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Whoa, Momma!

Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Tracey Henry and Suzannah DiMarzio

Miscarriage, the unspoken bond many share



It's an unspoken word, and yet a pregnant mother's greatest fear. Miscarriage. Losing a child in the womb, Mom_miscarriage without hint or notice or explanation.

The tragedy occurs in 10 to 25 percent of all pregnancies, studies suggest, usually within the first 13 weeks. But because of its nature, the news rarely travels. And so, should the unspeakable happen, it may be lost on you how altogether not alone you are in your grief.

I had just moved to Tampa when it happened to me. Went in for my first doctor's appointment, full of joy and expectation, only to discover there was no heartbeat, no life growing inside me. The pain was immediate and fierce. I couldn't talk to anyone. I went home and cried harder than I ever have. My husband took care of telling our parents and the few friends we had shared the news with. I don't think I even took one call.

The doctor told us we could try again in a few months, but my suffering lasted longer than that. I couldn't bear to risk feeling that pain again. Eventually, we did get pregnant and I waited until I was almost five months along before I shared the news. Thankfully, I had that baby and another without any problems at all.

The miscarriage comes up for me at random times. Like this week, when I realized that child would be turning 11 soon. Or at the doctor's office, when a form requires me to say how many times I've been pregnant and how many live births I've had. Three and two, a disparity that always catches me.

I've made a deliberate effort to reach out to relatives, friends and others when I hear of miscarriages. And that's really the only time I bring it up. It's a sad lonely road but certainly one that a lot of women share. For me, being alone in my suffering was the hardest part, because I didn't realize how common an experience it is. Knowing that now, I want to share the unspoken truth with all women.

-- Amy Hollyfield

[Last modified: Thursday, May 13, 2010 11:02am]


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