This story is part of our End of the Childbearing Years series, exploring the experiences, decisions, and feelings of Mormon women around this pivotal transition. Each story is a generous and vulnerable offering. We ask that comments be sensitive and nonjudgmental toward any woman’s choices or beliefs.
My husband and I always thought four sounded like a nice even number of kids to have, and when we reached number four, I was ready to be done. I struggled with postpartum depression and anxiety that got worse with each child, and I had suffered three miscarriages and had two c-sections. I wanted to feel done. We decided we were done. But…I felt ambiguous. Relieved, but grieving the end of my pregnancy and breastfeeding years, wondering if I was sure about being done.
Shortly before my youngest’s second birthday, we attended the temple and I had a very strong impression that we needed to have another baby. I leaned over to my husband in the Celestial room and told him this and he had an immediate spiritual confirmation that this was what we were supposed to do. So we proceeded and quickly became pregnant. I had a very hard time with the pregnancy, swinging between excitement and feeling like “What have I done?” Additionally, because of my miscarriage history, my doctor decided to put me on progesterone. Let’s just say I was no fun to live with.
At ten weeks, we went in for an ultrasound. Mercifully my husband was able to get the day off and go with me. The tech was very quiet and I knew that what I saw on the screen was not a ten-week fetus. The doctor came in shortly after to tell me that I was again miscarrying. I had a D&C the next day and I proceeded to grieve this miscarriage in a way that I hadn’t done with the others.
The question quickly became, “Do we try again?” But I finally felt really and truly done. I no longer felt the tug of another baby waiting to come to us. Another trip to the temple confirmed these feelings. Naturally, this raised a whole host of other questions: Why another miscarriage? Did this little spirit just need a very short stopover in mortality? Will we have him in the next life? I don’t know the answers to these questions. Our doctrine is vague in these areas and I personally believe it’s because there are no one-size-fits-all answers at these early stages of gestation and loss. I can only put faith in the personal revelation I’ve received and move forward and hope to have answers someday.