Our Baby We Never Met

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It’s been a while since I last posted. So much has happened in my life since last May, including our very first pregnancy that we found out ended in a miscarriage at 19 weeks, 1 day. On January 13, I had a D&E. I drafted this post on January 16, three days later, as a way to help me begin healing and process my emotions. Since then, I’ve been debating whether or not to hit publish.

This is the first of a series of blog posts that I plan to share on miscarriage, grief and healing.

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January 16, 2017:

It’s been three days since I had surgery to deliver my baby boy. Three days for me to attempt to start to recover physically and emotionally. Only three days. The physical pain from the surgery has diminished greatly. However, the emotional pain feels crushing.

So many people have shared their thoughts and feelings with me, and let me know how I should be feeling. My husband doesn’t understand why I’m having a hard time. 

I feel so alone and misunderstood. Does anyone actually understand what I’m going through? In spite of all my sadness, I have a glimmer of hope. I’m certain that I will get through this, although I will be forever changed. This personal post is about how I’m feeling and how I’m processing my emotions. I hope that someone who reads this will know that they are not alone. 

To start with, the word miscarriage implies that I carried my baby wrong. It implies that my body wasn’t able to support a life. It implies that my body failed. The doctors have told me that isn’t the case in the slightest, but it’s still hard to believe that it’s not my fault. After all, my baby boy was growing inside of me, and he developed incorrectly. I did my very best to take care of him, and I couldn’t do it. I failed. I feel horrible. I feel lost. I feel nothing short of devastated.

When I found out I was pregnant, I cried. Not because I was excited, but because I was afraid. I never imagined becoming a mother so quickly, but it was happening. I was going to be someone’s mommy. I very slowly grew used to the idea, and I was actually able to become excited. After all, babies are a blessing, and I don’t believe they happen on accident. Do you know how much needs to go right for an egg to be fertilized and a baby to start growing? So much needs to happen.

Once the egg is fertilized, so many more things need to go right. Previously, I thought once the baby was conceived and the positive pregnancy test showed up, that meant you were going to have a baby. In my ignorance, I didn’t think anything could go wrong. I knew I would become excited over time; I just needed to get used to the idea of being a mom. In my heart, I always knew that I wanted a baby. I thought I would be a little older and married for at least two years before that happened.

Since my husband and I are young, healthy and have no family history of issues, I had no doubt in my mind that we would have our baby. After all, what could go wrong? The egg was fertilized, and it was a done deal.

We made it to the second trimester, and we were definitely safe at that point. Time to start thinking about whether or not we wanted to have a gender reveal party and how we wanted to announce our pregnancy on social media! My secret boards on Pinterest were filling up with ideas for the nursery, baby products, and other pregnancy survival tips. I invited my mom and my best friend to these secret boards, so they could help me search for ideas.

We took our baby so many places in his short life. Quebec City, Montpelier, Orlando (Universal Studios and Disney World), NYC, Disneyland, Hoover Dam, Las Vegas, Antelope Canyon, Phoenix, Illinois. I dreamt of telling him about all the places we traveled while I was carrying him. I dreamt of returning to those places with him and traveling to Ireland with him in a baby wrap. More than anything, I dreamt of keeping him safe and loving him.

All of those hopes and dreams came to a crashing halt on January 11, when we found out there was no hope for our baby boy, and he no longer had a heartbeat.

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Anna Maria Island Weekend Trip

Recently, my husband and I hopped on a plane and jetted off to Tampa, so we could spend the weekend on Anna Maria Island!

Anna Maria Island is an amazing place to experience a true beach vacation! My family has been vacationing here for over 15 years, and we always look forward to returning.

There’s something so calming about the ocean that other vacation destinations can’t replicate. I’m imagining myself back at the beach right now listening to the ocean waves crashing into the shore, feeling the salty sea breeze and warm sun beaming down on my skin, and enjoying the peace that comes with relaxing in a beach chair under an umbrella with a great book in hand.

Weekend Highlights

This was Zach’s first time to the island! There are so many places we didn’t get to visit on our short weekend trip, but we did our best to relax while still enjoying some of the great things Anna Maria Island has to offer!

  1. Watching the sunrise (and sunset).

    This is something that is special to us, and we make a point to watch the sunrise and sunset on vacations and at home. This picture was taken as the sun was setting. Zach took a hyperlapse of it. His ability to hold his phone still and stay in one spot for so long is impressive!
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  2. Eating the most delicious dinner at The Waterfront Restaurant.

    This meal was easily the best meal of the trip! Zach absolutely loved the fresh bread, mashed potatoes, and ribeye. The ribeye was marinated for three days, and the wait was definitely worth it. I love the baked brie appetizer and mashed potatoes. Everything was cooked to perfection and our service was amazing.

  3. Spending time on the lanai.

    Nothing gets better than simply enjoying each other’s company and taking in the view. You just can’t get these views in the Midwest! image3

  4. Creating our own donuts at The Donut Experiment.

    We actually went twice! If you love warm cake donuts with a slightly crunchy exterior and picking out your own toppings, this is the place for you. Zach’s favorite? Crushed peanuts with vanilla frosting. My favorite? Key lime. If you’re visiting on a weekend, arrive as early as possible to avoid long waits! We got there at 7:15 am and had no problems. image1

  5. Browsing through shops.

    We especially loved Back Alley Treasures! They have a variety of local items and other fun trinkets to look at. We didn’t take any pictures while shopping, but we did leave with some homemade soap and soy candles that smell delicious!