Please don’t do this when a mom has lost her baby. {and why I won’t anymore}

Most of us have heard the old saying “don’t judge a person until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes”. 

It’s like, we know we shouldn’t, but we still do it sometimes. 

I remember hearing about a woman miscarrying and losing her baby at around eight weeks one time. I was a dumb, barely twenty-something at the time but I remember thinking, “oh, that’s so sad but at least she was barely pregnant when it happened”. (as if you can be barely pregnant)

As I got older and became pregnant with my first child, miscarriage turned into a more real and relatable fear in my life. What if it happened to me? What if MY baby didn’t make it? I began to realize just how blessed one actually is to not only carry but also deliver a healthy baby. Like it seems so much can go wrong that it almost should be rare when a baby comes out perfectly healthy. Such a miracle and it makes you feel so grateful when that happens to you or your loved ones.
 
But having a healthy baby that you carried and didn’t miscarry, still often isn’t enough for us to really “get it” sometimes.

Why is that? Maybe people don’t talk about miscarriage enough. Maybe they fear what people will think about them. 

I shudder when I think of what I’m going to tell you next and feel ashamed now that I even thought this way, but I’m going to be honest for those who can maybe relate. 

Okay, so even after my first child was born flawlessly, when I would hear about a woman miscarrying, I still found myself downplaying it almost by making excuses for why it was okay… like by thinking, “Well, thankfully she already has a healthy child at home, so she’s okay….” or “she has five other kids, so I’m sure she was okay with it”, or “well good thing it happened now and not later” (as in having a stillborn baby). 

When I thought things like this, of course I absolutely did not mean it in a callous or hurtful manner at all!

 In fact, it’s really because of my positive nature of always wanting to make something better or okay when things are bad that I would think this way; when things are terrible I like to look on the bright side and to try and find something, anything, good when things are sad. So even though I was extremely sad and sympathetic for these women, I guess I just let myself reason that it was okay because of this and this and this and that she would be okay. 

What people need to understand, what I needed to understand, is that we need to stop telling these women how to grieve the loss of their babies, because that’s what it is. The loss of a baby. 

A child that will now not be born. A life that was inside of you that will now not come into the world. Maybe even a heartbeat you’ve already heard, sweet and strong, that is now gone. Pregnancy tests you still have that say “positive” but you know are no longer valid. A sonogram picture of a baby that you know you’ll never see grow. Let’s call it what it is and sympathize the loss of what that woman or family has just had. It’s sad, terribly sad. 

And the physical part is just another blow while grieving the loss of your baby. The constant trips to the restroom and yes, all of the blood, that has you in tears every time you see it because you think, “there’s my baby”. 

I didn’t write this to make anyone feel bad or beat themselves up at all for maybe thinking this way before. Of course not, sweet friends. I did write it though to maybe open your eyes to how these mamas are probably feeling and how we can sympathize with them and not tell them cliches and junk that they don’t need to hear. And actually, I wrote this for me because now I know. 

After having two beautiful, healthy, full term pregnancies with two amazing babes to show for it, I recently faced the unexpected. 

I was feeling extremely tired and unlike myself recently for several weeks so decided to take a pregnancy test. Though I was preventing pregnancy at the time (my husband and I were still discussing our family plans and if we thought God wanted us to have a third child or not) against all odds the test said “positive”! 

I was super super super surprised and it did take me a few minutes to process, yet in the same breath I was elated and specifically said “Thank you Jesus! Every life is a miracle, this life is a miracle, and I guess you think I’ll be a good mom of three so thank you!” 

I had been doubting myself so much and really wasn’t sure if I would even be a good mom if I had three kids. I thought it was kind of funny that God had decided for me (of course!) when I saw the positive pregnancy test. I took two more and all positive. It was for real. 

With my two other babes, the second I found out I would yell for Jason and he would come into the bathroom and we would celebrate right away! This time I wanted to surprise him! 

A while before all of this, Jason was telling me how much he needed a vacation. He’s an incredible husband, father, and provider and works so hard at his job. I’m always so proud of him. Though he doesn’t do much physical labor at his job, he does enough mental labor (he’s a server administrator for federal computers at locations all over the U. S.) to make my head ache just when he tries to tell me about everything he did that day! (Haha- sorry Jason) So having down time is essential for his overall wellbeing as it is for us all. 

Around the time he’s telling me he needs to get away, we were also thinking ahead about our kids’ Christmas gifts. 

We aren’t ones to buy them every new toy and gadget on the planet, in fact, we limit this a lot. We much prefer to spend that money on experiences and travel and doing things they’ll learn and become more cultured from. So naturally we began to think of just about our favorite vacation spot that offers that and oh so much more… Disney World! 

It seemed crazy since we just went earlier this year and we are not exactly a skip, hop, and a jump away. {DAL — MCO}. But being that this is one of Disney’s slower seasons, the deals we got were too great to pass up! {New blog on that soon- how to do Disney on the cheap[er]}. Plus it was Jason’s birthday month, October, to put the icing on the cake! So we booked our Christmas gift to the babes. 

What does all this have to do with the original topic of this post? A few weeks after I found out we would be a family of five in the not too distant future, I was hustling and bustling around, as usual, when I saw the blood. 

It honestly stopped me in my tracks. I had never bled with my pregnancies, so I stayed positive and recalled how I’d read about women who spotted or bled through their entire pregnancies and were just fine. I’m fine, I thought. It’s just a little. But then it became more. 

I had wanted to surprise all of my family together but I broke down and told my mom what was going on. We were together that day so we just went on to the emergency room so I could get checked out. While there, the prognosis for the baby was not good. Two days later (longest two days of my life) it was confirmed that I was miscarrying and would not be having this baby. I was crushed. 

I had been happy about this baby and that’s what made it seem so not right! Because even though I was surprised we had conceived a baby at this time, I wasn’t disappointed or upset or not wanting this baby ever, not even for one second! 

This baby was loved and wanted from the moment I found out about him or her! 

And then I was filled with guilt and questions. Why had I not been more careful after finding out I was pregnant? Why did I continue to jump around and get on the ground and play rough with the kids? Had I “messed up” the baby? Did I make it come out? How did I have two great pregnancies but am losing one now? Did my body forget what it was doing? I know these questions may sound crazy but this was all I could think about. I felt terrible and was sad for what wouldn’t be. 

Then I had to break it all to my husband. Everything. He hadn’t even known I was pregnant. That’s what hurt the most. Seeing his face light up in excitement and surprise when I showed him the pregnancy tests yet having to tell him in the next minute that I had been at the ER and was possibly losing the baby. Thankfully he was able to walk with me through confirming the miscarriage, but it was all so sad.

But even in the midst of it all, I trusted God so much. I was okay. I knew His ways were higher than mine. I knew He had a plan for this pain and that He would work it for good, just like the Bible says. 

And He has. God used this in my life to show me the pain that comes with miscarriage and how these ladies feel. I’m able to relate and sympathize in a deeper and real way now. I know the physical pain that comes with losing your baby. 

The week I was going through the miscarriage, I also got strep throat from a little girl who had been at the ER the same night I went. I couldn’t get out of bed for several days. I don’t think I’ve ever been so sick in my life- weak and it hurt everywhere to move. 

God showed me just how much my husband loves me during this time as he waited on me hand and foot, cherished me, brought me hot tea for my flaming throat, bought the feminine products I needed, consoled me despite his own sadness. I love that man so much. 

It’s really cool how even in sad moments like these, you just look and say to yourself, “God knew”. I feel he had put the Disney trip on our hearts. Didn’t know how the timing of it all would be and how much we would need it. But He knew.  He knew we would be heartbroken and would need this family time to heal, love on each other, and move forward. 

I cherish the two babies I have with my entire heart. They’re my absolute heartbeat. But I’m also sad about the baby I have who is now with Jesus. And that is right and okay for me to feel this way! I shouldn’t feel I can’t be sad because I have two other precious babies. We don’t have to make any mother who has experienced a loss, whether inside the womb or out, feel like she can’t or shouldn’t grieve her child for one reason or another. 

Let’s instead feel empathy for these mothers and love on them during their pain. Take them their favorite snack, send her a heart-filled message, buy her family dinner, let her know that you care and that you’re sad with her. I had several close to me that I could bear sharing this with, do this for me and it meant the world. My sisters and my parents are so amazing. 

 Also, don’t feel like you have to say something wise to make it better to that sweet lady because likely nothing you can say will make it feel better, even though I know your kind heart will want to. Only the peace of Jesus will do that and that comes through prayers. I could sincerely feel people praying for me during this time and I know that’s how I felt so much peace despite my heartache. I knew God had it all in His hands because of people lifting me up in prayer. God is so good. 

Thank you for letting me share this with you all and be all over the place. It was something very hard to do, but I felt I needed to, if only just for me. There are many I did not tell this in person to, because really, it’s very difficult to speak about. Writing about it is easier for me. I love you all always and pray nothing but God’s best and biggest blessings over each of your lives! 

Olmos There,

Crystal Olmos 
Hey friend, let’s connnect more often. Find me here on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/crystalolmosthere/

9 Comments Add yours

  1. Karren Sharp says:

    I love you so much! I have felt this pain, and asked myself all those questions. Was God punishing me? I clung almost too tightly to my other two children during my time of grieving. I didn’t want to let them out of my sight. God is so good, and knows just how to minister to our hurts. Praying for your family during this most difficult season. 😘😘

    Liked by 1 person

    1. crystalolmos says:

      Aunt Karren, I am so sorry to hear that! I never knew about your loss but it makes me so sad to think about. God knows it all and knows just how to begin to heal us… love you so much and thank you for praying. Our Healer is good. xoxo

      Like

  2. Ali Sanchez says:

    Thank you for sharing. I can relate to this in its entirety. Having experienced a couple of losses myself (one at 32 weeks & another at 10 weeks), this article hits close to home. May god continue to bless your life. And it’s certainly Gods love and through prayers where we begin to heal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. crystalolmos says:

      Ali, I’m so sorry to hear this girl. It just absolutely breaks my heart. I’m so sorry! I pray you continually feel God’s presence and peace over these tremendous losses and I know we will see our sweet angels one day. They’re happy, healthy and being loved by Jesus right now and that makes me happy. Hugs to you! Thank you so much for reaching out mama and sharing your testimony with us all. xoxo

      Like

  3. Neiko Hearn says:

    Prayers for you and ur family sweet lady. Thanks for sharing.. If we be honest we’ve all had those thoughts, but knowing makes all the difference. God is so good & and his wisdom is so great! May God bless you continually sweet Crystal❤💞💕💋

    Liked by 1 person

    1. crystalolmos says:

      Ms. Hearn, thank you so much for your affirmation- you’re such a blessing. Thank you for your prayers; they mean so much! Love you!

      Like

  4. Rebeca G. says:

    Having misscarried several times (more than 3) myself, I can totally relate to this type of grief and sadness. I’m very sensitive when it comes to this topic because I’ve gone through it. However, I am so grateful and can see the miracle of life each time I look into my babies eyes now. There are no right words you can say, all we can do is be there for our friends if this happens to them. Thanks for sharing and I’ll be praying for you and your family.

    Like

  5. Ellen Oats says:

    Crystal, I am so sorry for your loss. I went through the same thing after I had two healthy children. You cannot dwell on this, but you will never quite get over it completely. Prayers for you all!

    Like

  6. I think that it doesn’t matter how old your child is either born or preborn. Nothing hurts like losing that child. I spoke with a woman the other day who is in her 70s. She was in tears because her 51 year old baby is battling terminal cancer. Thank you for sharing your experience and wisdom. All life is a gift from God no matter how long it is.

    May you be blessed abundantly!

    Like

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