Yesterday I found, amongst the bills and boring letters, a brilliant postcard from my best friend. This is what it said. I have put it up at home to remind myself that a) I must try to be less negative about the outcome of this pregnancy and b) my best friend is so very thoughtful. Thanks N. Made my day!
Inevitably a number of my friends, or ladies I know, have had babies or announced their pregnancies during the time when we were consumed by sadness at the loss of our baby. Of course a part of me was filled with jealousy. It made me feel like a bad person. However I realised it was only natural to feel this way. I felt robbed of the baby I was expecting. When I felt bad I reminded myself that I was still happy for them, I just wished I could have the same. There was no need to feel guilty about completely normal emotions. So if you feel that way don’t be too hard on yourself. Also remember that just because they are having a baby doesn’t mean there is one less in the world for you!
One of my best friends was due a week before me and we had excitedly discussed our pregnancies and maternity leave together. When I lost our baby it was hard to see her progress through her pregnancy. I felt that I should be doing the same. She totally understood when I needed not to see her for a bit and was beyond understanding about my emotions. Her gorgeous baby has now arrived and I adore him. However I was worried about how jealous I might feel and, based on my experiences, whether the labour would go safely. Thankfully all went well. And I can say with complete honesty that I feel nothing but happiness for her. When I saw his little face it was impossible not to feel joyous. He is a bundle of loveliness and a blessing to my friend. Obviously I wish I could be in that position but now that I am pregnant I at least feel there is a chance of that being me someday. And when I do I know she will be absolutely thrilled for me too.
Shout out to baby E! Love Auntie K x
“Tragedy happens in everyone’s life, everyone’s circle of family and friends. Be the person that others can count on when it does. I think that between 30 and 40 is the decade when a lot of shit finally starts to happen that you might have thought never would happen to you or those you love. Parents die, spouses die, babies are still-born, friends get divorced, spouses cheat… the list goes on and on. Helping someone through these times by simply being there, listening and not judging is an honor and will deepen your relationships in ways you probably can’t yet imagine.” (Rebecca, 40)
NE, JB, MB & GB
You’ve certainly done this for me.
Thank you, thank you, thank you and thank you xxxx
WARNING: Mushy Post Alert!
He will hate this public, vomit-inducing declaration of love, but it was time to give my DH a special mention.
There is absolutely no way I could have coped with the loss of our baby without the never-ending support of my kind and loving husband. IVF and pregnancy loss is stressful and emotional. It certainly is a test of a marriage. Instead of tearing us apart it made us closer than I ever knew possible. Despite his initial struggle to talk and be open he always listened. It made me so grateful to have such a brave and wonderful man by my side.
DH, I am so happy I married you.
When we lost the baby everyone was insistent that we, particularly me, should go see a psychologist or therapist to deal with the trauma and loss. Previously I had never had any desire or reason to do such a thing. In fact I felt it was a fairly self-indulgent past-time for the LA celebrity kids and the real crazies of the world. However I also realised that it couldn’t hurt and it would reassure my worrier of a Dad. I decided to be open-minded.
I began weekly sessions with a lovely woman. Never one to be the ‘feelingsy’ type I found it surprisingly easy to talk about everything. I had a lot to say. However, in retrospect, I don’t think I ever got emotional. I don’t like to cry in front of others or show vulnerability. She listened and told me reassuring things which I constantly challenged. I didn’t want to hear clichés. She told me all my emotions and the way I was coping was entirely normal considering the emotional roller coaster. We agreed that my depression, anxiety and fears were a direct result of the circumstances, rather than due to a pre-existing disposition for mental health issues. We eventually agreed that I didn’t need to continue to see her as I basically had something shit happen which I was dealing with. And that was that.
The thing is I am so lucky to have the very best of friends, and husband, who I got better therapy from. One of them is an actual psychologist! They know me, they are available when I need them, they feel emotionally connected to me and they don’t charge! Who needs a therapist when you are blessed with such great friends! I hope I never need to be there for them in this way, but if I do I will stand beside them like they have for me. Never will I take for granted the support, kindness and love they have given me.
My lovely friend received a 2,000 piece puzzle for her birthday. On one of my many visits to her home I got involved. It was a great distraction and before we knew it we 3 hours had passed. Over the weeks we did more and more of it and it was a great focus while we chatted about everything and nothing. I was hooked!
I did a bit of googling and found studies that suggest that jigsaw puzzles can actually lead to a longer life expectancy, a better quality of life, and reduce our chances of developing certain types of mental illness by an amazing third. Apparently it is due to the simultaneous use of both sides of the brain. In addition, completing a puzzle, or even just the successful placement of one piece, encourages the production of dopamine. Jigsaw puzzles are a unique activity that allows us to achieve a state of creative meditation, while imparting a sense of accomplishment.
You’ll find me in the toy store.
My best friend is amazing. Fact. For the last 4 months she has been endlessly loyal and supportive. It made the world of difference.
Today she continued her kindness by sending me this gift. A colouring book!
Supposedly colouring is a stress buster. I love it. Art, drawing and painting have always been relaxing and therapeutic to me.
Best go sharpen my pencils!