WARNING: In this post I talk about suicide, depression, and pregnancy loss. If you do not want to read it, I encourage you to skip this installment.
Part of me has been looking forward to getting real about this subject, sharing my story, and bringing more awareness to such a taboo subject. And then there’s the part of me that has been dreading it because I didn’t know how I would start to address it and what to talk about first since it’s so emotional and complicated, therefore making it harder to organize my thoughts. But I decided to just start with my site’s title description: “Rebuilding Life and Purpose After recurrent Loss”. Alright. Breath in. Breath out. Let’s talk about losing purpose.
My loss of purpose and honestly my will to live set in after my 4th miscarriage. I had 2 miscarriages when my husband and I were newlyweds then we were blessed with a little rainbow baby, Emmy Claire. When she was about 18 months old, we decided to grow the crew and I had one miscarriage right off around week 7 despite following every protocol we did with Emmy. We chocked it up to a fluke and just getting back in the game and tried again. We got pregnant pretty quickly and started referring to the baby as “Muffin”. We saw the heartbeat, got on more hormones and an oral blood thinner, and I focused on keeping things low stress. At almost 10 weeks, after a panic attack and prolonged hypo thyroid symptoms, I asked if we could check on the baby and we discovered there was no heartbeat.
That loss completely crushed me. We had a D&C, and I physically recovered quickly but emotionally I was aimless. Our health insurance was so terrible that we couldn’t go to a specialist for answers and we also couldn’t afford to pay for it out of pocket. Ya’ll I was SO lost and SO desperate. I fell into a horrible depression that even now I have to fight against. I lost *purpose*. To give a little concept, I grew up in a large family (8 kids) and we surrounded ourselves with other large families growing up and in my mind you just grew up and had a family. Especially as a woman that’s just what you did. Already being a mom and not having a career or job, I was committed 100% to and focused on motherhood and homemaking. All I wanted was to be a mom to 4 or so kiddos, raise them the absolute best I could for the glory of God and then send them off to become whatever they felt called to become. I mean does that sound selfish or anything? Was I wanting the wrong thing? What the heck is my purpose in life now anyway? One kid is so easy. And to make it even easier, she’s a very easy kid. She’s always slept well, eaten well, played well, never demanded or needed much and would even ride for hours in the car reading books to herself with no complaint. Like seriously. Easy.
So I sank. I completely let myself go in every way. I cared about nothing and lost my desire to craft, create, and make my home pretty and welcoming. I withdrew and avoided friends and family. I gave up on dieting and exercising after a while because I’d lose 5 pounds, then plateau and gain it all back after 2 months of consistency. The dieting never worked and that made me give up even more. My fibromyalgia would flare up so bad when I tried to work out that it would put me in bed for days. Supposedly, when you have an amazing little child, a loving husband and comfortable life, you still have a reason to live. Even if you’re sad and aimless you *want* to plug through for their sake. I didn’t. I became so depressed and so withdrawn and was failing so hard at everything no matter how hard I tried that I genuinely believed they would be better without me. When we first got married, we got decent life insurance plans. So I would sit and plan out my suicide, write a note telling Isaac he can use the money to settle the medical bills and pay for a good nanny for Emmy and that Emmy was young enough to not remember me so he could easily remarry without any major impact on her. And he was still young and in his prime so finding a wife (knowing to avoid one with so many mental and health problems this time around) would be easy and better for him. That happened about 5 times over the course of that year following my 4th loss. Each time, I would realize it was going to be a while before Isaac got home and that something could happen to Emmy in that time so I’d wait and eventually decide to put off suicide for another day.
I know what everyone is thinking- “suicide is the most selfish thing you can do! It doesn’t help your loved ones, it only hurts them worse.” Trust me, I know. I grew up hearing that. I will say this. If you have never been in debilitating depression and have lost all hope and purpose for your life, you can’t possibly know how unselfish it feels when you’re in the midst of contemplating it. I honestly and truly believed that Isaac and Emmy would be infinitely better off without a psycho case for a wife/ mom. I genuinely thought that they’d be happier and it wouldn’t take long for them to be over it. I did. I fight those feelings even today. Yes- I do believe that ultimately suicide is selfish and that knowledge and belief is what always kept me from following through. But until you’ve been there, you don’t know how real it is.
So why didn’t I get help? Why didn’t I go talk to anyone and why didn’t anyone really know how dark I’d become? Because you see guys, I didn’t care enough about myself to get help and by the time I deep down realized I needed it, I thought there was no way anyone could help me. I mean, could they bring back all my babies? Could they just give me the perfect life and make me feel like I had purpose when they couldn’t suddenly give me kids either? I didn’t believe anyone could help or even more accurately that they’d give a flying crap about me. I would just be another weirdo who couldn’t work out my own life and just sounded ungrateful. So I didn’t go get help. I didn’t really talk to anyone. And life went on.
That was when and how I lost purpose. That year and into most of 2019, I continued in aimlessness and just continued to go through the motions of acting like I was okay, smiling and hugging people like life was just hunky dory, and inside just dying and literally praying God would somehow make my life end since suicide wasn’t an option. I remember on multiple occasions just driving down the road and having the thought “Oh I could just floor the gas, go straight into that tree or that wall and it’d all be over.” The only thing that ever held me back was that Emmy was in the car with me and I refused to let her be a victim of my pain.
Okay so how did I go from that dark and that depressed to having experienced 3 more miscarriages with even less answers and actually being better than I was at just 4 losses with options still out there? Well my friends, that’s why this blog exists. My story is not over- on the contrary, it’s just begun. In an upcoming post I will start talking about pulling yourself out of complete darkness. Until then, I’d love to hear from you. Please drop me a comment and let me know- have you felt desperate? Have you contemplated self harm? Are you currently in a dark place and need to talk to someone? Contact me or comment below. Stay strong, my friends. It isn’t over yet.