When Becoming Pregnant is Not the Hardest Part
Infertility is not always about becoming pregnant. Sometimes that's the easy part. Sometimes it's the easier part. Sometimes the hard part is staying pregnant.
It is it's own special, horrific pain to miscarry the baby that was so dearly wanted and planned for. Our hopes and dreams for our babies often begin the moment we receive our first positive pregnancy test.
When infertility and miscarriage loss has not been present in our lives, many of us assume it will all just go well. That we get pregnant and nine months later, we have our babies.
If you've had a pregnancy loss, you know it doesn't always go that way.
If you've had a loss, how do you get through the next pregnancy successfully?
Luckily, most losses do not predict a future of losses.
Let me repeat that a different way.
Very frequently, if you have had a miscarriage, you will go on to have a successful pregnancy.
Re-read that please.
After a Miscarriage, Odds are Favorable for Successful Pregnancy
If you have had a miscarriage, the odds are very much in your favor that you can successfully carry another pregnancy to term and hold that baby. Yet another way to say it.
A few things to ask your health care provider before becoming pregnant again:
Was there a specific reason that the miscarriage occurred (often it is unknown)?
Is there a way to prevent that from happening again (often there was nothing that could have been done)?
How long should you wait before trying again (whether trying to conceive on your own or in fertility treatment cycles)?
Is there any genetic testing that should be done on either partner to prevent another miscarriage?
Is there any testing that could be done on an embryo to prevent another miscarriage (CCS, short for Comprehensive Chromosonal Screening, examines all of the chromosomes and allows you to know that the embryo or embryos are normal)?
Can they recommend a mental health professional or support group to help you with the grief process that occurs after a miscarriage?
You know that having another baby will not replace the baby you lost. I know that too, personally, having had two miscarriages. We cannot replace one baby with another, that's a given. We can go on, though, and have a successful pregnancy and have a family that is cherished for the living beings that exist in it.
Finding a way to get past that point in your pregnancy where you lost a baby is very challenging. Most of us don't relax until we have reached a new marker and have progressed farther. Many of us don't feel completely comfortable until the baby is moving and we can feel it.
What We Know About Miscarriage
What we do know about miscarriage is that it's never easy, whether a carefully planned pregnancy or a delightful surprise. It rips your heart open and makes you look inside.
Have the courage to look, you will find more strength than you imagined, more than enough healing powers to move on and enough love to support all of your efforts to create your family.
You do not have to do this alone. Lisa Tuttle, PhD, here at RMACT, is a wonderful resource, whether to see her personally or to be in a pregnancy loss support group.