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Breathe, hold. Scream.Think of the goal–a beautiful baby girl. I writhed in agony and shame. My thoughts drifted back to English class in high school when I felt my baby move for the first time. An ocean wave of motion, as she rolled over from the left side of my body, to the right, nearly knocking me out of my chair, as I struggled to pay attention about Haikus. 

At seventeen, I thought my life was over. Within in five months, I graduated highschool, moved out of my mom’s house, turned eighteen, got married and gave birth to a 9lb, 3oz baby girl. In which case, the birth alone scared me into never wanting to have sex.

Never again.

Because I was so young, the nurses didn’t take me seriously when I called and came in about the fluid I was leaking (that particular nurse was terminated). Three days after being sent home by that nurse, my mid-wife found I had a high leak in my amniotic sac, leaving the baby in almost no fluids and subjecting us both to the risk of a life threatening infection. 

I was rushed to the hospital where the nurses broke the rest of my water to stimulate full fledged labor. And tears came, not from the pain but from the shame impressed upon me as I overheard the nurses saying, “I don’t care if her water broke. Let the pain teach her a lesson. I’ll call the doc for her epidural when she’s dilated to four.” 

Oh dear God, what did I do? This hurts so bad, let it pass. Please,”  I said as I crushed the hands of my best friend Josh and my new husband of 2 months. (Seriously, when you’re a cheerleader and blond AND you end up pregnant, your guy friends become your close friends. Josh even became my baby’s god-father.)

So, at barely 18 years of age, I became a mama. 

Not wanting to get pregnant again, I researched the contraceptive methods my mid-wife urged me to review. We settled on the IUD, but within a year, I had it removed because of multiple complications. I tried birth control pills and even the patch.

Each type of contraception had major drawbacks, either my moods were out of whack enough to send me into a straight jacket, or it would cause the veins in the back of my legs to burst, can we say clots!?!? Since I was barely 20, I gave up the idea of birth control; being busy with school, my now toddling daughter and husband; the stress (or so I thought) caused my periods to stop altogether. Not such a bad thing right?

Being a young college girl, who cared if I didn’t have a visit from mother nature with her tenacious gift of cramps, moodiness, and bloating. Yet now that I’m 30 and wanting another child, I’ve practically begged mother nature to come. Unfortunately when she does, she comes with a vengeance (and that’s why I have an ongoing relationship with Percocet). But wait, I’m getting ahead of myself, that’s a whole other post.

Some of my close high school friends were like me, they faithfully took their birth control, went to college, started a career, got married, and now as they are entering their mid-thirties, they cannot get pregnant. My friend *Amity is furious, she did everything text book style. Wanting to have a strong family foundation established in which to bring the fruit of her womb forth; she learns instead, the birth control caused complications on top of the “You have such and such diagnosis.”  Meaning, no baby is ever likely to come from her womb. 

 I wonder how many of us are out there. We smile as our friends announce once again they are pregnant as if it’s like a sneeze affect.

I wonder how many of us are secretly hurting because we long to hold that baby in our arms and yet, we’ve buried more than our fair share of babies before they were born.

I question our sanity in any case. 

So here I am, after a very recent and dangerous miscarriage. Here I am–wanting to be pregnant and praying that my chance is soon. 

Here I am with three kids. Two are flukes 7 years, 0 months, 18 days, and 22 minutes apart. And the 3 year-old-baby of the family, was a round-house effort in all things hormones, tests, graphs, charts, and fertility drugs, and another unexpected. Another gone before I could see her sweet smile.

Here I am wondering if there are others like me whom that doctor has labeled their body’s as,

“Defective, hostile, and incompetent.” 

What’s your story? Is it like mine? Should I just accept what I have and be grateful or follow where my heart and my husband’s is leading? Either way, we are going through the infertility process. Come what may, if it’s not in God’s plans to conceive, we plan to adopt.

Heather Riggleman

Heather Riggleman believes Jazzercise, Jesus, and tacos can fix anything but not necessarily in that order. You can visit heatherriggleman.com to find out more. 

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In: Child Loss, Grief, Infertility, Motherhood
To the Moms and Dads Who Suffer Loss: You Are Not Alone www.herviewfromhome.com

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