Tag Archives: Angels

Stop Telling People They Can’t Talk About Their Miscarriage

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Recently “Every Child is a Blessing” posted two pics that went viral.

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The pictures above went viral not because they were just another picture of women pre and post birth but because these pictures were dedicated to the “taboo” subject of miscarriage. Whether or not I love the execution of the image is irrelevant, people have complained it is adding salt to the wounds, because I certainly appreciate the sentiment. The stigma surrounding miscarriages needs to end.

Miscarriages are often treated as if they are shameful secrets that need to be hidden away. People would deny that they thought this way but the actions of many actually indicate that they do. Women are indoctrinated that they should never tell anyone that they are pregnant until 12 weeks in case they miscarriage. Why? Because if people don’t know that you were pregnant than it doesn’t matter? That you’ve tried and failed and can keep the shame secret? That you’ll not be sad if others don’t know? These and other reasons are utterly illogical. Once a woman is pregnant and has decided to keep that baby, their hopes and dreams for that baby grow just as fast as the fetus. It isn’t just a collection of cells to the woman, it is the hopes and dreams of a rosie cheeked baby. A warm little person to hug and hold. A human being to love and nurture. It is real and it is growing and the mother is using her own body to feed and protect that little bundle of joy. In short, they love that baby. The pictures represent those dreams externalised that will never come to be with that pregnancy. The loss of that dream isn’t any better because people didn’t know, in fact it is harder. Harder because you have to endure that grief without support and because of this stigma of not being allowed to talk about it, you can’t even ask for support.

People are often highly insensitive to woman who have had miscarriages because of that taboo. I myself was told after mine that X person had also had a miscarriage in the past but thank God she hadn’t told anyone but immediate family because then nobody knew and therefore it was better for her. The message was pretty clear that it was “better” for people not to know. That telling people after your first ultrasound was unacceptable. One must wait until the second ultrasound. It was on my second ultrasound where I was told that there was no longer a heartbeat and that it was a case of fetal demise. I needed to get a babysitter for my daughter so that I could go to the hospital because my body was not letting go naturally. I’d put on the same amount of weight as if I had had an alive fetus.

The fact that my best friend knew and could offer me sympathy and support was a blessing. The fact that others also knew was both a blessing and a curse. A curse because insensitive women told me how it would have been “better” if others didn’t know, but a blessing because so many women I knew then opened up to me that they had miscarried before. That they were there to talk because they knew how much support was needed because they were denied it. They were expected not to speak about it and just soldier on because they knew that is what was expected of them. That because the baby wasn’t full term it didn’t count.

(Just a quick side note, none of my children reached full term. My daughter reached 35 weeks and my boys 32 weeks. All happy, healthy, alive and perfectly real and worthwhile to this day.)

But those hopes and dreams do count and one does grieve when those are literally ripped from their body and one does need support. And most importantly people deserve support and there is no shame in having a miscarriage, only sadness. The woman has done nothing wrong. It is sad, and it happens. But there is no fault and there does not need to be a secret.

So I’m glad that those pictures went viral. I’m glad that people now can visualise what the women have actually lost. And now maybe people will have compassion for women when they have a miscarriage rather than trying to shut them down with their insensitive comments about how people shouldn’t mention they’re pregnant until 12 weeks, or thank goodness it was so early on so it doesn’t matter. It does matter. People knowing will allow women to get support and stop being silenced.

And for the record, the greatest miscarriage risk is at 7 weeks not 12.

So hopefully now people will start offering support rather than lectures or dismissive statements. If you don’t want to be supportive of a grieving friend that’s fine, but please admit that the problem is with you, not because they told someone in your opinion to early or because the baby wasn’t “real enough” in your opinion. It’d be appreciated if people were honest that the problem was societal bias and not the grieving no-longer-mother-to-be.

Miscarriages aren’t a shameful secret that people shouldn’t know about. They’re sad and tragic and people need the support of loved ones to get through it, NOT secrecy and shame.

The Immortal Trace of Eventide – It begins

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Cassinder danced with her eyes closed in the middle of the crowded club as if alone. She belonged to the music and gyrated her body along to the music as if they were involved in an intimate relationship. Light enveloped her in a strobe, highlighting a golden strand of hair here, her long luscious eyelashes there, soft pink lips teamed with creamy white skin. The music faded from one song into another and she opened her eyes softly as if awoken from a dream. Then she saw him.

Boom

She convulsed as if electrocuted, her blonde curls flung out from her face as if in shock, and she clutched at her heart.

‘Are you alright?’ Prandanya, her best friend asked her. ‘You look like you’re having a heart attack.’

‘That boom, that explosion? Didn’t you feel it,’ Cassinder asked.

Prandanya raised a sharp black eyebrow and pursed almond coloured lips highlighted in gold frosting. Totally edible.

‘I didn’t hear anything.’

‘I was dancing, and then I saw this boy and then something went off,’ Cassinder looked pleadingly at her friend. ‘You have to believe me, I’m not crazy.’

‘What boy?’ Prandanya asked.

Cassinder stood on tiptoes and looked around the club scanning. She could see nothing until something flashed in the corner of her eye like a sapphire. Cassinder turned her head and there he was. Tall, strong, skin the colour of sun baked olives, and dark hair that fell in waves to his shoulders. Prandanya seeing Cassinder pause craned her head to see what she was seeing.

‘Boom indeed,’ Pranyada said. ‘I think my ovaries just exploded. That’s one A grade hottie right there.’

‘It’s not my loins,’ Cassinder responded hotly. ‘There was a boom. There’s something different about him.’

‘Well you better work it out quick. He’s making his way over here now.’

Cassinder’s perfect rosebud of a mouth formed a perfect O of surprise as the tall, dark handsome stranger sauntered his way over. To her even greater surprise he did not stop when he got to her. He simply grabbed her by the arm and swept her up along with her.

‘You felt it didn’t you?’ He demanded of her as he pushed them through the crowds. ‘You felt what I did.’

‘What you did?’ Cassinder stammered in her confusion and would have tripped over if it was not for the handsome stranger’s firm grip on her arm.

‘Don’t play innocent. You’re sweet face doesn’t fool me. I saw you convulse when I let it out.’ He was not even looking at her, his eyes were focused on a dimly lit exit sign.

‘I felt something. A boom. I don’t know what from,’ Cassinder apologised not really knowing what she was apologising for.

He grabbed her and pulled her to him, his face a mere inch from hers just as they reached the sketchy door.

‘I don’t believe you,’ he hissed

Boom. They were through the door and out into a cold dark alley. Cassinder immediately regretted her choice of her cream coloured slip dress and no undergarments for the evening. Her skin stood on end in goose pimples and her nipples were on point as if to guard against the cold.

‘Who are you!’ The demand came with such rage that Cassinder faltered backwards and fell over.

‘I’m Cassinder,’ she stammered. ‘I’m nobody. Why are you mad at me.’

‘Because you felt it. Noody should be able to feel it. Nobody human.’

‘What?’ Cassinder’s head was reeling, perhaps from the drink, perhaps from her rapid exit, perhaps from the sudden cold, but most likely because of the strangeness of this whole interaction.

Thump.

The dingy little door flew open and there was Prandanya.

‘What the heck is going on here?’ She demanded, hands pressed firmly on her hips.

The stranger looked at her and immediately sprang upwards, making his way for the roof top and was gone.

‘Wait,’ Cassinder wailed, getting to her feet. ‘I don’t even know your name.’

Prandanya hurried over to her and began fussing over her.

‘Are you okay? Did he hurt you?’

Cassinder pushed her away.

‘I’m fine. I’m fine. I just want to go home.’

‘Okay. Let’s go hail a cab,’ Prandanya responded.

As they walked towards the safety of a main street, Cassinder stopped short.

‘Damn! That guy stole my purse. His whole weirdness was just an act so that he could steal from me.’

‘Men,’ Prandanya shook her head. ‘Always just in to get what they can and then off. Don’t worry honey. The cab will be my treat. I think you’ve earned it tonight.