Throughout the last decade of my journey with PCOS and infertility, I’ve had more dreams than I can count that are related to pregnancy and childbirth. While going through fertility treatments, I can remember dreaming about getting two pink lines on a pregnancy test. I remember dreaming about those sweet little kicks and what they would feel like. Each pregnancy dream gave me so much hope and I felt like each one was a sign… a gift… a glimpse of what was to come. I would wake up from those dreams feeling so happy.
When I was pregnant with my daughter, I had so much hope and joy as I dreamt about what she’d look like. I can remember dreaming that she had dark curly hair at birth and was so tiny. Imagine my surprise to see that she did end up looking exactly how I had dreamed… dark curly hair, 6 lbs 6 oz. I loved dreaming about her when she was in the womb. I loved seeing that dream come to fruition.
Pregnancy dreams after a miscarriage? Totally different story.
A month ago, I had a series of very vivid pregnancy dreams back-to-back a few nights in a row. The first couple of nights were dreams of those two pinks lines and getting to tell my husband the news. I woke up from those dreams feeling indifferent. I woke up questioning how I’d feel if I did see two pink lines. Would I be elated? Would I be cautious?
The last dream in the dream-a-thon took my breath away. I had dreamed that I was pregnant… very pregnant… and I was going into labor. Except it wasn’t a joyous occasion because I knew that the baby wasn’t alive. I remember telling my friend in the dream, “I haven’t felt movement in a few days. I don’t want her to be born, I just want her to stay inside me forever.” But regardless, my body was ready to evict this beautiful life from me. And with each contraction, I sobbed. I woke up in tears, shaking, and clutching my belly. I felt such anguish over this dream all day long, and it ended with a headache.
My miscarriage was a first-trimester loss, and while I did experience a 4-hour labor that was absolutely horrific, it wasn’t anything like what I had dreamed. In real life, I did physically feel my baby’s sac pass from my body, and then later passed a placenta, and it was awful. I bled for weeks upon weeks and continued to gain weight as if I was still pregnant. I mourned and grieved and struggled to get by week-to-week and month-to-month while tolerating everyone else’s pregnancies than ran the same timeline as mine. But… I have no idea where my brain cooked up this whole scene. It felt as if my soul was being tormented by Satan himself.
Waking up from such a dream casts a horrible black shadow on your whole day.
I felt fear… so much fear. I felt like if I ever do get pregnant again, there’s no way I’d be able to enjoy it. I couldn’t enjoy it because this… this could happen. Every passing day would be filled with wonder and doubt that the baby would come home. Every week would come with new anxieties. Pregnancy is no longer something I can look forward to because I know it doesn’t always end with a living baby. I knew this before the dream, but now it’s like it has been stamped on my soul. My pregnancy with my daughter was scary, complicated, high-risk, and developed into a very rare condition that ended with preterm labor and a NICU stay. My second pregnancy ended abruptly. Pregnancy is tainted for me.
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Sometimes I go to bed at night and pray that God will spare me from pregnancy dreams. The dreams that once gave me hope now fill me with doubt and fear. The dreams that were once mine to hold onto in belief of babies to come are now nightmares. Dreams about pregnancy are no longer dreams. They no longer bring me hope and joy. They’re my worst nightmare.
Photo by Yuris Alhumaydy on Unsplash