In the United States, one out of every four pregnancies ends in miscarriage and one in every 160 pregnancies end in stillbirth. These numbers do not include infant death from preterm labor, diagnosis of life-limiting conditions, or SIDS. Here in Minnesota, Governor Dayton declared today, March 15, as Pregnancy After Loss Awareness Day, and March, Pregnancy After Loss Awareness Month. The amazing site Pregnancy After Loss Support has been leading the effort in raising awareness and acknowledging the difficult journey of balancing joy and grief during a subsequent pregnancy after loss.
I’m honored to contribute to the Pregnancy After Loss Support site as a Bump Day Blogger where I’ve been documenting my own PAL journey.
We feel so lucky to have been able to get pregnant again, but it hasn’t been a joy-filled journey. We had our big appointment — the anatomy scan — last week. This is the appointment that, just under 11 months ago, we found out our unborn son was likely going to die. The one that changed our lives forever. But this time around, we got happier news, and with that, a small weight has been lifted. And in two days, I’ll be halfway done with this journey that, at times, has felt like it might kill me.
I’ve switched doctors twice, had three ultrasounds, more than a couple frantic calls to the doctor and quite a few panic attacks. And unfortunately, these are all very common and normal things to happen in subsequent PAL. But sometimes you feel like something is wrong with you, especially when those around you are telling you how excited you should be that you’re pregnant again and that you shouldn’t worry because it’s bad for the baby, or chances of what happened before are low, so it likely won’t happen again and that you need to think positively. Those things aren’t helpful because I know all of those things. But trauma is a very real thing. And those who suffer from it have very little control of the after-effects.
So that’s why this day and month are so important — please help spread the word to help support women and their partners who are navigating this, sadly all-too-common journey. Find out how, here.