Because of Chrissy Teigen’s growing baby bulge, my miscarriage this week has given me hope. Despite the fact that early pregnancy loss occurs frequently, we as a society rarely discuss it. I’m here to celebrate Teigen’s good news because she was so transparent about her bad news. I rejoiced and sobbed when I scrolled to Chrissy Teigen’s photo announcing her newest pregnancy. Although I don’t follow celebrities regularly and their news seldom ever has an impact on my daily life, I don’t criticize anyone who does. When a prominent person passes away, I think of their families, wish them well in their legacy, and then I move on.
However, this was unique. Teigen’s baby belly serves as a reminder that there is still hope for me after I had a miscarriage this week.
I shed tears when Teigen and her husband, John Legend, lost their prematurely delivered son, Jack. Three years previously, my son had been born three months early, and I could still clearly recall his struggle for life.
Prior to becoming pregnant with him, I had a tragic and excruciatingly painful miscarriage of twins at around 12 weeks’ gestation. And one of my earliest childhood recollections is of losing my twin sisters, who were born too soon and too small to live. I could still picture how it split my parents apart.
I was hesitant to try again. I pondered whether the suffering and uncertainty were worth it as I looked at pictures of Teigen and Legend sobbing in the hospital. Maybe it was best to just take pleasure in your current family and avoid exposing yourself to further misery.
I was nevertheless prepared to attempt with much reluctance for another baby a few years later. But not long after a positive pregnancy test, I awoke in the middle of the night in excruciating pain.
The following day, when one of my editors contacted to inquire about a deadline, I decided to inform him of the situation. He had empathy and understanding right away. Nobody discusses this, he said. “But it happens a lot. So sorry again.”
I pondered the reasons why we avoid discussing this. I pondered why this editor was the third person I had informed; to everyone else, including my mother, I had just stated that I was ill but expected to recover within a day or two, which can only be described as wildly optimistic.
Many people contacted out to Teigen and Legend after they posted their devastating images of baby Jack in 2020 to express their sympathy and share their grief. However, some said that they were opportunists who used the tragedy as an excuse for a picture session.
That is one of the reasons we don’t discuss it.
Another justification is that discussing pregnancy in its early stages is still frowned upon.
First semester is all about waiting and watching The need to follow up the happy news of pregnancy with the painful news of loss is one factor in this, as is the fear of jinxing it. Teigen claimed that she held off on sharing this news because she simply wasn’t prepared. Instead, a lot of us hold off on making an announcement, so if the worst occurs, we’re forced to suffer in silence.
Additionally, some of it is a result of the decisions made during the first trimester. We hold off until we receive the findings of the ultrasound and tests and are certain we won’t want or need to terminate.
But now that Roe v. Wade, which upheld the constitutional right to an abortion, has been overturned, more people are talking about it. We are discussing the similarities between miscarriage treatment and abortion care. We’re talking about how pregnancy, even pregnancies that we really want, can traumatize us. We are discussing the risks associated with depriving people of necessary medical care.
While hearing all of these stories of suffering and loss has helped many of us feel lighter and more liberated, it has also been extremely difficult to do so while experiencing the reversal of any hard-won liberation we may have had.
With her needle-bruised thigh and glaring tummy swell, Teigen’s picture serves as a symbol of hope. What hope, even in the face of heartbreaking loss, she and Legend must have had to continue seeking treatments. What bravery to continue trying even after experiencing the worst-case scenario. What a relief it was to finally hear the news.
I experienced their grief when they lost their child, and today, despite my own suffering, I am able to rejoice with them. We can now join them in celebrating the extremely good since they were honest about the bad.
I therefore made the decision to talk about it when I was sitting on my couch with my heating pad and my therapeutic bowl of ice cream. I’m not sure if I’ll ever make another pregnancy announcement. I’m not sure what we’ll do after that. But I am confident that I will discover a way to feel delight once more. It has already begun.