Healing Your Broken Heart After Miscarriage

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“You never arrived in my arms, but you will never leave my heart.” ~Zoe Clark-Coates

If you have experienced a miscarriage, I am so sorry for your loss. I know the pain of pregnancy loss all too well, as I recently experienced a miscarriage at ten weeks pregnant.

It was a complete shock.

I had two healthy previous pregnancies, and everything felt fine—until it wasn’t.

As a mental health professional, I have worked with many women who have experienced miscarriage, and I know the statistics show that one in four will experience pregnancy loss.

With everything I knew and all the stories I had heard, I still hadn’t considered how likely it was to happen to me. During and after the loss, I found myself in a tunnel of darkness, sorrow, anger, shame, and unrelenting guilt.

Before I go further, I want to affirm that miscarriage is a significant loss, and it is natural to hurt deeply. Your grief is real, and it deserves to be honored.

“Grief only exists where love lived first.” ~Franchesca Cox

This quote is an important reminder that the attachment, love, and hopes you had for a future with your baby were real, and it does not matter how many weeks along you were.

In the aftermath of my miscarriage, I truly expected to move on quickly and didn’t imagine it would take such a toll on my well-being and mental health.

For months, I was triggered by everything and would break down into tears daily. I felt tremendous guilt for miscarrying.

The word “miscarriage” itself made me feel like I must have missed something, like I had failed my baby, my husband, and myself.

At no point had I received a follow-up call or been offered emotional support from doctors, and I truly didn’t realize how traumatic the physical aspect would be.

I knew I couldn’t change the pain of this experience and that I could not continue to bury it and isolate myself, hoping that the grief would just disappear. From the moment I found out I was pregnant with my third baby, my life changed, and it changed again when I lost the baby.

Here are some tips as a pregnancy loss survivor and mental health professional that helped me heal and find my sense of self again.

Grieve and Mourn Your Baby

Grief is your feelings and thoughts associated with the death, whereas mourning is when you take that pain outside of yourself by showing or doing something. Please give yourself permission to feel your feelings, and if you have any mementos, consider placing them in a special memory box.

I have a box with my pregnancy test, ultrasound picture, and a picture my four-year-old daughter drew for her angel baby brother or sister.

Take Time to Heal

Take some time to heal, and do not rush to get back into your normal routine. Something traumatic has happened to your body and soul, and you need time to recover.

Take some time off work, cancel commitments, and let household chores slide for as long as necessary.

Remember: There is no timeline for grieving. It hurts for as long as it hurts, and you need your own patience and compassion every step of the way.

Set Aside Time to Grieve

Purposefully invite your pain in and set time aside to mourn your baby. I know this may sound strange, but grief and mourning are hard work, and as human beings, we can easily push away the pain that comes with grief.

I encourage you to give yourself five or ten minutes of uninterrupted time where you dedicate yourself to your pain and truly allow yourself to feel it.

In the early days after my miscarriage, I would listen to Taylor Swift’s “Bigger Than the Whole Sky” and allow myself to cry while writing. That song spoke to me after my miscarriage and can still make me feel close to my baby when I listen to it today.

Find Your Tribe

I know initiating discussions around miscarriage is difficult, but remember that you are not alone, and that every time you share your story, you are breaking down the stigma and shame associated with talking about miscarriage.

Whether you join an in-person support group or just post in a community forum online, sharing your feelings can help you process them, and it could also help someone else heal from their loss.

If you are supporting a loved one through a miscarriage, please do not put pressure on yourself to “fix” their pain.

Your presence, empathy, and ongoing emotional support will help them in their healing more than you know.

Some Parting Thoughts

Be gentle and patient with yourself during this time, and remember that everyone experiences pregnancy loss grief in their own unique way.

An affirmation that I tell myself on those hard days is: My baby lives in my heart and will be safe there forever.

About Chantal Lester

Are you struggling with infertility, loss, or trauma? Chantal Lester, MSc, CCC, RP (Qualifying) is here to support you when you’re ready. Click here to read more about Chantal’s approach and expertise. Take that important step toward a healthier you with Calm Cool Collective Counselling. Fill out our Therapist Match Form, and we’ll match you with a therapist within 24 hours. Plus, enjoy a FREE 15-minute phone consultation with your chosen therapist! Remember, a problem shared is a problem halved.

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