Thursday, October 3, 2013

Trying Again After Miscarriage

I found these words spilling out of my mouth on my first date with my husband, "Well, I'm not sure if I can even have kids at this point, since I'm in my forties."

The thought bubble over my head was saying, "Why on earth are you telling this man these things?! Not exactly fun and flirty dinner conversation!"

Another part of my brain was saying, "Oh well, if you're gonna scare him away, make it sooner rather than later, for everyone's sake."

My future husband replied thoughtfully, "I want children, but I'd rather end up with the right woman than worry about what our life should look like. I'd be happy adopting or figuring it out somehow."

Two and a half years later, Claire was born.

The perfect happy ending!

I wasn’t always so sure we would get to that happy ending. It was easy to embark on the journey of getting pregnant with my husband, when I had nothing to lose.

Then, I had a miscarriage at 13 weeks.

I experienced what it was like to want something, and have it taken away. Intellectually, I thought I was prepared. I knew all the doom and gloom statistics about conception and miscarriage for women in their 40’s. But it's one thing to know something, quite another to experience it.

The hardest choice I ever made was to try again. It meant staying open to not knowing the ending of our story, facing the possibility of miscarriage again (indeed, we had one more), and living in a state of limbo.

miscarriage and pregnancy

There were times when the easier choice seemed to close the door on having a baby entirely and to just move on with our life. It’s a double-edged sword facing the unknown with someone you love. You each have your own journey full of personal shades of trepidation and hope. Sometimes, one person can carry the other through the down times. Sometimes, both of you need a little support, but neither has the resources to give.

Ultimately, though, it was my husband’s character that gave me the strength to keep trying. His words on our first date continued to resonate in our lives. He showed me how to put relationships over goals. He helped me have faith that the journey would take us exactly where we needed to go. He taught me that hope isn't getting what you think you want, but being open to what you receive.

I’m glad I listened to my heart on our first date. Between you and me, another thought bubble over my head was “I think I could marry this man." I didn’t share that one with him either.

This post is an adaptation of another post, The Story of Us, which I wrote on the fourth anniversary of our first date. I thought it deserved being revisited in the context of Claire being born.

Photo Source: Tatiana Vdb  Flickr. This photo has been adapted and does not suggest that the licenser endorse its use or this blog. License


  1. Thank you for sharing this post. It is so scary to try again after a miscarriage, we have experience 5 and it's nothing short of devastating but we keep trying.

  2. I totally had that same bubble over my head when I met my husband about marrying him. I think sometimes you just know and really thank you for sharing your experience with having a miscarriage before getting pregnant with Claire. I had a chemical pregnancy before getting pregnant with Emma and even though it was so early on, I remember that feeling of having something taken away that you really wanted. It was so horrible and just so glad we got our happy endings on this :)

  3. I love that, Rachel. I can very much relate to your feelings about TTC after your loss- I experienced that trepidation several times. I felt like I absolutely HAD to try again but the fear was paralyzing. It sounds like your husband and mine have a lot in common. So glad you shared this with us. xo

  4. I had an early miscarriage in my first pregnancy, and it made both my subsequent pregnancies much more anxiety-filled.... and even trying to conceive was scary after going through a m/c. Thanks for sharing your story.

  5. Oh my God I love this so much. I, too, had a miscarriage (in earlier years and in another marriage) (and major complications in this one) and am so glad that I tried again. You got Claire. I got Tucker. We are so blessed. I love, also, (as you know) that you knew your husband may just be the Right Guy so early. I knew the same.

    Rachel. My comment is not doing my brain justice. Sorry about that. Here...I'm going to try to say what I think WOULD be doing it justice, now...Experiencing the hope of almost getting something that we didn't know how desperately we wanted it is life changing. View altering. Altering and changing and scary and well. I'm so glad for you and your entire family that you kept hope. Even when it was a hard and hardest choice. xo.

  6. I completely understand this. And well done on your decision to keep trying. I love that you got Claire to affirm your efforts and fill your heart and your life with wonder.

  7. There's no way a man can totally relate to what you've been through. Still, I can only imagine the doubts you constantly had to fight and the prayers you must have said over and over. You're a strong person and have been blessed for being so. Now, you can truly enjoy your life!

  8. Miscarriage is one of the hardest things that you can face in life, and you are lucky to have a man you stood by and supported you through the difficult time. And what a beautiful result you have today!

  9. No matter how much you think you can prepare yourself for dealing with miscarriage, you simply can't, and unless you have experienced it, it is something you cannot possibly properly understand. As always this is beautifully written.

    Kate x
    Kate at Home

  10. Oh Rachel, your husband sounds like such a great person and I love reading about your obviously strong relationship. There's such hope in this piece.

  11. He's a keeper. And so are your posts. Continued success and happiness mujer. BB2U

  12. That's like a love at first sight story, and there aren't many of those around!! I'm glad you tried again, you seem to be a naturally wonderful parent and your daughter is a beauty. I'm sure she adds immeasurably to everything in life. They always do. :)

  13. I've never personally experienced the devastation of a miscarriage, but I have two daughter-in-law who both have. Multiple times. The strength and faith it takes just to get back up and try again. Risk it all again. Absolutely inspiring. Thank you for sharing this part of your story.
    P.S. your Husby definitely sounds like a keeper! I, too married a love-at-first-sight date.

  14. You married a wise man. :) Thanks for sharing what you learned from him, because I needed to read that. I'm glad everything worked out for you, but really sorry you had to go through the miscarriages. One of my friends had several (it was so hard for her, I was feeling her stress, too), but finally had a beautiful baby boy, born just 5 weeks after my son. Keeps you from taking life for granted, right?

  15. I adore this and you for going there. Although I am also picturing that thought bubble exploding over your head. And Claire was more than worth the decision to try again.

  16. I have so much respect for mamas that try again knowing that there is always a fear of loss. I don't know how I would handle that situation. One of my blog friends Jen she has gone through so much heartbreak and I absolutely adore that she and her husband keep going! They are going to be amazing parents and I can't wait for them to be able to experience what you and I have with our daughters!

    Hugs mama

    (¸¤ Lanaya | xoxo

  17. hi rachel, i so needed to read this post today. after two miscarriages, i have been protective of the fact that i am currently pregnant for a third time. in one hour, we are headed to the doctor and praying for a heart beat. "hope isn't getting what you think you want, but being open to what you receive." thank you for your words.

  18. It's probably a good thing you didn't share that second thought bubble with him on that first date. One far-reaching off-hand comment on a first date is enough. ;) But what a response! I would have had that second thought bubble too! So glad it all worked out in the end.

  19. I don't pretend to know what miscarriage feels like, so I can only imagine how hard it would be to try again - or to decide no to. And kudos to your husband for such a wonderful attitude!

  20. What a gorgeous post. I endured the pain of repeat miscarriage myself and it is so scary to try again not knowing what it all means. I am so glad you got your beautiful Claire and that you and your husband found each other!!

  21. While I haven't experienced this personally, I think it is so important that you are able to share this! There are so many people that have been through this that need to know that they are not alone. :-)

  22. I told my husband that I wasn't sure if I wanted to give up being a whore...and he stayed...
    Kidding. Kidding.
    I think that it is awesome that you both have each other. You may lose sight of a dream, but your husband never does. It pumps in your need to do what your heart wants.
    I'm sorry of what happened. No mother should ever have to. You're a strong woman and so brave to post this. xoxo


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