What Not To Say

“Well thank goodness it was early on in the pregnancy.”

“At least you know you can get pregnant!”

“Everything happens for a reason.”

“I’m sure it was for the best.”

“It just was not meant to be.”

“I’m sure next time will be fine!”

“Just relax. It will happen when it’s meant to happen.”

These are just some of the things that you really should not ever say to a woman who has experienced a miscarriage. While you mean well, and we do acknowledge that and appreciate it for what it is, these words are not helpful, constructive, and they do not make us feel better. Because I guarantee for each of these phrases, our thoughts will protest and struggle against them.

Here are some examples of how the post-miscarriage mind works:

“Well thank goodness it was early on in the pregnancy.”
Yes! Thank goodness, indeed. It’s not like I LOVED the little baby growing inside me as soon as I saw a positive test result, no. Thank goodness I didn’t get attached.

“At least you know you can get pregnant!”
Yes, right! Now all we need to worry about is staying pregnant. Phew! What a relief!

“Everything happens for a reason.”
Really? What’s the reason that this happened? Can you tell me, because I cannot figure it out. I’ve tried, but nothing happens.

“I’m sure it was for the best.”
Hm. Yes. Finding out that my baby was dead, and going through the physical pain of losing said baby was for the best. Thank GOD we didn’t have to go through the alternative. You know, nine months of bliss, the birth of our child, the happiness that followed.. That would have been just awful.

“It just was not meant to be.”
Why the hell not?

“I’m sure next time will be fine!”
Really? Because I’m not. What if next time is not fine? What if this happens again? How can you be so sure?

“Just relax. It will happen when it’s meant to happen.”
First off, don’t tell me to relax. You try relaxing during, and after a miscarriage, and see how well you do. Second, what if it’s never “meant” to happen? How is that fair?

So you see, while you may mean well in saying these things to us, they usually are not received as well as you may think. Sure we’ll smile, and we’ll nod and agree with you, but inside we are screaming these things to you. We don’t want your words of wisdom, or advice. We don’t want to know just how common miscarriages are while you tick off the names of women you know who have had them. In lieu of these phrases, you could try ones such as these:

“I heard about your miscarriage. I’m so sorry. How are you and your husband doing?”

“I’m so sorry to hear about your loss. If there is anything at all I/we can do for you, please don’t hesitate to ask.”

“I heard you lost the baby. You must be feeling very sad right now. Would you like to talk about anything?”

“I heard about what happened. I just wanted to let you know I’m sorry, and that this really sucks and you don’t deserve it at all.”

Sometimes, all we need is acknowledgement of our loss, and our pain. I think that a lot of the time a miscarriage is overlooked by many people as a loss that is not valid, because most of the time it happens to early in the pregnancy. For me, one of the most helpful things anyone ever offered me in response to my bad news was a simple, “Man. That sucks.”
Because you know what?

It does suck. A lot. When you are planning for, and anticipating a baby the moment you find our you are pregnant, you are in love. It doesn’t matter if you are pregnant for 3 weeks, 5 weeks, 7 weeks, or 18 weeks. You love your child immediately, and losing that child is traumatic. Not only do your emotions run wild, but your hormones do as well. You have to deal with the fact emotionally that your baby has died, and to top that all off, your body has to deal with it as well. Your pregnancy is supposed to be a time of joy, and of a shared love with your partner. There is, after all, a life growing inside of your body. While I was pregnant, I smiled. All the time. Every time I was at the store and passed a baby section, I would take my husband’s hand, and place my other on my belly, dreaming of what our baby would look like. Thinking of the things that I couldn’t wait to buy him, or her. Waiting anxiously for the days when people could tell I was pregnant, and I could buy all of those cute maternity shirts I had been eyeing.

I would dream of the day that I gave birth, and met my much anticipated little one. I would spend my lunch breaks thinking about what he or she would look like as a toddler, as a child; as a teenager. I dreamed of the endless possibilites that lay before my little baby…

And when you find out that you lose that baby, before you even got a chance to meet them, it hurts. It is like a little piece of your soul is ripped unexpectedly from your body. I never even officially found out if my little one was a boy, or a girl (though I had a feeling that he was a boy). Now, instead of marking off the days of how much longer I have before I meet my little one, I wistfully eye the calendar every Saturday and think, “20 weeks. You should be 20 weeks.”

I should be feeling my baby move inside of me. We would be finding out the gender soon, and be able to call our baby by the name we’d chosen. But none of those things are happening for us now. And that. Sucks.

There is always hope. I have happiness in my life, and I don’t dwell on my miscarriage every moment. But I do think about that little baby that I’ll never get to meet every single day of my life. I still get sad. I still count the weeks that pass that my belly remains the same size instead of swelling. I am back at square one of hoping, wishing, and wanting for my baby. I love my children so much already, and I have not even met them yet. And I am not the only woman out there who feels like this. Chances are that girl you know from work, your sister or your aunt, even your mother, have all felt the same way. A woman who loses their baby before they get to meet them has a special kind of pain. It is a pain that, unless you have experienced it, you cannot understand.

So thank you for trying, really. We do know that people often fall short of what they want to say when faced with someone who has just had a miscarriage. The best thing that you can do, honestly, is to just be there with an open ear, and a dry shoulder for us to cry on.

Because believe me, we’re going to need it.

10 pounds gone, a mile jogged, allergy fits

Well as of this weekend, I have officially lost 10 pounds. I weighed in at 160 pounds on Saturday. I’m extremely excited, and proud that I’ve made it this far, but I do also realize that I have at LEAST 20 more to go.

On Sunday I wanted a break from the elliptical, so I decided to see how far I could jog on the treadmill at 5.0 MPH. I’ve never been able to jog a mile, so that was my goal. I didn’t think I’d make it but lo and behold, I did. And I wasn’t even really winded! I was extremely proud, and happy.

Sunday my diet went to hell, but I had expected it. My mother in law cooked an Easter dinner, and I ate the hell out of it. It was so fabulous and good, though I felt MISERABLE afterward. My stomach was like “What the HELL are you doing to me?!”

I have been getting really good exercise in the past week. I MAYBE have a new job on the horizon (this is a HUGE HUGE HUGE maybe, I haven’t even been called about an interview yet). My allergies are going crazy today even though I took a Claritin this morning. I hope they clear up soon, because I probably look really horrible with my runny nose and watery eyes.

I just found out that one of the group members from my Spark People local group lost her 9 year old daughter last week. She had an unexpected brain hemmorage, and died. I felt like someone slapped me in the face when I read that. I didn’t know her personally, but was supposed to meet her this coming Sunday for the walk. I don’t know if she’s going to attend or not, but I doubt it. I feel so sad, and so horrible for her.

I just sneezed three times in a row. I can’t (four times in a row) go home from work; for one, I went home last Monday and for two, my manager called out sick. So, I’m stuck here sneezing and sniffling.

That’s all for now..

Goals and Rewards

When I lose ten pounds, I am going to allow myself to buy that Bumble & Bumble hair set that I have my eye on at Target.
I have currently lost 8.5 pounds. Almost there!

Losin’ and Sneezin’

Well, this weekend was lazy. I took a day off on Friday because my legs were killing me, and I didn’t want to hurt them. I had all intentions on doing my Saturday morning cardio and yoga class, but unfortunately on Friday night after our Warhammer game my brother in law and I got really drunk. When Josh and I got home I wasn’t tired, and I ended up not going to bed until 7 AM. I was supposed to meet Michelle at the gym at 9:30. I texted her early on an told her that I was just going to skip Saturday. Bad Natalie!

I did go on Sunday, and weighed in. I’ve lost another pound. I’m now at 161.5. When I did my very first weigh in 6 weeks ago, I weighed 170. So, I’m making progress!

I’m going home sick today from work. I feel pretty bad… I have to wait an hour to an hour and a half. The coworker who relieves me for lunch, and covers for me when I’m out sick and what have you has some things to be done early this morning. I don’t mind; I’m just glad that I’m going to get to go home.

Nothing really else to report… Today is a rest day, so I don’t have to feel badly about being sick and not making it to the gym. Back to it tomorrow..

Taking it easy

Ever since the kickboxing class on Wednesday, I’ve been taking it easy. My leg muscles are screaming at me, and upon the wise advise of my dear husband, I’ve decided to take today off. I worked out very lightly with Michelle last night (we just walked on treadmills.. I put an incline on mine, but walked at a steady/slow pace). Tomorrow it’s back, I have yoga in the morning. Woot!

There is a possibility of a new job on the horizon, one with a company I’ve kind of had my eye on in my peripheral vision for a few months. My friend Ryan works there, and the way he talks about it, it seems mega laid back, and just an overall good place to work. I’m excited about the prospect of a new job, because this one is wearing on me already. I haven’t even been here for a year, and already I’m tired of it. My coworkers and manager are very cool, but as far as professionally goes.. I’m left with a lot of work picking up where others lack. And I’m not okay with that. I also don’t feel like I get paid enough for the work I do.

So, we’ll see what happens. I went to my coworker’s going away mini-party today. He got a new job.. I had a slice of cake and a handful of Doritos. I went to McDonald’s for lunch and got a Happy Meal with apple slices instead of french fries. I looked up the nutritional info, and the cheeseburger I had was only 300 calories, much to my surprise. So I don’t feel too horrible about the things I’ve eaten today.

I can’t wait to get this weight off, and feel like me again. It’s going to be wonderful.

I got my ass kicked…. Almost literally!

Owwwwwwwwwwww.
I went to the Rush last night all by myself for a class.. It was called Knock Out Gear Up, and I was expecting another “kickboxing” class like Tuesday night’s class that Michelle and I attended. Well, this WAS kickboxing.. But it was taught by someone who actually KICKBOXED. It was less of a cardio class, and more of a controlled movement class. He taught us how to crouch defensively against punches, and draw our legs up defensively against kicks. We did things like that, we worked on our balance and control, and the last half of the class we sparred. At first, he just made punching/kicking movements in the mirror and we were to dodge accordingly, trying to predict his movements.
The last 20 minutes of the class, he brought out these punching blocks. We paired off (luckily there was an even number of people in the class), one of us holding the bag and the other “attacking”. We were instructed to hit and kick at the block best we could, while the person HOLDING the block was to dodge us, move, and try and keep us from kicking or punching it. I did well until it was my turn to spar the instructor. He only had the hand pads, and he would punch (not actually punching, it was more jabbing motions that were feigned punches.. Had we been in an actual kickboxing match I would have had bruises all over me) and kick, trying to teach me to be defensive. It was really hard, but I absolutely loved it.
We did an ab workout to end the session, and stretches. My legs are on fire, my arms are killing me, and I loved it. I’ll be back next Wednesday if I get off work in time.
I decided to make last night my “bad” night. Josh and I went out and ate Chinese food. I enjoyed every bite, and I only had two small plates. I normally load down my plates but I ate small portions, and felt very full. It was deeeeelicious.
Tonight, I’m taking it easy. Treadmill and abs only, because my legs, knees, and arms need a rest. Tomorrow night… WARHAMMER! Yah!!! And rest. No workout for me tomorrow night.

Kickboxing

Last night Michelle and I went to the gym to try out a kickboxing class. We’ve done a few step aerobics classes in the past few weeks, and have enjoyed them.

I’m on week 5 of my exercise and healthy living regimen. I’ve been consistently working out 5 days a week, sometimes more since then. I’m in much better shape than I was at the start but apparently, I am not quite in the shape that I thought.

We took the class, and within 20 minutes of it, I wanted to curl into a corner and die. It hurt so badly! It was making me move and use my muscles (my leg muscles in particular) in ways that they were not used to, and believe me, they were letting me know. During the class, I hated it, and wanted to quit. As soon as it was over, I was exhilirated, and felt amazing. I felt like I had gotten a truly great workout for the first time since I started this program. I will definitely be incorporating that class into my weekly regimen. Kickboxing Tuesdays, Yoga Saturdays.

I’ve lost 7.5 pounds thus far, in 5 weeks. I know that is pretty good, but in my head, it’s not enough. I’m such an impatient person, I want to buy new clothes right now. I’ve lost an inch off my waist, hips, and thighs, and it’s still not enough for me. I’m wondering if I’m pushing myself as hard as I possibly could. Some days the answer is yes, and some days the answer is no. I need to be continually stepping it up, so I don’t plateau already.

In other news, I am now the team leader of the Chattanooga Chew Chews, which is a group that will be participating in the 3.1 mile walk to benefit AIDS Awareness called the Strides of March. The event is on the 30th, and I’m really excited about it. I’m working to raise money for the foundation. If you happen to stumble across this blog, and on the off chance that you’d like to donate, there’s a link to my personal donation page on the right hand side of this blog. I’m not expecting much of a contribution. My mother has already donated $25, and that’s good for now. This is the first time I’ve ever done something like this, and I feel really, really good about it. I’m interested in keeping my eyes open for anything else that comes along like this. I’m particularly interested on doing things for the March of Dimes.

So, that’s all for now. I’m still working on getting this weight off. I know that I can do it, I have it in me. I’m not giving up or quitting, I’m just a little discouraged and I really don’t have any reason to be. My weight loss thus far is still very, very good.

Good morning

I had a very good weekend… I got some good exercise in, ate a few too many bad foods (I wasn’t horrible but I also was not as good as I should have been), and didn’t really feel badly about it. I played Warhammer Saturday night with my husband, brother in law, and our friends, and my character died within an hour and a half of gameplay. I didn’t mind; I really did not care for her.

We played again Sunday, with me rolling up a new character whom I like way better than my last.

That’s enough gaming talk.

I weighed in Saturday at 162.5, which puts me at a 7 1/2 pound weight loss in 5 weeks. Not bad. I’m getting impatient because while my clothes are fitting better, I’m still not at the point where I need new pants. Most of the change I can see is in my upper body; my arms and whatnot. My thighs are still gigantic. I didn’t get a chance to measure myself, so hopefully this coming weekend I’ll get to and I’ll see a change.

Today is my rest day, which is good. I’m feeling kind of sore. Ugh. I am putting off doing these stupid monthly summaries for work. If you saw them and the work involved, you’d be putting them off, too. I’m not sure how much longer I can stay in this job, doing the things I do, for this pay. Even if they paid me more, I don’t think I’d want to stay here much longer.

Ugh.

Fitness

Well, I did it. I joined a gym. I’ve been going with my friend Michelle about 3 times a week now as her guest (her membership allows her to bring someone for free each visit), but on the days I don’t go with her, I’ve been having to work out at our apartment complex’s gym. I hate our apartment complex’s gym. It’s a tiny little room with a treadmill, an elliptical, a bike, and a weight bench. I don’t like being in there alone, and the machines are old and are never cleaned. I dread going, and get bored. I am not the type of person that can exercise on her own; I have come to find that out. I need a gym.

So, last night Michelle and I went to the gym a little early to chat with someone about a membership for me. I chose a limited membership; for $39.00 a month I can go to only one branch, and can only go three days a week. I chose Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday because those are the days I don’t get to go with Michelle. So basically, my only off day from exercise will be Monday. I go with Michelle Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays (yoga!). I signed a 36 month contract, which made me kind of anxious at first but I realize that it will make me adopt this as a lifestyle, not just.. A “weight loss” program. I don’t want to just lose weight, I want to be healthy and stay healthy.

I worry about what will happen when I do get pregnant. I know that I want to exercise while I’m pregnant, but after the baby comes, I won’t be able to do much of anything for at least 6 weeks while I heal. The guy I signed up with said I could freeze my account with a doctor’s note, so that’s good.

I’m cutting this a little short.. I’ve got stuff I have to do.

Goals

When your goals seem far away..
When it’s hard to breathe..
When the tears well up in your eyes thinking of your loss, the absence..
Keep your eyes on your goal…
Your health.. Your body.. Your baby, depends on this.
Remember, it will be yours someday.. Someday soon..
To the one that I had… I loved you from the moment I knew you were there. I proudly exclaimed when you were the size of a poppyseed, and excitedly updated when you grew. And then, you stopped growing. I loved you as much then as I would if you’d have taken your first breath… I miss you every single day.
And to my ones that aren’t here yet… The love you will find in my arms, and in the arms of your father will be overwhelming, and amazing. We have not met you yet, and already we love and want you so, so much. I cannot wait to meet you, little ones. However many of you there may be.
<3