what to expect: pregnancy loss post baby announcement
Samina Qureshi is the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and owner of Wholesome Start. Her nutrition practice is based in Houston, Texas and she provides virtual nutrition counseling sessions to clients across the country. Schedule your FREE 15-minute nutrition session today!
The moment I found out I was pregnant I couldn't wait to share this exciting news with all my family and friends. I daydreamed about posting that I was pregnant on social media and all the joy that comes from starting a family. I'm pretty open, so this wasn't going to be a hush hush pregnancy. However, my husband and I did want to be cautious about the timing of our pregnancy announcement. We waited to post our baby announcement on social media until I was around 22 weeks because the risk of miscarriage or something bad happening decreases the further along you are. Little did we know that just two weeks later we were about to face the most difficult time of our lives. (Read all about my emergency c-section and pregnancy loss here)
While I was recovering from severe preeclampsia in the hospital I constantly thought about our pregnancy announcement. Why couldn't we have waited a couple weeks longer to make this experience be less painful? I kept thinking about what everyone else would think. How could I move forward from this when everyone knew I was pregnant and just a couple weeks later I am no longer able to say that I am? The more I thought about it the more anxious I became. What am I supposed to tell people now?
While I was still recovering in the hospital, my husband and I wanted to update our friends and family via social media to inform them of my health and the pregnancy loss. For us, it felt like the right thing to do. As soon as I pressed publish on my Facebook post we both felt a huge sense of relief and comfort. We were able to share our story and really come to terms with what happened. In addition to providing us with a way to process what occurred, we were able to spread awareness of the reality of pregnancy complications, educate people on preeclampsia, and provide an open space for support. I was overwhelmed with how many messages I received from acquaintances, clients, close friends, and even family members who had gone through similar events. Many of these stories had never left their mouths before. They had the opportunity to share something that is often seen as taboo and gain a sense of community. There is peace in knowing you're not alone, and I am so grateful that I could provide some comfort.
In my nutrition counseling sessions and posts I often talk about how social media can be a toxic environment, but it can also be a great way to connect with people who can support you through rough times. After hearing other families' experiences, I feel even closer with my community and have definitely regained a sense of hope. Fast forward to now, around 10 weeks post emergency c-section, and I am so happy that we shared our first pregnancy journey with all our family and friends. It allowed me to honor my angel baby's life and celebrate the time I had with him.
After I posted about our pregnancy outcome, I no longer had the “what will people think” thoughts. People can interpret my experience as they wish and I’ve created an open dialogue for anyone going through something similar to reach out to me or others for support. I’ve always believed in the power of creating a space for people to share their experiences without shame or judgement. I understand that being so open and public isn’t something everyone is comfortable with and that's okay! If you aren’t open to sharing your experiences, you can always journal about what you are going through for yourself. Simply writing down your thoughts and feelings can help you better digest your experiences. The good thing about journaling is that you always have an opportunity to revisit your entries when you’re ready.
The What To Expect blog series will continue! Everyone, including myself, experiences hardships in life that can put a pause on your wellness journey. But remember that you deserve to live life without carrying the stress or guilt around your health. At Wholesome Start Nutrition Therapy, you have the opportunity to share your unique wellness journey with me to develop a personalized nutrition care plan that fits your needs at each stage of your life.
Stay tuned! The following blogs will go into more detail about the physical healing process with pregnancy loss, preeclampsia, and emergency c-section. Until then, please feel free to reach out to me via the comments below or contact me for support.