In Memory of my Unnamed Angel
I’ve heard there’s never a good time to have a second child. My husband had just quit his job to start a business, a project I was passionate about was being cancelled at work and within days, I found out I was pregnant. The timing of my pregnancy could definitely have been better.
Many thoughts ran through my mind – Finally, our daughter would have a sibling to play with. Would it be a boy this time? How would I raise a boy in Islam in these challenging times? Would (s)he be dark like me?
I went for the usual ultrasound thereafter. The sonographer was weird – when I asked if I could hear the heartbeat, she said she didn’t like the sound that the machine made. I found that rather odd, but since she showed me the little image of the baby on the screen,
I let go of the nagging feeling that she had seen something that she was hiding from me.
Two weeks later, on a cold March evening, I started bleeding. With every drop, it felt like I was losing a part of my baby. I cried quietly in the shower. The next morning, after a long wait on the queue, my worst fears were confirmed. I had lost the baby, my baby, even though my doctor claimed it was “just a mass of cells.”
I’d had a miscarriage.
Read more: Healing the Wounds of a Miscarriage
I was devastated. I cried lots. I didn’t know how to grieve. I didn’t know a single person who’d had a miscarriage before. I didn’t know if I should take time off work. I didn’t know if the thoughts I’d had of bad timing had made my baby think I didn’t want her. I felt guilty for wanting to seek help and solace. I understood the data – that almost 20% of pregnancies end in miscarriage, but it didn’t make it easier. I felt guilty. I felt ashamed. I felt like I should have done something to prevent the loss. I hated when I heard ‘it was God’s will.’ I hated when I was told, “don’t worry, you’ll have another one.” I hated putting on a brave facade when I was so deeply hurt inside. Most of all, I hated that I was somewhat glad that only a few knew I was pregnant and I wouldn’t have to have many feel pity on me.
I recently read the personal story that Mark Zuckerberg shared, of his journey with his wife and having had 3 miscarriages. I wish more people in our society would openly talk about it, so that it doesn’t feel like a failure as a woman when you have a miscarriage.
It’s been four months since the miscarriage. I’m taking one day at a time hoping that being open and vulnerable in writing this article will help me heal. I hate that the memory of the pregnancy has started fading away. I’m terrified of getting pregnant again even when I still so strongly want another child. Despite all, my prayer is that that my little Angel knows I love her even though I didn’t get to meet her.