For many reading Meghan Markle’s piece in the New York Times this week about the miscarriage she suffered in July this year will bring back visceral memories. Instead of dismissing her actions as “publicity stunts” or even more bizarrely, demanding to see evidence of her misfortune, some of us will chose to confront our own memories in a cathartic way, whilst others will arm themselves with knowledge that might help in the future.

I was transported back to 2007, lying on a hospital trolley, slipping back into consciousness and hearing some woman sobbing. I tried to open my eyes, and swimming above me I could vaguely see a male and a female nurse, the man looking questioningly at the woman. She glanced down at me, and just as I blinked the tears away to improve my vision, said to the male nurse: “They do that, sometimes.” At that moment it hit me that I’d just had a procedure to remove the remnants of my 11-week miscarried pregnancy, and that the sobbing woman in the room was me. How weird that even as I shook off the affects of the anaesthesia my mind was so convulsed with sorrow that I was already crying for the baby I would never see.

Like most women, I went back home, cared for my two young children, made the dinner and after a week, went back to a full time job that was stressing me out. I felt different though –changed, shrunken, diminished in some way. I didn’t talk about it. Not to my husband, my mum, my sister, my friends. Nobody seemed to know what to say to me, and I felt there was nothing to say.

I reasoned that I was lucky to have kids already, and that according to statistics, miscarriage was common, so why get upset? It felt that because it had happened before the 12-week mark, it wasn’t quite real. But it had been all-consumingly real to me – the two lines on the pregnancy test kit, the intense joy, the tick in the “pregnant” box of the doctor’s confirmation test, the morning sickness, the body changes, the weeks of expectation, the strange dreams, the tiredness, the change of diet, the pregnancy books.

And then an aching, unmanageable void. So I buried it in the internal vault where even I, a woman who has regaled, some might say bored many with my stories, don’t venture for material.

Reading Markle’s article has caused me to revisit that time, and, with a clear head, a recently emptied nest and the dangerous self-assurance that being a woman of a certain age brings, I’m surprised to find I want to be one of the many who are carrying on the conversation that she started this week. It was the ordinariness of the context that Markle writes about that struck a chord with me.

On holiday in France, and at nine weeks pregnant, I’d sweated through a baking hot July day. We were watching the film The Last King of Scotland. The morning sickness had not been as debilitating this time, so I was relatively relaxed. Then a sudden painful cramp, a sharp stab in the back and a long but faint eerie whistle sound from deep within my abdomen caused me to cry out in pain. I phoned a cousin who was a medic. She listened quietly asking if there had been any bleeding. No…surely that means it’s all all right. You’re probably fine. What about the whistle? Hm some women do report sounds when….When what? Silence. I’m sure you’ll be fine.

And that was the strange thing. I always imagined there would be blood. But right from that night to having four scans once back in Scotland (yes four, because, in my grief I couldn’t accept the information that there was no heartbeat and wanted to make sure there was no chance of a mistake) to lying on the trolley after the procedure to remove the pregnancy, I did not see a single drop of blood. There was no tumultuous outward evidence.

But, internally I felt the most primeval pain, mixed with a burning rage at my body for failing me, and embarrassingly, a terrible and illogical jealousy of other pregnant women’s blossoming bellies who I passed on the street.

Whilst these more extreme feelings lessened within a few weeks, what had happened never really left me, and not ever talking about it left it unanalysed, unresolved and possibly unhealed. Of course, it’s different for everyone, that’s why we need to hear a diverse range of experiences, but maybe it’s never too late to empty out that internal vault. Maybe, this is the gift that a woman with a high public profile like Meghan Markle can give the rest of us, when she shares her experience.