We had just been informed that my wife's pregnancy had come to an end, in the form of a miscarriage, an hour or so before. One fact had escaped us when we received this news -- that my wife would have to go about her life over the next few days with our miscarried child still inside her, because our doctor only performed the D&Cs on Wednesday afternoons.
Few situations highlight our inability to fix and make better more starkly than the loss of a baby. Medical professionals treating a family affected by miscarriage or stillbirth are faced not only with the inability to fix or heal the baby who has died, but also uncertainty about how to respond to the grieving parents.
When the doctor confirmed my worst suspicions and slowly helped me up from the exam table, I asked, "What happens now? Do I need to have a D&C?" He shook his head no. "You'll need to deliver." With those words, I was transported into a "through the looking glass" world where life as it was supposed to be was turned on its head.
Most of all, sharing this story reminded me that we are not on this journey alone. Sure we have ourselves, and we have our family and friends. But we also have something else. Something that bonds us to each other. There is a big, big world out there full of people who are ready to love and ready to share, ready to listen and ready to give.
I wish I didn't have this expertise. Oh, so many times I've made this wish. Yet it's mine and it's one that I'm glad to use if doing so can help someone be better able to provide a bit of a peace to parents at a time when their world is falling apart. So I sat on this panel sharing my experience and owning my expertise.