October is National Pregnancy & Infant Loss Remembrance month.
Every single Mom out there has a story to tell about their pregnancy. Many of these tales are happy, though some are difficult. I had the chance to meet and spend time with nine brave Moms that have the harder stories to tell. These are the women with memories of babies gone too soon, born sleeping, or not born at all.
Some of these Moms were willing to share their journey to a child to help raise awareness about this very real situation that many families go though. The stormy & hopeless parts, but also the absolute joy when they received their rainbow after the storm.
First of all, I'm sure some of you are wondering; What is a Rainbow Baby?
According to Wikipedia: A rainbow baby is a term for a child born to a couple who have previously lost a child due to miscarriage, stillbirth or death during infancy. These subsequent pregnancies can bring "strong feelings of anxiety, guilt, and even fear" but also "immense joy, reflection, healing, and mixed emotions"
In October of 1988 Ronald Reagan announced that October was to be known as National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month, and now October 15th is also widely known as National Pregnancy & Infant Loss Remembrance Day. In honor of this month, we will be sharing a couple blog entries from the women that joined our amazing Rainbow Event at the Alerin Barn located in St. Johnsbury, VT.
Katrina & Witten
Katrina chose not to share her story, but sweet Witten is her handsome rainbow baby. He was so full of smiles and endless love for his Mama during our event.
Megan & Brantley
"In 2011 we found out we were pregnant with Burton. He was born a couple weeks early and spent some time in the NICU.
In 2014 we decided we wanted to give him a brother or sister. In Oct of 2014 we found out we were pregnant with baby#2 and just 3 days after finding out I miscarried. We hadn't decided whether to try again or not but in March of 2015 I found out I was 15 weeks pregnant. In August of that year we had a healthy baby boy Brantley.
He was the light at the end of the dark tunnel."
Heather & Jersey
"May of 2011 my husband and I found out we were pregnant and were over the moon excited. We went to our first appointment and found out we were due to have Baby Fournier in January 2012. We went to all of our doctors appointment for Baby Fournier and everything was great. Baby’s heart rate and growth were perfect. September 1, 2011 we were so excited to go to our appointment, that was the day we were finding out the gender(providing the baby cooperated). The ultrasound technician came in (she was sweet as could be), our hearts smiled so big seeing our baby for the first time.
The ultrasound tech left the room part way through the appointment. It was at that moment I looked at Jamie (my husband) and said “something isn’t right,I know it, somethings wrong.” He reassured me everything was fine. I was a wreck, I was in a rush to get upstairs to my OB appointment for them to reassure me that the baby was fine. Once we got in the OB room and the Doctor walked in, I knew, I knew it was a harsh reality we were about to face.
The doctor had put on her best poker face but I knew. She reached out to shake both of our hands and sat down and said a phrase I will NEVER forget, “I’m sorry, there wasn’t a heartbeat found today.” She apologized so much as we both sat there in tears and disbelief beyond measures. How could the be? We just felt the baby move earlier that day. This isn’t possible, what did we do to deserve this? There are parents out there that don’t want their kids or don’t deserve them(my opinion), but us, we wanted our baby, we were/are good parents. The doctor then told us “you can either have a D&C or you can deliver your baby naturally.” She gave us time to discuss our options but we didn’t need time, there was absolutely no way at 5 1/2 months pregnant I was having a D&C. She came back in and we told her we were delivering our baby. We had already loved the baby so much that we needed to officially bring our baby into the world and shower with all our love for as long as we could. She told us “you will need to come back tomorrow to be induced. If you wait any longer you are at risk of infection and serious illness.” That night was the longest night EVER. Mind you we had to tell all our family the horrible news(they had all been texting and calling while we were in our last appointment).
My Gram was the hardest one to tell as that same day 47 years prior my Gram had lost my aunt while she was 6 1/2 months pregnant. Jamie was far stronger than I was that day. He went home and took care of our kids(6&3 at the time) while I locked myself in our room and cried the entire night. I remember not going to sleep. The next morning, we had the LONGEST 15 minute drive to the hospital ever. We were there for 8 hours before we had our SON(they had never told us the day before). Jamie had been hoping for a son and the whole time I was in labor I was hoping for a girl, because I knew Jamie couldn’t bare the pain of losing a son. I could be strong and take the pain of losing a girl. I wanted Jamie to have the son he always wanted. I will NEVER forget the look on Jamie’s face. I could see his heart was shattered. My heart hurt for me but hurt even more for him. Delivering our son sleeping wasn’t the only horrid part. Leaving the hospital the next day without our baby was by far the hardest thing we had done. Leaving the hospital meant that we couldn’t hold him again, see his precious face, kiss his little nose or hold his little hand again. We weren’t ready for that. A bit of time went by after we were home and things were back to “normal” and we talked about having another baby. Before we put ourselves brought all that pain again we had my OB do a bunch of testing to ensure that we could have a healthy baby. We were reassured that we could have a healthy baby. We weren’t trying but we weren’t taking the precautions to not have a baby either. We were leaving it in God’s hands.
It was only 7 months later we found out we were almost 3 months pregnant. That day was the happiest yet most terrifying day for us. The pregnancy started out great, but by month 5 I was super uncomfortable and things just weren’t right. By month 6 we were having to do non stress tests for our daughter twice a week and by month 8 I was put on bed rest. All while going to the OB 3 times a week for fluid checked and non stress tests. October 2012 our daughter was born full term and small weighing 5lbs 9oz. We will forever be thankfully for our rainbow baby!"
Diane & Delaney
My husband and I are very outgoing people who love to entertain, go camping, and just live life to the fullest. We both were excited after getting married in September 2014 (after 7 years of being together) to start building our family and try to have a baby.
After 3 ½ years of treatments, ovulation meds, and multiple procedures to check and be sure I was “baby ready” we received the best news ever! PREGNANT!!!! I had so many ways and cute ideas I wanted to tell my husband but I couldn’t wait to tell him so all my cute ideas went out the window when he got home that night from work I started crying and handed him the test and we were both so excited!!! I called My mom & Dad, we stopped into our in laws and told our siblings- and face timed my Brother as he lived out of town at the time. The excitement was overwhelming.
After calling the Doctor that following day we scheduled an appointment and everything seemed wonderful, the excitement and nervousness was there but mostly just excitement. My doctor scheduled an ultrasound for two weeks later and at that point we would be 6 weeks pregnant. The ultrasound day came and my Husband was able to come to the appointment with me. The tech was very nice, but very quiet and didn’t really tell us much or say anything about what she was seeing. She advised us that she would send everything to the doctor and he would contact us and schedule the next visits etc. My husband and I left that ultrasound with a very unnerving feeling, as if something wasn’t right- we were new at this but felt that there should have been more and the tech should’ve been able to tell us at least something.
3 Days later I met with my OBGYN and he said he was unsure but that there didn’t seem to be a lot of development but not to rule anything out and to come back in 2 more weeks and at that point I would be 8 weeks pregnant and we should be able to tell more. I felt sick to my stomach still as if something wasn’t right, but was trying to be optimistic. What felt like the longest 2 weeks of my life finally came and I went for the ultrasound. Still this time, not much – at the previous appointment with my OBGYN he said he couldn’t see the fetal pole, and that was very important. This time, they still couldn’t find it, and it didn’t seem like any change had happened. I was devastated (and again without my husband by my side). I couldn’t even handle or process all that I was being told.
My OBGYN wasn’t in the office so I saw one of the female APRN’s who was very understanding and comforting; I was bawling my eyes out and so upset. The hardest part was that I had to go back and tell my husband and my family the horrible news. That evening when my husband came through the door I was bawling and so upset I hadn’t seen my husband cry hardly at all before but that night was awful!
Fast forward 2 more weeks and I had a D&C procedure to remove old scar tissue, and discussed that we should wait a few months and I could be put on a medication that would help me ovulate. I decided after several months of taking the meds with no progress that I wanted to stop taking them. I was sick of putting medication into my body for it to not work…well 3 weeks later I had been feeling really off, - not sick just tired and extremely moody and hungry.
I took a test at my work and the test said PREGNANT! I took several more tests that day just to be sure and was ecstatic but that excitement quickly turned to anxiety and nervousness- I vomited several times that day out of fear. (Keep in mind this was the day I found out, and that day would’ve also been the due date of our baby #1 (Halloween) I went home and told my husband how scared I was and felt guilty for not feeling excited, but he assured me that whatever happened we would get through it together.
Again, went back for an ultrasound- this time much later than before this time at 8 weeks (and we hadn’t told anyone except for my best friend)! This time the results were dramatically different we saw everything we needed to see and got to hear the heartbeat- we were both so excited and couldn’t even handle all the positivity (hard to process- after all we had been through). Still nervous I was wicked anxious. The weeks flew by and the nervousness quickly changed to excitement as soon as I could feel my baby start to move! Several weeks later we had the gender ultrasound- my husband and I both decided we didn’t want to find out, we had a gender reveal party and found out we were having a baby girl! Again, I couldn’t believe it. I had wanted a baby girl so bad and was so sure I was having a boy- this time the crying was out of pure excitement! 9 Months later, she decided to make her appearance on June 28th 2019 weighing 6lbz 11oz- it was so quick, and now here we are almost 4 months later. I cannot imagine my life without her. I truly believe that Baby Thompson #1 was with us the whole time, making sure Delaney Elizabeth Thompson was as perfect, beautiful, and healthy as she could possibly be. This little girl has changed my life in so many ways, I know in my heart I was meant to be a Mom, and now I realize that everything does happen for a reason- however, I still don’t understand that reason but am thankful because now I have the most beautiful baby girl and she’s so healthy and perfect, and I love her with all of my heart – she is my whole world.
Jessica & Evelyn
Growing up I had always wanted to have a family with three more children. Life didn’t work out the way I had expected it to. I have never expected to be a single mom to a great little boy for such a long time. And October 10, 2015 I went to a wedding and there I met the man that I am with now. He is older than I by 15 years.
The end of August 2017 we find out that we are expecting. This came as a total surprise as in we were not planning on having children. I had grown to except that having more children wasn’t in the cards for me. I was scared but I was so excited that here I am finally expecting baby number two. The second I saw that positive line on the pregnancy test I was through the roof excited I dream come true I couldn’t wait for our first doctors appointment I couldn’t wait to see that little heart fluttering on the baby monitor.
As I write this I remember the first ultrasound clear as day I should have been around five or six weeks face off my last menstrual cycle. All that they could see on the ultrasound was the just gestational sack and the yoke and they told me to come back in about 10 days just to make sure that things are developing as we were expecting. It wasn’t until October 31 on Halloween that we discover that the baby had never developed. I was 11 weeks pregnant with no baby I was angry how can a woman’s body show all of the signs of a pregnancy and not have a baby? I was given the option to take a medication to help speed up the miscarriage it wasn’t until November 2 where I couldn’t bear the heart ache of waiting for this to pass I ended up having a DNC procedure. That day my heart broke in ways I didn’t think was possible. I still struggle with this the what could have been who with that baby have been it’s hard to imagine.
Fast forward a little bit on September 3, 2018 I’m not feeling well I took a pregnancy test even though the odds of me being pregnant we’re very slim the test came back negative the next morning I took another test and it was positive. Mind you my boyfriend had scheduled an appointment for a vasectomy consultation. That appointment was for September 13.
During this pregnancy I felt like I couldn’t thoroughly enjoy it as much as I wanted to, because of how the pregnancy that was just a year ago was every appointment I was afraid that they wouldn’t find a heartbeat, that there wouldn’t be a baby. On May 16, 2019 I delivered the most beautiful baby girl I’ve ever laid my eyes on without a doubt this baby Evelyn was supposed to be here we needed her and I cannot express how blessed and fortunate I feel to have this beautiful girl.
Kyla & Easton
"Two years, 730 days. 6 miscarriages, 16 rounds of fertility treatment, 3 failed IUIs, 2 surgeries, over 10 procedures, thousands of shots, hundreds of ultrasounds, hundreds of appointments- and an uncountable amount of blood work, medication, and testing. 1 autoimmune disease, Recurrent miscarriage syndrome, 2 gene mutations, PCOS, Infertility and hypothyroidism- we never gave up. 6 times we sat and a room and were told, “I’m sorry, there is no longer a heartbeat.” 1 twin pregnancy that ended in a late term loss, which resulted in emergency surgery. 2 years of heartache. So many what ifs, questions, and confusion. With each loss I told myself, the sun will rise and we will try again. It’s better to try and fail, than to not try at all.
It started out with unexplained loss, but we easily became pregnant each and every time we tried. 6 times within 13 months. Then after the 6 losses- we suddenly battled infertility for a year straight- even with fertility treatments. We decided to take a break because my body was exhausted after a year of treatment and everything that comes with it. To our surprise, as soon as we stopped treatment, we conceived.
During our child loss and infertility journey, I also lost my grandmother and father in the same year, 6 months apart. A year exactly after my dads passing and we have been blessed with this miracle, I believe, with everything I have in me, that this has been a gift sent straight down from my angels.
Good things come to those who wait.
We ask for continued prayers for a healthy pregnancy, and a happy, healthy, baby at the end of the rainbow."
To follow their story, head on over and check out their Facebook page- Our journey -
Lindsay & Harper
"We lost a baby right before conceiving Harper. It was an early loss but still devastating. Ned had returned from his month long annual training for the Guard and we decided we wanted a baby. I got pregnant very quickly, but we lost it at about 6-7 weeks.
It was hard and we questioned whether we were supposed to grow our family and questioned why it happened to us. Then we found out we were pregnant with Harper, and of course she’s perfect. We still wonder who our other baby would’ve been, but they certainly sent us a wonderful baby girl."
Aubrey & Bradeigh
This handsome little hunk of a man is my rainbow baby. New Years eve of 2014 going into 2015 I took a test, instantly two bold pink lines showed up. I was thrilled, gave it a couple weeks and made a doc appointment. We go for an ultrasound, the tech looks at the screen and says 'do twins run in either side of your families?' TWINS, we were shocked and instantly thinking omg what will we do with twins!?!? All went well for a week or so until I went back for another ultrasound, one baby was gone and the other had grown a little. They said come back in two more weeks so we can check on it.
Not yet to the two weeks I lost the other. I was devistated, I went to all of these appointments on my own after the first ultrasound. No one but my daughter and I (who had just turned 3) I was heart broken trying to explain to her the two babies she was so excited for were no longer with us. I held her as she cried and I had to explain that it just doesn't work out sometime. My partner was not there to comfort me or help me grieve, he withdrew himself and confided in an ex.
Not once did he talk to me about our loss, other then me calling him from the doctors office crying hysterically, he instantly called up his ex. I was livid, it was none of their business and how could he want to talk to her about it but could not talk to me. I felt so lost, alone, and broken. Our relationship did not last long after that, we just became more distant from each other until one day I just had to say it was over.
I started a new relationship the summer of 2016, three months later we were talking about waiting a couple years and we would have our own since I had my daughter from another relationship and he had two from his previous, well a week later life had a different plan for us and I was late. I was scared and it took a lot for me to be really happy through this pregnancy because I was afraid of what I could lose again. BUT here he is, born two weeks early a but over 7 lbs and still so extremely healthy 💖💖💖💖
My heart goes out to any momma who has gone through this. I thought I was alone until I realized how common it was and no one really talked about it. It's nothing to be ashamed of, we did nothing wrong, life just had other plans for these babies.
Jamie & Noah
Ryan and I got married on October 4th 2014 and we had talked about having kids and were so excited to try. We both wanted to be married first and we got pregnant right away. Then on December 6th 2014 I started bleeding.. and knew that I had lost the baby, but everyone tried to think positive and tell me everything was fine and it was all going to work out. I just had that gut feeling that it was over.
The drs office was going to make me wait a week for an appointment but I begged them and they let me come in that day. It was with a new dr, who we fell in love with.. and without her we wouldn’t have our 2 boys. I remember looking at that tv waiting to see that flicker.. and never seeing it. Then She said the 6 words no pregnant woman wants to hear. “ I don’t see a heart beat.”
I remember the room, I remember what I was wearing, I remember her giving me my options as I sobbed hysterically into my hands. I remember my friend calling Ryan and telling him he should probably come home. I was crying for the loss of someone I never met but loved so much. I felt like a failure, and like my husband deserved someone that could give him a baby. Our worlds were torn upside down. We were crushed. I watched as my friends got pregnant with no issues and had amazing beautiful children as we struggled.
We then went though 2 years of constant disappointments and countless drs appointments to get pregnant. Hundreds of pregnancy tests , failed infertility meds and 1 autoimmune disease later We finally got pregnant with Noah. We were so scared the entire pregnancy but also celebrating every milestone because we had never made it that far. He is the Rainbow after the storm and we couldn’t image our lives without that sassy little boy. When we found out we were pregnant with Lincoln it was a complete shock because we weren’t trying. We didn’t think it would be an easy road if we decided to have number 3 but he was for sure meant to be in this family.
He is the sunshine along with our rainbow and they fit perfectly together💕