The first time I saw pregnant on our Home Pregnancy Test, I was elated. A little surprised it had happened so quickly, but completely ready to dive into the world of being Mommy. It had never occurred to me that things might not end up my way – having been a nurturer all my life, it was a given that I would soon welcome my own little bundle into this world.
It was not to be. About ten weeks after that test, a typical Friday of preschool teaching became a nightmare of a weekend, as we spent the weekend losing our precious baby. Losing this baby had not been on my radar, and I was thrown into the most intense grief I’d ever known. I screamed and cried and soul searched, and tried to make sense of it, finally coming to the conclusion that these things did happen, and I wasn’t to be excluded. We decided to try again. Soon enough, I was expecting once more. Even more quickly, this time, my hopes were dashed. At eight weeks on the dot, heavy bleeding gave way to another day at the hospital, and the ultrasound that ended with a tech telling me, “No heartbeat. Second failed pregnancy.”
After my second loss I did not know where to turn. I simply did not know how to assimilate what was happening into my schema of this world – a place I loved fiercely – I did not know how to go on being the person I was while holding these devastating losses in my heart. One day I decided to pull out my Crayola 64 Box and some construction paper. I remember choosing a big green piece of paper for my project – Green seemed appropriate for some reason. I used my crayons to create a list. I created a list of people, books, quotes, places, songs, poems, you name it, anything that inspired me. I posted that list on my wall, and I told myself I would choose one thing daily. And I did. Little by little that one small thing started to bring a moment of joy, a moment of beauty back into my life.
During this time I also fell deeply into my yoga practice. I’d been practicing for years, so it felt natural to lean into my practice for support. Yoga gave me space to be whomever and however I was at any particular time. It fed my spirit, and let me know that at some point, I would be ok again.
Between these two things, a yoga practice and finding small moments of beauty, I knew I was on to something. As I worked through my own grief in this way, as I address healing for myself physically, emotionally, and spiritually, I felt deep within me that my methods could be beneficial for more women. A few years later, I’m so happy to present the result of my journey. My tool-kit for healing became a book and a website that I am so honored to be able to share with others. There Was Supposed To Be a Baby: A Guide for Healing After Pregnancy Loss is available on my website, www.therewassupposedtobe.com, and on Amazon. My greatest hope is that this guide can help other women find small moments of beauty and grace, and create for themselves a path to healing spiritually, emotionally, and physically. One form of healing cannot be achieved without another – and I hope I am able to help others find that balance.
Take care of yourself. Take is slow. Be gentle. Be well.
Catherine Keating speaks from the heart and her experiences address your healing at every level. With a passion for health and wellness and a background in teaching and yoga, Catherine found a way to heal after her miscarriages. As a woman who experienced the loss of two pregnancies, she knows firsthand what it means to heal physically, emotionally, and spiritually. She is excited to share her story with you.