Noah’s Necklace

After my miscarriage, people kept asking my mom what they could do for me. As you can imagine, there isn’t a lot specifically TO do—but I certainly appreciated the people who sent meals and then a week or so later, I deeply appreciated having close friends who were willing to listen to my story. The WHOLE story, not just a “I had a miscarriage. It was hard, but I’m doing okay” type of thing. My recovery in the first week following the miscarriage was about the same as recovering from a full-term birth, only with lots more crying. I cannot overemphasize how much that Noah’s birth was a BIRTH for me, not “just a miscarriage.” The contractions, the physical progression, the “altered state of consciousness” mental state, as well as the coping skills mobilized were indistinguishable from my other labors. After it was over, I felt physically worn out and weak the way I felt after having my other two children. I also kept hearing my heart beat loudly in my ears while sitting up—if I was lying down, it was fine, but if I was sitting up for any amount of time my heart would loudly whoosh in my ears. I did not experience this after my other children and I imagine it is because I didn’t lose as much blood with them (and I still lost a lot with them!). So, having the meals come in was of benefit the same way it is during any other postpartum period—you do not really have the stamina to be up and cooking after having a baby! After two weeks postpartum however, I felt physically totally back to normal. (This wasn’t the case after my full-term births—I felt like physical recovery took longer and it was due to the tearing/swelling I experienced with them, which obviously wasn’t the same in birthing a four inch baby. Plus, with full-terms births, I had a newborn to care for and nurse and all the time goes to that.)

Anyway, when people would ask what they could do, I started having my mom tell them they could send me a bead to add to a memorial necklace. Many people sent beads/charms and they all meant SO much to me. Yesterday was the 3 month anniversary of Noah’s birth and I finally strung all the things people sent together into a “necklace” (it isn’t really wearable, which was never my intention, it is a string of beads). It took me a long time to make and it was a healing process. Also, I remembered where every single bead came from, even though I didn’t keep a list at the time (I have a list now). We hung the string of beads up over Noah’s “angel” birth certificate (which we also finally hung up last night).

Here are some pictures of it:


8 responses to “Noah’s Necklace

  1. I love this idea and this notion. I wish that more people considered miscarriage as a valid birth experience. It took me a long time to realize that I was angry at people who did not value my experience as a mother or the birthing process, and it really hurt when family or friends pretended that this “bad thing” never existed, but now they are crazy happy about my baby.

    I think people just can’t get it until they have it happen.

    • Thank you for your post, Bethany (and for the post you made on your own blog too–It was interesting and good to read). I think this is a totally overlooked and ignored aspect of miscarriage–as I shared in another post: “Miscarriages are labor, miscarriages are birth. To consider them less dishonors the woman whose womb has held life, however briefly.” (Kathryn Miller Ridiman)

      Anyway, thanks for commenting!


  2. That’s a beautiful gift/memorial, Molly.

    I appreciate your sharing. I hope that it helps those of us who haven’t had it happen begin to “get it.” I know that you have forever changed my understanding of miscarriage. Thank you.

    • Thanks, Laurel. I actually had another miscarriage this last week that I haven’t had the strength to write about it yet or even to tell hardly anyone about it (I’ve only told my parents and four friends). It was a very early one and yet again there are lessons to be learned in it for me–the early m/c experience was very different for me and from it I learned how some people might treat miscarriage as “no big deal,” because this one was so much less physically or emotionally impactful than Noah’s birth was. I’m having a “sinking spell” today though where the reality of having had two miscarriages in three months is really starting to hit me and I am going through a very serious feeling body-crisis-of-faith.

  3. What a wonderful necklace! I think it is beautiful; so much love. I am sorry for your losses. When I had “sinking spells” (to use your description), after my miscarriage, I played with a special bracelet my friend had given me. The bracelet was from her mother, given after my friends miscarriage. I carried/wore the bracelet everyday until my son was born. When ever I wasn’t feeling in a good place, I would use the bracelet to think positive thoughts.
    Maybe you have something that you can use to help you… it really worked for me.

    Also, I really needed to see real stories of hope from real people who had a baby following one (or multiple miscarriages). I have posted a number of these hope stories; maybe they would help you.

    I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

    • Hi Sharon–coincidentally I was at the OurHopePlace just yesterday reading some of the stories and ideas. The bracelet idea is lovely. I have a pendant that I bought to remember my baby and I wear it always! (and I do play with it/turn it over…and remember him).

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