I’ve experienced a pain that no mother every wants to endure – an awful nightmare that came to life not just once, but twice in my journey to motherhood. I’m not sure why I was chosen to become a mother to two angels, or why my children were never allowed to know life outside of my womb. Even now, nearly three years later, I think about that question at least once per day. I question the existence of a God that would allow me to go through such pain and not allow a baby to meet his mother and father.
Some say it is time for me to move on with my life and focus on the two beautiful children I do have here on Earth. While I’ll always be eternally grateful for them, I still question and wonder about my other two babies and why they both were given to me then ripped away. That burden is mine to carry until I take my last breath. I wear it around like a giant scar on my chest, similar to an open heart surgical patient, with a massive scar in the center of my chest. As if someone reached into my chest, tore out a piece of my heart, sewed me back up and then came back six months later and did it again. What’s left is a heart that’ll never be the same. It’s been broken, tattered, and bruised too many times for it to ever go back to the way it once was.
This unbelievable burden is not something I would have chosen, then again, who the hell would? Nobody sets out on the path of trying to conceive in hopes of miscarrying. I never thought it’d happen to me. Yet, it did. It wasn’t until that moment when the ultrasound tech told me there was no heartbeat, though there had been just five weeks prior, that I realized how very often it does occur to mothers hoping to have babies –one in four. One in four women that want nothing in the world more than to hold a baby of their own, to rock her to sleep at night and sniff her precious head, or to hear his first cry in that cold hospital room. One in four lives changed in an instant. Hopes and dreams smashed all to hell with a simple sentence like, “There’s no heartbeat” or by simply going to the bathroom and wiping a streak of blood from herself. Just like that, a mother’s life is forever changed. Her soul is instantly tainted for the rest of time and she never knew her heart could break into that many pieces.
Some scars are carried like a badge of honor – police officers that get shot saving lives in the line of duty, though unfortunate they are remembered as heroes or a sister that gave her brother a much needed kidney bears the mark of a heroine that saved her little brother’s life. These aren’t the kind of scars we carry. We have fragmented hearts, stretch marks from babies we’ll never hold, and C-section incisions that will heal with time but nothing to show for them. Most of the world will never see our scars and while most days we are grateful for that it is also insanely tragic. The tragedy is in the fact that unless we speak of our lost babies, the world will never know they were here. That fact alone if perhaps the saddest part of losing a baby – to know that they were indeed here but the only part of them that remains is our memories of them in our hearts and the hearts of a select few others that loved them too.
Although there’s no way of undoing the damage that has been done to my heart or to stop wondering about what could have been, I will hold the spirits of my unborn babies deep inside of it for the rest of my life. There they will be at the center of my thoughts, hopes and prayers each day until I’m no longer a part of this Earth. There they will be safe, loved, and never forgotten.
Originally posted on the Grit & Grace Project