It is hard to forget “firsts.” You’ll always remember the name  of your first partner, your first crush and your first kiss, and you  won’t shake the memory of the first time you snuck out of your house,  had sex or got your period. I remember all my firsts, and I am  completely and entirely the type of person who commemorates these  moments — including my first miscarriage.

It was a Sunday in 2010. I was a newly married young woman carrying Paloma, my unborn baby who I wanted, loved and made me feel like a mom from the minute I knew she was inside of me. But while  volunteering at my church in Miami, my stomach began to feel off. I  felt nauseated, so I went to the bathroom only to notice that there was  blood on my panties. I immediately told my then-husband, and we rushed  to the emergency room.  

After running some tests, a doctor broke the news: Paloma had  died inside of me. They said that sometimes “things happens,” and  informed me that the reason for her passing could have been anything  from my diet to our genes simply not matching up. To really know, they  said they’d have to run some tests, but that would only take place if I  miscarried more than three times in a row. I was told a bunch of things  that I could not wrap my head around, and all of it felt wrong, but I  was too shocked to advocate for myself.  

I was advised to pass her naturally, or I could have her  vacuumed out of me. Feeling so attached to my daughter, who I had  already named, I could not imagine seeing someone suck her from my body.  Without much thought, I told the physician I would pass Paloma at home.  

No one told me what to expect. I didn’t know when it would  happen, how long it would take, how she would pass through me or if it  would hurt, physically at least. I was just told to come back if I  needed anything else or to call my OB/GYN the next day for further  conversation. I didn’t even know what questions to ask. I was so young,  and the shock of it all kept me from really asking much of anything....

Originally published in Fierce Mitu, read the rest here.