A letter to the baby we lost, while we are expecting again…

A letter to the baby we lost…

We are just a few weeks out from meeting your baby sister. And while it can feel at times that we are replacing you – we want you to know that you will never be replaced. Once your sister arrives, we will be in a new world of change and adjustment. Things will be busy and chaotic at times, but that does not mean you will be forgotten.

As we get ready to welcome her, we are being as intentional as we can about remembering you. This time last year, you were in my belly. I was talking to you, singing to you and telling your sisters all about you. On November 8th, we found out we had lost you. And the three months that followed were excruciating. It was hard enough losing you. To add to the emotional pain, there was physical pain, confusion, complications and more.

Although your memory may be filled with heartache and pain, we are committed to sharing your story to those it may help. Because at the end of the day, we realized that you went from perfection to perfection. You never had an ounce of pain and will never know any type of heartache. And while we will always miss you here, we have hope in knowing that you are with our Jesus and we will meet you one day.

When your sisters can understand, they will get to hear all about you. They’ll know your story, and we will celebrate you and look forward to meeting you. We will share with them the joy that we have in our hearts for you.

The pain that you’ve been feeling can’t compare to the joy that’s coming. Romans 8:18

Just like labor pains always end up being worth it, the pain of losing you will be worth it as well. Every tear, every complication, every sleepless night wishing we still had you – it was all worth it. YOU were worth it. You mattered from the day we saw that positive pregnancy test, and you will always matter to us.

We are 36 weeks pregnant with your sister. We may seem distracted planning for her arrival. While we are so excited to meet her, please know that she’s not a replacement, but another addition to our family. You’ll forever live in our hearts.

I’ll never run away from the pain of missing you – but rather embrace it. While this life on earth can be hard and we’ll never know why we lost you – we don’t have to know. We know you’re with Jesus, and that’s what we chose to focus on. We remind ourselves that the first time you opened your eyes – you saw Jesus. What comfort that brings us!

Read more: Pregnancy After Miscarriage

You have given us all a new outlook on true joy. We have learned to be joyful in the midst of grief and for that we are so grateful. What I want you to know most is that we miss you. We are grateful for the 12 weeks we had you, and cannot wait to see you dancing with Jesus one day. Your sisters will all dance right along with you.

Thank you for being a part of our story.

xoxo,

Pregnancy After Miscarriage

Pregnancy After Miscarriage

Pregnancy after miscarriage – what a blessing, and a beautiful story of hope. But there are so many emotions and feelings that come along with it. I want to talk about those in a very vulnerable way. I was unaware of what I would experience during this time, and if sharing my story can help just one person, then it will be worth it. Whether you are in a season of grief or joy (or both), I hope this post finds you well and encourages you, even in the slightest bit.

We are currently 16 weeks pregnant. Now that my energy is coming back, I’ve had some time to gather my thoughts and process what is actually happening. We experienced a miscarriage seven months ago (you can read about it here).

While the past seven months have been filled with many dark moments, Christ has given me little glimpses of hope. Seven months ago, I had a hard time getting out of bed. I remember waking up many times just wishing it was all a bad dream. I even told my husband I didn’t know if I ever wanted to try for another baby because I never wanted to experience that again. There was so much hurt in my heart, followed by confusion. But I knew God was still good, and I knew He would get us through that season.

Related Article: To the Mom Who is Scared

I realized that the foundation I had as a believer prepared me for that moment when my world came crashing down. Every sermon, book, podcast or conversation about hardships came back to me. I knew this wasn’t the end of our story, but the beginning.

I’m more than happy to share our story. Not because we are pregnant, but because of the One who brought us through one of the most difficult times in our life. Being a Christian doesn’t mean hardships do not exist, but the peace that took over our home and our hearts can only be accredited to Christ. Grief or joy – He gets all the glory.

Eight things I didn’t know about pregnancy after miscarriage

  1. Unexpected emotions – I was expecting to be fearful and somewhat anxious when we found out we were pregnant again. What I didn’t realize is that I would feel guilty at times. As excited as we are to welcome another baby into our family, I’m experiencing moments of guilt for being excited. I am still mourning the loss (and think I always will have moments of sadness because of it), but I’m also excited about this baby boy inside of me. At times it feels like my excitement takes away from the grief that baby deserves. In those moments I have to remind myself of the One who is writing our story. This baby in my belly, and the one He’s holding in Heaven are both a part of our story. Grief and joy can coexist, and I’m very thankful for the strength Christ gives us to do both.
  2. Holy hormones – Guys, it was bad. Like my husband was starting to worry. I had very little patience and could go from happy to “Woah… what just happened” within seconds. Maybe it’s because this is my first boy, but I also think after a miscarriage your hormones can still be so out of whack. Either way – it’s gotten a lot better the past few weeks. But man, hormones be crazy.
  3. Unexplainable peace – The peace that passes all understanding. It can’t be explained, but it can be felt and experienced. From losing our baby at home to reading a positive pregnancy test again – I could feel His presence through it all. I was a hot mess, and still am at times – but I always knew He was there with me. “You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.” Psalm 56:8
  4. Thankful for symptoms – Extreme fatigue got me good. As hard as that was, I welcomed it. I knew that symptoms were a good thing. So throughout my crazy hormonal days and movie days stuck in bed (we have two toddlers so don’t romanticize that – #toystorymarathon), there was a touch of joy throughout it all because it gave me hope that things were ok.
  5. Hellloooo fetal doppler – With the baby we lost, I obsessed over that doppler. I checked every day just hoping we would find a heartbeat until we had our ultrasound that would confirm we miscarried. I told myself I wouldn’t do it much this pregnancy, but I do give myself once a week to hear that heartbeat in between appointments. It does help, but I wouldn’t recommend doing it much in the first trimester because it can be so tough to find sometimes.
  6. One day at a time – I’ve had a lot of people ask if I’m nervous/scared/anxious during this pregnancy. And my answer is “sometimes.” Whether we miscarried or not, I would have those feelings. I think any mom will tell you that until that baby is in her arms, there will be moments of worry and fear. Honestly I don’t experience the fear nearly as much as I thought I would. I remind myself again that God writes our story. I’ll do my best to nurture this baby inside of me, but the rest is out of my hands.
  7. Ultrasounds will forever be emotional – Seeing your little nugget with a beating heart will bring a world of emotions. I’m pretty good at holding it together, but once they turned the screen so I could see, I couldn’t hold back the tears. I saw his heart fluttering and his little legs just kicking away – I’ll never forget that moment or the joy that came along with it.
  8. Allow yourself to celebrate – It’s still surreal to talk about this pregnancy. The fear that something could go wrong definitely creeps up every now and then. I’m trying my best to celebrate this life inside of me, and to allow myself and those around me to be excited. And as you can see, there’s two little girls who are celebrating too…

I only have a small glimpse into what many families have gone through or are currently going through. My heart hurts deeply for those affected by loss and infertility. I found myself hesitant to share our news when I know that so many women are struggling. We want to be there for those that are going through or have gone through similar circumstances. Thank you so much for being a part of our story. No matter what season you are in, we want to encourage you in any way we can.

xoxo,

Miscarriage: 7 Things I Learned

Miscarriage: 7 Things I Learned

Miscarriage… this is a tough one. But I think it’s something we should be talking about. I currently have a one year old and a three year old. Very easy pregnancies, very normal births. At this point I never thought we would experience this kind of loss. We found out we were pregnant with our third and were ecstatic. I am one of those people that loves being pregnant. People generally tell me I’m crazy because of that. But there’s just something about it. Maternity clothes are my jam. Who doesn’t want to live in stretchy pants?

We had a dating ultrasound and found out that the baby measured at 6 weeks and 1 day. It took a while, but the ultrasound tech was able to find the heartbeat. It’s a feeling of relief that just can’t be explained. All signs pointed to a healthy pregnancy. Throughout the pregnancy I did have a feeling that something was wrong, but there were no physical signs of miscarriage. I tried to tell myself that I was just being paranoid. When we were 12 weeks, they were unable to find a heartbeat with a fetal doppler. Ultrasound showed that the baby had stopped growing at 8 weeks. To sum up how I felt in that moment – my world fell apart. I won’t get into the details of what happened next, but I do want to share what I’ve learned along this journey. Just for a point of reference, it has been a little over a month since we lost our sweet baby.

*This is based on my experience alone. I realize that this is a totally different experience for those that do not have children. My heart aches for you.

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1. It’s painful

Emotionally more than anything. I am usually not a very emotional person. I’m not sure if it’s because I grew up with three brothers, played sports or if it’s just how I’m wired. I can usually get a pretty good grip on my emotions. Not this time. And it was painful for more than just me. My husband, our parents, brothers and sisters. Everyone was hurting with us and for us.

2. It’s eye opening

I always knew our girls were gifts from above, but this loss reminded me that they truly are miracles. I found myself just wanting to hold them and appreciate them so much more.

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” James 1:17

3. I learned how to grieve

I used to think something was wrong with me because it took so much for me to actually get emotional about something. Everyone around me would be in tears, and I’d be the one comforting them because I was the only one that wasn’t emotional. Again, not sure where that comes from, but this miscarriage really did teach me how to grieve in a healthy way. I had some very close friends walk me through that. We are so thankful for the support we had and still have during this time. It’s made such a difference in our grieving process.

4. It’s ok to be a mess.

Along with grieving, I learned it’s ok to be a mess. Like a hot mess, not just a normal mess. Being as I usually held myself together, this was tough for me. I didn’t like not being in control of my emotions. I would be driving and out of the blue: BAM! Here come the tears. And when I would usually suck it up, I let them flow. And I still do. If I feel those feelings of disappointment coming up, I embrace it, rather than run from it. I loved that child and still do, and it’s ok for me to miss him/her and to think about what could’ve been.

5. This is not from the Lord

I know that this is not from the Lord. Without a doubt. Until we reach perfection when we go to be with the Lord, these things will happen. I am thankful for the trust I have in Him, and over the years I have learned that He ONLY wants good things for us. No part of this process is easy. Knowing that God wants to take my burdens has helped me remember that this is not for me to carry.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29

I don’t know why this happened, or why bad things happen at all. Sometimes we will never get answers this side of Heaven. All I can do is take this experience to encourage others and give glory to God for the good things He has given us.

6. Grief and Joy can coexist

I never knew this until I experienced it myself. With all the pain that miscarriage brings, we can choose joy while grieving. Not the “I’m going to put a smile on my face even though I’m a mess” kind of joy. But the kind that says, “This hurts, this is hard, but I can choose joy because I know I will see that baby again.” It’s been this rollercoaster of joyful and tearful moments, that have all run together.

I have two toddlers, two beautiful gifts from God. My heart was broken for our whole family, and I knew one day I would have to explain this to them. We plan to tell them that there is another brother or sister in Heaven that can’t wait to meet them. I hope to make it a special moment for them and to use it as a teaching opportunity as much as we can.

7. There’s hope

When I was in the thick of this, it was very hard to be hopeful. It is a process and I’ve learned to give myself grace in getting through it. I was even at the point where I didn’t want to get pregnant again because of the fear that it would happen again. I don’t know what we would do or how we would get through this without Jesus. It stretched me and challenged me to lean on Him even more.

What helped me most was knowing that my baby was with Jesus. I pictured Jesus seeing that baby for the first time and gently saying, “Welcome home.” From perfection to perfection. That baby never had to experience any kind of pain or disappointment, he went straight to the One who created him. I still yearn for that child, and I’ll forever miss him. And that’s ok, because he deserves to be missed.

I would love to hear how you’re finding hope and joy. What helped you get through your miscarriage? Comment below!