I never heard my friends talk about their miscarriage until after I had one. As I reflected on my experience alongside their own, I wondered: why are women so ashamed to talk about loss?
Why is miscarriage a taboo at all?
Maybe because it is so hard to admit it and let go. Let go of expectations, dreams, and plans of a life you were creating that was suddenly no more. Nobody is ready for such loss, but when it happens, we somehow need to look deeply within ourselves and try to figure out how to cope with it.
It wasn’t any different for me. What I thought was a regular checkup turned out to be a big nightmare. What we saw on the scan was our tiny little one, no longer having a heartbeat.
I didn’t want to believe it.
So many thoughts and emotions ran through my head, I just couldn’t think straight. Finally later that day, I fell asleep and during those long hours of the night I had the most beautiful dream.
I dreamed that there were lots of women around me dancing in celebration. It reminded me of the books that I had read about priestesses and ancient rituals for the Goddess. They were so happy, dancing around in a circle around the fire to the beat of the drums. I saw fire; I heard drums.
It was so beautiful that I approached the circle, and one of those women took my hand while the others made space so I could be in the circle. All of them were looking at me and smiling.
The one who was holding my hand said: “We are celebrating you!” And they kept dancing and laughing with so much joy and bliss. One of the ladies had a special red dress that drew my attention. She was holding something in her arms. It was my baby. She looked at me with such tender eyes and smiled. In that moment I understood that everything was all right. That this was the way it should be, and that the ceremony was for me. The beautiful energy of the whole experience spread to every cell of my body, and when I woke up I was about to sing and smile when I suddenly realized that today was to be the worst day of my life as not only had I lost my baby, but was on the verge of undergoing a surgical procedure to remove all trace of that miracle in me.
That morning on that cold surgery table, while the doctor was giving me the anesthesia, I saw her again. The beautiful lady in red with tender eyes looking deeply into mine. “Everything is alright” She repeated and repeated and repeated until I fell asleep.
Despite the fact that my body and mind needed to grieve, deep inside I knew that I was going to be alright. I spent days and days doing nothing but crying and meditating.
I had the unconditional love of my husband, my family, and so many friends that took care of me and, day by day, I started to let go of my ego and all my dysfunctional thoughts of not being good enough, feeling guilty and, ashamed. I started to deeply surrender to the big mystery of life, and I realized how grateful I was to see another world in front of me. A world not of cause and effect anymore, but a world of cycles.
When we see death as a part of the cycle, it becomes a blessing of Nature, a chance to create space for something new. It is like when all the trees lose their leaves in autumn, to die in winter, to start something new in spring, to reach the peak in summer, not with sadness about the autumn coming, but with the full surrender of death and rebirth.
I honestly don’t know if I will ever have a baby despite my desire. I don’t know what the future holds. I just have the certainty that I am so much lighter than before. It is like all my fears and insecurities have set me free after my grieving process. Some people say that miscarriage happens for a big cleansing of ancestral patterns. I feel more than that. I feel reborn.
I can’t say that for every woman there is a “right” way to cope with a miscarriage but I went through 5 steps that helped me to gain peace and some Nature wisdom, where there is no “good” or “bad”, instead of a life with cycles and movement.
1. Grieve and take care of yourself
One of the most important steps to cope with any loss is grieving. Allow yourself time to grieve, cry, rest. It is a very delicate and introspective moment to feel all your sadness, anger, and frustration.
Reproductive losses are one of the most lonely experiences women can go through in our society. Asking for help is important to break the cycle of loneliness, isolation, shame, and guilt. I was surprised to see how many friends had the same experience and kept to themselves until I shared my abortion in social media.
Invite family and friends to be with you, to cook for you, to answer your emails and phone calls. Our bodies ask for help during the first weeks, not only because of the loss but also because we go through postpartum. Check with a natural healer practitioner what kind of herbs or essential oils might be good for you. St. John’s Wort worked for me. It is normal to feel depressed with your hormones going down, dealing with a postpartum plus the impact of the loss.
I definitely recommend some holistic treatments, as yoni steams (vaginal steaming) after your bleeding. I talked to a Vaginal Steam Facilitator, but you can look for a Postpartum Peristeam Practitioner through the Peristeam Hydrotherapy Institute as well. They will be able to guide you about the do’s and don’t, and the herb choice. The “Closing of the Bones” ceremony, also known in Mayan culture as the “rebozo” practice. I know that some midwives offer it. And a Womb Blessing to change and heal the energies of your womb. You can look at Womb Blessing’s website by Miranda Gray for a certified Moon Mother near you.
2. Join a Miscarriage Group in social media
Again, don’t be alone. Miscarriage groups are a great way to connect, share experiences, talk about your loss. The more you talk about it, the easier you will accept the process. And there is nothing better than a group of women that knows what you are dealing with, to engage and connect.
3. Write
Make a journal about your emotions. It will help you to express your feelings and to organize your thoughts. The deeper you go to observe your emotions, the more you face your shadows until they are not scary anymore. Give yourself permission to explore all your emotions. I promise you, this pain hurts but it will also set you free. Go deep in all dimensions of your being.
4. Meditate and be in Nature
Meditation is one of the most effective inner work that exists! Just to sit in silence you are able to observe thoughts, emotions, physical pains, you name it. It is a date with yourself, an exclusive time just for you to listen, observe, feel. I used to do many womb meditations (check Miranda Gray’s books or search for a Moon Mother near you) and I was able to feel the energies of my womb and got many insights of what I was letting go.
Be in Nature. The more you are in Nature, the more you understand the cycles of life and integrate them into your physical being and soul. Everything in Nature has a cycle and way of returning to life. It is difficult, but I understand that all the expectations and attachments must die in us, in order for something bigger to come. I believe now that my dream was a huge blessing for me to understand the real meaning of cycles, death, and rebirth, as celebrations of new beginnings.
5. Allow yourself to surrender
The biggest challenge is to get rid of suffering. We suffer because we are attached to something. The moment you realize that you are not in control of anything, and your most precious dream is no more real, it is your choice to remain attached to the past or look forward surrendering to the mysteries of life.
I did some rituals and prayers sending all my love and gratitude for our little one. Saying goodbye was tremendously hard. But I believed that this little soul had its own way to evolve spiritually and we shared what we supposed to share in those first months of pregnancy. It was a miracle, a blessing that I will never forget, and it was time to detached from my expectations and dreams. Setting our tiny little one free to his/her journey brought peace into my heart.
I know that is not an easy thing to do. Have faith. I believe the moment we let go and surrender to something bigger than our ego, everything goes into place. Trust that no matter what, you are exactly where you should be. Everything is perfect the way it is. Breathe. Have patience. Love yourself. With time you will be able to see the big picture.