Kathy miscarried nine years ago, at the age of 15. She hopes her story can help someone going through something similar, so that they don't have to feel as alone as she did.
What had happened was never brought up or spoken about again, it was as if it never happened.
Right around my 15th birthday, I started missing my periods. I never took a test out of fear, but inside I knew I was pregnant but I tried to ignore it in the hope I was wrong.
I could feel my stomach getting bigger and felt sick a lot more often. My boyfriend at the time would joke about how if I really wanted to stop it he could punch me in the stomach really hard but it never came to that. Even though it was unplanned and unwanted, when I would walk home alone at night I would sing lullabies to myself and hold my stomach. I fantasised about naming her Lily. I never told anyone else what was going on.
After around 4 months, I got what I thought was a period and felt relieved. But it didn’t stop. I changed my pad 4 times within an hour but it kept filling with blood. I got really scared because I had never seen so much blood before in person. I started to get dizzy and felt nauseous so I went to the bathroom. When I threw up in the toilet the force of heaving put pressure on my stomach and it felt like a bucket of water splashing down my legs. My whole bathroom floor filled with blood. I opened the door and shouted for my mom.
I drifted in and out of consciousness but I remember her pulling off my jeans and wrapping a towel around my waist as I leaned my head on the toilet while we waited for the ambulance. She came with me in the ambulance. I vaguely remember the paramedic trying to talk to me but my vision was completely black and all I could feel was the movement of the vehicle. In the hospital they brought me to a private room in a wheelchair, gave me an oxygen mask and put some kind of clear liquid into my vein on a drip to bring up my blood pressure. My vision slowly started to come back and I felt less dizzy.
At one point I felt something come out of me but I waited for everyone to leave the room before I checked what it was. It was this strange looking blue organ that I now know was the after birth but at the time I was so freaked out I just wrapped it in tissue and threw it in the bin before anyone came back in. They told me in private that I was pregnant and had miscarried and offered to tell my mom for me, so I agreed and they told her outside my room. When she came back in all she said was ‘Why didn’t you tell me?’ So I lied and said ‘I didn’t know’. That’s the only thing that was ever said about it.
She went home and I stayed over night so I could get a scan early the next morning. It wasnt an ultrasound scan like I would see on TV, it was a long metal object that they stuck a condom on and put inside me. It hurt a lot and I could feel it up near my belly button on the inside. The nurse who was meant to hold my hand said she felt dizzy, and she left the room to get air, I think she was in shock over how young I was. The doctor was really nice though, and pointed out the blood clots to me on the screen and said that the miscarriage was complete and I wouldn’t need surgery.
My parents and siblings collected me from the hospital and they said I could go anywhere I wanted for food, so we got KFC and I ate in the back of the car not speaking to anyone. What had happened was never brought up or spoken about again, it was as if it never happened.
To this day, I haven’t spoken about what happened aloud because I have nobody I can tell this to. I had to go back to school a couple of days later, and I was worried that nobody would believe me if I told them what happened and that I would be called an attention seeker. So I kept quiet and dealt with it alone. My parents didn’t let me leave the house after that, so I had to stop seeing my boyfriend so I couldn’t even speak to him about it.
What was especially hard was that on the way home from the hospital, we got a call from my older brother – his girlfriend had gone into labour. This hurt me so much, because I had just lost a baby while someone else was getting to deliver hers.
I grew really attached to my niece from the very start, because I had all these hormones and maternal instincts but nothing to vent them into until I held her for the first time. I would spend every day looking after her (the mother was only 18 and her and my brother would go out to parties a lot while I happily babysat). It was as if she was my own baby. Her name was Holly and my lost baby was Lily, so they were both little flowers. To this day when I see Holly, I picture Lily standing next to her knowing that she would be the same age.
Even though it is 9 years later, I still think about Lily a lot and often get really depressed. I don’t think that I ever fully dealt with it, because it’s been a secret I’ve had to go through alone. I tried to tell a boyfriend once a few years later but he said it ‘upset him’ and never to talk about it with him again. This hurt because it obviously upset me too, but yet again I was left unable to speak to anyone. Now it is at the point where its been so long I feel that people would blame me for bringing it up, telling me to get over it, so I just don’t speak about it.
I am writing this both as a way to get it off my chest, but also to help anyone who is going through something similar. I would like them to know that they aren’t alone, and that with time the pain starts to heal although I think it will always leave a scar. I am sending my love to anyone else going through this right now.