Social media, also known as virtual cutting

It seems like whenever I am going through something, the opposite is going on in everyone else’s life.  For example, when I had the miscarriage, it seemed like all of the sudden everyone else I knew was pregnant. So what I should have done was deactivate all social media I have so I wasn’t torturing myself with the millions of posts and pictures with their baby bumps or newborns, but is that what I did? Of course not!  Since I wasn’t doing that, I should have ‘unfollowed’ friends that were either pregnant or had just had a baby. But again, is that what I did? No again.  Instead, I ‘like’ the pictures because what if I don’t and the person notices that I am the only person not liking any of their pictures?!  I can’t have that!  In reality, does anyone actually care whether I like their pictures…probably not.

I was due June 16, I have a cousin that is due June 20….every time she posts her pregnancy tracker it is like a dagger to my heart.  I should be posting my own pregnancy tracker and instead I’m filled with worry and anxiety over my upcoming surgery and whether or not I will ever be able to have another child. Let me be clear, I am not angry she is pregnant and I am not, I do not see her posts and get upset because she is having what seems like a normal pregnancy.  It just brings up all the raw emotion I had right after the loss.  And it brings back the feelings of guilt, that my body could not provide a safe place for my baby. So I continue to ‘like’ the posts and ‘like’ the pictures and torture myself.  Like I said….virtual cutting.

I wish I could put out a public service announcement to everyone I know or will meet in the future that had a baby in the year 2016.  A warning of sorts, so they know I have to keep my distance from their children.  Something like:

To whom it may concern,

While I can be happy for you and your growing family, please for the sake of my mental well-being, understand I will not be able to interact/hold/play with your child.  This does not mean I am not happy for you, it does not mean I am angry with you, it simply means I don’t want to have a complete breakdown in front of you or your child.  Thank you for your understanding.

Unfortunately, life is not like that and instead I will end up making people angry because they think I hate them or their child, or I will lose friends that don’t understand why it’s ok for me to be around other children but not ones born the same year as my child was supposed to be born.  People are not going to understand that every milestone their child makes, I will be thinking of mine that should have been hitting those same milestones.  Or thinking of how maybe our children would have been best friends but we will never know now because my child is in heaven.  And well, all of those thoughts make me want to cry, so instead I will just keep my distance and hope people get that I am happy for them…just from a distance.

How quickly things change

I have never consistently gone to the doctor, with the exception of when I was pregnant. I know I should but I just never did.  After the miscarriage, again for my own piece of mind, I talked to my Ob about getting a full physical and getting every little thing checked out. I saw two possible outcomes to that, one, they would find somethings that caused the miscarriage and hopefully be able to treat it or two, they wouldn’t find anything and I would know the miscarriage was just a horrible experience that hopefully would never happen again.  And so began the next step in my journey….

February 8th I saw an internist and during my physical, he felt my neck and thought it felt larger than it should. That day he sent me to get an ultrasound and a few weeks later I found out there was a 4cm growth on the left lobe of my thyroid.  Since then I have seen many different kinds of doctors and had many different tests run.  They cannot say definitively but thyroid issues can cause miscarriages, so now maybe I have my answer.  But with that answer comes a whole new set of questions. Questions regarding treatment and future pregnancies….things that weigh very heavily on my mind.

But the reason I am sharing all of this information about my current health journey is because I realized a couple very important things that I hope will register with someone else out there.  First, get regular check ups! This sounds easy enough and I’m sure most people do but if you don’t, please consider the fact that I had NO symptoms! Physically I felt fine and had it not been for the miscarriage, I could be in a much worse situation. I am lucky because my tumor is benign, however down the road it could have become cancerous.  I am very blessed it was caught early. Secondly, be your own advocate! I have talked to a lot of different people in the medical field since I found out my diagnosis and I have learned it never hurts to get a second opinion or third or fourth or however many it takes for you to find a doctor you feel comfortable with.  

I have always had this underlying feeling that the miscarriage was my fault, that my body let my baby down. Logically I know this not true but sometimes the heart is not so logical…. And now I think, if I had gone to the doctor sooner they would have found the issue with my thyroid and I wouldn’t have lost my baby but there is no way to know if that is true or not.  So I have to believe it happened this way for a reason….stay tuned while I search for that reason…..

The start of my story

I am someone who believes everything happens for a reason.  I believe there is a plan for me, one that I might not always be able to see, but a plan nonetheless.  On November 20, 2015 I temporarily stopped believing in that plan.  I was 10 weeks pregnant and had just been told my baby did not have a heartbeat and there was nothing that could be done.  Thanksgiving was 6 days away and it was when we planned on telling our families about the baby, now we were calling family members and telling them in the same conversation that we were pregnant but the baby didn’t make it.  We had to tell our 2 1/2 year old that the baby was no longer in Mommy’s tummy but in heaven.  Some people may question why we told him, but with him kissing my belly everyday and talking about his little brother/sister, we didn’t see another option.

The days and weeks after our loss were filled with a lot of tears and even more questions.  Why did this happen?  How could my body fail my child?  Why would this be a part of my plan?  And then a couple really great things happened.  First, my husband and I started attending a support group for people that have gone through similar situations.  It is not an exaggeration when I say, the first time I felt like I could breathe again after our loss, was when I walked out of that first meeting.  It is a club no one wants to be a part of but once you are, it becomes like your second family.

Second, I rediscovered Mama Laughlin.  She is someone I follow on Facebook who has a blog about her weight loss journey.  Right after the holidays I saw a post she had on a dietbet she was hosting with a link to her AdvoCare site.  I had participated in one of her dietbets before, and had won, and who wouldn’t want to get paid for losing weight?!  So I talked to my husband and told him not only did I want to do the dietbet again but what if I got into AdvoCare too?  Because this is what I realized, there was a plan for me and since I wasn’t privy to what that plan was, I needed (for my own sanity) to come up with my own plan.  And that started with me getting healthy.  I wanted to be healthy for my son, my husband, any future children we may be blessed with but mostly for me.  So I signed up to do the AdvoCare 24 day challenge and guess what, I lost 15lbs and 11inches….in 24 days!!!  Am I saying it is a miracle pill that you take and weight will just fall off, no of course not or everyone would be doing it.  But I was determined to be successful, so I followed their food guidelines and I started jogging again, something I had not done since before the miscarriage.  In a later post, I will go more into my journey with AdvoCare but my purpose for this post is to explain why I started this blog in the first place.

So even though I was on this journey to becoming healthier, I still needed more.  I needed something else to come out of this tragedy and that’s when Mama Laughlin inspired me again.  Her blog helped me kick start my weight loss journey, what if I started a blog to help someone else in their journey?  One thing that helped when I went to my first meeting with the support group was knowing I was not alone.  Obviously I knew other people had experienced the loss of a child but actually talking to someone that had been there and made it out the other side….not having to explain to people what you were feeling because they had felt the same things….venting about the things people would say that they thought helped but really just made it worse….priceless.

And that is what I hope this blog will be.  A way to share my experiences, my journey, and maybe help someone along the way….