Young African Mom: I had a miscarriage, its a fact of life
You can be healthy, you can be in love, you can be fervently faithful and you can still have a miscarriage.
Up to 20% of all pregnancies end in a miscarriage and 80% of them happen in the first trimester, and there is nothing any can do about it. Miscarriages happen. Just like a pregnancy can happen without you trying, the same for a miscarriage.
In 2014 before I was pregnant with Saint Olu I had a miscarriage. I was about 6 weeks into the first trimester. One morning I was pregnant and worried about how my life was about to change; the next night I could barely stand up as I crouched over my bed. By the time I made it to the clinic, blood and blood clots had soaked my panties. It was 3am and I was the only patient at Osu Trust Hospital on Oxford Street.
I didn't even need the attending nurse to tell me what had happened. I just knew that my body was releasing what it could not contain. I spent an hour at the clinic doing labs. I was to go back the next day for the results. I didn't go back for the results. I already knew what they would say.
I was home before 5 am. The cramping pain that had previously felt delimitating had subsided to regular period levels. I showered, put on a pad though I prefer tampons and went to sleep.
Losing the pregnancy at six weeks made me feel weird. I was sad but not grief stricken. I felt a combination of shock, disbelief, relief, fear and isolation. It felt weird. I had only told my ex and my best friend that I was pregnant. They say don't tell anyone you're pregnant in the first trimester that you wouldn't want to tell you had a miscarriage.
I wish I had said something then when it happened but like most women I was afraid to say it out loud. What if this happens again? What if I never get pregnant again? What If I never have a child? We only talk about them when it happens to others. I would not be writing about this today if a friend had not confided in me about her own miscarriage.
We are all so misinformed about our bodies and our reproductive health and we need to talk more not just in times of loss.
Every woman should know as soon as they become sexually active that yes you can get pregnant but that also that miscarriages are a normal part of that process. I say normal because it really happens and can happen to anyone. Yes some people are at a higher risk for miscarriages because of pre-existing health conditions but even those of us; well and healthy can have this happen too.
A miscarriage today does not mean you will not get pregnant tomorrow. The miscarriage too is part of the process. Keep your head up, keep living, but most importantly trust your body to do the things it was biologically designed to do.
The fear that every woman has is that their miscarriage is a sign of things to come, infertility. This is not true. I know a woman (my friend Whitney) who had 10! Yes 10 miscarriages and today has three sons. I had one miscarriage and almost exactly a year less a month later I had my son.
Not all of us will be able to have children but having a miscarriage is not a predication of that.
Don't be afraid. It is not your fault. Miscarriages happen.