Stories of Love and Loss: Some personal stories of infant and pregnancy loss
Last year, one of our editors brought it to our attention that October is infant and pregnancy loss awareness month. We weren’t prepared for it, but it wouldn’t be a stretch to say that all of us in the office had experienced a loss of this nature or knew someone close who had.
So we put it out to the Wrapt community- asking if anyone who had suffered an experience such as this wanted to share and we were overwhelmed with the stories of life, love, loss and the trauma of having survived these.
With the permission of a few select authors, we have collated some personal stories of loss, and some artistic works too. All of these are from different women, from various stages of their pregnancies, birth or motherhood, sharing about or responding to their tragedies and traumas.
While we believe that raising awareness of pregnancy and infancy loss is hugely important, we are also acutely aware of how challenging, painful and triggering experiences of loss like this can be. So with sensitivity to this fact, we implore you to think and feel on this topic and proceed only if you feel emotionally stable enough to do so.
The following are excerpts from each story or work, please click to follow through to full story/ work:
“Someone once told me it is not easy bringing life into this world. They were right. Even if for so many it seems to be. For many more, there is heartache and there are struggles. So many struggles. Many think I first became a mother when my twins were born 6 years ago. They are wrong. It was long before I held my own, live babies in my arms.”
“I think about my pregnancy loss almost every day - for me, it was a medical termination of a partial molar pregnancy. I was 12 weeks when I had my termination. I will always remember the date of the termination, the intended due date and wonder who my baby would be now.”
“My uterus continued to contract, and as my water broke, I jumped into the shower. Blood and blood clots began to flow out, and suddenly I panicked. It's too much blood!? What's going on here!? I called the midwife quickly, and just one minute into the conversation my sac fell out. The midwife assured me that the pain would subside shortly and the bleeding would slow.”
“On the 4th of February, I delivered a stillborn baby. Like so many women who have lived before me, I labored for hours, breathing and counting through contractions, howling and writhing like an animal, clenching and clawing my partner’s arm, and then finally delivering into this world a small, limp being with no heartbeat.”
“A little over a year ago I wouldn't have thought twice about this question. However, my life changed in a blink of an eye in August 2017 and this 'simple' question suddenly became a source of great hurt, struggle, sadness and anxiety - What do I say? What do I not say? What will people think?”
We are immensely grateful for everyone’s contributions (published or not). We draw strength from your stories of survival, as we hope speaking to these experiences provides you with the strength you need to keep surviving. Additionally, we hope that through this series we are helping to open the conversation up wider- to help break the silence. Unfortunately, losses such of these are more common than people think and so it is our responsibility to create a space of security and support for women suffering losses such as these.