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I have been avoiding this blog post. I knew I needed to finish writing this part, but for me, this was one of the most difficult memories. I was unprepared for the miscarriage experience and it had a lot of long-term mental health affects. 

From the doctor’s estimation, we could trace back to when the baby stopped developing, during the time of my grandfather’s funeral. However, my internal body stubbornly kept on going for weeks as if nothing was wrong. Just like me, stubborn. 

They gave me medicine to help my body let go of the eleven week pregnancy so I would not go septic. My body was still not registering fully that the pregnancy was no longer progressing.

My husband, sister-in-law and my cousin supported me throughout the weekend and I am eternally grateful for their love and support.

We planned to start the process on a Saturday morning. I went to our apartment bathroom and sat on the toilet, staring at the medicine. I knew I had to stick this medicine up my private parts.

A rush of thoughts and resistance came up. The thoughts repeated like on a feedback loop: “What if they were wrong and the baby was not dead? What if by sticking this medicine in me, I would be the one ending my baby’s life? I don’t want to do this. Oh gosh please I don’t want to do this.”

Logically, I knew the doctors were not lying to me or making a mistake. I knew that if we did not try this route, I could get very sick or die. Eventually my hands moved on their own without the support of my mind and glided the medicine within me. I silently came out of the bathroom, my loved ones standing in the kitchen watching me with concern, love and apprehension. 

I sat on the couch and waited. I had no idea what to expect. We watched corny movies to await the blood. When it started, it came suddenly with a ferocity of waves of pain. My body started contracting, pushing out pieces of my womb and soul. I rushed to the bathroom multiple times to change diaper-like pads that were overflowing. My sweet husband cleaned the floor several times from the blood that would escape the pads. 

By the evening I was exhausted and nowhere near done. One set of contractions actually had me crouching on the floor, gripping my husband’s hands as I had the urge to push. I breathed like I was in labor, which in a way I was. The evening comes back to me in only small flashes. The feeling of my cousin rubbed my back in circles as I breathed through pain. My husband’s hands supported my body as I cried out and shook. My sister-in-law’s eyes welled up with tears as she whispered something sweet and supportive. The sight of going to the bathroom and hearing a plop; looking down and watching a spherical object floating delicately through the water as ribbons of blood danced around it. Having to flush was the hardest part. There was no baby there. Just a delicate empty egg.

I bled for a month. Two days after I took the medicine, the school year had started and I needed to teach my third graders. There was no time off that could be taken so I forced my weary body to go everyday and plastered a smile on my face. This was the start of wearing The Jazmin Suit. I would continue to mask for over a year. Throughout the day, I would escape to the classroom bathroom as I felt a contraction coming on, biting down on a towel as I silently endured the waves of pain and blood. I was completely unaware that miscarriages could take this long. Neither did I know that this would not be my first miscarriage. 

There is not a lot of common knowledge about the world of miscarriages. Once you have one, everyone comes out of the woodwork to say they had one also. Growing up we get tons of information of how our bodies will change during puberty, how sex can equal pregnancy and the different ways to practice safe sex. Yet, where are the talks about the different ways one can experience a miscarriage? How a miscarriage can affect both the body and mind? This needs to be an equally important subject instead of taboo. I wish I would have known what to expect. I wish I would have set up a support system past that weekend. I wish our medical system would establish mental health therapy immediately after a miscarriage, because I struggled immensely not understanding the signs and symptoms of PTSD and Postpartum Depression. 

If you have experienced a miscarriage, please know that you are not alone. Reach out to a trained professional and get help. There are support groups now on Zoom or possibly in your local area. Whether your miscarriage was at 1 week or 40 weeks, your attachment to that baby was important to you. Or you can reach out to me, someone who has been through that physical and emotional pain, and found my silver lining.