I found out about my miscarriage in an email, the morning after my ultrasound. Spontaneous abortion. I was told that a heating pad, aspirin, and rest would help soothe the pain. When I spoke to a friend, she asked, “What else does your body need?”
I was used to stifling sorrow, shooing away sadness— what I needed was to scream. “So do it,” my friend said. We lived in New York City, where every inch of space is shared with strangers, walls are paper-thin, every uttered word has a witness. She offered up her rooftop pool. “Being underwater is like being in space— no one can hear you scream,” she insisted. I felt embarrassed at first: Toddlers throw tantrums and wail. But I needed an outlet.
So I forced myself under, pushing against the side of the pool. The tears disappeared in the chlorinated water, and the wails rose up as bubbles. Submerge. Scream. Cry. Rise. Repeat. Each time, I resurfaced lighter. — Jessica Ciencin Henriquez