I dedicate this text to all moms who have their star in the sky. You are not alone.
It was the beginning of May, early morning… I am sitting in the bathroom, watching a pregnancy test strip, which is on the laundry basket. “One line… Okay. Wait a little longer.. What is this? Two lines! TWO LINES!”. I’m coming out of the bathroom and wake my husband up: “Honey, I’m pregnant!”.
Although we didn’t hope for a new addition during this ‘evil times’ , it did happen. At the first checkup, the doctor confirmed the pregnancy. Since it was too early, he couldn’t see anything else, so he scheduled an examination for me two weeks later. From the beginning, I felt like I was carrying twins, although no one officially confirmed that to me. I was very tired, I slept for 15 hours a day, I ate more compared with how much I’d eaten during the first pregnancy… At the second checkup the thing was pretty clear. The doctor first looked at me seriously, then at the ultrasound screen, then at me again. By default, I thought something was wrong, and then she looked at me slightly through a smile and said: “Congratulations! They are twins! ” I cried with happiness! To this day, I have not found the words that would be appropriate to describe the amount of excitement, happiness and love that I felt. Regardless of the factual situation that I am carrying twins, the doctor tried to point out to me the problems that such a pregnancy brings. Still, it couldn’t diminish my happiness, I almost didn’t hear her words because I was preoccupied with the thoughts of having two babies. In fact, the woman was trying to point out to me the possibility that one baby would not survive. Now I know that the term is “the disappearing Byzantine syndrome”. The point is, before the 12th week of pregnancy, there is a risk that one twin will simply not survive. The cause of this phenomenon is not known, that is, scientists suspect that it could be anything, from the fact that the baby did not “attach” to the uterus properly, to the fact that the baby is sick and was removed by a natural selection. Of course, such a possibility was impossible in my head, because I am young, I have not yet turned 25, I do not belong to some risk group, I do not have any serious illnesses, I do not take medication, all the analyzes I did are excellent. So, there is nothing wrong.
I left the office looking at the picture with two dots: “God, I am so blessed!”. I took a picture out of my bag so many times to show my two dots, I wanted to stick it on my forehead and walk all around the city. I went so crazy with happiness that I even explained to our dog and our cat that we would have two babies. I won’t speak how happy my daughter was happy when she found out that, all of a sudden, she would get, not one, but two as a company.. It hurts me even more that it didn’t happen!
Everything was fine, and then I went for a checkup. I was in the 11th week and, the only thing I knew was that in just a couple of days,… a few more days and I am entering the third month. I’m lying on the bed again and watch the doctor’s face. He looks at me worriedly again, yet I had no doubt that something was wrong. She didn’t smile this time. She looked at m and said with sadness in her voice, “I’m sorry, one baby’s heart stopped.” Silence rang in my head… The whole building collapsed on me. There were no tears, there was nothing. Just a huge void, a bottomless hole, filled with pain. I remained silent until the end of the examination, although I tried to act ‘normal’, at least a little. I only have so much voice in my throat to tell my husband that we have only one dot left. I came home. Still silent. I’m sitting on the bed staring helplessly at one place. I feel that the pain in my bottomless hole has reached the top. I was alone and then I fell apart. In pieces. Like when a mirror breaks. I screamed in pain. My whole body hurt. The tears choke me. I didn’t want to see anyone. I didn’t want to talk to anyone. I just wanted to be alone. Alone and broken in pieces… In just thirty days, I went from the greatest happiness to the greatest sorrow.
First I was angry at myself and then at others. Angry, angry. “How could that happen to me?” God, why did you punish me? That’s right!.. The others are to blame! Not all of them were so happy that we would have twins! They wished this would happen!… It’s my fault, I’m guilty of it myself! I should have eaten better, slept more… My husband is guilty! He didn’t look after me, he didn’t take care of me! ” There was everything… Irrational thoughts and projections and magical thinking… and then came sadness, and with it guilt, and responsibility, and self-humiliation… And for a long time I was gone. I was falling apart every time I was left alone. And again and again, I am speechless when someone comes, as if everything is fine, because who can, for God’s sake, understand my pain. And I was right. Nobody understood. There was no consolation.
The comments were, some more gentle, some a little harsher, but always the same: “Well, what can you do, it happens… Don’t get upset, you have a baby inside, it will hurt it… Hey, who knows why it had to be like that, it’s better like this. You are not the only one. It is better now when it is so tiny than when it is bigger…”. Whatever they said, they may have been right, but that did not help. I felt like I was alone in the world, like it was just happening to me. Although I know that many meant well, whatever they said just repelled me and closed me in, to suffer in silence. It bothered me even more that I felt unfair to the baby who was alive. I was divided. I should have rejoiced that we have at least one baby, and I truly did, but I also couldn’t help but grieve for the baby who was no more. I had expectations, I hoped, I dreamed there would be two. In fact, all those images I created in my head killed me in the end. But isn’t it natural to fantasize about those happy situations, to fantasize about what the babies will look like, what they will be called, how they will grow? Sadness and happiness constantly swapped places and there was that feeling of injustice: “What kind of a mother am I, how can I not feel sorry for the baby? What kind of a mother am I, how can I not look forward to the baby who is coming?”… A vicious circle from which the way out cannot be seen. The only thing that could help me at that moment was to know that I was not alone, that I was not crazy that it hurt so much, to share everything with someone who had gone through the same thing. Then I started looking for a solution on Google. And I found only one text, on one portal, where one mother honestly shared her experience. I felt better!…It was immediately easier for me. It was as if I shared the pain. I’m not the only one who is suffering. And that was the only real consolation.
But, just because it was easier for me, it doesn’t mean everything is now gone. I think that such things are never really gone, we just accept them and learn to live with them. What I have learned from all this is that we cannot plan everything, uncertainties are inevitable, no matter how much we want something and are convinced that it will be so, life will deny us, bad things happen to us to make us stronger, to prepare us for something better and so we can learn something from that experience. But the main thing that this whole situation has taught me and why I am writing this text is what women need at that moment of loss. Women need support. I’m sorry, although your comments were well-intentioned and although you wanted to help so very much, and I admit that it is not easy to manage and help someone in such a situation, it will not comfort the ruined universe of a woman. She will only close in even more and she will want to reject it all. The only thing you can do is listen to her without a single word, as many as 1000 times if necessary, and honestly share your experience with her, if, unfortunately, you’ve gone through it, and if you have not, then “connect” her with someone who has. That is why I wrote this text, for all moms who have no one to tell them they are not crazy because they are suffering, that it will not go away and that they will not come to terms with it and just accept it, to support them in some way in their pain. That is why this text does not contain any psychologization about the situation, only advice on how to behave for those who are in the position of a comforter and a sincere confession for those who feel alone in the world.
I want to thank all the moms who shared their painful experiences with me. When I posted my example on social networks, a lot of women, acquaintances, friends, neighbors, but also unknown women and girls came to me with their stories, which sincerely moved me and helped me not to feel that I’m the only one. I learned exactly that from all the examples, that to everyone it meant a lot to hear similar experiences and that regardless of everything they went through, they still managed to become mothers. That is why I want to believe that there is always hope.
For all moms.. You are not alone!
Marjia Igic

Author Marjia Igic

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