Pregnancy After A Miscarriage…

By: Jennifer Cole | Pregnancy | January 30, 2021

If you’ve suffered one or more previous miscarriages and are now pregnant again, you’re likely processing a lot right now. Grief. Apprehension. Fear. Anxiety. Guarded excitement. There’s no quick and easy way to pivot away from the loss of one baby to the eager anticipation of a new baby. Our emotions simply don’t work that way. It’s insensitive and naive for our friends and family (or perhaps even our partner) to assume that just because we’re pregnant again, it has somehow magically erased the pain and suffering we endured losing one or more babies before this.

Mixed Emotions

To say you’re experiencing mixed emotions about this pregnancy is probably an understatement. While with your first pregnancy you were probably over the moon excited as soon as you found out and thought about your baby every single day, now you might be reluctant to do that again. Allowing yourself to embrace and love this baby with abandon like you did before could end up causing you so much more emotional pain than you’ve already endured. You may not be able to rally, even though you know you want to try again. What if you lose this baby, too? Wouldn’t it be easier on your psyche to not get attached to this baby just yet in case they don’t make it?

In Protection Mode

And so the walls go up. You’ve decided for your own self-protection that you’re not going to fall in love with this baby until…? Until when? 12 weeks? 14 weeks? 20 weeks? If you wait until then, you’ve lost half of your pregnancy to bond and love your baby. That’s 20 weeks you can’t get back. During that time, you’ll feel like you’re in limbo because while technically you’re 100% pregnant, on an emotional level you’re in denial and therefore suffering from a certain level of cognitive dissonance. On some level you’ll be emotionally and psychologically disconnected from the reality of your pregnancy and your baby.

What then is the answer to your dilemma? How do you allow yourself to love this baby without opening yourself up to more emotional pain?

You Decide to Take the Risk. You Bet On Love.

Love is risky. It always has been and always will be. Unless you make yourself vulnerable and take a risk of being hurt, you’ll never experience love. At its very core, love is a gamble. But undoubtedly love is always a risk worth taking. Always. Allowing yourself to love and bond with this new baby might initially make you feel like you’re being disloyal to the baby (or babies) you’ve lost, but when you really think about it, don’t all babies deserve love, no matter how long they’re with us? Whether or not they emerge from the womb and are born, they all deserve our love. This baby is no exception to that. It’s never easy taking the risk when you realize the pain that might be on the other side of that choice, but the flip side isn’t what you want, either. And you have an unlimited amount of love in your reserves.

Let Your Baby Feel Unconditional Love

Your baby, all babies, deserve to be baked in love, not fear. When you’re positive, loving and accepting of what’s going on in your body, that baby will be nourished by that love. Unfortunately, there’s never any certainty and guarantee that your love will be enough to keep them here through birth, but for you to know that they were loved the whole time they were here matters. They belong to you and are looking to you for this unconditional love, regardless of the outcome.

And here are the facts you should know about miscarriages. Only 2% of birthing people experience two pregnancy losses in a row, and only about 1% have three consecutive pregnancy losses. After one miscarriage, the chance of a second miscarriage ranges from approximately 14 to 21%. So the odds of giving birth to a healthy baby are on your side.

It may be difficult to open your heart to this baby at first, but like most things in life, the risk of being hurt is worth the reward. Give yourself the gift of loving this baby as much as you can, as soon as you can. You’ll never regret it.

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About the author:
Jennifer Cole CD(DONA) DONA Certified Birth Doula and Hypnobabies Certified HypnoDoula supporting families throughout San Diego County.

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