Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, has opened up about her miscarriage for the first time in an opinion piece for The New York Times.
Revealing the deep pain she and Prince Harry felt several years ago, but giving no further specifics as to time or place, Markle explained how simply talking about grief is the first step in coming to terms with it.
“It was a July morning that began as ordinarily as any other day: Make breakfast. Feed the dogs. Take vitamins. Find that missing sock. Pick up the rogue crayon that rolled under the table. Throw my hair in a ponytail before getting my son from his crib,” she wrote.
“After changing his diaper, I felt a sharp cramp. I dropped to the floor with him in my arms, humming a lullaby to keep us both calm, the cheerful tune a stark contrast to my sense that something was not right.
“I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child, that I was losing my second.”
Markle said that “losing a child means carrying an almost unbearable grief, experienced by many but talked about by few.”
She went on to talk about the time when British TV journo Tom Bradby asked her if she was “OK” during her and Harry’s tour of South Africa in October last year.
“I answered him honestly, not knowing that what I said would resonate with so many – new moms and older ones, and anyone who had, in their own way, been silently suffering,” Markle wrote.
“My off-the-cuff reply seemed to give people permission to speak their truth.”
Markle said that it was the question, rather than her answer, which she found most freeing. She had the same experience with Harry after her miscarriage.
“Sitting in a hospital bed, watching my husband’s heart break as he tried to hold the shattered pieces of mine, I realised that the only way to begin to heal is to first ask, ‘Are you OK?’”
It was this very question, Markle discovered, that is the first step towards healing in almost any situation.
Now in 2020 – after the coronavirus pandemic has ravaged the world and the killing of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor sparked Black Lives Matter demonstrations not only in Markle’s home country, the US, but around the world – it is this very same question which we need to be asking each other, Markle wrote.
Whether its losing a child to a miscarriage or losing a loved one to COVID-19, Markle said it’s important to talk and open up about your pain.
You can read the full article here, but perhaps it’s Markle’s closing line perfectly encapsulates her whole message: “Are we OK? We will be.”