But lots of people seem to have experienced it (1 in 4, they say).
Shhhh ... don't say it too loudly ... miscarriage.
Oh wait, I mean ...
It's really sad to lose a baby. It doesn't matter if that baby has been born still, lived for days or months and then died or if that baby only gestated for 6 weeks ... 12 weeks ... 17 weeks before it died without its parents even getting to meet it.
We had a miscarriage. Nate is not our first. In May of 2007 we got pregnant for the first time after 5 months of trying (with one month off). August 31, 2007 we got to meet little Jonathan, though he had already died by the time he was born. He had been growing for 17 weeks. Though we don't know for sure when he stopped breathing in utero, according to his size he may have died around 14 weeks.
After it happened, which was about a month after we had started telling work and more people than just family, so many women told me that they had had one too. Men told me that their wives had had them. Friends told me that their moms had had one. But nobody talks about it.
I do. I talk about it without any embarassment. I didn't do anything wrong. Most miscarriages don't have a known cause. Especially the ones that happen before that "magic" 12-week mark. Sometimes they're not healthy. Jonathan wasn't healthy. He just lasted a little longer than many. We're lucky to even know the cause of his death. See, since I was 17 weeks along, we were given a choice. Instead of miscarrying naturally, which is sometimes a possibility (it's like a really heavy, rather a bit more painful period, I have heard), we could either get a D & E (not D & C, those happen earlier on, after a certain point, it's E for extraction), or get induced and deliver. Our first thought -- get it DONE! D & E. No doubts. However, it was Thursday before Labor Day weekend. We wouldn't have been able to go in until Tuesday because the doctor was booked on Friday. My body hadn't realized the baby was dead yet. Our reasons for choosing D & E was to get it over with. Tuesday was too far away. So we went in Thursday evening and I was induced. I delivered tiny Jonathan around 4am. He was small enough to fit in the palm of my hand but big enough to be able to see he was a boy. :D And big enough to see the problem.
He had an omphalocele. A really bad one. An omphalocele is when the intestines are outside of the body. When a baby develops, its intestines develop outside of its abdomen and then by 12 weeks or so the abdomen closes up around them. Sometimes a little piece gets closed up outside and that's an omphalocele. Jonathan basically had everything out. Poor kiddo.
It was really really sad. Really sad. 5 months later we did get pregnant again, and 9 months after that Nate was born. No problems.
So if it is so sad, why do I talk about it? Well, because I think miscarriages should be talked about. Because Nate is not my first. Because I've had 2 pregnancies to draw experiences from. Because Nate has an older brother that he will know about. And just because I want to, dammit. It helps me.