Over the last couple months, I've mentioned my friend who experienced a pregnancy-related tragedy. I haven't shared any specific details because I figured it was her story to tell, not mine. But she recently shared her story on an infant loss/miscarriage site, and I got permission to share the link.
You can read Robin's story here.
I'd also like to offer a little context. This situation has affected me deeply, and I think it'll make sense after you read her story and also understand my relation to it.
Robin is my best friend. We've been friends since middle school, so if I'm doing the math correctly, that's twenty years. As she says in her story, she went off birth control in January 2011. I stopped taking it in February 2011. Neither of us got pregnant for many months, and we struggled through that together. Then, as she explains, she found out she was pregnant in December 2011. Four weeks later, she miscarried. The day she had her D&C, I found out I was pregnant. One of the hardest things I've done is tell my best friend, who just had a D&C for a miscarriage, that I was pregnant. But I knew she wouldn't appreciate me lying or hiding it from her. It didn't matter though. Two days later, I began to miscarry due to an ectopic pregnancy. So we supported each other through that mutual heartbreak.
A few months later, Robin shared with me that she was pregnant again. And a few days after that, I discovered I was too. We were both extremely tentative about the whole thing, knowing just how fragile early pregnancy can be. But amazingly, we both hit the 12 week milestone. We also both had really positive 20-week ultrasounds. We were still a little wary, knowing you're never fully out of the woods, but we did start to plan for the future.
This summer she and her husband moved from a home an hour away from us, to about a place about 10 minutes away. We began to daydream about play dates and raising our kids together and how our children would be best friends. It was all supposed to be so perfect.
Then in September the nightmare began. You should read her story for the details. Our paths were the same for so long, nearly parallel, then they diverged in the worst possible way. Not only did she nearly lose her own life, but she lost her son. She got to spend a couple days with him, and then he was gone.
From my perspective, it's very difficult. I'm supposed to be one of her biggest supporters right now. But I'm also her biggest reminder of what she lost. She was due January 5, I'm due January 10. Her baby was born in September, but she will always look at my child and remember what could have been. Fortunately we've been very proactive about dealing with this. We talk about her son and what happened all the time. We talk about how it could affect our friendship, and how we're going to work through that. I'm confident we'll be even better friends for going through this, but what would be even better is if none of this happened to begin with.
Robin's story is one reason I can never, ever not think about how lucky I am. I know these stories and the things I read on baby forums and whatnot serve to make me paranoid. But they also serve as a reminder to never take for granted what I have. I fully intend to have a healthy pregnancy going forward, as well as a healthy delivery and a healthy baby. But I don't want to take that for granted or forget how fortunate that makes me.
So anyway, that's the story.