Sometimes darkness and despair teaches you more than it damages you. This is my story of how losing my little boy, through a late miscarriage, changed me for the better.
After an early miscarriage in 2009, I was over the moon (but a bag of nerves) to fall pregnant again in 2010. Actually, not just a bag of nerves – I was in total denial and didn’t go anywhere near a midwife or scan till I was nearly 14 weeks pregnant. “So far so good” was the message from the private clinic.
Roll on the 20 week anomaly scan; the screen filled with a snowstorm and we knew something wasn’t right. I negotiated; “if we can get the baby to 24 weeks it will all be OK?” The consultant gave us the news: Potters. Up until then, I had associated that word with talking rabbits and a boy wizard.
No working kidneys; Incompatible with life. A late miscarriage awaits.
“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop and look fear in the face” (Eleanor Roosevelt)
In the waiting room the nauseating realisation washed over me; I would have to give birth to a baby that I would never bring home. This was going to break me. Life would never be the same: I would be shattered.
You know what, six years on after many dark months, it didn’t and it hasn’t. My family and I faced, square on, what we thought was the most devastating thing that a person could go through.
My experience has given me some fundamental life lessons that have changed me as a person: what I value, how I live my life, how I earn a living!
What Late Miscarriage Has Taught Me
1) Say “YES”, then work out how to do it later
How many times has the fear of the unknown or rejection or failure stopped you from trying? Sometimes the thing that scares you the most will be the making of you; you are much, much braver and stronger than you give yourself credit for.
2) Ask for help and support
No one is an island and you cannot manage on your own. In the early days, the help was from family and support networks. Now, I am much more comfortable asking for help with the things that matter.
3) Embrace change: That is your control
How you react to a situation can influence your mindset and outlook; in the immediate term and in the future. Don’t beat yourself up with what hasn’t happened, consider what you have made decisions on, however small they may be, and be confident that it has come from a place of love and trust yourself. Look at the small stuff, this is what counts.
4) Appreciate the now
This isn’t the rejection of the future or removal of plans, but living more in the moment and enjoying everything for what it is, rather than for what it should be.
5) Don’t be scared of taking a risk
Losing something so precious shifts your perspective; what is important to you and what you would fight to protect, is a much smaller list. You may be more prepared to take a leap of faith, as long as your nearest and dearest stay safe.
If you are going through this loss right now, you have my heart; there is light after the dark.
“She stood in the storm and when the wind did not blow her away, she adjusted her sails” (Elizabeth Edwards)
About Clara Wilcox
Clara runs The Balance Collective. She is a mum of two with over a decade’s experience in recruitment and coaching. She offers career and return to work coaching for parents and flexible working consultancy and workshops for businesses.
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