Miscarriage can impact every part of our lives. At least, it did for me. By the time I finished undergoing the physical process of the loss, I felt like I did not know who I was. I did not know what day it was, only that I had been in bed for almost a week. I needed to care for myself after my loss.
I cocooned myself at home for almost a month, barely leaving, just sitting in my grief and not knowing how to begin life again. I took things slowly. There were some things I did too quickly, and they took me back a few steps. Through trial and error, I learned the things that helped me feel okay and care for myself. The things and actions that gave me a small sense of peace, like I had finally caught my breath.
Love Your Body
Forgive it. Your body did all that it could do. It is okay to feel like it failed you, but also realize all it has done for you. Practice physical self-care: do yoga, take long baths, have a spa day. Do whatever gives you calm and peace. And spend a minute or two during those times telling your body that you love it. It will take time to fully trust it again, but this is a start.
Give Yourself a Break
If you can take some time off of work, then do so. No matter how early your loss was. Do not force yourself to go out, even grocery shopping. If you want to stay home in bed for five days, allow yourself that time, if you can. I canceled plans last minute or I didn’t make them at all. I did not push myself to go anywhere I did not absolutely have to. This meant that usually when I went out I was able to feel calmer about the excursion and not break down halfway through.
Related Post: My Miscarriage Wasn’t Just A Heavy Period
If you don’t usually buy new clothes or you only have a glass of wine once every few months, it’s okay to indulge during this time. Allow yourself to buy a new shirt. Allow yourself one glass of wine. Buy some cake. Whatever it is, mark a day for yourself to do something you enjoy but do not do often. It’s okay to have some extra chocolate right now and enjoy it.
Don’t Force Yourself to Feel Hopeful
Hope will come. Maybe not even for a long time. But don’t force it. You do not have to put a smile on every day. You don’t have to say or feel that things will get better. And you do not have to say thank you or feel comforted when a friend tells you that things will get better either. Keep space for hope and welcome it when it arrives, but also give your grief space right now.
Related Post: Hope, Despair, and Being Honest
Be Open with Yourself About Your Feelings
This can look like many things. Maybe you journal about everything you are feeling: the good, bad, and the ugly. Or maybe you post openly on social media about your experience. You could also spend some time with a compassionate, non-judgemental friend, and share with them all of your thoughts and emotions. This can help you feel less alone. Or at the very least, it might help you feel a little lighter. Maybe these suggestions sound like too much all at once. That is okay. Just pick one and feel the kindness and care you are giving yourself. After everything you’ve been through, you deserve it.
Feature Photo by Carli Jeen
Heidi Beltran is the mother of Talia Luna, who was lost to a missed miscarriage at 11 weeks in April of 2016, and her Rainbow Baby, Atlas Delilah Rose, born December 2017. You can follow her on Instagram to see her journey.