Revelations of the life we could have had
Playtimes and snuggles at the drop of a hat.
Walking your pushchair down through the park
Protecting you so the sun won’t mark.
Watching and waiting as you slowly drop off
Into a peaceful sleep – it is never enough.
Wishing you would eat one more bite
Of the food presented in your clear sight.
Revelation: when you open your eyes and see
The smile that could have belonged to me.
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
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 –
Pretending to be strong
My facade is effective
While the inside crumbles.
It’s hard to admit
The unwilling wallowing within
I can’t be the me
That I used to be.
Imbalanced and confused
No easy way to define
The feelings that
Overwhelm – pride.
I can’t admit
For the world to see
All my struggles are there
If you look closely.
See the hollow eye
Now devoid of its smile
It occasionally fills but
Is it a lie?
There once was a smile
For the world to see
You still see that facade
But there is no more me.
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.
What would you think if you met me today?
Would you be sad or happy to see me?
So affected by your loss have I been that
You might not recognise this being.
My mind has been fractured, destroyed by the pain
The grief, the anger, the heartbreak
But my body only bears one scar
From when I tried to end it.
If you could see how you’re loved
And how your death has wrecked me
Maybe you wouldn’t have gone.
Your life could have saved me.
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.
Bump, no bump
What difference does it make
The physical manifestation of the missing piece.
That bump you hide
How I’d long to flaunt it
Presenting with pride the child within.
Embarassed by your size
Why do you fear it so?
What I would give that mine didn’t go.
That I can’t reveal
A similar product – I’m physically healed.