My Complicated Miscarriage by Anonymous
Rabbi Aryeh Nivin’s Personal Development Chaburas were named one of the six most ambitious spiritual initiatives by Family First magazine. Two new chabura groups for women are starting this Elul. Click here to find out more about joining the $1 no-commitment Elul program for women. Every JewishMOM.com reader who signs up for the $1 Elul session will automatically enter the raffle to win a free 12-week course registration (worth $150). This means that you have nothing to lose, and everything to gain by trying this out.
In the following article, a Rabbi Nivin Chabura participant explains how Rabbi Nivin’s teachings helped her to get through a traumatic and complicated miscarriage.
I’m writing from my husband’s iPhone after the four longest, most horrific days of my beautiful life. I was 12 weeks pregnant when I started bleeding and experienced a miscarriage Monday morning.
The night before I had been resting while listening to Rabbi Nivin’s Purim class before bed. I had even been in touch with a friend about it and we had been discussing some of the ideas. I cannot begin to tell you how that class and its central message of Divine Providence and feeling Hashem’s intense love carried me through the trauma of the following day.
B”H once I got to the hospital all seemed to go as smooth and easily as possible and within a few hours I was back home. After my experience I felt very connected to Rabbi Nivin’s own pre-Purim experience from two years ago when he was seriously ill and fighting for his life. And I was inspired to also use my own difficulties as a catalyst for growth– in the spirit of Purim.
My husband and I were so grateful for the precious children we have at home and all the blessings that made this miscarriage 100 times less traumatic than every other one we had heard about from close family and friends. We saw Hashem’s hand orchestrating the events through and through. We were also handling the situation so much better than anyone expected.
We did feel guilty that we had taken getting pregnant this time for granted, and that we had felt apprehensive about how we were going to take care of another baby at this point when we were barely managing the needs of our other young children. Yet, we tried to trust that if Hashem gave us this precious blessing then surely by the time the baby would be born, we would be ready.
I was dealing with the miscarriage in what I thought was a healthy way and felt Hashem’s love through every step.
Then on Wednesday, two days after the original miscarriage, I went through another ER experience and they discovered that some of the placenta was still inside of me.
As a result, I fell unconscious. That was terrifying, both for me and my husband who was with me when it happened.
Immediately after I awoke I asked my husband to play Rabbi Nivin’s next class for me. This, BH, lifted my spirits a bit and brought back to me the feeling of life and excitement through Torah. After that I was in the hospital for a couple days and had over a month-long recovery. I couldn’t help but think maybe we took the original miscarriage too lightly and Hashem was sending us more to really shake us up. Later, I thought maybe they were both tests, just like Hashem tested Avraham again and again.
I was in a funk for a couple days until Purim, and then my down mood began to lift. What made it so confusing to me was when people would tell me, especially nurses and family, that they were sorry for my loss. That expression made me feel like I was supposed to be so sad, that I wasn’t allowed to smile and be happy.
After days of hearing that it was so hard to transition into the joy of Purim. It felt so unnatural, the juxtaposition of my hospitalization with Purim, the happiest day of the year.
The biggest comfort for me at the time was being able to go on Purim morning to bench hagomel, thanking Hashem for my survival of a life-threatening event. I felt it was a true miracle to be able to to publicize my gratitude to Hashem and being able to go to shul and to be with my family. I wanted to share the love from Above that I felt. This helped me to work through this Purim paradox I had felt.
Shortly afterwards, I spoke with a Chabura coach and figured out a new system for me to ensure my constant growth. I decided to try to do an extra mitzvah each day, and I am keeping a journal of it. If I have nothing to report then I write something I appreciate about someone in my life. I think this is helping me grow in gratitude and humility.
Anyway, my main goal for this message is to thank Rabbi Nivin for giving me the strength to get through this challenging time and for building me up in times of light so that I can endure the times of uncertainty. He is teaching me that I can stay strong and grow much stronger from every life experience so that I can continue to inspire myself, my husband, our precious children, and our students.
I am so grateful for what I have learned in this Chabura and for the connection it provides to a community of women who are growth-oriented. It is so helpful to know there are other women with whom I share this passion for growth and it inspires me to inspire others.
Thank you Rabbi Nivin for everything!