**Possible Trigger Post**
Most of you know that we lost Elliot at 41 weeks last March. Her 1st birthday is right around the corner. I can hardly believe it’s been almost a year since Ben and I said hello and goodbye to our beautiful baby girl. It’s been a long, difficult year. VERY difficult.
Today marks the one year anniversary of Elliot’s original due date. It was pushed to March 20th early in the pregnancy based on my cycle. I can’t help but wonder what life would be like if we kept Elliot’s original due date. I likely would have been induced on March 27th, when Elliot was still alive. The 27th will forever be known as the last day of Elliot’s physical life. I remember that day so clearly, and it was beautiful. I don’t know what the outcome would have been had we been induced on the 27th, but I will always wonder.
Ben and I had high hopes that we’d have good news to share as we began our second year in the after. Then it happened. A positive pregnancy test. Yay! How beautiful it was that baby #2 was conceived in the same month as Elliot’s 1st birthday.
And then, just like that, the pregnancy was done and the baby was gone.
It all happened so quickly we didn’t really have a chance to tell anyone until it was over.
We had one day of excitement. One day of the new pregnancy glow. One day of wondering what we’d name our new miracle. One day of wondering how our little bean was going to change our family dynamic as we went from three to four.
The worry and stress set in the day after my positive HPT. I knew something was wrong. I felt okay physically, but something just didn’t feel right. A few days later, my pregnancy was confirmed with a blood test at my doctor’s office, but my beta was low. The nurse told me everything would probably be okay as long as my beta doubled in the next 48 hours. I went back for my second blood test and the doctor confirmed the pregnancy wasn’t viable. My levels quickly fell and by the weekend I had begun to miscarry.
Some may wonder what the big deal is. I miscarried less than a week after my positive home pregnancy test. To us, it IS a big deal. The hope for a new life was lost, again. The balance that Ben and I worked so hard to achieve in the past 11 months seemed so fragile in the moments that followed the email (yes, email!) from the doctor. I was rocked to the core. I wondered why and how this could be happening to us again. It made me miss Elliot and long to hold her in my arms even more. It made me feel more resentful that we are in this place. We shouldn’t be here. We should be playing with our 11-month-old daughter. It made me angry that we had to make similar phone calls as the ones we made almost a year ago to tell our family what was happening. We wanted them to be happy with us this time, but instead we shared more sadness. It made me sad that we’ll never know who this new baby would have been. Would we have had another daughter or a son this time? Would he/she have looked more like Ben or like me? The questions are endless and will remain unanswered.
The only thing I’m sure of is that this baby will forever be a part of Ben and me. We fell in love with her the moment we found out she existed. However brief, she was here and she existed.
We have been on both sides of pregnancy loss now – a late-term stillbirth and an early miscarriage. I am 1 in 160 AND 1 in 4. This has become my reality in a matter of one year. The unfairness of it all stings every day as I’m faced with constant reminders that my should-be toddler isn’t here and there is no longer a new life developing in my womb.
I am sharing this part of our story because opening up about my experience has helped me so much. I need to keep writing and sharing. It’s an important part of my process. I also share this because so many other couples are dealing with the same heartache and disappointment, at this very moment. I want them to know they are not alone. I needed to know when Elliot died and I still need to know today – we are not alone.
We are heartbroken that it still isn’t our time to bring home a baby. I’m starting to fear that it may never be our time. Maybe Elliot was our only real chance for a traditional family. Maybe we’re asking for too much now and should just stop while we’re ahead, as in, before we lose any more children.
I feel it’s important to note that even if we are lucky enough to bring home a baby someday, Elliot can never be replaced. We will always want and wish for her. We will always feel her absence. She will always be our baby. I know most people get that, but I just had to put it out there.
Even with all of the heartache, seemingly constant disappointment, and fear, we still have hope that one day it will be our turn again.
I saw this photo in my news feed today and it seemed very fitting, especially as the waves of grief continue to crash down on me. Thank you to those who continue to hold my hand.
Image credit: CarlyMarie