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Amanda

Mom to Baby H

August 24, 2018

Millville, New Jersey

Before I begin, it is my hope that this post reaches more than just those who have suffered a loss. I hope it helps anyone with any kind of story. Mothers and fathers of children here on Earth, mothers and fathers of angel babies, single parents, grandparents, foster parents, adoptive parents.. Your story, whether it was easy or trying, is still beautiful. And it is yours, unique to you and your family. I hope my story helps you open yours up to the world. It deserves to be heard. 

This should have been the month where we announced you to the world. Instead, i sit here writing this as a way to heal my broken heart and reach out my arms to those who may also be suffering. How ironic that our baby would have been announced in this month. Pregnancy and infant loss awareness month. A month where we remember all of the angel babies and celebrate them for what they truly are no matter how young or old, how early or far along they may have been. They were babies. They are babies. They are our children. They are the boys and girls we dreamed about, planned for, cried for, and prayed for. They should be remembered and they should be spoken of. This is me doing something I never thought I could do.. sharing my story because I know it’s okay and it’s what this world needs.. to knock down those closed doors and allow the conversations to flow. Because with conversation comes understanding and with understanding comes love and with love comes hope. 

So here I am.. making this announcement. Not the one I ever thought I’d make or ever wish on anyone. I am the 1 in 4. I had a miscarriage. I am also the 1 in 8. I struggle with infertility (secondary infertility, to be exact). I wasn’t very far along and I only knew about my baby for 10 days. But that doesn’t matter and shouldn’t matter. That shouldn’t be the statement someone tells you or even what you tell yourself: “at least you weren’t that far along.” At first, I said that. I said those insensitive words to myself to make me feel as though my pain wasn’t comparable to others, that I shouldn’t be allowed to mourn my baby. I couldn’t keep doing that though. In order to heal and to help others, I have to first be honest with myself. 

This loss broke me. In those 10 short days of knowing my baby was growing inside me, I started planning their entire life. I thought about how their big brother would feel getting a sibling, what they’d look like, what we would name him/her, and how our little family of 3 would adjust as it slowly morphed into 4. All of those hopes and dreams disappeared the day I started to lose my baby. And as I endured the mental and physical pain that surrounds a loss, the world still went on. My son here on Earth still needed me. He needed me to love him and hold him just as I had always done. My work still needed me. My students needed me. Many had no idea I was even going through this (and please don’t take it personally if you’re just finding out now.. I’m still learning how to speak my story aloud). While a piece of my heart was aching as I tried to understand and rationalize the loss of my unborn baby, the rest of my world needed the other pieces of my heart. 

That’s how it is for so many mothers and fathers out there. The world isn’t aware that they are hurting. There’s no obituary or service to make it known there are broken hearts. And once people do know, they seem to feel so awkward and uncomfortable to discuss it with the grieving parents that it is still buried away. This is no one person’s fault. I myself have actually said the words, “It’s just awkward to just come out and say oh by the way, I had a miscarriage.” This is just what we have grown accustomed to.. but we have to change this. This shouldn’t be taboo. This is a loss. There are tears, devastation, and grief just like any other loss. No one should have to go through this alone. Am I saying this loss is equivalent to the loss of a child who was on Earth at one time or the loss of a parent or spouse? No. What I am saying is the life of that baby mattered, whether they were ever actually on Earth or not. And it’s not just the people around us that need to break down the walls. We, the grieving parents, need to do it, too. We need to talk about it. We need to let people in. We need to not compare our stories to others. 

While I was extremely sad and at times lonely, I have tried my best not to compare my story to someone else. I have rarely felt anger or resentment towards others who can make healthy pregnancy announcements or whose babies do make it to Earth. I have done my best to also not compare my story to those who have endured a longer, more challenging journey. And when I have had those feelings, I have looked to God and prayer to help me through. Through keeping my heart with God, I am able to still feel joy for others and pray that they may never have to endure my pain. I know this is not the case for some. And that’s okay. You lost a child. You’re allowed to be angry, envious, or have resentment. 

But I hope you find something that helps you push past these feelings. My something has been God. Through him, I am still healing and persevering through my story. Through him, I still have hope that I may one day beat secondary infertility and receive my rainbow at the end of the storm. My hope is that anyone reading this finds their “something.” Look to your family, friends, coworkers, support groups, prayer, or God to help keep you focused. Don’t be afraid to share your story; your hopes, dreams, and fears. We cannot be afraid to speak our story. That’s how these angel babies live on. I’ve seen the quote that goes something like “When I am gone, there will be no one else on Earth who will know of my angel baby.” That shouldn’t be the case. If we start talking and start listening, no child whether here on Earth or in heaven, will ever be forgotten. 

So this is my story. And I know it is far from over. I hope my story is able to help someone speak theirs aloud. Or at the very least I hope it helps someone know they aren’t alone. Have hope that one day you will receive your rainbow. 

You can email Amanda here.

 

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