When I was a teenager, I was going to marry my high school/university sweetheart and have kids. I didn’t have a concrete thought of what I was going to do for a career. Yes I ended up going to university to become a teacher but then life had a mind of its own.
I am now 39 and have two fur babies…no human babies! I have my own business and have worked really hard to get here. The last 15 years of my life has been a journey in finding myself…the right partner for me…and a purpose in life that energizes rather than depletes me. I have not been ready to have a child, if I am really honest with myself. But that didn’t stop me in wanting them, or talking to whichever partner I was with at the time, about having them. I have watched other people get married and have kids. I have had to press pause on Facebook because I couldn’t handle seeing other people have what I wanted, but didn’t have in my life.
In October 2014, I met my husband. It is now November 2017 and I have had four miscarriages. The first one happened in 2016. We went to Cabo for vacation and conceived on Valentine’s day. At the end of April, I was in Ikea – I had gone to acquire blinds for our office, which would be converted into a spare room should my husband want to sleep if the baby was crying upstairs. I was picking out those blinds when I suddenly felt a gush and ran to the bathroom. Blood. Everywhere. I went home and lied down. I was dizzy and in pain. Panicked. Something was wrong. My husband drove us to the hospital and we found out the baby has passed. I had been 7 weeks pregnant. I decided to have a D and C (a surgical procedure to remove the baby that was no longer living). I could have waited for the baby to miscarry naturally on its own. But it could have take a week – 4 weeks – or longer. I wouldn’t know when it would have happen. I didn’t want anything to happen when I was with a client. That would be traumatic for both of us.
That first miscarriage was upsetting. WTF. Really?!!! Come on…I was 37…How many obstacles was I going to have to go through?! So I did EMDR on that miscarriage. I came through to the other side. There’s always next time. At least we can get pregnant! Going through that experience with my husband made me realize that we can get through anything together and we decided to get hitched!
We were married in July 2016 and conceived again in October. I miscarried again in December. This time we had made it to 9 weeks but found out at my check up that it had passed at 7 weeks. Thats a whole other experience. There was a dead baby in me for 2 weeks! I had another D and C, which was less scary because I knew what it was all about. But getting over this miscarriage was harder. Physically. I felt my life force drained out of me. I felt dead to the world. I had to take time off work because I just couldn’t move off the bloody couch. We decided to go to Cabo because I needed to get away. I got my period again and I seemed to come back to life. I went back to work when we got home and slowly I found myself in a routine again – going to yoga, running, reading, enjoying life.
We conceived again in April 2017 and then on my birthday in June, we found out we lost another baby. Ugh. I decided to wait to miscarry naturally this time. WOW. THAT WAS HARD. I waited two weeks. Nothing happened. I decided to take a pill to induce labour to miscarry naturally at home. OMG. PAIN. Loss of connection with reality pain. I thought, how do women give birth without drugs. This is crazy! But when morning came, I was supposed to take another pill. I couldn’t do it. My uterus felt like it had taken a beating. Now I had to go through it again. No thanks! I ended up having another D and C. I think my husband and I were both just going through the motions on this one. I lost hope. I started to think about of life without kids. Sleeping in. Living on your own terms. Travel. My husband said it was too hard to watch me go through the ups an downs. I tell ya…sometimes I think being a guy would be so much easier. They laugh about how our moods go up and down but hormones… I could do without them sometimes. I don’t like the ups and downs either.
I couldn’t give up though. Creating life is a miracle. A little baby Julie and Alex. To see life through an innocent pair of eyes. Bringing joy to the simplest of life’s experiences. We decided to try again. Over the past two years, I have collected baby items and I have put them in a closet. Envisioning my dream. Feeling it. Willing it to happen. Good idea or not? Jury’s out on that one. October 2017 comes and I know I’m pregnant. I can feel it. Canadian thanksgiving weekend comes and I start to bleed. A week before my period. I think its implantation bleeding. My temperature is still elevated, it usually drops immediately when I get my period, so that’s a good sign. But my back is killing me. I can’t bend over. I delude myself into thinking everything is okay. But it wasn’t. When I was supposed to get my period, I bled again. I gave up. I told Alex I was done. He was happy to hear it. He was done with the struggle.
I knew I was hurting but I felt like I was done. I was done with putting my life on hold. Not going on vacation for fear of Zika. Not going to hot yoga in case I was pregnant. Not drinking in case I was pregnant. Fear of working out in case I lost a baby. Having a hard time walking because of the discomfort. The bloating. The fatigue. The push to make money to save for maternity leave. The hope. The devastation. Enough. Maybe it just wasn’t meant to be. But I had lost drive in everything…my job, walking the dogs, cooking, reading, blogging, yoga. I thought maybe I was depressed. But then I remembered this is how I felt after each miscarriage. I realized I would feel better after I got my period. So I googled…why do women chose not to have kids?
- They are afraid of screwing them up. (I’m afraid of having a child that has a problem – I’m 39 and my husband is 43. The chances of a mistake are higher the older you get. That’s why we are having so many miscarriages!)
- I don’t think I could handle the emotional struggle if my child had a medical problem, or was bullied, or suffered in anyway! I can barely watch some movies!
- Some women don’t want to short-change their kids. They have a career and know they can’t manage both well…and they don’t want the kid to suffer. So they chose their career.
- They can be a mother to their dogs, or friend’s or family’s kids. I could be a mom to my nieces and nephews. I care about my clients. I care about the world. (But it isn’t the same as having your own child).
- I’m old..I’m tired. Having a kid is ALOT of work.
- I remember the movie Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. There’s a line that says having a baby is like getting a tattoo on your face. You have to be totally committed. Am I? Really?
- I’m used to my life being all about me. Then life will not be about me for at least 18 years. Can I manage that? Am I overthinking things now because I’m older. If I were in my 20’s would I really be thinking this in depth about having a kid?
- It’s a big commitment. A big responsibility. And there are no returns!
- I seem more passionate about my career – or is that to protect myself because I keep having miscarriages?!!
- Am I able to handle balancing my own health with the health of my child? My husband? My career? My house? I’m not super woman! I can’t do it all and still be a nice person!
- There are so many kids that need a loving home…Could I be that home for them?
- I have to be honest with myself. After each miscarriage I was relieved. To get my body back. To get back to my life. But I guess you only feel that way for the first trimester. And the third trimester. And when you are nursing. But it gets better, right?!
- Are we ready for a baby? I’m self-employed. I don’t have maternity leave. Can we afford it if I don’t work? I’m the major breadwinner at this point…And we are still paying off debt. It seems like a mountain of problems.
- Maybe my life purpose is better served with service – making the world a better place.
- Am I supposed to flow with life and not try and force having a kid? If it’s meant to be it will be? But nothing happens in life if you just wish for it. You actually have to have sex at the right time! Let’s face it…the older you get, the less sex you have. We aren’t teenagers anymore! It has to be planned…
- Maybe like Sarah Silverman said, she will do it like Diane Keaton when there is nothing else she wants to do more.
Today, I sat down and played with a little farm animal box that has a plush cow, duck, rooster, etc. My heart was open. I grabbed the pair of baby booties and felt the dream come back to life. I don’t want to give up just yet….
Maybe all of those miscarriages are meant to teach me that I have to put myself first…In a healthy way. I have been taking care of others all of my life, the idea of taking care of a baby seems overwhelming to me now. But I’d rather give my energy to my baby, than to to my parents, or all of my clients. I love them but they are not as important as having a baby. It’s time to put myself first. Then maybe I will be strong enough to carry the next one to term.
So I have shifted…and it came in an unexpected way….Ahh..the universe…willing to teach us …Thank you for the push. I will take care of me…Oxygen for me first…right? Right..,
Here’s to flowing and not forcing.