April Fool’s Day is a day of elaborate jokes and pranking. Heck, I have participated in my fair share of fairly epic pranks. However, there is one “joke” that gets pulled year after year, and it is never funny. That “joke” in question is a fake pregnancy announcement.
I use “joke” loosely in the above statement because it really is no joke at all. On April Fool’s Day after I had my first miscarriage, one of my Facebook friends, posted a pregnancy test on her wall. I am sure she thought of it as a harmless prank, but it felt like a kick in the gut. Here is this chick basically saying, “Ha Ha. Psyche! I am not really pregnant. Pregnancy is soooo hilarious, you all.” All I kept feeling was how my body failed me, how I was supposed to be a few months away from having my sweet baby, and all I had was an empty womb and a still broken heart.
Women grieve differently. Some women who are struggling with infertility or suffered miscarriages can see this and not be affected. I am not one of them. My back to back losses made me feel like a failure. They ripped my heart apart. I fell apart. I had nightmares. In fact, I still have nightmares sometimes, and it has been over four years since my last loss. For many women, this “joke” acts as a trigger, a reminder of how our bodies have not given us what we wanted, a reminder of what we have lost.
I have written about my losses quite a bit, as well as my journey to my rainbow baby. I have done it because miscarriage is still a somewhat taboo subject, and many people are still insensitive about the subject. My losses spiraled me to a very dark point in my life. The feelings from my losses made me want to rip my heart out to ease the hurt inside me. So I wrote and wrote and wrote…to heal…to share…and to help others understand.
There are plenty of jokes that you can try for April Fool’s Day, but don’t be a jerk. “Jokes” like a fake pregnancy announcement can really hurt someone you love, someone who may be struggling with infertility or someone who may have miscarried. Because these are subjects that are not always shared, you may not even know about their struggles, so find something else. Don’t be insensitive. Be funny. Be creative. Don’t be a jerk on April Fool’s Day.