I’m Sorry for My Fragile Heart

FragileHeartLet’s be real; life is not always bright and happy. Today I share my very recent personal story on Real Posh Mom not only for my healing, but I hope for that of others. The more people I talk to – not only women – who have been through this, the more I realize that we need to open up and share our stories. It makes me sad that anyone else has experienced this pain, but it does help to know that I’m not alone.  ~ Jayne


At two weeks, we knew there was life. At nine weeks, we knew there were two. At twelve weeks, we knew something was wrong. At thirteen weeks, after a drive to Los Angeles for a long needle through my abdomen and meetings with specialists, there was hope. At almost sixteen weeks, we knew it was too late. At what was supposed to be four months into our pregnancy, I was once again alone in my body.

Three. That’s how many babies we’ve conceived and lost in one year. My new therapist offered to call them embryos if it would make me feel better, but it wouldn’t. Embryos are what they would be if they were not intended, not loved, not cared and dreamed for. These were our babies and always will be. I consider myself a mom of four, even though three of them never made it past the second trimester. But I can’t say that. When people ask me how many children I have the answer is, of course, one. One perfect 6-year-old daughter. And when other women who I know have had miscarriages and stillborns and infant losses are asked how many children they have, of course the answer is the number of living. But we all know the truth in our hearts.

I didn’t name them. I probably would have if they’d made it to 20 weeks. For some inexplicable reason, that’s the point where it made sense to me. Maybe because we were hoping to make it to 20 weeks, when fetal intervention surgery may have been an option to save at least one. But the mass growing in the chest of Baby A causing pressure on her developing heart and lungs grew too rapidly. With a shared placenta her sister couldn’t handle the change in blood pressure, so within hours of each other we lost them both, much sooner than even our doctors expected. The routine visit showed not the squirmy twins I’d loved watching only two weeks prior, with beautiful profiles and feet that were kicking each other like I’d hoped they would do for years to come, but instead lifeless little bodies with still hearts. I felt my own heart stop for a moment with them, forever just “the twins,” our Baby A and Baby B.

Only weeks ago yet forever ago, I was assembling hidden inspiration boards on Pinterest that I intended to make public as soon as we were confident enough to make our happy announcement. Clothes, registry items, products and advice we’d need in the coming months and years was being curated as I lay in bed or on the couch or on the bathroom floor, my body too tired and sore to do much else. I’d finally broken down and purchased a few maternity basics as there was no hope in buttoning any of my regular size jeans, and I often wondered if I would ever be able to again given my age and the multiple pregnancy. Projects and trips had been cancelled, put on hold, or sped up to accommodate both the official due date and a more realistic expected one, and real estate in two different states was analyzed in the hopes of making some very big decisions quickly. I went to sleep at night with my hands on my belly trying to feel those first few flutters expected at any moment, and I woke every morning wondering how much they’d grown while I’d slept. Now I place my hand on my soft abdomen and miss them so much it’s hard to get out of bed.

The last miscarriage was hard, this time was harder. Is harder. It will take longer to bounce back into the land of the living and although physically there is no permanent damage, emotionally that is not the case. I am still getting promotional emails for formula and cord blood registries and car seats. Alerts pop up on my phone telling me that my baby is now the size of an onion and what nutrients I should make sure to be getting this week. I delete the apps and unsubscribe from the mailing lists but more keep coming. My body is late getting the message as well, ready to nurse infants that aren’t here. There suddenly seem to be more babies around than ever before. And so many twins. And everyone I see seems to be pregnant. I resent the once forbidden wine, sushi and unpasteurized cheese that I’m now able to have after months of craving them.

I am heartbroken. I am angry. But mostly, I am really, really sorry. It doesn’t matter how many doctors tell me that it wasn’t my fault, that there was as a one in a million chance of the anomalies, or that neither my body nor our genes caused the problems. In my mind, I failed these babies by not giving them the best chances for survival. I don’t know how, but somewhere something went wrong, and it happened inside of me. I am sorry that my amazingly paternal husband still does not have his own child, one with features and gestures that he and his family can compare to their own. I am sorry that my daughter still does not have a half-sibling like we have now twice promised her she would have, and who instead has a mother who cries all the time.

I am also sorry that when a woman sat next to me at the cafe with her beautiful baby in her arms, I didn’t smile and ask her questions like everyone else did. Instead I turned away and tried to work through the suffocating emotion without making a scene. And, I’m sorry that I abruptly stopped and walked the other direction when I saw a couple on the beach with twin toddlers. Sorry that I didn’t attend the PTA meetings, dinners, and trunk shows where I knew someone would be pregnant or showing off their new family addition. Sorry that I couldn’t really go anywhere, worried that the tears would suddenly start streaming down my face, and I would have to explain why. Sorry that I couldn’t bring myself to comment on friends’ sonogram images, pictures of their babies in Halloween costumes, or their beautiful new maternity photos. So, so very sorry that I can’t share in their joy. But, they have friends, family and strangers smiling at them, approaching them, touching their bellies and asking about sleep training and onesies and siblings and strollers. I have a void. Literally a void in my body, where new life is supposed to be growing. Figuratively a void in my life that baby showers, kicking, mock-tails, registries and birth classes were supposed to fill right now. In a few months, I will feel the void that infant crying, midnight feedings and diaper changes were supposed to fill. But how do I tell them, these happy sleep-deprived people, how bitter I am? I can’t, and I won’t. But the ache is constant. I miss my babies and the dreams I had for them. I miss being exhausted and sick but knowing it was all for a good reason. I miss the anticipation of their arrival in our lives.

I know that I am still living, that my heart is not the one that stopped. I hope to one day forgive my body for these cruel betrayals. I hope to receive forgiveness from the friends and strangers who didn’t get the happy version of me they were expecting, and who didn’t know why. I hope that one day my husband and I either find the strength to try again, or find peace in not taking the chance of more heartbreak. I can’t comprehend either at this point, but I am grateful that we do have options, knowing that it could all be much worse and is for so many. If our life consists of only my daughter, our beautiful marriage and supportive family, then it certainly isn’t something to complain about. I know.

I am sorry that in my fragile heart right now, it’s not enough.

Originally published on my personal blog A Moveable Appetency


  1. Jayne, once again your words leave me in a whirlwind of emotions. I have been where you are. Know that I say this not to compare, because no one’s experiences are the same, but I say it only so you know there are people out there that will not judge the emotions you are feeling and…just get it. I am here if you need to talk, have questions, or hell, just want to scream. Sending lots of love to Laguna! <3

    • Thank you Christy. It’s sad that so many of us have been through it. At least we can understand each other’s pain. <3

  2. J, my heart aches for you and lifts you up in sisterly understanding.

  3. Thank you Teia. I know you understand so much of this. Hugs to you and yours. <3

  4. Please NEVER apologize for expressing your feelings. Please NEVER feel bad for taking time for yourself to heal…for your family to heal. THANK YOU for using your gift of writing to share what loss is truly like. Love you, my dear friend!

  5. I’m feeling for you Jayne!! I’m in tears reading this. I’ve been in your shoes and unfortunately had to have an emergency hysterectomy a couple years ago. I wanted another child so bad. I hated everyone and their posts with babies and pregnancies and whatever else related to it!!! My heart still hurts, I’ll never fully get over it. I still kinda cringe at baby stuff. I still get magazines in the mail for babies and it rips me apart!!
    It’s all to familiar. ❤️

  6. You write these words with beauty and passion and such heartbreak. You know I will keep you and your awesome hubby and phenominal daughter in my prayers. Wishing I could hug you right now.

  7. Dear Jayne,
    You are truly an amazing woman with a heart of gold and a generous spirit! Your babies were blessed to have you as their mother and I believe they’ll be overjoyed when you’re reunited one day. I don’t understand why God chooses what He chooses, but I do trust that He’s got our good in mind and so I’ll be praying for your peace, healing and a consolation in knowing that He’s cradling your little ones and they’re remembering you, too. My heart aches for you; I am so incredibly sorry for you and your husband’s loss. Sending lots of love your way.

  8. Sweet Jayne…I cannot profess to know first-hand how you feel, so I will simply say, ‘I’m sorry.” Sorry for every moment of pain you and Gar have experienced.

    One morning, at 4 a.m. to be exact, the phone rang (back when people actually called on your house phone). It was my best friend’s husband. He said, “She lost the baby.” Four words that still haunt me more than 20 years later.

    My best friend was 20 weeks along with her second child and…

    Again, I don’t profess to know what she went through or what you went through. But, I hurt. I hurt in a way I never did before. My entire body, my heart, my soul, my very being ached for my friend and for her child. We lived about 4 hours away from each other at the time. So, I couldn’t hug her, I couldn’t hold her, I couldn’t comfort her. I couldn’t, somehow, transfer the far-more devastating pain she was experiencing to myself so that, if only for a minute, she would have relief.

    I never knew I could hurt for another person as much as I hurt for her.

    It was then that I realized every life, no matter how long or how short it is, has a purpose. And, her child of only 20 weeks made me understand how much I loved my friend, how I truly, truly loved her.

    No, this realization didn’t change the course of that sweet baby’s short little life, but it did change me. Forever.

    Sending love and prayers your way…

  9. What a sad post to have to write. But also how brave to share this with us. I wish you and you husband all the best with giving this loss a place in you lives.

  10. I followed a link from Twitter. I just had my first miscarriage on Saturday night. I was 10 weeks pregnant, my first pregnancy, and I’m 46. I’m devastated and feel so alone, though I’m not. Thank you for sharing your story.

    • I am so sorry for your loss, Roxanne. Though we are not alone in our pain, each of us has a unique story and a different sense of loss. None can be compared to another. I wish you peace in your healing. As my therapist said- everybody mourns differently and we need to find what is best for us. Hugs.

  11. Oh Jayne, I had no idea. My oldest daughter had 2 miscarriages and hardly talked about it. Thats why it is so helpful for you to share your heart breaking experiences. While I won’t pretend to know all the emotions the mother goes through, I will say the grandparents feel so sorry and helpless to ease the pain for their child and mourn the grandchildren they didnt get ro know!

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