October is the month dedicated to the awareness of what happens to one of four women. The medical term is miscarriage, stillbirth, neonatal death ...but that doesn't even scratch the surface of what's true for every woman who lost a baby before it drew its first breath outside of her.
A few months ago I read this beautiful tribute of my dear friend Tara to her daughter Sophie Luna. Tara, who is a shining light in our community, allowed me to share it here today with you all:
Today would have been my due date.
This photo was taken on Father’s Day, just minutes before I told my husband he was going to be a daddy. After four long and heartbreaking years of unexplained fertility struggles, it felt like the sun was finally shining on us.
But just two short weeks later on the 4th of July, I started bleeding. By nighttime, I found myself alone in the ER at 2 am (COVID); my husband, mom, and dad were in the parking lot, eagerly awaiting news.
Post ultrasound, I waited for the doctor in a random room of the eerily silent hospital. I stared at the clock. It was late. It felt like a bad dream.
When the doctor finally came in, he had a look on his face that confirmed what I already knew. There was no heartbeat. There was no sign of a baby. I was indeed pregnant, but it was not viable.
I had one of those out-of-body kinds of experiences where I watched myself listen to him, strangely without tears, nodding calmly and mustering some spacey questions he didn’t really have the answers to.
“Is this it? Am I going to have more bleeding? What happens after this? What do I do?”
His answer: “I’m so sorry. You’re asking the right questions but I’m having to recall some of this from my residency and I would encourage you to follow up with your OBGYN.”
He was very nice. And very sympathetic. But he didn’t have the answers I needed.
The doctor left. I looked anxiously at my phone with the weight of knowing I was about to deliver a gut punch to Nick and my parents in the parking lot. Somehow, I made the call.
Minutes later, I would pay the $400 hospital bill and then stumble out of the ER and into the arms of my husband and family as I sobbed. The irony of feeling the warm air on a beautiful summer night made it seem all the more insulting. Like hope mocking me.
I looked up at the bright and full moon questioning the mystery of it all, my heart smashed into a million pieces…
I am compelled to share this publicly not for sympathy, but to affect change.
I am 1 in 4.
1 in 4 women experience miscarriage but it’s considered taboo to talk about.
We live in an age where we constantly and casually consume images of sex, violence, war, and brutality and yet we are so ill-equipped to share and open up about the very real, very common, very traumatic, and silent suffering that women (and men) experience every single day around miscarriage and fertility challenges.
And, how could we? We have never been taught.
If our pain points to our purpose, this longsuffering has ignited a passion in me for so much more for our daughters and sons. I may not be a mama yet, but I possess a fierce mama’s heart.
I deeply respect the experience of every woman – and each experience is different – but personally speaking, I don’t hold the belief or have the experience that my baby has died. Instead, I hold hope and belief in the possibility that my baby’s soul will return to me someday soon.
And when she does and she comes of age, I want her experience to be different from my own…
Instead of learning that her period is a painful and inconvenient hassle to deal with, I want her to know the natural wisdom of her moon cycles, their important rhythms, and the power that it holds for her.
Instead of only being taught how not to get pregnant, I want her to know and be educated on how to get pregnant and preserve and nurture her fertility if she wants a family.
Instead of finding herself isolated, ashamed, and afraid to speak out about any fertility challenges she may encounter, I want her to have the strong support of a sisterhood who knows how to surround, hold and love her through the ups and downs of perpetual heartache.
And instead of frantically Googling, “What happens during a miscarriage?” at the age of 41 - only to discover she’ll be in pain and bleed clots for two weeks as she grieves the dream and loss of her child - I want her to know ahead of time what to expect if pregnancy loss should happen so she can surrender to the experience with the support, care and the counsel she needs.
When I learned that my due date would be in February, my first thought was wondering if there would be snow. What if the midwife couldn’t get to us? What if we were snowed in?
As I sit here this morning, looking down at my belly that would have been swollen and ready to pop by now, the skies are blue and the sun is shining bittersweet and bright.
And if there is anything that would bring me solace as I sit with these strange and uncomfortable noticings and feelings, it would be to know that others stand with me in this vision for a wiser way.
In honor of the one I am missing today, am committed to creating this change in the world…
Do you stand with me?
If you share Tara's passion and stand with this vision for a wiser way for our daughters, your participation is valued (and vital!) in birthing it into the world.
Tara and a trusted circle of friends are currently creating The Luna Sisterhood; a sacred community and school of life for young women.
Would you like to be a part this important moment? You are invited to join this special circle by clicking the link below.
This is me, Bettina, again:
... something exciting is coming in November...
The Journey towards motherhood can be joyful and fun, and it can be - well - the opposite, especially if you have experienced miscarriage and loss. As time goes on, you can find yourself in a place of fear, negativity, and doubt, and even on good days, you may feel alone and anxious about what lies ahead.
I get it. I truly get it. That's why I am so passionate about teaching moms-to-be how they can manage their state of mind and their emotions to feel strong, empowered, and certain again.
In truth, I love working with my clients because I love seeing them transform in so many areas of their lives, not just the one at hand.
Let's put the joy back into the journey, shall we?!!!
By popular demand, I am currently designing a whole new Motherhood Mindset Mentoring program which will launch in early November 2021 and run for four weeks. Each week we'll release a new module with pre-recorded videos that you can watch at your own time.
In addition, we will meet once a week for 60-90 minutes of group coaching so I can answer your specific questions and can work with you on a personal level. I will keep this first group very small and intimate to make sure you get the most out of this brand-new mentorship program before I release it to a wider audience in 2022.
If you are interested in joining this very first intimate group. please email me at bettina @ bettinagordon.com so you get first dips on the course once I open the doors!
In this community we value out-of-the-box thinkers and learn from the female mavericks who designed their lives intentionally -- either by choice, or necessity. Success leaves clues and radically shifts perspectives, as you'll see in our free video series: