Since my miscarriage, I feel like I have a COMPLETELY different understanding of and acceptance of many things related to childbearing losses. I have a totally new sense of compassion and identification with women who have experienced any kind of childbearing loss—infertility, miscarriage, stillbirth, birth trauma, cesarean birth, breastfeeding problems, etc. I also suddenly understand why some women say that they don’t care about the birth, all they want is a “healthy baby.” This has been transformative and expanding for me as a long-term birth activist/advocate. So, though I do still maintain that it is completely possible and reasonable to expect (and deserve!) both—a “good birth” AND a “healthy baby” I have a totally different level of compassion for women who might say that.
Though my miscarriage was the most difficult and saddest experience of my life, I feel like it was a profound and transformative and actually sacred experience. I am so grateful to my little Noah and for the gifts he brought to my life. His birth has taken its place as the most transformative experience of my life. I feel like I am still in this place of “openness” after birthing him, where I am ripe for growth and change and discovery. I plan to go on a personal renewal retreat soon (just at home) in order to take more full advantage of this state of being, because I already feel the window of discovery closing for me somewhat.
However, despite all my previously referenced comments about transformation, I do feel a really intense physical and emotional *pang* when I see women who are pregnant, especially several of my friends who were due after me, but who now have nice round bellies while mine is empty. It does hurt me to see them—it is so deep. So, I can relate to “bitter, angry, jealous” feelings some women express post-m/c too.
I read insatiably about miscarriage and find it a fascinating subject really—all the reactions, all the stories, all the pain, all the “shoulds,” all the “what ifs.” It is like this whole other untapped arena of childbearing/women’s experience that I missed when I was so focused on/consumed with birth as my passion. I feel like my passion is blooming to include more aspects of women’s experiences, not just the full-term birth experience (as I’ve mentioned, my miscarriage was very much a birth experience for me). I feel like I can appreciate more fully the totality and complexity of the female experience/life as a woman.
I recently finished reading the book Wild Feminine and found it very healing—it isn’t about miscarriage, but the author’s own experience of miscarriage is referenced multiple times throughout the book (I appreciated how “normally” it was interwoven instead of reserved for a chapter on “bad things” which is how I feel miscarriage is usually presented in books…if is included at all). It is kind of “New Agey,” but it was JUST what I needed to read right now—all about connecting to the energy of your “pelvic bowl” and about healing/releasing the various wounds you hold there, etc., etc.
Here are some quotes (non-miscarriage specific) from this book that I shared on my Facebook fan page: