Miscarriage is a loaded term and one that has been floating around in my thoughts for a while. Knowing a little about the statistics and having seen people I love go through such a tough experience physically and emotionally, yet still face another level of struggle – the social construct that we shouldn’t speak about it with anyone outwith our closest people – has sat uneasy. I’m not for a moment supposing it’s an easy thing to talk about even if it was more common to do so in our culture, and perhaps some would not want to at all, but I also wonder if our norms hold those who’ve gone through it back from processing what has happened, and feeling more connection and support from other people in their lives and work.
I only knew Natalie Scroggie as This Vet Runs – her blog and social media alias - before we recorded this episode. I’d stumbled across her on Twitter, where she was talking openly about her recent miscarriage and beginning to train for her first London Marathon.
Natalie is a veterinary surgeon based in Nottingham and had her miscarriage a little over a year ago. She feels passionately we should be able to talk about this extremely common experience more, rather than hiding it away out of sight and perpetuating the stigma that it shouldn’t be spoken about. Nat talks honestly about her pregnancy, which was unplanned, as well as the physical and emotional experience of the miscarriage, her struggles going back to work and bottling her grief inside and where she is now with her mental wellbeing.
She is also devoted to running and tells us about her awesome London marathon finish and what transitioning to being a runner has been like after a history with eating disorders, and the role it now plays in her life. Nat was an absolute inspiration to me through the way she talked clearly about subjects a lot of us would still feel terrified to talk about publicly – and I hope this will do its bit to help more folk feel they can speak up without being brought down by concern about what people will think - at work, in friendships and in family groups.
I really hope you enjoy meeting this amazing woman as much as I did, and we would love to hear more about your own experiences. Should miscarriage be talked about more if it feels right for the person – and partnership - going through it? What are your true feelings on the 12- week rule guiding people to stay quiet about their pregnancy – does this feed into a stigmatised society?
On the note of asking you questions, lovey listeners, it’s worth saying that I’m soon setting up a Facebook group for Of Mountains and Minds where folks can give feedback and suggestions and we can all brainstorm topics that need more talk behind them, and maybe even plan some meet ups. Watch this space.
Find the episode in all the usual places, on Soundcloud, iTunes, Stitcher and TuneIn, from Friday 28th at 8am. If you haven’t done a good deed today and enjoy listening regularly, PLEASE give me a quick FIVE-STAR rating to help keep this thing going into series five, or tell a friend about the podcast.
One huge thanks to Nat and happy listening.