August 10, 2015
When Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan recently announced their pregnancy, along with their three prior miscarriages, I did a couple of emotional back flips. First was the heartfelt camaraderie felt among members of a club no one wants any part of, and happiness for them that they now have good baby news to share. Next was the gladness that the media blew up with pieces urging increased awareness of pregnancy loss and encouraging people to share their stories. While not everyone feels compelled to share such private pain, the opportunity for those that do to do it in a more informed, thoughtful, compassionate environment can only be good, and has been a long, lonely time coming. And I for one have a lot to say.
The last couple of months have felt like a coming out for me, in terms of both my writing and my reproductive journey. Indeed, the two are not unrelated. I struggled so painfully with my miscarriages and everything that came with them that I wrote a book about it titled What Didn’t Kill Me. I now have two amazing children, ages 9 and 3, and I still struggle (more on that in an upcoming post), because reproductive trauma doesn’t end with having a baby in a bassinet next to the bed. I’ve kept my reproductive story and my writing—painful and otherwise—very private for a very long time.
Around May of this year, I finally felt ready to dip my toe into the waters of sharing my writing and my miscarriages. I gotta say, it has felt like Niagra fucking Falls. In a good way, but still. I’ve always been a goal setter and a planner and a doer, but for once it seems like things are moving way faster than I thought they would: Some online classes and loads of reading on how to get going as an author these days. Getting involved with Resolve, The National Infertility Association. A website, a blog, and social media—holy shit, the Facebook onslaught alone (and that’s with barely any friends or followers yet!). All with little kids and a (part-time) day job. And now the Zuckerberg news, which seems to have bumped discussion about miscarriage to the forefront at warp speed.
It all feels a bit overwhelming, and really, really good. Which I suppose is how a coming out should feel. Thanks for being here with me as I’m reading, writing, and raving about all of the above. My sincere hope is that it’s good for you, and others, too!