Miscarriage Poem | “I am only a thin photograph of me as a mother”

I never thought I would have a baby. In my twenties I was married to a man with CFS or ME who felt too exhausted to rear a child so we never tried.

In my 30’s I left him and a year later met the most amazing man who I am still so in love with. He already had a small son from a previous marriage and after a while decided he did not want any more children. This made things very difficult for me as I love him so much but also would love to try and be a mum.

In November a miracle happened and he changed his mind! He was then 39 and me 34 – so we stopped using contraception and a month later in Hanuary I found out I was pregnant! I was so happy!! everything seemed totally fine and I was due to see the midwife and have my first check up and scan at 11 weeks –

BUT at 10.5 weeks I started to bleed – a long story followed but the hospital where we live in France refused to believe I was having a miscarriage and I had to go back twice to ER before they would admit me to the Gyne ward for a scan which showed that I was indeed right and having a miscarriage  – but the baby had stopped growing at 6 weeks and had not miscarried until the 10th week ( a missed-miscarriage) so I had a natural miscarriage at home and 10 days later a scan showed it was all gone.

I have felt so sad and numb ever since and for two months still felt pregnant with raging hormones and terrible PMT/ weight gain and grief. I have now had 3 periods since the loss and we have been trying when my partner is here (he works away so it is very hard to try) and I know it is still only recent but I think about the little baby that never grew every single day. I really hope we can try again and make a happy healthy baby sometime soon.

To help me grieve I wrote this poem and thought I would share it with others.

I am only a thin photograph of me as a mother

The screen showed – numb
An utterly empty slightly pulsing image
Of a grey womb

Blood took a long time to come
All I could do was lace up my walking boots
And every afternoon tread the slow green lane

Under the willow’s whispering branches
Across the wooden tracks slippery with February
I took the same path again and again and tracked your loss
Red as you left me in the spring frost

You who I had imagined flame haired
Named after a fiery spark
I whispered to you as you drained away
As if you slipped back into the marsh

A red light covered the fields each day
And nothing else seemed to move
Only the intense cramps reminding me
Of all those imagined times together

I am only a thin photograph of me as a mother
But the picture is so small the doctor will not show
It to me and so you are stapled
To a brown card and I am told to go home
Rest and only if I haemorrhage return

How can I tell?

I walk in nature instead
Pick up the cold feel of winter sticks
And last year’s oak leaves
Wet and dead

The medical leaflet, which is all I have got, I read
Clinically it turns my vision of you into a large bright clot
Yet when you leave I grieve

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About Unspoken Grief

Unspoken Grief is a non-profit website dedicated to creating awareness and resources for anyone touched directly or indirectly by miscarriage, stillbirth or neonatal death.

©Unspoken Grief 2017; Devan McGuinness


Unspoken Grief exists to provide peer-to-peer support and resources. The information on this site is intended only for advocacy and educational purposes. It's not intended to give medical advice, to diagnose or to offer treatment for any medical or psychological conditions. Please consult your own health care provider for your own specific situation and needs.