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Miscarriage- "Bittersweet Acceptance"

by Ellen DuBois on 12/21/14




I've learned over the past twenty plus years that life after miscarriage changes more than once. I changed more than once and that's all due to time, growth, healing and learning.  

I went experienced a wealth of different emotions after my miscarriage including: grief, anger, bitterness, jealousy, sadness, despair and more. I had to feel all of these things to reach a point of "bittersweet acceptance". What do I mean? Well, it took a long time after miscarrying for me to accept my loss. After accepting it the tears still fell, but far less often. The deep longing and ache for my baby never went away, but it lessened.

I had to grow into accepting my loss and the road wasn't easy. However, the only way I could arrive at accepting my loss was by traveling that road.

I think back to those days right after my miscarriage. They were so dark and I felt incredibly lost, alone and afraid. It was such a terrible time and my heart goes out to anyone who is living it now or has lived it. 

I've come a long way from those days where I had to hold back tears to the point of exhaustion. 

I never wanted to accept this kind of loss in my life, but I had to. In doing so, I was able to move forward- and that's the bittersweet part. That's bittersweet acceptance.

Love and Light to you. I know it can be particularly rough during the Christmas and holiday season. Please know you're not alone on your road and my thoughts and prayers are with you.- Ellen

I wrote this poem a long time ago, but I thought it would fit in here:

Bittersweet Rememberance

Oh, do not see me weep

 for my tears are for my own-

 not a river runs so deep 

as those bittersweet memories gone.

How, I ask my gleaming face 

as my reflection in the mirror cast- 

did my heart go from sweet to bittersweet? 

Was the joy I felt not meant to last?

Betwixt am I, caught in between 

what once caressed my bleeding heart- 

I look although I've already seen 

what I did not at the start.

Close the door, 

hide my eyes from everyone but I- 

as my Bittersweet Remembrance 

makes me smile while I cry. 

© Ellen M. DuBois

Miscarriage: It's okay to take some quiet time for you.

by Ellen DuBois on 12/19/14





If you've suffered a miscarriage, it hurts on many levels. Many women, (I was) are in pain physically, emotionally and spiritually. The depths are immeasurable. 

With all the activity and business surrounding Christmas and the holidays season, you may be feeling overwhelmed if you've suffered a miscarriage. You may be grieving as you decorate your tree, wrap presents, light your candles. In a world filled with celebrations, you may feel like hiding out for a while because it's all so...much.

Feeling both ends of the emotional spectrum is draining.  The effort it takes to wear your "happy face" while crying on the inside is enormous. Grieving is exhausting. You need to regroup and replenish. It's okay to take some quiet time for you- time to breathe, slow down and simply "be".

I hope you give yourself permission to do so, and I am so sorry for your loss.

Love and Light,

Ellen

Miscarriage: Missing You, Especially at Christmas

by Ellen DuBois on 12/16/14

"I miss you every day. But, I feel it more at Christmas. No matter how long it's been, there will always be a place in my heart for you. Year after year I wish you were here- seeing the tree, celebrating with me, smiling on Christmas morning. What gets me through is knowing you're here in spirit. It's not the way I wanted, but it's comforting when I feel your presence. Merry Christmas my little one. I will always love you."- Ellen DuBois, MiscarriageHelp.com


Welcome to MiscarriageHelp.com. My name is Ellen DuBois, host of this site, miscarriage survivor, and author of I Never Held You: Miscarriage, Grief, Healing and Recovery (Volume 1). If you or someone you love has suffered a miscarriage, please know you're not alone. Connect with people who understand.

Note: Some people find it difficult to post comments here because it's not very clear how to do it. Just hit the "comment" link under any post. I'll get your comment and respond. If it's easier, please email me. ellen@miscarriagehelp.com
Love & comfort to you, Ellen

The MiscarriageHelp.com Daily- paper.li- by Ellen DuBois. Updated daily with a curated selection of articles, blog posts, videos and photos. Click here. Miscarriage Support- Because Your Loss Matters.



Miscarriage- Just Because I Never Held You, Doesn’t Mean I Didn't Love You

by Ellen DuBois on 12/09/14



Over twenty-years ago I lost my baby to miscarriage. To say it was one of the loneliest, most isolating times of my life is an understatement. Nobody saw my baby. I never held my sweet baby. So, why was I overcome with such grief?

When you suffer a miscarriage, many people don't view your loss as 'real'. If they do, there seems to be a limit on the time you're allowed to grieve. All too quickly women hear, Don't you think you should be over this by now? Or the dreaded, It was meant to be. There was probably something wrong with the baby, and You can always have another.

Like this baby didn't count? That’s how I felt all those years ago, and sadly, many women feel still feel that way today. For as far as we've come in terms of miscarriage awareness, support sites, groups and books on miscarriage, we've got a long way to go. But, at least we’re heading in the right direction. Step by step.

I digress .

At twenty-five years old, I stood knee deep in the fallout of my miscarriage. I felt like a wet, heavy blanket was draped around my shoulders. My husband, (at the time), and I didn't talk about it much. He didn't get the connection I’d already formed with my unborn. After sixteen-weeks of pregnancy, suddenly, I wasn't. My body felt pregnant. My hormones were a mess. I was bloated, depressed, and cried at the drop of a hat. I avoided pregnant women like the plague along with anything having to do with babies. The thought of attending a baby shower made me cringe. I barely made is past the baby isle in the grocery store without suffering a panic attack, or fearing I’d burst out in tears.

I was happy for friends and family who were pregnant; it’s just that I viewed pregnancy as a reminder of what I lost. It stung. I couldn't break free from the world of "Why not me?" Why couldn't it be me? Why did I lose my baby? Why…why…why?

My grief lasted a long time. Although I was back to work within a week of my D&C, I was just going through the motions, still wearing that heavy blanket. By the time July rolled around, I was so run down I landed in bed with a double lobe pneumonia. That’s how I spent my Fourth of July. There were so many tears, so many words left unspoken, and so much kept inside. I busied myself to the point of distraction so I wouldn't have to think. Every time I thought, my mind went straight to the baby I lost and missed. The tears would flow again.

That made me sick, literally.

There were days I thought I was losing it. There were moments I thought I was crazy. Why couldn't I let go? Where was the relief? Why couldn't I talk to my husband about it without him getting worked up or wanting to avoid the subject and me all together?

I learned over time that I wasn't crazy or losing it for feeling the way I did. I learned after my miscarriage and divorce and lots of grieving and growing that what I felt was normal. I learned my life took on a "new normal" after my miscarriage because I suffered a very real loss- one that went unacknowledged by many. I learned after searching and searching for something that spoke to me and my pain that there wasn't much out there- not back then, and so I had to dig deep into my faith and into myself, to find ways to cope and heal.

I remember the day, eleven years after my miscarriage, sitting at the kitchen table when a feeling so strong told me to write about my experience and life after miscarriage. The need to reach out to other women was incredibly powerful and I couldn't ignore it. After all those years, I knew it was time to dive in to something I never thought I would: revisiting miscarriage and giving validation and support to those who needed it. Even if I reached just one person, I had to give it a try. Why? Because I didn't want anyone feeling as alone and isolated as I did after I miscarried.

The Internet wasn't really around when I miscarried, but it was eleven years later. I learned about e-books and wrote a short one about what I went through and steps I took along my journey toward healing after miscarriage. My support site was launched in 2006, and I began receiving comment after comment from women who needed to voice themselves- let it out. They were living the nightmare I’d lived and felt they had no one to talk to. They felt dismissed and found a place where they could be heard by others who’d lived it.

My e-book grew into a paperback with much more added. Dr. Linda Backman, a licensed psychologist and grief counselor wrote a heartfelt foreword and several of the beginning chapters.

I never held you my little one, but I loved you with all my heart. Still do.

Welcome to MiscarriageHelp.com. My name is Ellen DuBois, host of this site, miscarriage survivor, and author of I Never Held You: Miscarriage, Grief, Healing and Recovery (Volume 1). If you or someone you love has suffered a miscarriage, please know you're not alone. Connect with people who understand.

Note: Some people find it difficult to post comments here because it's not very clear how to do it. Just hit the "comment" link under any post. I'll get your comment and respond. If it's easier, please email me. ellen@miscarriagehelp.com
Love & comfort to you, Ellen

The MiscarriageHelp.com Daily- paper.li- by Ellen DuBois. Updated daily with a curated selection of articles, blog posts, videos and photos. Click here. Miscarriage Support- Because Your Loss Matters.



Kisses From Heaven

by Ellen DuBois on 12/05/14




"Each soul is as unique as a snowflake. Sometimes, when snow falls from the sky, I think of you. As snowflakes gently touch my face- it feels like kisses from Heaven."- Ellen M. DuBois

Welcome to MiscarriageHelp.com. My name is Ellen DuBois, host of this site, miscarriage survivor, and author of I Never Held You: Miscarriage, Grief, Healing and Recovery (Volume 1). If you or someone you love has suffered a miscarriage, please know you're not alone. Connect with people who understand.

Note: Some people find it difficult to post comments here because it's not very clear how to do it. Just hit the "comment" link under any post. I'll get your comment and respond. If it's easier, please email me. ellen@miscarriagehelp.com
Love & comfort to you, Ellen

The MiscarriageHelp.com Daily- paper.li- by Ellen DuBois. Updated daily with a curated selection of articles, blog posts, videos and photos. Click here. Miscarriage Support- Because Your Loss Matters.



A Prayer of Thanksgiving, Ellen M. DuBois

by Ellen DuBois on 11/27/14


Thanks for the beautiful sun and moon-
for loved ones who didn't leave us too soon.

Let's pray for those who don't have a thing-
May they find comfort and peace from the Heavenly King.

Give thanks for waterfalls, stars and twilight-
give thanks for the warm beds we sleep in at night.

Give thanks for the feast as we gather around-
thank God for His blessings- just look around!

Even give thanks for this day that is here.
Give thanks every second, every moment of the year.

Be thankful for those you hold in your heart.
Give thanks for their love, may you never grow apart.

Offer thanks for our country and prayers for peace-
As we gather together over this glorious feast.

Give thanks for your blessings, be they big or small-
each one is special, let's count them all.

As we celebrate today, remember what it means-
Please pray for those who don't have anything.

Remember as you sit at your table tonight-
there are those in the cold- no food in sight.

Give thanks for those working in shelters all day-
feeding families, feeding children- for them, let us pray.

Give thanks for this nation- for those who have lost.
Give thanks for your freedom- it came with a cost.

Give thanks as you gather with family and friends-
"Thank you, Dear God, your love's without end."

Through Him we are here, celebrating today.
Give thanks for His Love, this Thanksgiving Day.

© Ellen M. DuBois

Overwhelmed? Smell the Roses and Blow Out the Candles

by Ellen DuBois on 11/26/14





I'm feeling overwhelmed. It's the day before Thanksgiving. As the cold rain pours down - I listen to the patter.

My mother's been in and out of the hospital since September 26th. My father and I brought her home yesterday. Thank God she'll be home for Thanksgiving. It's not easy seeing your parents ill. Not at all. It's not easy seeing them age or feeling older myself. 

However, it's better than the alternative.

My dog passed away on Veteran's Day. God, I miss him. I have a new, little buddy to love, but one pet does not replace another. I can love my new dog and still grieve Baron. I had him for fifteen-plus years.

I feel empty, but I know I'll bounce back. I'll count my blessings and be okay. It's just that right now, I'm not.

There's other "stuff", too, but I don't want this to sound like a complete gripe session. Maybe it is. Maybe I need to vent. I've always written my way out of dark places. It's a release. I need to let out and sort out my feelings, and writing seems to be my ticket to sanity.

This is also what would have been my due date so many years ago, had I not miscarried. I get overwhelmed this time of year even without all the other things going on. 

So, while I try to wrap my brain around my mother's health, (and worrying about my father), grieve the loss of my baby some twenty years ago and my dog not even two weeks ago, wait on the radiologist's second opinion of my mammogram to see if I need another biopsy and, to hell with my fibroids, (they can wait), I will breathe. 

Like they've said so many times to my mother, "Smell the roses and blow out the candles."

I'm doing it now. If you're feeling overwhelmed, you might want to try it. It helps.


Welcome to MiscarriageHelp.com. My name is Ellen DuBois, host of this site, miscarriage survivor, and author of I Never Held You: Miscarriage, Grief, Healing and Recovery (Volume 1). If you or someone you love has suffered a miscarriage, please know you're not alone. Connect with people who understand.

Note: Some people find it difficult to post comments here because it's not very clear how to do it. Just hit the "comment" link under any post. I'll get your comment and respond. If it's easier, please email me. ellen@miscarriagehelp.com
Love & comfort to you, Ellen

The MiscarriageHelp.com Daily- paper.li- by Ellen DuBois. Updated daily with a curated selection of articles, blog posts, videos and photos. Click here. Miscarriage Support- Because Your Loss Matters.



While Watching Heaven Is For Real...

by Ellen DuBois on 11/22/14




"I can still feel you near me and I know, without a doubt, you live on in Heaven. It is for real..."

Last night I watched Heaven Is For Real. I read the book and was excited to find it on cable last night.

There were several parts of the movie that spoke to me- reached straight into my heart. In particular, there was a scene where the small boy who saw Heaven during surgery told his mother he had a sister. He did. But, there was another baby the mother lost to miscarriage. The four-year-old boy was never told about it. But, in Heaven, he met her. They hugged. He described what she looked like and as tears ran down the mother's face, they also ran down mine.

I felt my baby's spirit near me. It was not my imagination- it was real. Just as it was real to the boy in the movie. Just like it was real to the mother of the baby who cried tears of joy, shock, grief- you name it- upon hearing what her little boy said.

It's been so long since I lost my son to miscarriage. This Thanksgiving it will be twenty-three years.  I remember when I found out I was pregnant the doctor said it would be a "Thanksgiving baby". 

I've always wondered what it would be like to hold my baby- to hug him. This year, I will take comfort in knowing my baby has been loved, held and hugged by God, the angels, by Jesus and by family members who live on in Heaven with him.

Heaven is for real to me, too.

Love and Light to you, and I'm deeply sorry for your loss.
Ellen

Grief & Joy are Real. An Exhausting Ride.

by Ellen DuBois on 11/20/14

"Grief is real and so is joy. When the two are felt together, it's one heck of an exhausting ride."- Ellen M. DuBois





Many of you may find yourselves trying extra hard to prepare for the holidays. If you've had a miscarriage, you're probabably swimming in a pool of emotions. Some days are better than others. Some days feel like they'll never end. Sometimes, you catch yourself doing something that's supposed to make you feel happy, (like decorating a Christmas tree, etc.), and it's taking everything you've got to keep from bursting into tears.

I relate. There were so many Thanksgivings and Christmases when my strength felt sapped because I used it up trying to hold myself together.

Over the years, I've learned a thing or two about getting through- even enjoying- the holidays while grieving. That's not to say every moment will be joyful. I wish it could be, but that's not real, (at least it wasn't for me). Grief is real and so is joy. When the two are felt together, it's one heck of an exhausting ride.

If you can manage the time, you may have to step back, step out, and to just "be". The alone time, the quiet moments, can refresh the soul. Take some deep breaths. Let the air touch your face and feel it. Just being outdoors, away from it all is calming.

If you find yourself smiling over something...anything, please allow yourself to do so. Some women feel guilty for feeling any kind of "happy feeling" after miscarrying. They wonder how they could smile when they ache so much. Please, try not to feel guilty. When something sparks joy within your heart, I believe it's God's way of balancing out your pain with the opposite- joy. Try to let it in.

Allow yourself to feel whatever it is you're feeling. If you're looking at your Christmas tree and missing your baby, let the tears fall. Letting them out is far better than keeping them pent up inside. If you're in a room full of people, step out if you can, or promise yourself you'll give yourself permission to let it out, write it out, cry it out, walk it out, (whatever's right for you), later on. On the flip side, if you feel an unexpected smile, allow yourself to smile. I think the bottom line is this: Your feelings are telling you something and they want you to listen and set them free by letting them out.

The world does not need to understand you. I know you wish they could, but those of us who have suffered any kind of loss and are struggling over the holidays know  what it's like to be in a room full of people and still feel alone.

You are not.

Love and Light to you,

Ellen



Welcome to MiscarriageHelp.com. My name is Ellen DuBois, host of this site, miscarriage survivor, and author of I Never Held You: Miscarriage, Grief, Healing and Recovery (Volume 1). If you or someone you love has suffered a miscarriage, please know you're not alone. Connect with people who understand.

Note: Some people find it difficult to post comments here because it's not very clear how to do it. Just hit the "comment" link under any post. I'll get your comment and respond. If it's easier, please email me. ellen@miscarriagehelp.com
Love & comfort to you, Ellen

The MiscarriageHelp.com Daily- paper.li- by Ellen DuBois. Updated daily with a curated selection of articles, blog posts, videos and photos. Click here. Miscarriage Support- Because Your Loss Matters.



Miscarriage: Give Yourself the Time You Need During the Holidays.

by Ellen DuBois on 11/15/14



Hello Everyone,

This time of year brings with it many joys. It also can wear you down with all the running around, travel, planning, preparing and more. For those who have experienced a loss, (of any kind), you often feel more overwhelmed. On top of the seemingly endless "to do" list(s), you're grieving the loss of your child. You've suffered a miscarriage and it's pretty difficult to keep up with everything, including yourself.

I learned how important it was to take care of myself after my miscarriage some twenty years ago, but I learned too late. By the Fourth of July, I was in bed with a pneumonia because I didn't take the time to just "be".  I didn't get the rest I needed. I was on constant overdrive, to the point of distraction. If I kept going, I'd be okay because I wouldn't have to think, feel, cry.

You know what? I still cried. I still felt. I still grieved the child I lost. In not taking some precious time to still myself and rest, I landed in another place I didn't want to be. All the emotions I tried to busy myself from were still there. I tried so hard to go on like life was 'normal', but it wasn't. So, I wore myself out to the point where I had to rest.

To all of you who have suffered a miscarriage, or any kind of loss, please give yourself some 'mini breaks'. I know there's a lot to do. I'm aware you may have travel plans, or perhaps need to get ready for guests.

However, there is nothing more important than your health. You are entitled, and need to give yourself the time you need to breathe...and just "be".

I am so sorry for your loss.

Love and Light,

Ellen


Welcome to MiscarriageHelp.com. My name is Ellen DuBois, host of this site, miscarriage survivor, and author of I Never Held You: Miscarriage, Grief, Healing and Recovery (Volume 1). If you or someone you love has suffered a miscarriage, please know you're not alone. Connect with people who understand.

Note: Some people find it difficult to post comments here because it's not very clear how to do it. Just hit the "comment" link under any post. I'll get your comment and respond. If it's easier, please email me. ellen@miscarriagehelp.com
Love & comfort to you, Ellen

The MiscarriageHelp.com Daily- paper.li- by Ellen DuBois. Updated daily with a curated selection of articles, blog posts, videos and photos. Click here. Miscarriage Support- Because Your Loss Matters.





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"MiscarriageHelp.com is a support site for women and their families who have suffered the pain, loss and grief after miscarriage. I respond personally to each email and post and have been doing so since 2006. It's an outreach to me, as I try to connect and support those who have walked the often lonely road after miscarriage. Why? I don't want anyone to feel as alone as I did some twenty years ago after my own miscarriage." -Love & comfort to you, Ellen, - Ellen M. DuBois
I Never Held You: Miscarriage, Grief, Healing and Recovery (Volume 1).


Claire Chew, Grief Recovery Specialist/Spiritual Counselor

310.314.9837 www.clairechew.com

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