Paula Faris Recalls Experiencing Painful Miscarriage During Sean Spicer Interview in New Book
The day before the 2017 interview, Faris learned the baby had no heartbeat at her nine-week ultrasound appointment
“How could these two surreal events be converging? My career high, my personal low,” Paula Faris writes.
In her new book Called Out: Why I Traded Two Dream Jobs for a Life of True Calling, the ABC News journalist details the heartbreaking experience of suffering a miscarriage while interviewing former White House press secretary Sean Spicer, his first network interview after he left the Trump administration.
The day before the interview — which aired in September 2017 — Faris learned the baby had no heartbeat at her nine-week ultrasound appointment.
“I put on my most professional face and walked into the interview with Spicer, not knowing if my baby was still alive,” she writes.
Speaking to PEOPLE, Faris, 44, reveals the miscarriage kicked off a “season of hell” that made her reevaluate her priorities — and ultimately led to her decision to leave The View and the weekend desk of Good Morning America back in 2018.
“If there’s a crisis or something tragic that happens in my life, my coping mechanism has always been going back to work, which isn’t always a good thing,” she says. “I was trying to compartmentalize it.”
Days after the interview, doctors confirmed she had lost the baby. Faris writes that she had to undergo an emergency D&C (dilation and curettage) procedure, too, to strip the fetal tissue from her uterus.
It wouldn’t be her only loss, either: Faris went on to experience two more pregnancy losses, most recently suffering a miscarriage last July.
“Anytime you experience a loss, like a loss of a child, it forces you to reevaluate your priorities,” she says. “While it’s okay to grieve and it’s okay to mourn, it’s not okay to beat yourself up … miscarriage is so common and it happens to so many women.”
She continues: “Allow yourself a moment to grieve, but then you need to give yourself the permission to move on to emotionally reconcile what happened.”
Faris and her husband John Krueger share daughter Caroline, 12, and sons JJ, 10, and Landon, 6.
The family is currently practicing social distancing amid the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic at their home in South Carolina, where Faris says they’ve been having family movie nights and playing ample board games like Chutes and Ladders — “my 6-year-old has been cheating quite a bit,” she adds.
As for parenting during a pandemic, Faris says she’s focused on doling out patience and a lot of love.
“I’m not a teacher, and I’m not a barber, you know?” she says. “So I’m asking my family to give each other grace as we all step out of our comfort zones and really try to root into the things that matter, the things that don’t change when a crisis comes.”