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In just over a month’s time, I will mark one of the hardest days of my adult life – the day we made the choice to terminate a pregnancy for medical reasons. Due to the laws where I live, I was forced to go to an abortion clinic to end the life of a baby we desperately wanted to save my own life.  I was forced to endure a humiliating ultrasound and I was treated absolutely horribly by a radiologist.

I am still furious that I was put through the hell of having to choose to end my child’s life and that I was treated so horribly that day.

The entire experience still makes me bitter, to the point where just thinking about it brings literal tears to my eyes and pain to my heart.

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And so, I fully acknowledged that for the last 2 years I have refused to basically even think about that day or the little girl we lost that day.  I always was pro-choice and as a result of this experience have become even more so.  But otherwise, I’ve really done my best to avoid thinking about it.  Basically, I’ve refused to spend my precious time with my living son giving much though to the fact that I chose to end my child’s life to save my own.  It’s not so much that I’ve been denying that it happened, just that I’ve been refusing to think about it when I just want to focus on the happy that our living son brings to our lives.

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The specific date of the termination, the day we said goodbye to our only known daughter, is etched into my mind – August 14.  Yet, I had to actually look up what year it happened.  (As an aside, yes, I still have the list of all my infertility dates and procedure results – confirmed pregnancy, HSG tests, follicle counts, beta results, ultrasounds dates and results including fetal heart rates and sized, cytotec/misoprostol doses, confirmed not pregnant beta results, fetal genetic testing, etc).

It happened in 2013.  It has been 5 years since I chose to end my child’s life.  5 years.

Life has changed so much.  I have a son now, who I am absolutely beyond thankful for.  My focus is on him, and always needs to be on him.

The few people who know about the termination don’t talk about our experience or our little girl.  Mr. MPB and I used to talk about it from time to time, but it seems with time, even we don’t talk about it anymore. Which is sad, because blocking out the whole termination experience has basically made it so we don’t talk about our little girl.  In some ways, it’s as though our little girl never existed.

Yet, if I’m honest, I think blocking the termination out of my life has been the easy option.  I truly don’t think I’ve given myself the time to heal from the entire termination process and I definitely haven’t grieved the loss of our daughter.  And honestly, I don’t think I’ve given myself permission to heal.  In some ways, it’s almost like I need to carry around the anger, the guilt and the hurt, as if it’s my cross to bear.

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I randomly bumped into someone recently, someone I used to work with on a volunteer committee, but not someone that I was particularly close to.

I saw him, and he instantly got up from what he was doing and wrapped his arms around me in a giant bear hug.  And he said “I’ve been so worried about you.  You vanished a few years ago when you quit your job and I haven’t heard anything about you since.”

I’m not a big hugger at the best of times so while the bear hug struck me as a bit odd, I figured maybe he was just friendlier then I remembered?  So, I lightheartedly joked that once I became a mom, my priorities have really shifted and I’m just not as involved in volunteer professional activities any more.

We both had places to be so we quickly planned to meet up for lunch the next week.  That lunch was yesterday.

We met at his office and walked a few blocks to a restaurant.  As we walked, he said “I knew you had a couple of miscarriages and I just couldn’t stop worrying….I had a friend, who had a few miscarriages and after her third one she fell into a deep depression.  Eventually she took her own life as she blamed herself for the loss of her babies.  Honestly, I was just so happy to see you last week and to know that you are okay.  And to hear that you have a son now, that’s just amazing!”

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To anyone reading this today, know that infertility is damn hard.  It impacts your life in ways I never thought possible.  You are not alone in this struggle.

I understand how hard loss is.  I know all the feelings that come with saying goodbye to a baby you desperately want, the dreams you had for that child, and the dreams you had for your future family.

Recurrent pregnancy loss is the most excruciatingly horrible experience I have ever been though.

No matter what happens in my life, I will always understand.

You are not alone.

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Please, please, please, if you are struggling with infertility and experiencing depression or thoughts of self-harm or suicide, talk to someone.  Please reach out for help.  If you are in Canada, please follow this link to find resources in your area.  And please, know it’s not your fault and you are not alone.

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