I’m going to do something a little different and include some of the writing I did when I was very fresh in my pain and grief. It has been almost a year now, and the tears still come at times, but I have a better handle on my grief and I’m able to share with others who are also experiencing loss.
Written 6/30/2020, 6 days after my loss
For most of my life I have stifled feelings, I suppose afraid to express emotion. I knew immediately that was not going to work this time. After having my daughter Violet in 2017 I experienced a lot of postpartum anxiety and tried to deal with it all on my own.
By the time Violet turned 3, we had been trying to have another baby for about 2 years. Then hit the 2020 quarantine, I had started on clomid (only took during one cycle) and I suppose since my husband and I had way more time together, we FINALLY got pregnant! We were SO, SO HAPPY! We told immediate family on Mother’s Day. What a joy to finally have a sibling for Violet after trying for so many years!
Only to be taken away just a few short weeks later, at my 12 week checkup appointment, no less.
Once the physical symptoms of my miscarriage slowed down, I started to realize that if I didn’t start talking about my feelings and my baby with someone, I was literally going to lose my mind. We hadn’t planned on announcing to the world that we were pregnant until the second trimester (just a week away from my miscarriage date). But then I started to feel like if I didn’t acknowledge my baby I was just a huge liar. I loved my baby already. My baby was here. It was inside me, I heard the heartbeat and saw that beautiful little one inside my womb. Why should I weather this storm alone and pretend my baby didn’t exist?
I reached out to coworkers first and asked for their prayers. Immediately after telling them I had a small sense of relief. Their words of encouragement and prayer were a tiny sliver of hope for me. I wondered, can I tell my larger circle of family and friends? Dare I? I began to write in my phone what I was feeling and talked about my baby and what had happened. I told my husband I thought it would help if I write something and let people know. He said okay. I waited a few more days and tweaked my writing a bit. And on Monday, 5 days after my miscarriage began, I wrote out a short version of what had happened.
I also reached out to a grief group at church, which, due to covid was meeting online via Zoom. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I found it therapeutic and another step towards healing. My heart will never be the same. But I have to work through these feelings one day at a time. And sometimes it’s one hour at a time, and one minute at a time. I’m still crying every day. And sometimes I don’t know what will trigger the tears, and they flow. But I’ve accepted that. I don’t have control. And I need help. Admitting that I think is my first step to healing, and my “new normal”.
In the weeks and months that followed my miscarriage I continued attending a grief group through church, and also sought out professional grief counseling. Those were some of the best decisions I have made in my life and I know I am where I am today because of those decisions. My faith also had a huge hand in guiding me toward hope and joy again.
I spent many mornings walking and talking to God, asking him to do something good with my pain. I begged him to restore my heart, my hope, and my joy. I prayed that prayer many, many times and He slowly pieced my heart back together.
One day I was walking and I asked God to take care of my baby until I could see him in heaven. And in my head a voice told me, “His name is Joshua”. I continued to pray for “my baby” and I heard three times, “His name is Joshua.” God gave me my baby’s name. This name connected me to a friend who was in a crisis pregnancy, and I believe (long story short) that God giving me this particular name saved another baby’s life.
Fast forward a few more weeks, my tenth wedding anniversary and my husband and I were desperately trying to get pregnant again. I began praying for God to bless us with another child if it was His will. Then we waited to find out if we had conceived or not.
The day before my next expected period I saw a tiny bit of blood when I wiped and I was distraught, thinking there’s no way I would be pregnant. I went upstairs to my bedroom and cried silently, worried I would have to wait another year to conceive.
After talking with my husband he told me to just take a pregnancy test the next morning so we would know one way or the other. I said, “I’ll cry either way” but I really, really wanted to know.
The next morning came, and I anxiously took my test. To my absolute surprise two lines showed up on the test. I. COULD. NOT. BELIEVE. IT.
I didn’t cry. I was too shocked. And also afraid of losing this baby too. But also so thankful for the chance to be a mommy again.
Those first few weeks I was plagued with paranoia, afraid every time I went to the bathroom. The weeks went on, and things continued to go well. At every doctor appointment I held my breath until I could hear the heartbeat. Every week got a little less hard (notice I didn’t say easier!). I concentrated on the Scripture that I felt God had given me for encouragement:
“Forget the former things: do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:18-19
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified, do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
These verses reminded me that this was a new pregnancy, a different baby, and that God had His hand in my life and my baby’s life from the very beginning. He told me things would be different this time and not to dwell on the pain of the past. He can make a way where no one else can. And He will never leave me. He was with me in my darkest moments of pain, and also with me in my renewed joy.
I stand now less than two weeks away from my due date, anticipating our sweet Matthew, which means “gift of God”. He is truly a gift to us, and one we will always be so thankful for. I look toward the future with hope, and knowing that all of my babies are loved and cherished not just by me, but by God too. He holds my Joshua in his arms until I can see him again. And He walks with me as I await my beautiful rainbow Matthew.
Photos taken by Kendra Renee Photography.
Find out more about Project Finding Your Rainbow.
Pin for later and help spread the project!