On Mother’s Day of 2006, I had my seventh miscarriage.
I sharing with you now because of a conversation I had with a friend last weekend about the taboo of talking about women’s issues such as infertility, miscarriage, prematurity, and postpartum depression in our society. Also, much of the conversations at the recent Mom 2.0 Summit blogging conference were about opening up more on our sites and using our platforms to tell our stories. And this is my story.
When it comes to infertility, miscarriage, prematurity, and postpartum depression, I had them all. So I can relate to just how taboo these topics are, particularly in today’s world of constant over-sharing.
When I was going through it all, I didn’t want to talk about it. Certainly I did not want to broadcast it. I was embarrassed. I felt broken. I was so sad, and it was difficult for me to consider that anyone else could relate to that, beyond my husband and a couple of friends who were dealing with related issues. Now I wear my stats like a badge of honor: 7 miscarriages, 2 D&C’s, 2 hysterosalpinograms, 1 surgery, 3 IVF procedures, several hundred intramuscular shots, 10 weeks in the hospital, and 2 premature babies. Oh, and let’s not forget 4 weeks in the NICU for baby, plus 1 bout of postpartum depression for the win.
And I am absolutely one of the lucky ones, because today I have two healthy children. It was worth every appointment, every needle, and every moment.
When I think back on that whole experience, what I remember most is the silence. Both the figurative silence of not discussing these types of women’s issues, but also the literal silence of the doctor’s office waiting rooms and the hospital NICU. Eight years later, I can still feel the silence of sitting in the glider, carefully surrounded by tubes and wires, while holding my 4-pound baby for hours. All the while not making a peep or any eye contact with the other parents in the NICU, because I knew that my child was twice as large (if not more) than theirs and I dared not make it seem as if I could relate to their anxiety or pain.
We need to break the silence. We need to talk out loud. We need to let other women (and men) know that they are not alone. That someone else has been there.
We celebrate moms on Mother’s Day and dads on Father’s Day, but one day is hardly enough to celebrate those who go through so much to bring their babies into this world, let alone that once they are here the hard work has only just begun.
To every mother and father who truly, truly understand what the miracle of childbirth really means, I celebrate you always.
The fight to save babies and help all moms have healthy, full-term pregnancies is the focus of the March of Dimes’ mission. Impact from the generous gifts that the March of Dimes has received has funded important research and programs that help all babies begin healthy lives. A baby is born prematurely every minute and approximately 72 children die each day before reaching their first birthday.
#imbornto is a campaign from the March of Dimes which connects millions of consumers by shopping, dining or donating during the Mother’s Day and Father’s Day months. The campaign is a celebration of their parents, the moms and dads who keep them healthy and safe, before and after birth. Learn more at www.imbornto.com. You can support the March of Dimes and the imbornto campaign by making a donation here or by making a purchase through their partner companies.
Because every baby is born to do something special and unique, and every parent deserves a celebration.
This post has been sponsored courtesy of The Motherhood and the March of Dimes. Follow the conversation on social media using #imbornto. Together, we can help more babies be born strong and healthy. Images courtesy of MarchofDimes.org. Photo credit: eBay