October 2017, and it aches for your heart too. Honestly, I don’t think there are really any words to describe the way it truly feels to have a miscarriage. After months of mourning the loss it hurts just as much today as it did the day it happened. We’ve lost a piece of our hearts. You’re in my thoughts.

    Reply
    1. shaheen khan Post author

      I agree with you Kristin and thank you for sharing, it means a lot. I think it’s harder than most people assume and just because the pregnancy is gone doesn’t mean the feelings are. I will be thinking of you and thank you so much for all your love and support <3

      Reply
  13. Julie Brenna

    Thank you so much for sharing. This can be such a lonely place to be and it’s so refreshing to hear your story and see you continue on your journey. Personally, I have suffered multiple miscarriages, and each and every one of them were beyond difficult. Before babies or after babies, they are truly upsetting and difficult both mentally and physically. We had a successful round of IVF and have our sweet boy Holden, and later conceived on our own naturally, our daughter, Harper. I applaude you for sharing openly. For a long time, I kept our losses to ourselves. Over time, I opened up to closest friends and family and it was the best decision. Having your people praying for you and there for you is so important. I wish you all the best on your journey. My favorite quote during my journey was, “a grateful heart is a magnet for miracles.” Keep believing and kiss that sweet boy of yours in the meantime.

    Reply
    1. shaheen khan Post author

      Aww Julie, thank you for sharing! I loved reading this and your story keeps me hopeful. I agree, writing and opening up about our journey has honestly helped me more than I thought it would. It can sometimes feel like you are ‘hiding’ those losses and having people support you is such a blessing. I love that quote and will definitely be squeezing Zain over here <3

      Reply
  14. annie

    I’m so sorry for your loss. I’ve been through miscarriages too and am wrapping you in a hug 🙂 Thanks for speaking out. I think it’s important.

    Reply

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