I called in sick after my first miscarriage.
I’m not going to list the reasons why. If you’ve ever had a miscarriage, then you know why. If you haven’t, then words can’t quite justify the pain and agony endured.
But, what do you say?
“To whom it may concern–I won’t be coming to work today because I had a miscarriage.”
So, I didn’t say anything. I worried that someone might want to know how far along I was. I worried that when they heard that I was “only” five weeks that they would scoff at my request for time away.
So I just said I was sick.
Did people even call out for miscarriages? I had never had anyone share their miscarriage experience with me, so I didn’t know what you should do.
Was I being overly dramatic? Was this necessary?
All day long, I questioned myself.
The day I called out was also the day of a big meeting I was supposed to attend. I felt bad for missing it, but I couldn’t imagine sitting in a room with others while I soaked a heavy duty maxi pad and tried not to break down.
But when I returned to work, someone called me out for missing the meeting. It was important. They had really needed me to be there.
And I didn’t know what to say.
Was a miscarriage a good enough reason?
I didn’t say anything. I just nodded, mumbled an apology, and blinked back a fresh wave of tears before excusing myself.
And then I went to the bathroom and I wept. Big, ugly sobs. Shoulders heaving and gasping for air. Pausing only when I heard footsteps enter, waiting for the door to swing shut before I exhaled another shaky breath.
I felt shameful.
So, so alone.
Nobody knew that I had miscarried and I didn’t know how to tell them.
All I could do was dry my tears, clean myself up, and go back to work. Where no one even knew that I had been pregnant.
And where no one knew that I was now alone.
Photo by Kinga Cichewicz on Unsplash
3 thoughts on “I Won’t Be Coming To Work Today–I Had A Miscarriage”
I wish I knew how to fix this; where to start. You’re doing it, I think, with your writing. So thank you.
I did not have a big meeting, but I had the same thing happen to me. I had originally taken a vacation during a super busy time to go to India for a month that I had to cancel due to not being able to travel due to the miscarriage/getting pregnant in the first place. It was very uncomfortable to do without giving a proper explanation. My boss asked me straight into my face are you pregnant, I did not have the heart to say “not anymore”. Other than my husband, mom and best friend nobody even knows I was pregnant. I couldn’t even handle it myself for it was the 2nd one within 2 years and I had no babies yet. So although I cried for a month straight we did not talk about “it”. Only now 2 years later with a baby at hand I could finally grieve through and let go. The pregnancy was tough because the whole time I was so afraid, the first 2 months after the baby was born I was still soooooo darn afraid of something happening to him. He’s doing okay despite having a minor limb difference that he is going to recover fully after therapy for at least 4 years. Thank you for being this open! I wish you all the best.
I too had to make that call. Well for me it was a text because saying those words, “I lost the baby” wasn’t an option yet. A text from the ER bed before being discharged to inform my boss that I had lost my baby, letting him know I wasn’t sure when I would be back to work. He responded with “take your time.” I few days later was my OB appointment to make sure I had completed the delivery, and I had not. A D&C was scheduled for 2 days later. I texted my boss again to update him, I also kindly asked him to let everyone know why I wasn’t there, to let anyone who asked know that I’m, WE, are not ok but will be. You see the place I worked was a large company but I worked with a small, tight-knit, family style group. They all knew I was expecting how could I hide it. How could I hide the morning sickness, the mass amounts of chocolate covered pretzels that where the only thing that I could keep down. How could I hide the 15lbs of belly I had been growing for the past 13.5 weeks. I couldn’t and the return to work after a week was the easiest it could be. You see my boss had a small, informal meeting to inform them of my loss. It was the best thing for me. No one asked, or talked about it but when I wanted and needed to talk they listened and I am forever grateful.