Rainbow baby is the term for a baby after the loss of a previous child. It is the understanding that a rainbow’s beauty does not negate the ravages of the storm. When a rainbow appears, it doesn’t mean that the storm never happened or that the family is not still dealing with its aftermath. What it means is that something beautiful and full of light has appeared in the midst of the darkness and clouds.
I feel you now baby, little flutters and tickles every once in a while. I’ve felt your soul since the very beginning, but feeling your movement is such a relief. I even bought a doppler and though I don’t use it often or for very long, every time I hear the flutter of your heartbeat it soothes those jagged places that still exist in side of me.
Baby, you are so strong. The beginning of this pregnancy was just like the last, but you held on, charged through. When I thought you were lost, you waved to me as if to say, “I’m right here Mom, don’t worry.” But I do. I worry all of the time. I love you so much, I want you so fiercely that I worry every day. With every nudge you reassure me, though and I am no longer gripped in fear all of the time. I understand your strength and it helps me be strong, too. I have so many hopes for you, and I can’t wait to meet you.
I love you, Baby. Bigger than the moon.
Yesterday, I wrote about how I’ve decided to pursue my passions and apply to become a Bradley Method™ instructor and a certified personal trainer. Today, I bought my personal trainer exam voucher and study materials and I am going to schedule my exam for sometime in July. I’ve already filled out my Bradley™ application for the December workshop, rewrote my birth story, and will be putting down my deposit in the coming months. Because why not just jump in head first? I am so excited and nervous! I know I have a lot of work ahead of me but I am so ready to get started.
I’ve wanted to do these things for so long but I kept making excuses, mostly pregnancy/baby related. After losing our baby last month, it really pushed me to just go for what I want. To let what happens happen, but to make sure I was doing everything I could to make my dreams a reality.
Last night I dreamed that I got fired from my job. I was happy, I was not only forced to make the changes I wanted to make but I was free to do it. Alas, it was only a dream and it will be a long time before I’ll be able to make these things my main source of income, but it’s a road I am ready to travel. It’s not going to be easy, I’ll be a little like Lightening McQueen ripping up the old path and laying down new pavement, (yepppp I’m a mom!) but it’s going to be worth it. (And now I am going to adopt Ka-chow! as my own personal catch phrase.) Next up is to get CPR/AED certified before my exam.
If all goes as planned, I’ll be a certified personal trainer and Bradley Method™ instructor by the end of the year!
Well hello, Life, I see that you’ve been waiting for me.
I love pregnancy. I love birth and babies, breastfeeding, parenting — all of it. If there is one thing I have complete confidence in myself in, it’s being a mother. I love my daughter so much that it doesn’t matter how many mistakes I make or how much I still have to learn, I know that I am doing my absolute best every single day and that she’ll never doubt that she is loved. That matters to me more than anything. This role feels so absoutely right to me that I don’t doubt it’s what I am meant to do. Since losing this baby, I’m starting to feel the one thing I never did before, and the one thing I never wanted to associate with motherhood.
I am afraid to get pregnant, not because I don’t want to, but because I want it more than I ever have. And now, I am afraid it will get taken away again. I am afraid to start trying, my excitement replaced with trepidation and anxiety. Things I never worried about, something that I lived for just a few short months ago, is tainted now. Change in life is unavoidable. I know that someday I will see a beautiful round belly and I won’t ache to fill my own. That I’ll see a squishy little face and be content with gobbling up it’s cheeks and then waving good bye. That’s the natural rythmn to life, and that’s fine. I never wanted to fear it though, and that’s where I am stuck.
Nothing will change this, I could have 100 healthy babies and I know that I will still have the same sense of dread in my heart that something will go wrong. This is my truth now, and this is my attempt at acceptance. The fear I had before of loss wasn’t real, wasn’t tangible like it is now. I thought I was afraid of it, but I was niave and honestly never thought it would happen to me. I had a healthy pregnancy, a relatively uncomplicated labor, and a beautiful baby girl. Why wouldn’t that just be the way it went again? Who knows why, but it wasn’t. And I’m here in the aftermath, putting pieces back together and tossing those that no longer fit. And through it all I find these lyrics floating around my brain, reassuring me that fear is ok, pain is ok, I am ok.
Just because it burns doesn’t mean you’re gonna die, you gotta get up and try and try and try…
“There’s no heart beat, I’m sorry.”
What do you say to that, how do you respond to I’m sorry? When everything slows down and you look at your husband and see his face crumble? When you watch dreams he didn’t even realize he had die? You say, “It’s ok.” And it is, but it isn’t. You say, “We’ll be ok.” because you will, but you aren’t. If you are me you stroke a picture on a screen, gently whisper “Goodbye, baby.” and turn it around. You have to be strong. Because there is no heartbeat. Because you lost it.
Now there are plates full of half eaten food, doorbells and green flashing lights that lead to another “I’m sorry,” you don’t want to hear. There are tears in eyes and close hugs but all I want are deep sheets and for it to start. For it to end. Even though the pregnancy is over my job is not done, I have to be strong, have to be brave.
Sitting in my living room, in the same spot we didn’t hear the heartbeat I say aloud the worst fear I have. “Will it look like a baby?”