By Danielle Kovasckitz
I never knew how much I wanted to be a mother until I became one.
& I certainly had no idea how much miscarrying my first child would hurt.
These past few months have been a whirlwind of emotion for Luke and I. In the midst of finishing up this semester of school and working toward becoming licensed foster parents, I discovered I was pregnant. We hadn’t been on birth control for months, and were certainly aware of how babies are made, yet somehow those two pink lines shocked me to the core. I’m going to be a mom...I am a mother. I told Luke in a manner that was opposite of cute. I threw the lights on in our bedroom while he was half asleep and shoved the pregnancy test in his face. “Is that a second line?!”
...It clearly was.
We told some of our closest friends and family. We talked about what this meant for our growing family. We were excited, and I made appointments for the months to come. Luke started writing poetry to our little mustard seed. We were going to be parents.
From the moment I realized I was pregnant, I was terrified of miscarrying. I knew the statistics: one in four pregnancies would end in miscarriage. I was aware of women in my community who had miscarried but had never walked through it closely with a friend. Every time I went to the bathroom I feared blood. I spoke truth over my tiny babe, trying my best to choose hope over fear with each new day. I envisioned what it would be like to watch as my womb grew with life. What it would be like to one day feel this tiny human move around inside of me. I became amazed at what my body was capable of. I grew more in awe of what it means to be a woman. I was exhausted.
A month ago, my worst nightmare became true. I miscarried our sweet babe in the middle of the night. I’m not sure I have ever cried so many tears. Luke and I held each other and mourned the loss of our small child. The days that followed left me feeling hollow. I don’t believe that anything could have prepared me for the depth of this hurt, the personalness of this loss. Grief is a weird creature and there are still days that I feel as though I am drowning. On harder days I am extra thankful for the people in this small mountain town.
I have been humbled by the vulnerability of other women sharing their stories of loss. I’ve connected with women through social media, women in my community, professors at my college, and been supported by friends and family more than I could have imagined. I am finding a deep beauty in communal grief and vulnerability.
I do not pride myself on my ability to cry or be vulnerable. It is not a strength that I find in myself. Yet, I know that this season would be so much darker for me had other women not been brave enough to share their stories. My friends would not have been able to bring me food or book massages or hold space for me to process had I not shared my loss with them.
I needed to write this. I needed to add my voice to the resounding #ihadamiscarriage. I want to celebrate the life that I held, no matter how short. I want other women to know that they are not alone in their grief. I need to speak truth over my own life. Perhaps you need to speak it over yours as well.
My body did not fail me.
My miscarriage is not my fault.
My grief is not dramatic.
I am strong.
I am fierce.
I am a mother.
I will hold life again.
I spend a lot of time reading posts written by other women who have lost their babes too early. A recent post held a quote from Garbes’ Like a Mother, “Miscarriage helped me understand that we become mothers not, as books and websites tell us, when our babies reach the size of an avocado or butternut squash but simply when we declare ourselves so.”
If you know the pain of pregnancy loss, my heart aches with yours. You are not alone. Please feel the freedom to connect with me.
To my community that continues to hold me, thank you. There are no words for the love that I have felt. I love you.
To my Luke, you are an amazing dad. You have carried me more than you know.
[You can write to Danielle at firstname.lastname@example.org]