I never expected to enjoy pregnancy after loss MORE

pregnancy after loss


Being pregnant after losing a baby (or babies) is a completely different experience to those pregnancies that came before. I remember so feeling angry and so so sad after our third loss that I would never again get to enjoy a pregnancy. I also felt incredibly jealous of anyone who was pregnant with a baby and got to experience the effortless trust that everything would work out.  I had to keep to reminding myself that I was her for my first two pregnancies, reminding myself of how lucky I was for those two.


At that point though I was so wound up in my own anxiety that I couldn’t imagine ever being able to enjoy a pregnancy again.


And now here I am. 


14 weeks pregnant and doing my damnedest to enjoy as much of it as I can. The anxiety creeps in at times. But I’m better at handling her now. (And yes I try to think of my anxiety as this annoying imaginary friend that I just have to know how to handle in the right way).  


Now when she starts to pop up I come back to the mantras I started using when we started trying again. “I am healthy and strong and am growing a healthy baby” and then I take a deep breath into my belly because that’s the fastest way to calm my nervous system down and tell it to stop producing all the stress hormones.


Now, I journal her unhelpful thoughts out regularly so that she doesn’t trick me into thinking they’re my own.


Now, when she starts to creep in I know that voicing her crazy to someone helps me to see that the fear is not actually my truth at all.


Pregnancy this time round IS completely different to my first two pregnancies. For the most part with Eamon and Rory I was blissfully naive to the experience of losing a baby. Or at least, naive to the fact that there was a chance it could happen to me and how painful it would be. I was aware it could happen, I just foolishly thought ‘it would never happen to me’. I’d been with my own sister when she found out her little boy had no heartbeat at 22 weeks three years before I had Eamon.  I’d had friends who’d had miscarriages.  I knew it was a chance of course, but I guess you just tell yourself it won’t happen to you.


After you’ve been through it though, it doesn’t just feel like a chance any longer, it feels like a high possibility.  It feels like someone has stacked all those statistics against you (information which really doesn’t help an anxious person – actually anyone- in the slightest).


After the three losses I sort of resigned myself to the fact that I wouldn’t get to enjoy pregnancy again. I told myself that I was okay with that, and reminded myself how lucky I was to have had two completely normal uncomplicated pregnancies.


What I didn’t expect though was the experience of loss to actually make me enjoy pregnancy more, once I got a handle on the anxiety.  


My eyes are fully open to the complete miracle of growing a baby now.  I’m so hyper-aware of the absolute magic of it all that I’m incredibly grateful for even the bad bits (the morning sickness, my low blood pressure and non-existent energy).


Unlike my first two pregnancies there is no internal bemoaning the process of pregnancy, there is no wishing away the 9 months or complaining that I ‘can’t wait to be over’.  (Apologies to anyone I may have voiced this to during those pregnancies, I now understand your desire to slap me).


I’ve been firmly present in every moment of this pregnancy, to the point that I can actually tell you down to the day how far along I am.  Each new day that clocks over feels like a huge blessing and I send out a little thank you to the universe.


Of course, it isn’t all roses.  I don’t think I’ll be completely anxiety free until this baby is born into my hands. Actually who am I kidding, not even then. 


Loss has given me this other amazing gift (or curse – depending on how you want to look at it) that makes you keenly aware of how fragile life is. My mind often plays worst-case-scenarios in my head whenever my boys are away from me, especially when someone else is driving them somewhere. I can’t explain it, but it always sends my anxiety sky-high until I get the ‘arrived safely’ text. I say gift because it definitely means you can’t take any of it for granted when you’re so aware of how easily it can end.


I still check every time I go to the toilet for blood. It’s less of an intense, anxiety driven urge like it was during the last pregnancy, but the urge to check is definitely still there.


Waiting to feel movement has been a huge lesson in patience. I’ve only recently begun to feel little kicks and rolls, far earlier than I’ve ever noticed it with the boys, and then only because I’ve been desperately waiting to feel it.


Of course, now I want to feel it all the time and I start to feel a little panicked when I haven’t felt it in a while.


Each ultrasound and doctors appointment tests all of my self-calming techniques that’s for sure. My heart races, I feel sick and I literally have to chant my mantra and tell myself to breathe before each one. Even those that are just your average, run of the mill, check blood pressure-all good-see you next month variety, send me sky-rocketing.


Now that I’ve written all of these anxieties on paper I feel like I’ve made myself out to be a total crazy person, rather than my intention for this post which was to tell you that I’m really enjoying this pregnancy, which I am.


I no longer take for granted this ability to create a baby and it feels like bloody magic that my body can do this.


It can, and it will and I while I can’t wait to meet this new little man there is not a single day of carrying him that I’m wishing away (not entirely, but definitely somewhat because the current youngest little man is testing me to the max at the minute and I’m not in any hurry to get to the talking-back stage with this one – ha!)


Have you experienced pregnancy after a loss? How did you handle the anxiety?  Did you enjoy the pregnancy more or less?

3 Responses to “I never expected to enjoy pregnancy after loss MORE

  • Loved reading this 🙂
    I’m currently just 5 weeks pregnant after 2 losses (I have a 3 year old). Totally identify with that loss of naivety that with pregnancy first time round and the anxiety that just wants to overtake. I go from being so hopeful and excited to completely terrified.
    Good to know you got your baby 🙂

    • Bettina Rae
      6 years ago

      Congratulations Jenny! Keep breathing through that anxiety. I’ll be sending hope and love your way that you get your baby too. xx

Trackbacks & Pings

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *