The Miscarriage Secret
As I write this, I acknowledge that women's experiences with miscarriage vary greatly. I was still in my first trimester when I miscarried, and it was my first pregnancy. But the grief was significant for a time and church worship was difficult. Something about so many pregnant women gathered in one place and so many happy children trooping forward as the church prayed for them, and something about the rawness I felt as I watched the Lord's body break for my broken body, something about all of these elements overwhelmed me. In the first weeks I had to walk out of church early on a consistent basis trying to hold it together until I breached the front doors. My husband followed with my coat, and his comforting words, but the feeling of shame that I couldn't keep from crying and my panicked pride that someone may have seen my emotion embarrassed me.
Imagine if, as Christians and as women, we could more openly acknowledge the burden of miscarriage. We could at least talk about the guilt a woman feels when a beautiful newborn baby causes her to weep, and perhaps through the dialogue of a community, that guilt would lessen as it revealed more candidly the processes of grief women who miscarry walk through. Worship isn't just for those who rejoice. It is also for those who mourn –both secretly and openly. Perhaps this secret grief, though, needs a bit more air and light. Perhaps it needs the freedom of expression that we assign to other forms of grief, so that after sharing and receiving our stories of miscarriage, we can see clearly enough to reach out and tenderly remove the tendrils of pain that grow on each other's hearts.
Caitlin Lubinski holds a master's in English literature. A freelance writer and adjunct writing instructor, she lives in Beverly, Massachusetts, with her husband. They are expecting a baby on October 15.
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