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Monday, July 6, 2015

strength & courage - a miscarriage story - Amber Hampton

I am so grateful to read Amber's story of strength, perseverance, and determination to get through what felt like the worst thing she'd ever gone through. Her honesty and courage are incredible. I am honored that you shared your story with us, Amber. I know this is going to help a mom out there who is feeling alone, defeated, and scared. 

Thank you... 

All images from Amber Hampton 

1. When did you experience a miscarriage? 
Fall 2011 

How far along were you? 
9 weeks when I found out 11 weeks when I had the D&C

2. What do you remember physically about the process?  

It was very weird for me because I am a nurse and I remember women saying how painful it was. However, mine felt like menstrual cramping. Until I took the medication to attempt to finish the miscarriage after my body wasn't finishing, then the pain increased. 

I felt like I was having an out of body experience. More mentally than physically, I just could not believe I was pregnant. 

What was the most difficult part physically? 
It wasn't really bad physically because I was so messed up mentally with everything that was happening (my father was also on a liver transplant list and I found out days before I went in for my D&C that he was getting a liver and I needed to be there because I was on his list and you can't get your liver if your people on your list don't come to give support. I was in North Carolina he was in Nebraska.)

3. What do you remember emotionally about this process? 

It almost broke me. I think because it was so much at once. I had to think thoughts I never thought I would think. 

Being pregnant and going through a divorce or separation really puts things into perspective.  What's best for you? For the baby? 

What was most difficult emotionally to consider? When I first found out I was pregnant before the doctors knew I miscarried I actually contemplated an abortion because of the situation. I was always pro life. How could I be considering that?! It's not the baby's fault. But is it fair to bring the baby into a broken home from the beginning? I was at the lowest point in my life (I thought already) ... My husband had an affair, we were separated on the way to a divorce, I was pregnant, my father was going through liver cancer and on his last leg waiting for a liver transplant. 

Getting through everything made me more understanding. I realize that things in life happen and we're all human. I realized that I shouldn't be so hard on women who make choices I don't agree with because I don't know their situation.

4. What feeling words would you use to describe this experience? 

Gut wrenching, eye opening, painful, scary, isolated, alone.

5. What were some of the thoughts you had in your mind that maybe at the time didn't make a whole lot of sense, but still you were thinking them all the same? 

About the abortion.

6. What medically happened for you? 

At 9 weeks there was a heartbeat but it wasn't normal and I was bleeding. At 10 weeks there was no heartbeat. I attempted medication to help my body expel the fetus. For a week I bled but didn't pass anything, so they decided for a d&c at 11 weeks. 

Did you have any procedures? What helped you through this process medically - medicines, baths, sleep, etc.? 
Working. I worked my normal schedule the entire time and even went back to work 2 days after procedure. It was the only normal thing I had in my life. My coworkers were amazing!

7. What helped you emotionally through this process? 

My friends- if I didn't have them I would have literally lost it. 

Do you remember things someone said to you that helped you feel better? 
They were just very supportive, no one said what they felt I should do they just let me do what I felt I needed to do and supported me through it all.

8. What are some of the worst things you heard from people about this time? 

My aunt... I was about to have the d&c and she was mad because I wasn't in Nebraska with my dad yet. I asked her if she wanted me to finish my miscarriage on the plane there?!? She said she was just tired of doing it all (for my dad). I said I can't do anything right now... She was very selfish at that time.

9. What is your advice to a mom who has gone through a miscarriage? 

Depending on what's going on in her life. A miscarriage isn't always the worst thing in the world. It's always sad because of loss of life but they may not want to hear what most people think they need to hear. 

What do you hope they remember? 

Just because you have a miscarriage doesn't mean you cannot go on to have a normal pregnancy.

10. What is your advice to a friend of a mom who has gone through a miscarriage? 

Take it day by day ... They will experience different emotions daily. 

What do you want to encourage them to do or not do to be supportive? 
Don't press their beliefs on them.

11. Why do you think moms don't talk about miscarriages? 

Because as women our job is to give life and when that doesn't happen, you feel like it's your fault or there's something wrong with you. 

Why do you think they SHOULD talk about their experience? 
To voice their thoughts to help with the healing process.

12. Do you do anything to honor the baby you lost, the due date, or another part of this experience? 


13. How has this experience made you a stronger mother? 
I realize how precious life is and how it can change in the blink of an eye. I think about my first baby. Now that me and my husband have gotten back together and have a good healthy marriage we have talked about the first pregnancy. He tells me he thinks that our baby now was the baby before he said God took him up there and kept him for awhile and gave him back to us again when we were ready.

14. Is there a happy ending to your story? 

Yes. I have an amazing 10 month old boy. My husband is a fabulous, involved, attentive, loving dad and great husband.

15. Anything else you want to share? 

Life happens.

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