Zero For Two: My Uterus Hates Me
I was a fangirl ever since I first listened to Sickboy and yet I never really felt that my own story would have any merit in a sea of discussions about brain tumours, cystic fibrosis, and mental illness (to name a few). What I was experiencing, as explained to me by my doctors, was a very common phenomenon. 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage, which is an insane statistic. I was batting 0 for 2 after having two pregnancies end in miscarriage since last July. My husband and I had been trying to start a family for two years, and this wasn’t exactly working out as planned.
After my second miscarriage last November, and having many stilted conversations around the subject, I decided to submit to be a guest on the podcast on a whim. A week after my submission, Sickboy posted a poignant article written by Dayna Winter that said everything I wanted to say (with much more humour and eloquence, I should add!) about the brutality of having a miscarriage. I read the article out loud to my husband that evening, and we laughed over the similarities in our experiences. We were finding the humour in our own situation through the help of someone else and there was a weight being lifted off our shoulders. It had only been two months since our last miscarriage, and we had been feeling pretty down about life since then. Laughter and joy were two things missing from our experience with infertility, and we were beginning to find it.
Shortly after that article was posted, Jeremie called me and said they wanted to talk all things blood and dead babies with me, and I was thrilled. After solidifying a date to record, I hung up the phone and was instantly terrified. What the hell was I doing? I am an open person to my close friends and family, but I have kept my battle with infertility a silent struggle for anyone beyond my inner circle. I had a hard time even saying the word “miscarriage” and would sometimes tell people, “I was pregnant, and now I’m not...” They would mumble some platitudes, and that would be the end of our discussion.
I was getting the message loud and clear that people didn’t want to talk about it and I perpetuated this by staying silent. I went to work just two days after my second D and C (a surgery that involves the scraping out of the uterus after a miscarriage, for anyone wondering) and I didn’t tell anyone that I was walking around for four weeks slowly losing a child that I had wanted so badly. I felt like my uterus hated me and was left struggling with the emotional downfall of hormones after each loss I had. I was experiencing something very traumatic in isolation, and it left both my husband and I trying to navigate this road alone.
So that’s exactly why I signed on to do this. Nobody fucking talks about it. I was perpetuating the stigma around infertility by not speaking up, and in the process I was making myself feel even more isolated and ashamed. 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage and yet nobody knows what a miscarriage is? That’s crazy. I put my fears aside and I showed up the night of the recording to take a seat at the fourth mic in their studio. I sat down and easily talked about the two most horrific experiences of my life to three genuinely interested and kind guys. Nobody patted me on the head and said, “these things just happen,” and nobody gave me a sad, knowing look, and then changed the subject. For the first time since my first miscarriage, I was laughing and having a good time talking about it. I never knew that was possible and I hope to have more conversations like that one in the future.
Listen to Joanne's incredible episode HERE!