There’s been a lot of talk about miscarriage lately, and whilst I don’t presume to say I know how the fathers feel in these situations, I do have a question, and you’ll have to bear with me.
It’s not a long question but there is a reason for it taking a while to explain.
You see, I always believed that the closest I have gotten to a miscarriage was when, at about four months my wife phoned me from work distraught to say she was bleeding heavily. I drove straight to her and took her to the hospital where we were told she had indeed had a miscarriage and would need to stay in overnight for observation.
I had to leave her there that night and that was the most awful, gut wrenching feeling I’d ever had. I remember I went Home sat on the couch and stared at the wall.
Right at the line in the wallpaper where I’d accidentally joined the pattern wrong years previously. A sight that up until that point had made me chuckle and caused my wife to shake her head at me coupled with an amused, exasperated sigh.
But at that point, I felt nothing.
I sat there all night, I think I must have fallen asleep at some point but I was still there in the morning, and it was there I stayed until visiting hours commenced once more.
Now it turned out that the baby was still there.
There was a surprise blood test result followed by a nurse sprinting down the corridor to the ultrasound room to grab someone before they left for the day which resulted in us seeing the tiniest heart, beating away on a tiny screen that has forever become my default answer to the question, what’s your favourite movie?
It’s pretty obvious that this was not a miscarriage. No-one knew why there’d been bleeding and it was never figured out. But let’s get back to my original question. You see we had become pregnant after two rounds of IVF. The first round didn’t work, and this is where my question comes in.
The first round didn’t work, and this is where my question comes in.
That first round may not have worked but the eggs had fertilised. They had turned into embryos. Hell, they even showed them to us on a screen! (More movies). They were implanted days after they had started to develop, but something went wrong and at some point, they stopped.
So what’s the difference between a miscarriage and a failed IVF attempt?
I mean, we knew we had fertilised embryos, Christ we (stupidly) even named them. You know like the nicknames you give the bump so they’re not called ‘bump’ the whole time.
Is it really so different to a miscarriage?
We both cried for days. We nearly gave up trying at all. Now I know there’s different medical terminology for failed cycles and all that but, there’s still a sense of loss.
Maybe I’m wrong, maybe I’m not but that’s the question.
Now, don’t get me wrong I don’t think there is a right answer to this. I don’t think it’s possible for someone to answer this question without being subjective.
I’m not writing this for an answer, I’m writing this to say to those that have had a miscarriage, I don’t think I can fathom your pain.
But I think I might be able to feel some of it.