What My Miscarriage Taught Me about Vulnerability

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After sharing details on our miscarriage ‘publicly’ on Facebook and Instagram, these messages among the many condolences, thoughts and prayers, stood out. 

“It’s so hard to share, but so important.”

“Thank you for sharing this heartbreakingly beautiful perspective.”

“God is proud of you for sharing your heart.”

“You have so much courage to share your journey with this.”

“Thank you for your vulnerability.”

“Thank you for sharing so that even one other may not feel alone in what they’ve experienced.” 

What Miscarriage Taught Me about Vulnerability

These comments all implied how I was helping others by being vulnerable. And while that’s certainly a bonus in sharing our journey through miscarriage, it’s not why I chose to share. 

So why?

I needed to share to heal, to find the strength to carry on with my everyday life, and (most importantly) to stay true to myself. 

Let me explain. 

“There’s a high likelihood you will miscarry if you haven’t already.”

It was a Monday afternoon. I left work to visit my chiropractor before picking up my toddler at daycare. As I walked in the entryway to the chiropractor’s office, I saw “Essentia” pop up on my phone.

I had completed my third HCG test that afternoon. My doctor requested this test in early pregnancy to ensure my levels were rising appropriately. I had viewed the results in MyChart earlier and while the numbers were up, it wasn’t significant, and I was nervously awaiting this phone call. 

I took the call and after some back and forth discussing my ‘low’ levels, I point blank asked, “Is my baby going to be okay?”.

A quiet, but clear voice on the other end replied, “There’s a high likelihood you will miscarry if you haven’t already.” 

The kind and compassionate nurse continued to explain and I tried my best to answer her questions, but my mind was reeling and my heart felt like it was shattering. The short-lived joy we had regarding this new life was ripped away in an instant. I questioned what would happen with my body, if there was any chance for a miracle, and how to deliver this news to my husband. 

Relying on Vulnerability

After sharing the news with my husband, I still felt so lonely. While there were still more questions than answers, I knew I needed my inner circle — I needed their prayers and support. 

I decided to text my parents, my brother, three long standing friends from grade school, and two colleagues who are also dear friends. 

For about half of the group, they knew I was in early pregnancy. 

For the other half, this message came out of left field (We hadn’t told everyone since it had only been a few weeks since we found out.)

To me, it didn’t matter. I needed them. 

Of course sharing didn’t make me feel instantly better, but there was comfort in sharing, knowing others had our back, feeling their support.

Then the next day I realized keeping this journey between me and my inner circle just wasn’t going to work. 

No Time for Small Talk

The next morning I was scheduled to attend a ‘Refresh & Reconnect’ Retreat. I figured it was still a good idea to go, rather than sitting in my sorrows at home. 

Very quickly into conversations, I realized I made the wrong choice. 

While it didn’t feel right to divulge my recent information upon the first hello, it also felt incredibly uncomfortable to make small talk. It was hard to act like nothing was wrong. Plus, I was emotional with little moments bringing tears to my eyes. I felt as if I wasn’t showing up as the normal Hannah. 

As the morning went on and conversations deepened, I found comfort in sharing my story with a few women and as before, it didn’t take the pain away. But to me, it erased the elephant in ‘my’ room. I felt lighter.

I took this feeling of relief seriously and started slowly sharing with extended family, colleagues, and additional friends. And after a week of some thought, I let the vulnerability gates flood open as I posted to social media. 

Reflecting on Miscarriage

Two months have gone by and I’ve had some time to reflect on that challenging week in our lives. And while my husband, our family, and our faith were so crucial in helping us move forward during this time, I can confidently say vulnerability got me through it. 

Our Community Showed Up

Immediately after sharing, people showed up for us. And they showed up big. Through prayer, thoughtful messages, sentimental gifts, handwritten cards, and so much more. We were supported in the most beautiful way. 

We felt loved and knew that while our loved ones wouldn’t take the pain away, they would walk with us through this journey. 

Meaningful Conversations about Miscarriage

After sharing, I couldn’t believe the number of miscarriages I heard about. From friends, family, and acquaintances. While heartbreaking that so many have walked the path, it was another powerful reminder that I wasn’t alone. I had countless conversations with moms who have gone through their own heartbreak. They were able to offer advice and condolences, and also share their story in a space that was comfortable for them.

It was sad, but so powerful at the same time. 

Faith & Trust

I’ve really grown in my faith the last few years and this miscarriage was a powerful reminder of the work it takes to trust that God has a bigger plan than any of us can ever imagine.

Years ago, I would’ve never been able to understand how people can trust God through some of life’s toughest moments. Now I truly believed there was a reason for this loss. And while it didn’t make the pain go away, it allowed us to carry on amidst the hurt. 

Lean in to Vulnerability

Most importantly, practicing vulnerability during this hard season allowed space to process our situation rather than brushing it under the rug. My miscarriage isn’t something I’m ashamed of, and I’m open to talking about it. 

So, the next time you’re going through something, no matter the severity, I challenge you to be vulnerable. Find someone you can share with and see how much better you feel. Or, if sharing isn’t in your comfort zone, put your thoughts to paper.

Release your feelings, speak your truth, and see how much better you feel!  

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Hannah Kogler
Hannah lives in Fargo with her husband, Tyler, and their daughter, Harper (October 2020). She was raised in East Grand Forks and spent most of her time growing up playing soccer, figure skating, and babysitting her cousins. She attended NDSU (Go Bison!) and earned her degree in Management Communication with a minor in Public Relations. After graduation, Hannah met her husband when he graciously offered to help her sweaty-self move a couch into her apartment. The rest was history! Hannah is fortunate to work at BIO Girls, an organization with an important mission of increasing self-esteem in adolescent girls. When she’s not hanging out at home with Tyler and Harper, she enjoys reading, working out, golfing and spending way too much time shopping. She’ll never turn down a margarita, fried pickles or a competitive card game with her large extended family.


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