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On my first IVF cycle, I had a miscarriage and it was kind of a defining point for me. It is probably one of the hardest things that I’ve ever gone through in my life. I remember I would walk down the corridor at work just feeling like I’d been hit by a bus. Feeling like I was in this massive fog. And feeling like I was just trying to hide the tears.
Feeling like I could burst into tears at any moment.
And for someone who thrives on being around people, this was a point in my life when I felt like I didn’t really want to talk to anyone. I didn’t want to share my journey with anyone. I was already blogging at this point about little bits of my journey. But this was like radio silence. I did not want to discuss this with anyone. I didn’t want anyone’s advice. I just wanted to crawl into a hole and die. Really. I felt like I’ve just spent a lot of money and tried for two years. And endured such heartbreak to only have my heart broken even further. I felt like I was already traveling at rock bottom and then I had the miscarriage and discovered a whole new low in life is pretty much how I felt.
If you are feeling in that space right now, know that you are not alone.
Know that how you are feeling right now is completely valid.
But here are some tips going forward on some tips on how I feel I can help you recover from a miscarriage. If you have felt quite affected by a miscarriage, it’s not something that you have to … Like I’m doing those quote fingers… “recover from”. There will always be a small part of you that hold on to that miscarriage. That has a space for that little flicker, spark, that was a little baby that didn’t make it.
The first thing that it is really important to take some time to grieve.
I don’t think you need to bounce back.
This might change you forever. And this is not saying you don’t have to feel okay straightaway. You don’t need to get back on the bandwagon straight away. This is totally your journey to living. And I feel like you can take time to grieve and however long that is for you.
I had someone who I never told about my miscarriage who obviously had big mouths around me look at me one time and say, “Have you finished grieving yet?” And I was really insulted and saddened by that because no, I hadn’t. And I don’t think you ever need to stop grieving. I think that you need to take some time for yourself.
Take a break. Whether that’s just mentally. Whatever that is for you, take some time to breathe. It’s a serious thing that’s happened. Some people will have multiple miscarriages and deal with it and feel okay. Some people will have one miscarriage like me and feel quite deeply affected by that. And that’s okay. This is your journey. This is how you feel. However long you want to grieve. If that’s forever, that’s fine. This might change you forever. And that’s fine. Take some time. And take the time that you need.
The next one is to be confident in your decisions.
Sometimes when we have a miscarriage, we need to make some quite big decisions on our journey. Whatever decision you make is the right decision for you. And no one can tell you otherwise. It’s okay to not tell other people the full story or to tell a white lie. Be confident in your decisions. You’ve acted on your gut. You’ve made the right decision. You might have trusted your doctor to give you some particular advice. Don’t second guess yourself.
I promise you’ve made the right decision in this.
Whatever you are doing is the right thing to do because it’s the right thing to do for you. And because that’s the path that you were guided on and what you have chosen. You have never made the wrong decision.
Next, release any guilt or feelings that you could’ve done something differently.
I think when we suffer a miscarriage, we all have that moment of wondering what we could’ve done differently. Was it something I ate? Did I exercise too much? Did I do something to cause this?
Whatever it is, release it.
I’m not overly religious, but sometimes we can also say it was meant to be, or it was God, or have faith, or it wasn’t. I think sometimes just shitty things happen. Sometimes just really tough things happen and I don’t think we need to analyze them. I don’t think we need to spend ages and ages trying to make meaning out of them, or trying to make them mean something, or trying to find the purpose or reason why things happen.
Just sometimes really crappy things happen to us in life. And more often than not, we didn’t do anything to cause that.
If you are sitting here in bed wondering what you could’ve done differently, how you could’ve changed this story or this outcome, please stop. Now is a time for love. Not a time for fear. Now is a time for you to love that little spark. Love that baby. Love your partner. Love yourself. It’s a time to wrap yourself up and give yourself love rather than giving yourself fear, and shame, and guilt, and any of those emotions.
Please don’t wonder whether you could’ve done anything differently because I guarantee that in 99.9% of cases, it doesn’t matter what you ate, what you exercised, any of that kind of stuff. It was just a shitty thing that was going to happen.
Number four is to create a little memento.
Whatever that looks like to you. That might mean buying a necklace. It might mean getting a tattoo. Maybe you get a little love heart on a finger or something like that. A loving reminder of what has happened can really help you grieve in this process. Because we never want to necessarily forget.
I think sometimes as well, the scars that we have as warriors remind ourselves of our fight and our battle. But having a reminder can honor what has happened. Can honor the little life that was inside you. That didn’t eventuate. That didn’t come to life. And I want you to also hold hope for the future as well.
Create a really loving memento and let it help you move forward.
Sometimes we can feel really afraid to stop thinking about when someone has passed. Sometimes it can feel like it’s fogging up our mind and we’re not really thinking about anything productive. So maybe you have had a stillbirth and you just feel like it clouds your thinking all the time. It might cloud you with sadness all of the time.
Something that might be helpful is to say, “Okay, from 4:30 to five PM every day, I am going to sit, and focus on this, and think about this, and hold space for this little being.” And then what you do is go about your day, you know in your mind that you have dedicated some space and some time to think about what happened.
The next one is a practical tip to really try and nourish your body.
And by nourish, I mean hearty blood building products. When we go through a miscarriage, we’re obviously losing a lot of blood and things like that. It is time to treat our bodies gently and try and have really hearty, fulfilling, and blood building foods to help give us the energy that we have lost back on a physical level. Try and look at what kind of hearty stews or soups, filling things can you look at eating in this time that will make you feel really good?
The very, very last thing that I would recommend in terms of how to recover from a miscarriage is prayer affirmations and journaling.
I think that prayer, whether it’s to God or the gods, or to Buddha, or to the universe, or to whoever you want to pray to, can be a really healing process. Likewise, can journaling. Just being able to get those thoughts out on paper. Get those thoughts out of your head and have some faith that the universe is working in some regard. And just to say affirmations to remind yourself that things will be okay.
Being your biggest cheerleader can be really healing.
All of those three things are things that help you support yourself on this journey and help you emotionally heal from trauma. These are things that have really helped me in my life to recover from the various things that happen.
Take some time to grieve. Be confident in your decisions. You have made the right decisions. Release any guilt or feelings that you could’ve done anything differently. Create a memento. Make space every day to think about this. Set an alarm on your phone that gives you dedicated time and space that you can have a think about what’s happened. Nourish your body with hearty blood building products. And prayers, affirmations, and journaling. Just get out whatever it is on your mind. Start to try and focus on hope and what can happen in the future.
If you are recovering from a miscarriage, I am so sorry for your loss and sending you lots of love, and support, and care as you move forward from this experience.