Everything happens for a reason. While in the trenches of the experience, there was absolutely no believing that was true. There were no words that were going to make me feel better in the months after the loss. I was so hurt and so lost and so vulnerable. I was surrounded by extremely loving people but I still felt so alone. I ached and my heart broke all the time. There are few things worse than losing a baby, no matter what stage of the pregnancy you are in. Though, I am sure the grief is unfathomable the further along you are.
I know, more clearly now, that God had a plan for me. I felt a pull to work in infertility and I had no idea why. While I am not a particularly religious person, I know that God put me there. I went through the painful loss of a pregnancy, the heart breaking months of trying and failing to build a family, the devastation of failed fertility treatment and then the incredibly joy of a successful treatment cycle so that I could help others because no one should go through that alone.
In 1988, President Reagan announced October as National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. One in four women will experience pregnancy loss - many of them without even realizing that they were pregnant to begin with. It's a terrible statistic and the stigma associated with it is worse. While we cannot do much to prevent pregnancy loss, we can support those who have experienced it. No woman should ever feel like she did something wrong to cause a miscarriage and no woman should ever have to feel alone after the loss. We need to hold each other's hands and be that calming and reassuring presence that, in time, everything will be okay.
Tonight I will take that time to hold my daughter a little closer because I am so lucky to have her.