Scrolling through the list of test results on my phone, the patient portal from my doctor’s office provides abundant information about my numerous appointments thus far. A multitude of blood tests, ultrasounds, urine tests, and general provider notes litter the screen. Falling upon the “conditions” tab, my breath halted briefly, my disbelieving smile faded, my shoulders slumped a bit.
Topping off the list is “habitual aborter”. This is how my chart defines me. This is how doctors see my journey. This is how any new doctor will learn about me.
Through the last five years, I’ve dealt with terrible labels I wouldn’t wish for anyone: recurrent pregnancy loss, subchornionic hematoma, septate uterus. All new to my repertoire, acceptance that they will follow me through my life has settled, becoming a part of who I am. Habitual aborter may take a bit longer to find it’s way into my heart. It may never.
To me, it implies I did something wrong. To me, it implies I chose to end my previous three pregnancies. To me, it is ugly, offensive, and disheartening.
This journey of infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss carries more pain than the loss of our babies. Its searing labels, words, and preconceptions of who I am leaves scars just as deep. I cannot erase them, or pretend they don’t exist. I cannot convince someone I am more normal than how I present on paper. I cannot go back to a time when I was not plagued with serious issues that have caused such grief in our lives.
As I exit the healthcare app and turn off my phone, I settle on the couch to filter out the negativity. Baby Sprout is worth all the positive vibes, thoughts, and emotions available — even from this Habitual Aborter.