Honoring Uncertainty

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Something happened.  Something was… different.

You came to stillbirthday, you looked through our list of losses that we support, read a few of their descriptions – in particular, Chemical Pregnancy.

You looked at some of the photos we hold here at stillbirthday.

But… you’re just not sure.

Everything seemed to happen so fast:

You felt pregnant, and then all of a sudden, you were met with blood.

Maybe lots of blood, and maybe with deeply painful cramping.

No real pregnancy test, there just wasn’t time.

This was… something different.

There are many reasons why your cycle might change, even abruptly.

Sudden stress, including financial, social, or marital stress might impact your menstrual cycle.

Deep and longstanding stress might also impact your menstrual cycle.

Nutrition and self care also might have an impact.

Some mothers report a change in menstrual cycle after a big move, and there is something to be said for large sorority-type events that have a strong emphasis on women or motherhood.  Examples might include women’s rape survivor rallies, sexual trafficking fundraising or women’s rights in childbirth conferences.

These things and more might have an otherwise unexplained change in your menstrual cycle.

Additionally, through our season of our menstruation, it is entirely possible, and even medically normal, to have an occasional menstrual cycle that is simply different.

And by different, any number of experiences might occur:

Your menstrual cycle might appear later, sooner, lighter or heavier than you usually experience.

If you have discussed these things with your doctor or midwife and still just feel unsure about what you experienced,

please know that here at stillbirthday, we honor your uncertainty.

The feeling of uncertainty isn’t easier and it surely isn’t simpler than bereavement.

Many mothers will resolve themselves to
“Well, I’ll never know this side of eternity.”

And that can be a lonely, painful place to be.

Please know, you aren’t alone.

And in a time that seems so very fast moving, with answers for most things readily available, even for early pregnancy tests, it can seem frustrating and disappointing not to have a certain answer.

If you believe you may have experienced loss but don’t have anything to “prove” it, we validate you.

You are invited to share your story here as well: please remember that sharing your story at stillbirthday is a way to express your feelings and share your experiences with other mothers – it is not to diagnose, treat or answer any medical questions.

You might visit our farewell celebrations for ideas to celebrate your “Maybe Baby”.


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  1. I had something like this happen to me. I was so confused. And everything was just crazy. I really really thought I was pregnant. I had so many symptoms. And I was really late on my period. I took a pregnancy test but it came up negative. But I’ve heard so many times that sometimes the first one comes up negative. And I had only taken one. Sometime after that, I had cramps that were just so unbearable, I could hardly move. I wound up leaving work early for that. And it even hurt the day after that. About a week later I got my what I thought was my so called “period”. I had no idea if I miscarried or just wasn’t pregnant at all. I remember it was heavier than usual, it caught me off guard and made a real mess. I was so uncertain and still am. I really wish I could know.

  2. Becca, I had an almost identical experience, and although this isn’t my first time browsing the SBD site, it’s the first time I’ve discovered this page. It brought tears to my eyes to have this experience recognized, because for me, whether or not I was pregnant in any real way, I had already begun the process of coping with my feelings about being pregnant and what it meant because I was *that certain* that I was. Having that go away was remarkably difficult at the time, but I’ve only recently recognized it as something I need to cope with in its own right. It feels very meaningful to have it acknowledged in this way.

  3. I finally feel like someone understands. Back in March, I missed my period and all had the symptoms of being pregnant and took 6 test, 4 negative and 2 positive. So I believed that I was pregnant and began the process of becoming a new mom. But all of the sudden the symptoms stopped 2 months later but because of the pregnancy test, I didn’t take myself to the doctor. My period came later on that month and it wasn’t normal to me, but I was so scared which I do regret because I didn’t take the chance to know and enjoy what little time I could have had with my child. And with the expected due date approaching, I can’t help but wonder what could have been.

  4. Thank you so much for this post. I had what I believe to have been a miscarriage several years ago but I didn’t know how to talk to anyone about it. I was so sad and lonely at that time. My doctor said that spontaneous abortions (a term that made me feel awful – like my baby chose to reject me) was common and that I would probably go on to have children without any issues. Her warmth was nice, but being uncertain about what really happened made it difficult for me to grieve my loss . Reading this has inspired me to allow myself to grieve, to let go. I honestly feel validated. Thank you so very much.

  5. Georgia Mom says:

    I am 39… we decided to try for another a year ago and nothing. I started feeling nausea’s about a month or so ago; accompanied by emotions among other things. I have two children already and a few weeks ago I almost felt like I “knew” this funny feeling I was having from long before. Could I…? I disregarded it, not wanting to be disappointed as I had been numerous months before. A few weeks went by and my complexion started to change for the worse. I consulted a doctor regarding it and he prescribed me Doxycycline, with no pregnancy test beforehand. Not really paying much mind to the medication, I took it and started to notice the way it made me feel. It was like a light switch went off. I stopped taking the med, but almost a week later the hemorrhagic like bleeding started up with clots the size of golf balls (at least). Could this be the case? Thoughts anyone?


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