real life

13 things that are utterly awful about having a miscarriage. And two good ones.

It’s my birthday today, which is weird because today was the day I was supposed to be announcing The Thing That Was Happening.

I had rehearsed the moment in my head. I would be joyful and glowing and would have make-up on and have washed my hair AND blow-dried it. I would wheel in a big chocolate cake that had piped on it  ‘Let’s get fat together’ and as people looked at it quizzically I would say with a humorous glint in my eye ‘I’m PREGNANT!’

And people would erupt and there would be joyfulness and hugging, and THEN we would eat cake, and it would be a moment so good that not a single person would be looking at their phone.

But that’s not happening anymore and this is why making plans in your head is a stupid idea.

So now the cake looks a little different. Pass me a fork.

The birthday cake you make when you have just had a miscarriage.

There are so many things that are awful about having a miscarriage.

The moment the ultrasound technician goes very quiet.


The moment you think, "Why didn't I bring my husband?"

The moment you have to exit through the waiting room, full of pregnant, hopeful women.

The moment you scramble for your stupid health care card through torrents of tears (why is it always never where you think?) and the receptionist waves you away.

The look on your partner's face when you tell them.

When you call your mum and she cries.

When the doctor Googles "What to do after a miscarriage" in front of you.

When the maternity clothes you ordered when you were feeling excited, arrive.

When you don't return them because you're not sure what your face will do in public.

When you have to buy maternity pads.

When that ultrasound bill arrives.

When you scroll Instagram and Facebook and every single ad is for maternity clothes, baby products and baby clothes.

When the dog sniffs your crotch and you wonder; 'Can it smell death?'

There are two good things about having a miscarriage:

People say the F word, a lot.

And mum made me a chocolate cake with sprinkles.

If you, or someone you know is struggling with pregnancy loss or depression, contact PANDA on Ph: 1300 726 306.

You can listen to Monique talking about what has and hasn't helped her through these last few weeks: 

Mamamia, through our Pregnancy Loss Awareness resources, offers hope to those who are hearing those torturous words, “I’m sorry, but there’s no heartbeat” for the first time. And to those who are still grieving after years or decades. There are more details here.