She’s the type of person you meet and immediately feel comfortable around. There’s a sweetness, a calmness, and a refreshing matter-of-factness about her. It could be easy to assume Sam lives a charmed life.
She’s happily married. She just finished her Master’s degree. She runs with her dog. She works with children all day. She will adamantly attest that she just loves old people, so much so it’s her Instagram handle.
But like so many women, Sam has her own silent struggle.
She carries with her the sadness of losing multiple pregnancies, one she constantly works to overcome with optimism and faith.
“I was naive,” Sam explains. “Call it ignorant bliss. I just thought you got pregnant and had a baby.”
Sam and her husband were so excited when they found out they were expecting.
“The timing was perfect. We started making all the plans, looking forward to all the next steps,” Sam says. But then at her eight-week appointment, things didn’t look right. The doctors told her to come back in two weeks, but her baby didn’t make it that long.
“It was devastating,” she shares, hoping her story can help other women understand they aren’t alone, and that it’s okay to talk about, even if you don’t have your rainbow baby yet.
“The worst part was probably having to tell my husband,” she says. “He was nothing but supportive, but having to say it out loud. Having to take away his hope. Having to see that disappointment. It just makes it all so real.”
Sam says she found herself in a place she had never been before. She was having dark thoughts - jealousy, envy, things she had never experienced before but simply couldn’t help. And there was guilt.
“Even though I can look at the science of it all, it was impossible to wonder if I did something wrong,” Sam says.
“And on a larger scale, there’s this sense that I’m a woman. This is what I’m supposed to do. I felt like I was letting my husband down.”
Sam says confiding in a friend who had been through the same pain helped her turn the corner. And ultimately being able to be that friend to help another woman going through the pain of miscarriage made it seem like there may be redemption for her suffering in helping another.
“It was healing to speak about it. At first it was just painful to talk about, but the more I opened up, the easier it became,” Sam explains.
Along with the pain of losing a baby, there’s the restlessness of waiting to try again, a feeling that you’re being robbed of time.
After taking the time to heal physically and emotionally, Sam and her husband again learned they were pregnant.
“The excitement we experienced the first time around was replaced with fear,” she says. “Miscarriage takes the joy out of it.”
And once again they discovered they had lost their baby, this time at five weeks gestation.
“I guess we were lucky to lose them so early, but it seems strange to say that,” she says. “Instead I try to think that I’m the person God entrusted with this child for however long it happens to be."
Sam and her husband are still trying and hopeful for their rainbow baby. She realizes it’s early in their journey, and they’re trying to let go of their timeline.
“We will be a family one day,” Sam says. “We are fortunate to have grown even closer through the hurt, and we know that one day we will be a family no matter what.”
Adopted herself, Sam has always had a plan to adopt, but she admits it would be devastating blow if she couldn’t carry her own child.
“I have never been able to look at someone and see myself in them, to share features,” she says. She yearns for that genetic connection she’s never felt before.
“Now watch, when we do have kids they’ll look nothing like me,” she jokes, “but it will just be nice to know that they’re a part of us.”
Right now Sam says she’s accepting the wait.
“I wasn’t always this positive, it’s taken time and healing,” she says. “But I can tell you this, we won’t take a second for granted when it does happen.”
"When I think of what I really want to tell other women that are struggling with miscarriage, it's this:
You are not alone.
You are not to blame.
There's nothing you could have done differently to change the outcome.
You are enough.
In the waiting, be kind to yourself and to your partner.
You are beautiful and worthy and special.
It's okay to feel however you're feeling. Know that you won't feel this way forever. You will get through this and find joy again."