Baby Loss and Rainbow Babies
Today (20th March) is one of those dates etched in my mind forever. I have to admit my memory isn’t particularly brilliant when it comes to dates but some simply never leave you. Birth dates of your babies and special anniversaries, they stick as memorable happy occasions. Unfortunately this date isn’t one of those. Nine years ago today we lost our first baby, a few days before our 12 week scan.
Baby loss, it would never happen to me. We were pregnant, we were having a baby, simple. It never even occurred to me that we wouldn’t be becoming a family the following autumn. Names had been written down, I’d bought a few bits like a nursing chair and a couple of teddies. We’d imagined what our baby may look like. Would they have my eyes? My husbands nose? Would we be welcoming a girl or boy? I didn’t think about whether my baby was growing properly or not, I simply assumed that they would be just fine.
Truth is our baby didn’t grow after about 8/9 weeks. Our baby had stopped growing weeks before we’d realised anything was wrong. I’ll never forget walking home from work, I’d begun spotting and was full of dread. I walked home with tears falling down my cheeks and with an ache in my belly. I woke the next morning in pain, a clot, sharp stabbing pains. We sobbed, how was this happening to us? We headed to the early pregnancy unit, I was sat opposite a heavily pregnant woman. Life felt so incredibly unfair. They confirmed our fears and I was sent home for the weekend for things to progress naturally. We returned on the Monday where they told us that our miscarriage was complete. That day was supposed to to be the day we saw our baby on a monitor for the first time, where we’d hear their heartbeat and later show off our scan photos. That day couldn’t have been more different to the one I was counting down to for all those weeks.
The physical pain subsided after a few days but the emotional pain left it’s mark on my heart. It will be with me always. Years later our first baby isn’t in my constant thoughts like they were in the early days. Certain situations bring the pain back, of course this anniversary is one of those times, I usually have a little cry. At times it completely floors me without warning. Perhaps I’ll be listening to another Mother’s story, her heartache is raw just as mine was all those years ago. Or I’ll be watching my children play and suddenly feel like I’ve lost one, but all three are right there in my sight. It can just creep up on me in the most mundane of times.
Loss for us led to happier times, our rainbow baby, Archie.
Rainbow Baby – A baby born after the loss of a child
When you’ve experienced a loss of course a baby is happy news. That positive pregnancy test just 3 months later, ah the happiest moment. It was the morning of my father in laws wedding and I jumped into Steves arms, whacking my foot on the loo in the process! Yet this happiness was tainted with fear. Would we be facing the same experience? Was our baby OK? Would this baby grow? Could we cope with the pain again so soon? The twelve week scan seemed so so far away. We decided to pay for a private early scan at ten weeks, we just couldn’t wait any longer to know if our baby was alright.
The clinic were amazing. I remember the woman switching on the sound straight away… A heartbeat! I cannot put into words the relief I felt. A tiny little baby, our baby, wiggling around in my belly. A strong heartbeat and four little buds where arms and legs would soon grow. Once again tears rolled down my face, yet this time it was complete overwhelming joy. It allowed me to relax and look forward to enjoying my pregnancy, no more dread about the twelve week scan either!
Now I sit here with our three children. I think the pain will remain for the rest of my life. It will continue to creep on me when I least expect it and I think I’ll always feel a bit like someone is missing. But these three little people, they’ve helped heal the pain. I am forever thankful for three healthy babies. So today, on the 9th anniversary of loosing our first child, I think of you all. All the babies we didn’t get to meet, the ones lost too soon and all our little angels in the sky. I share your pain, we are stronger together.
xxx Sarah xxx
PS – Did you know that I’ve recently started a new instagram account called @three_children_and_us
It follows our lives with three chilrden, home preschooling, our new home adventure and more. It may even become a separate blog, watch this space…