Reflections: who I was and who I am.

Over the last week I have opened up truths about the last year to a new friend. It wasn’t painful to be honest for once, it was refreshing. But something was painful.

I decided to write a short play for an event, which I did. Then I thought I should get back to the play I started writing last year. I found it and read through it again to remind myself where I needed to write more. That’s when it got painful. I threw my soul into those words and they bit me. I felt melancholy and close to tears the rest of the day, only feeling better when meeting the earlier mentioned friend.

Yesterday, I played the song I wrote almost a year ago which defines the miscarriage for me. I’ve played it a number of times but, this time, I started crying. Maybe it is just tiredness or maybe everything is feeling raw at the moment.

My husband thinks that it is the time of year. It is a year since I started writing again and I started learning to recover. Looking back on who I was then is like looking at a different person most of time time. I can sometimes see that anger though, glinting back up. I walk with my nephew and people smile at me. I don’t have that in the rest of my life.

Being a mother changes the way the world views you. Being a mother without a child changes the way you view the world.

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Poem 83

Parallel lives, parallel worlds

Looking left and right at all that could be

Seeing the joy, seeing the sadness

Seeing the heartbreak bestowed on me

Now that you’re gone, returned to the ground

Now that you’re gone…

…I fear I’ll be found.

Poem 82

The hardest thing

Is when people don’t know.

Comments pass by

Each one a blow.

The missing mention

About motherhood

All because

Life was not good.

The jealous pangs

When people talk about

The laughter and smiles

Before forced to shout

At their beautiful gift

Present and true.

But I lost my gift.

I lost you.

Poem 81

The sun warms my aching mind
Torn up over the life that has passed me by
A year of wonder, a year of pain
A year of not knowing if I’ll be the same
As once I was, just 12 months ago
As once I was when you made me whole.

The sun warms my healing heart
Reminding me that all things scar
They make us stronger, they make us stand tall
They show us that we recover when we fall
Down upon the worst of luck but, with love
I will always make it up.

Poem 75

One year ago.
One. Whole. Year.
One whole year since I first saw a faint line
And my life changed.
I’m not who I was
No longer that girl
The one with endless hope and smiles
Free from heartbreak.
Now I’m broken
And re-formed
Pieced back together, day by day, hour by hour.
Longing for that different life.
Tested and challenged;
Triumphed and defeated;
Discovering new limits and realms of me –
Destroyed?
Recovered?
Just being.

Mother without a child

All the children scream “Happy Mother’s Day”
They fawn and cuddle with delight
Presenting gifts with hushed tones
Hoping that they got it right.

Their mothers get spoilt and pampered
Enjoying a day that’s for them
Happy that their smiling faces
Are maybe behaving again.

But what of those childless mothers
How do they celebrate this day?
Always longing that they will be presented with
A card simply saying “Mummmy”

They’ve never experienced the joy of today
From the view of the mother, not child
But a mother they still are, even though
Their child passed before being alive.

On Mother’s Day we join to celebrate
Throw gifts onto our creators
But spare a thought, my dear friend
For the mums who have lost their creations.

12 weeks on

Today marks 12.5 weeks since I found out about my missed miscarriage and 12 weeks since the physical miscarriage happened. In these 12 weeks, I have learnt more about myself than I ever wanted to know and I have become more dependent on people than I have ever been before. There have been good days and there have been bad days. Typically the good outnumber the bad but the last week or two has been particularly difficult and the balance has been off.

I wanted to write this for anyone who is struggling with a miscarriage, whether it is them or a friend/family member who has experienced it. The most important piece of information I have received is this:

You are allowed to grief. You have experienced a loss in the family. If it was someone people in the family knew about, you’d be allowed to grief: this is no different.

Those words were spoken to me by my counsellor. I have avoided going to counselling for many years but, with this, I reached the stage where I couldn’t avoid it any more. My counsellor has made me feel more validated than any other person who has tried to help me, my husband included. I am lucky enough to have a wonderful support network but, even with that network, I feel like I am failing sometimes by having such a strong reaction to the miscarriage. It is important to remember that feeling is not failing. When I’ve had moments where I am really struggling, I have told certain people whom I really trust and I get responses back like:

Well don’t be too hard on yourself. Your head’s doing whatever it needs to do.

Upon telling a friend that I am going to counselling, she said that she thought I was amazing to be tackling it full force and how much she admired me for it. It has given me that strength to keep pushing through on the bad days. I’ve learnt that there is no shame in needing to remove myself from situations that are just too much for me, even if someone else could cope. We each recover differently and that is the key thought for recovering from a miscarriage. Different people feel differently. I seem to be struggling more than other people I know who have had miscarriages but that is OK. 12 weeks on I have learnt that lesson – I hope anyone else reading this can learn it sooner.

Thank you for listening.

P.S. After 64 poems published consecutively, there may be a little break as the writing is dependent on my mood. That being said, I wrote 5 in one day the other week so maybe they will pick up again.

Poem 59

I feel weak for not being the version of me

Who understands and copes with what has gone wrong

The version who accepts that pain is good and that

Bottling only causes harm.

I hate that I can’t be free from these thoughts

Taking over my mind like a wraith

Digging into the trenches and

Pouring concrete to make them stay.

Breaking the thoughts is the hardest thing

Aside from surviving with your loss

I wish I could break the pain of my heart

Now that my love is lost.

Poem 58

Am I betraying your memory

If I choose to stop?

Although – 

Did you have a memory for me to betray?
Sometimes I think it would be easier if

I forgot

And let all of the past disappear.

It hurts that I had to let you go

Yet

I’m thankful for what I’ve gained from it.

Losing you was worse than I could have thought

And yet – 

Do I regret it?

I wish you could splash through the bubbling brook

Creating a world full of chaos.

Instead I sit and watch the still stream

Still chaotic but

Invisible to see.