Tuesday, 11 June 2013

The ultimate miscarriage of justice

Last night my wife lost a child.

Nine weeks into her pregnancy the thing she feared most would happen happened. She had a miscarriage.

Were the physical strain not enough to endure she also had to go through the emotional turmoil of grieving for a child that was never born into the world.

The tears are rolling down my cheeks as I write these words.

Although I'm never shy of showing my emotions watching trashy TV, in a curious twist of my own complex character I struggle sometimes to face into the biggest of things.

I was hardly moved at first when Becky said on Saturday night she feared she was going to have a miscarriage. Perhaps we were already both expecting the worst.

But on reflection I think I still hadn't really come to terms with what happened to us previously.

Last August Becky lost another baby, at eleven weeks while on holiday in Ireland.

It was an awful thing to happen so far away from home. We had driven to West Ireland from our home near Bradford.

Two kids in tow and making our way back from deepest County Cork to Dublin, no family within easy reach, Becky couldn't deny what was clearly happening.

Were it not for an absolute angel of a guest house owner I'm not sure what we'd have done as we dashed to the nearest A&E in the early hours while our children slept peacefully.

The experience was scary. Upsetting. And surreal. The practical nature of having to keep going meant I didn't really come to terms with what had happened. I put it to one side. We never really spoke about it again. Or at least I didn't.

But yesterday as Becky sat pale as a ghost on the downstairs toilet floor asking for help I realised I could lose her too. Sound a bit dramatic? Yes, maybe. But that's how it felt. And by all accounts a very real threat when a woman is having a miscarriage.

My voice breaking as I rang 999, barely able to describe what was happening. Feeling helpless and trapped.

Within two minutes a paramedic was with us. The NHS at its very best. With the kids next door watching the Disney channel none the wiser.

I hasten to add Becky is home tonight,  and is physically fine. I also want to emphasise I'm not penning these words for your sympathy.

In fact I wrote them on the basis I would never post them publicly. I'm writing them because I needed to grieve. I need to grieve. Grieve for what might have been. Grieve for the third daughter or first son that was due to be born in January 2014.

I adore my two healthy children who I cherish even more today than I probably realised yesterday.

And I love my wife. It's so easy when kids come along at first without much effort to underestimate what women go through by bearing children.

I am in awe of her and what she's gone through on our family's behalf.

One final word for our friend Matt who somehow understood my shaky voice on the end of the mobile last night and legged it round to babysit our kids until the early hours of yesterday morning.

I will never forget your generosity Matt. Even though you say it was nothing. It meant more than you will ever know.


  1. So sorry to hear about your loss. Can't really imagine how your wife and you feel.

  2. Only just seen this, Dom. Really sorry to hear about this, but really glad you shared. Hope you and Becky are in a better place soon.