A miscarriage is a heartbreaking, gut-wrenching thing to have to go through. Whether you were 6 weeks along or 6 months, losing a child will change your life. Most people tell you once you get past month 3 of pregnancy, you are "out of the woods". If you were going to miscarry, you probably would have already done so. They tell us this because, statistically speaking, it's the truth, but it's not a promise. I never would have imagined that Taylor Grace's heart would stop beating in month 5 of pregnancy.
Parker and I were in a fairly unique situation. Most of the time when you miscarry, you don't know it's going to happen. You either wake up one terrible morning with blood everywhere, or you hold your breath at the doctor's office while they try to find your baby's heartbeat to no avail. The medical term for a miscarriage is "spontaneous abortion", the key word being "spontaneous". What made our situation so unique is the fact that we were told we were going to lose our child. We knew we would miscarry weeks before we did, and there was nothing we could do but pray and sit around waiting for it to happen.
I spoke with several mommies of angel babies in those weeks leading up to my miscarriage. I sought out any advice I could get from those who had gone through this painful journey before me. This was foreign territory, and I wanted to begin to prepare my heart and mind. There was one thing that each angel mommy told me. "Be prepared. You're going to grieve differently". They were talking about Parker and me. They always say a woman becomes a mother the day her baby is formed in her womb. A man becomes a father the day his baby is born. Obviously this is a generalization, but a lot of men, Parker included, will tell you this is true. Taylor Grace was in my body. I felt my body change and saw my belly grow. Parker was over the moon to be a dad, but the concept was still fairly abstract to him because he didn't get to hold her or see her or touch her. His body didn't change. He didn't feel something growing inside of him. I did.
Parker and I spoke many times while Taylor Grace was still with us about how we expected to grieve and promised to be as patient and understanding with each other as possible, but nothing can prepare you for the day that grieving starts. No amount of planning or knowledge will ever prepare you to lose your child. Everyone who warned us that the grieving process would be different was absolutely right to do so. It has been different. He lost a child too, so I don't want to belittle anything he has gone through, but we will both openly admit that this has been harder on me. There have been moments of weakness where I have been so upset with him for not being more emotional. "Why wasn't he reacting like I did? Taylor was his daughter too!" These are the thoughts I let into my mind, and those thoughts are not fair to him. He loves Taylor just as much as I do, and he does grieve her loss, but he has also been a source of strength when it gets too hard for me and all I know to do is cry. He has been there for me through every tear to hold me and remind me that she's in a better place. He loves his daughter so much, but he also loves his wife, and seeing me go through this has probably been the hardest part for him. He has loved me through this, and it's my job to love him through it too, even if we choose to grieve differently. We just have to love each other through it.
I have never been one to broadcast disagreements on the blog or talk about struggles in my marriage. I don't sugarcoat, but I also leave some things between my husband and me. Today, my intent with sharing this struggle is to hopefully let this be a resource for couples who have to go through the same thing. What everyone says is true. You're going to grieve differently, but that's okay. You are different people. You don't have to agree, but you do have to promise to love each other through this. Trials in this life can bring us together or tear us apart. Let it bring you together.