I can’t believe I’m going to address this topic and be so open, but it’s on my heart right now. I have a really hard time with pregnant women. There, I said it. I always feel I like I need to explain myself. Because from the outside looking in, I can’t imagine what people think of me. I just want you to understand how I feel and what goes through my head.
- When you say, “We had our first ultrasound today,” I hear that was the day our world was rocked when we found out no baby was developing.
- When you say, “The baby has a heartbeat of ____,” I think the first time we heard that, the doctor accompanied it by saying, “You are threatening to miscarry.” It was the one and only time we ever heard a heartbeat in five years and we couldn’t even enjoy it.
- When I see your belly, I see the lack of my own.
- When you say, “I’m seven weeks pregnant,” I hear the voice in my head saying that was the day I miscarried #3.
- When I hear your big announcement, I know I will never have one, even if I do have a child someday. My announcement will be riddled with beta hcg numbers and the need to take things day-by-day instead of a happy proclamation.
- When I see your joy, I feel my pain.
- When I see your husband holding your child, I see myself as a failure that I can’t provide that for my husband.
- When I see your family photo Christmas card, mine feels empty.
- When you come home from the doctor with an ultrasound photo, I come home with a book called “Empty Arms.”
- When you go to the doctor, it’s a happy time. When I go, it’s torture to be so surrounded by pregnant women and baby photos, especially after a miscarriage.
- When you say, “Being pregnant sucks”or “I hate this morning sickness,” I say “Bring it on!”
- When you say, “We weren’t even trying,” I hear the universe laughing at me.
- When you say, “We’ve been trying for a whole year,” I think, “Just a year? We’re approaching five years now. How is that possible? When will this end?”
It’s not you, it’s me. No, really, it is me. I’m not trying to turn everything you say or do to be all about me. I don’t want to think about ME. I don’t want to think about pregnancy. I don’t want to think of my problems and my failures. I don’t want to remember my losses. I would love to escape everything. These are persistent thoughts that come bubbling up even though I do my best to keep them out. I do not possess Vulcan mind capabilities.
Think of it like this. Do you know an alcoholic? Is it a good idea for them to be around booze? Should they hang out at a bar? It’s too hard.
Or, what about a war vet? Do you think many of them want to re-live what they’ve been through? Do they want to see war movies? Does hearing fireworks make them jump? Do certain triggers give them flashbacks? Again, these things are too hard for a veteran.
Well, pregnancy is too hard for me. I have to protect myself. So, if I don’t seem happy for you, it’s not that–I’m just trying to keep myself sane.