I have always prided myself on maintaining a decent level of… (let’s say) presentability . Not vain, but not without my vanity, not over polished, but still well kept, in every sense of the word; physically, emotionally, mentally and all the rest. Miscarriage threw all that out the window for me. I lost the baby, my job, friends, my sense of being and possibly my mind a little bit too.
In the aftermath and once I managed to scramble back to my feet, I began to work on my mental health; I’d been to this dark place before and knew I had to find the exit, quick! However, a huge lack of priority in (what the buzz trends call) ‘self care’ escalated after miscarrying. I suddenly became aware of all the possible contributors to our terrible loss. I know, I know these things can’t be helped but that kind of advice is not tangible, is it? You can’t take that notion and improve on it, but lists of nasties and hindrances such as chemicals and perfumes and the plethora of anti-fertility agents the modern day world spews out, these things can be avoided, discarded and to a certain extent obsessed about in order to relieve the level of irrational guilt someone (namely me) may have (had). So, a long with changing my cleaning agents and slowly cancelling perfumes and parabens out of my life (as much as humanly possible) I also irradicated luxuries such as my make-up bag and creams a long with any time I had previously dedicated to maintaining ‘me’. I didn’t mean to neglect myself, I just wanted to make sure nothing was polluting my body and poisoning our chances of conceiving again and that was all consuming.
Looking back it’s possible these changes helped, it’s also possible that life is just what happens and the saying:
‘God laughs, when men make plans’
is probably more true than I ever might really know. Maybe I made it happen, maybe it would have just happened regardless, either way I gained that fulfilment that I’d been grieving and in doing so my anxiety felt a comfort in the sacrifices I’d made.
I know I’m one of the lucky ones, I often blog about how the birth of my son (some months later) helped to reconfigure my mental malfunctions and 26 months later life has taken a hold of any neurosis I had and the pure mind blowing learning curves (of a first time mum) have fought against any extremes and helped to create a natural life balance. I still try to be as conscientious about the chemicals I use in my every day life but I’ve also, slowly allowed myself to regain a basic supply of make-up, if that’s what you can call tinted moisturiser, blush and mascara!
Although, far more than all of this and most importantly of all, I’ve forgiven myself. I hope that if you’re reading this and anything I’ve said resignates with you, that you have/will let yourself be forgiven too.