For years, October was my favorite month. I was born, started dating my partner, got engaged and was married, all in the month of October. October is still my favorite month, but it’s bittersweet now, as it also marks the due date of the first pregnancy that I lost and the month that I lost my second pregnancy.
Since 1988, October has been Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, which seemed cruelly fitting to me back in 2018, when I was in the throes of a very private and very common grief. While I knew at the time that miscarriage is common, I didn’t realize how common it actually is until I experienced it myself. According to Christine C. Greves, MD, Obstetrics and Gynecology at Winnie Palmer Hospital in Orlando, one in four pregnancies end in miscarriage.
One in four.
I was astounded to learn just how many of my friends, neighbors, and coworkers had been through this experience. I did not share with many people at the time, but those that knew quietly connected me with others that had been through it themselves. I don’t have the words to express the gratitude I have–it was a life preserver in the waves of grief.
After realizing how common this loss is, I also realized that I knew hardly anything about pregnancy, or even how my body functions. I was angry and scared, and I felt lost. So I turned to the place I consider home–the library. While there are many religiously based resources addressing pregnancy, infertility, and infant loss, I needed something different. It has taken me years to compile a list of these resources. They address everything from the feelings of anger and grief to the cultural and scientific history of reproduction and pregnancy.
Healing isn’t linear, and at different times in my life, I have felt differently about my experience. There is no right or wrong way to feel, a fact I’m still learning five years later. This list is not exhaustive by any means, and if none of these resources work for you, please email me at email@example.com for recommendations tailored to your current needs.