NADOFOTOS via Getty Images
Yuichiro Chino via Getty Images
You have probably noticed the Mother's Day advertisements plastered on every available sign and window-front for the last month. However, these ads can provoke a painful reaction in some women and couples, which is one important reason why International Bereaved Mother's Day is so important.
Alicia Lawrence Fabrisi
Pregnancy loss is a sensitive topic.
AntonioGuillem via Getty Images
These images are raising awareness about the reality of stillbirth in a very meaningful way.
Andersen Ross via Getty Images
The emotional distress started to make me feel sick all the time and it came to the point that I just couldn't continue like this anymore. I decided that my first step to healing was to talk to people who have experienced the same type of loss, and by doing this it helped me realize that everything I was feeling was normal.
"By labeling it as a traumatic loss, we validate the experience."
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
I think we do all women a disservice when we don't challenge the "Disneyfication" of our reproductive experience. Pregnancy is glorified as transcendent despite its many dark elements. Birth is similarly idealized. But miscarriages resist beatification; at best, they are an extremely efficient expulsion of expired reproductive material by one's own body.
The holidays are a joyful time of celebration and coming together with friends and family. But for families who have lost a loved one, the holidays can be especially difficult. Old memories and traditions offer reminders of loved ones no longer there. Families who have lost babies can find the holidays particularly bittersweet.
One year ago today I experienced my second miscarriage; almost a year prior to that I had the first. Looking back these last two years, I often feel disconnected as if what I went through didn't really happen.
Women often feel guilt, thinking a stressful event or something like their previous use of oral contraceptives caused the miscarriage. The majority of time, miscarriage is a random, isolated event and a cause can't be determined.
Mathew Zucker via Getty Images
While the majority of people haven't found the courage yet to talk with expectant parents about the risk of losing a child, how to survive such tragedies and continue to live, we need to be even more diligent in ensuring that we have experienced specialists in place that are available every time parents are facing the tragedy of losing their baby.
The shifts in friendships and relationships are extreme. The negative ones go all the way to a feeling of being shunned. Here comes the living nightmare, take cover. A couple who lost two children. Sometimes it feels like we have a contagious virus that others try to dodge by avoiding bereaved parents.
There is a fantasy surrounding pregnancy portraying it as a blissful state when women glow with health and the miracle of life. Yet, when a woman has experienced miscarriage and/or infertility, a pregnancy can be filled with fear and anxiety. We are not women who will ever experience that radiance that is supposed to accompany pregnancy.
I don't know where it came from, I don't know why, but from one moment to the next I was mourning my unborn babies. My heart felt the painful cramp of loss like it was freshly earned. I felt a wash of trauma sweep over me and I gasped to catch my breath. Great. Right here on vacation in Florida. In Target.