“I’m afraid the results aren’t clear. You’re going to have to come back in a week’s time, for another blood test, and then we’ll know what’s happening.”
These are not the words I wanted to hear! I’ve been pregnant twelve times (and miscarried all of those babies) and I’ve found myself in this situation on a number of occasions.
I now work as a therapist, helping women all around the world to cope with the pain of miscarriage. If you’ve been through something like this, or are going through it now, my heart really goes out to you. I know how tough it is.
I felt as if a cold hand was squeezing my heart. I was so scared! And I didn’t know how to feel. Should I still think of myself as pregnant? Should I relate to myself as if I was losing my baby? Should I hope and pray for the best? Or should I prepare myself for the worst? It was agony! The best way I’ve found to describe it was “like being in a kind of miscarriage limbo.”
And I didn’t know how I was going to get through that long wait…
If you’re struggling with something like this, here are some thoughts about how to make it easier to cope with.
1. Take it one moment at a time
The reality is that we just don’t know what’s going to happen, and so that’s what you’re dealing with. And it can feel as if those thoughts are driving us insane. And in this context, it’s really OK to try and distract yourself as much as possible. You could do whatever absorbs your attention. (Read, bake, go for a walk, watch something enjoyable, talk to a friend, play with a pet…)
2. It's out of our hands
Sometimes we might feel as if it’s our job to try and keep our baby alive by the sheer force of our will. We think that if we want it enough, and focus enough, it will be OK. (And sometimes we can think that if it isn’t OK, then we must have done something wrong, which of course we haven’t…)
But actually, all of this is out of our hands. And if you do want to send your baby love and prayers, and good wishes for its health and survival, then that’s a really lovely thing to do. But don’t feel that you have to do that.
3. Allow the roller-coaster of emotions
It’s OK to feel a wide range of emotions. And you may move through a lot of different ones, and they might seem to be conflicting sometimes. I remember a strong combination of fear, hope and uncertainty. Sometimes I felt desperate, and almost itchy with wanting it to change.
Have compassion for yourself, if you’re feeling like this: it’s completely understandable. Don’t beat yourself up for not being on an even keel. And remember that this uncertainty will end eventually.
4. EFT "tapping" can help
Just before my third miscarriage, I discovered “tapping” (EFT – Emotional Freedom Techniques.) As the name implies, it’s a simple and effective self-help tool which allows you to reduce the intensity of strong feelings and emotions.
I “tapped” on myself an enormous amount, and it always helped me to feel calmer and more peaceful, no matter what was going on. It’s extremely useful. It’s one of the techniques which I teach to my clients, so that they can use it to help themselves feel a little better, any time they need it.
5. Take great care of yourself
It’s important that you look after yourself during this time of anxiety. One of the best things you can do for your baby is to treat yourself gently and kindly. See if you can rest, if you need it, and do things which help you to relax. Looking after your own health and well-being, at this time, is valuable.
Look after yourself, however you’re feeling. Distract yourself, if that’s helpful. Remember that what happens is probably beyond our control. Allow the roller-coaster of emotions to pass through you. Perhaps consider “tapping.” And above all, take kind and gentle care of yourself.
I’m wishing you all the very best, and sending you my love.
~ Rosalind xxx