Jessica’s Poem

Jessica wrote this poem for her baby after her loss. She hopes it helps whomever decides to read it.

Little Baby B

Seven months it took to finally find you

The faint double line told me it was true

Anxiety started the very next day

When another double line seemed to be fading away

Deciding to put my worries aside for a while

I put my hope in the multiple tests that said there was a child 

The weeks went on and no period came 

Symptoms from my first seemed to be the same 

Then came the dreaded sickness I remembered

The hope and knowledge of 2nd trimester was now what I treasured 

Nauseous and not myself all day for weeks on end 

I couldn’t wait for my sickness to finally mend 

Only a couple more weeks I thought in my head

Until I feel like myself and the days I won’t dread

Then came the first appointment to see you, little one

I had no idea of all that was about to come undone.

Nervous walking into the office, surprisingly not very excited 

Maybe God was preparing me for the pain that was about to be ignited 

Just seconds it took for the tech to decide 

That instead we had to try to find you inside 

The moment I knew she had trouble finding you 

Everything inside me wanted it not to be true 

“Your weeks are definitely off” she said with no hesitation 

As if we had been wrong when giving our information

You measured as if you were almost a month behind 

But you had a strong heartbeat and movement she did find

I knew deep down that something was wrong 

The dates of everything just did not go along 

Sitting in the waiting room for our follow up appointment 

My entire being was being rocked by this shocking disappointment 

Finally as we sat with the doctor in the uninviting room 

His worry about the dates confirmed the dreaded gloom 

His answers were honest, his words gentle and kind 

When he said “it’s in God’s hands” it slightly eased my mind.

I knew he was right and that we had to just wait 

To see what God decided about your sweet fate 

The doctor said he’d like to see us in a week 

To see if you had grown, the answer we must seek 

That week was the hardest and longest of my life 

My mind was filled with racing anxiety and strife 

Mother’s Day came and went filling my heart with emotion 

It was hard to find full joy in the day when my mind was in commotion 

Finally, the day had come to journey back to the space

Where everything we had hoped for had been misplaced 

I prayed hard for our favorite ultrasound tech

For the last one was not thoughtful, insensitive and blech 

There was the one I prayed for calling my name to come in

My heart was so glad for this already was a win

Again you were too small to see

She had to go in and see how you would be 

Only a few days it showed you had grown 

I still saw your little form from what was shown 

And then came the words we were dreading to hear

“I’m so sorry I can’t find the heartbeat, my dear.”

Immediately I broke down into a puddle of tears 

Coming true, one of my biggest of fears 

After a moment alone for daddy and I to talk  

Our favorite nurse met us in the hallway to walk 

She squeezed me with her compassion and love 

She was like our very own angel sent from above 

We got to the office where the doc met us there 

Another kind face to show us sensitivity and care 

He expressed his sympathy handling us so dear

And in our conversation I was so glad he was here 

We talked about God and His plans that may not be understood 

But agreed that after time we can see it’s all for our good 

The doc shared some of his own heartache and story 

And we talked about how all the hard can still reveal God’s glory 

My goodness, God knew what I needed on this day 

To see these three faces to help ease some of the pain away

Gratefulness is what overflows from my heart 

This piece of my story they will always be a sweet part 

The days ahead of us I knew would be tough 

The thought of breaking the news over and over was rough 

Maybe I shouldn’t have told so many I thought

But we also had an army praying for this battle we fought 

We sat in the car and sent a few texts 

I sobbed as I wrote, and then onto the next 

How is it that the deafening mom guilt already starts 

As soon as even just the idea of you is in our hearts?

Maybe it was that run or that bike ride or maybe it was stress

Maybe I ate something wrong or didn’t follow the rules the very best

Just another waiting game in the days to follow

As my body started the process, but was going so slow

I decided to take the meds the doctor prescribed 

It was such a hard choice to finally decide 

I wasn’t sure how long my body would take on its own 

And I just couldn’t think of it happening when I was alone 

For Ben would be gone in just another day 

I knew I had to get it done before he went away 

It happened much faster than I had been assuming

This traumatic part of the process in my head that had been looming

The pain was unreal, almost like laboring pains 

And along with it came the dreaded crimson red stains

It’s as if my body was matching the ache of my soul

And now they both could together unite as a whole 

Finally, almost out of the blue

What the doctor described I think came true 

My body just felt a massive relief 

Although there would still be much more grief 

I decided to go see if the relief meant what I thought

Then out you came, my dear, one who had bravely fought

The feelings were weird and maybe a little numb 

Seeing my dream in the toilet was where we had come 

When I really think about it all it is crushing 

The idea that you are finally gone in one flushing 

Though there was relief that the worst parts were finally done 

I know every day I’m going to think of you, dear one.

The days to follow would bring grief in waves

Every little trigger would make my heart cave

Each new abdominal ache, mood swing, each bright red drop 

Would again remind me of what just came to a stop

Three different pregnancy apps I had to go to 

To click I’ve had a loss to end the tracking of you

Thrown onto the pregnancy packet from the nurse 

Each piece of trash fell just making the aches worse 

Your big brother runs around no idea what’s going on

Not knowing that mommy and daddy’s dream is now gone 

You were a fighter for a bit we got to briefly see

But now I hope your soul is running wild and free

You are kept safe in the hands of the Lord

And our love for you will push us forward 

To dream once again of a precious little child

To join our little family and our son so wild 

God has bigger plans that we just can’t yet see

But I believe we’ll be stronger, thanks to you, our little Baby B.


Abena’s Story

On August 28, 2020, I found out that my husband and I were expecting. I was so shocked that I called my parents and told them the news before telling my husband a few moments later. They were ecstatic because they had been wanting to be grandparents for a while. Being that this was my first time, I could not help but share the good news with my parents, my in-laws, my cousin, and a few close friends.

I was nervous but excited at the same time. I was going to be a mother!!! I just kept thinking, “Wow! This is finally happening!”

Both my husband and I were overwhelmed with emotion. Everything in my life was coming together. I had the guy, the dog, the house, and this seemed to be the perfect time to expand our family. So, we started planning and preparing. You know what they say; if you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans.

I scheduled an appointment with my OBGYN, but I learned the appointment would be for another two months . I was able to get an appointment on October 2, 2020. Seeing that I had some time before my schedule appointment, my mom suggested finding a way to verify the pregnancy besides the pregnancy test.

I consulted with a friend and she was able to book me an appointment with Baby Bungalow. This clinic was able to show me an ultrasound of my little one at five weeks gestation. I was indeed pregnant! This was happening.

I left the clinic and entered planning mode. I am a firstborn with Type A tendencies. I like to have a plan as it helps me to stay organized. The thought of something ever going wrong never crossed my mind. As far as I was concerned, in nine months from now, I was going to be bringing home our little bundle of joy. For the most part, the women in my life were able to bring healthy babies into the world, and no one ever previously came forward stating they had infertility issues, let alone lost a child.

Fast forward to the week leading up to my appointment, I started spotting. Again, I went back to my mom and a few friends, and they all assured me not to worry because sometimes that happens. I made a mental note to tell my doctor at the next appointment.

As I headed to the appointment by myself seeing that my husband was at work, and besides with the new Covid protocols wouldn’t permit him inside.

I walked in the clinic and waited to be seen by the doctor. I went back to the exam room and answered all the nurse’s questions. She updated my medicine and checked my blood pressure. Shortly after, the doctor came in to see me. She too had some questions for me. I answered all her questions, and then told her that I was having some issues with spotting.

She had me lay back on the table and checked my cervix and noticed that I was still bleeding. She pulled out a fetal doppler to check and see if she could hear the baby’s heartbeat. She was not able to, but she told me not to worry.

The doctor booked an emergency transvaginal ultrasound at a nearby clinic because the technician onsite was not in the building. I headed there in search of answers.

Something felt wrong, but I tried to remain calm as much as possible. Again I waited to be seen.

The technician conducted a transvaginal ultrasound. She took several scans and it seemed to last for such a long time. She left the room and returned with the doctor. He told me that he was able to see a fetal pole and that the fetus was growing but they could not determine the one point that the fetus stopped growing. He attributed it to chromosome abnormality. He kept talking but time stood still. Everything he said was going in one ear and out the other, until he said the pregnancy was what they call a “missed abortion,” and the pregnancy would no longer be viable.

Tears slowly started streaming down my face, but I quickly brushed them aside. I was pregnant but no longer pregnant. I left the appointment and finally let the tears fall as I made it inside my car. I cried and cried and cried some more. I wanted to be a mom so badly, I did not realize just how much until I was told that it was not going to happen how I had originally thought.

October 14th, I would go on in giving birth to death. October would forever have a new meaning for us. I did not se this coming. Why did God allow this to happen to us? What lesson did I need to learn from this situation? So many thoughts of shame and guilt started to overtake my brain.

Did I do something wrong?

Is there something wrong with me?

Am I inadequate?

Why does it have to be harder for me than it is for some others?

I was so excited at the prospect of becoming a mother that my heart felt like it was being ripped out of my body. I was absolutely devastated. My baby existed even though it was only for a moment. That baby has forever changed me and how a view bringing a life into the world. Bringing a life into the world is truly miraculous. Even after death, life keeps going. Time was standing still for me, but life was happening all around me.

I learned that October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. One in four women have experienced the same things as me. They too have received the news, “I’m sorry there is no heartbeat.” I found comfort that I was not alone. I found people who understood what was going through. They listened without judgement and gave me the best suggestions on how to cope with the loss.

They reminded me that it is okay to not be okay. Sometimes we must embrace the suck. It is here to teach us, allow us to grow, and to share our story with others so they too can also heal. Grief comes and goes. It does not get easier; you just learn how to manage it better. I will always have footprints on my heart. Why? Because my baby existed. It does not matter how briefly.

Sending love to all those who are healing from things that they have yet to discuss with anyone. I still want to be a mother, someone once told me delayed does not mean denied. I may have to change my plan, but that does not mean that I must change the goal of becoming a mom. Be intentional for fighting for your dreams and always remember why you started in the first place.

Pregnancy After Loss

Pregnancy After Loss: Salina

In late June, I surprised my husband after our housewarming party with a positive pregnancy test. We’d been trying since we got married and were lucky enough to get a house big enough to raise a family in. Dating is not a sure thing, but estimates would have put our pregnancy at 6 weeks when I tested positive. We decided to keep the pregnancy close to the chest until our first ultrasound appointment 3 weeks later.

Like most healthcare appointments, my husband and I were very nervous leading up to the date. We were happy to find an opening at Lankenau, very close to our home and well-renowned for their maternity care. At the first appointment, the doctor was very knowledgeable and reassuring about the pregnancy. He helped us answer several questions about our expectations and we felt like we were in good hands going forward. After some talk, the doctor decided to finish the appointment with the ultrasound. The next few minutes felt like an eternity as they prepared. He searched for a moment and paused; we knew from what we were seeing that something was wrong. The doctor mentioned that what he was seeing looked more like a 5-6 week appointment rather than a 9 week ultrasound. He bluntly diagnosed a “blighted ovum” – the body was preparing for a pregnancy but there was no baby developing.

We went over the dates again with the doctor and he made it very clear that there was zero chance I was pregnant with a viable embryo. I burst into tears—I felt that my body had failed me. The doctor then informed us that I would likely miscarry at some point in the next two weeks and that if that wasn’t the case, he would prescribe misoprostol to induce the miscarriage. Our world shattered and we now prepared for a different reality leaving our first appointment.

After gathering ourselves, we left the hospital and went home to grieve. With the help of friends and family, we picked ourselves up and tried taking steps forward to put the loss behind us. I waited every day for the miscarriage to happen—the anxiety that came with waiting for the inevitable to happen became too much. I decided that I didn’t want to wait for the miscarriage and asked my doctor for the prescription. He obliged and I took the misoprostol. The medication made me ill and I felt like I was in a fever dream nightmare until morning. However, I noticed that rather than the expected heavy bleeding that comes with taking this medication, I bled very little. I reached out to our doctor the next day, and we made an appointment for the following week.

When I arrived to the follow up appointment accompanied by my mother (as my husband couldn’t get off work), the doctor entered the room and began discussing an ovarian cyst (he had confused me with another patient and had no recollection of who I was or why I was there). After being briefed on my case by me, he performed an ultrasound. Staring at the screen, we realized we were looking at a developing 9 week old baby—the doctor fell silent. The air left the room, and the tension was palpable. Why was there a baby now when there wasn’t one 2 weeks prior? How did we have a baby after taking the misoprostol? A million questions ran through all our minds simultaneously as the new reality set in.

The doctor looked at me and my mother, and immediately recommended termination. He then changed his recommendation after some Google research (I wish I was kidding.) and we scheduled an appointment with a specialist. As to be expected, there is very little information about misoprostol exposure this early into a pregnancy let alone any pregnancy. My mom and I left the appointment knowing very little about anything beyond that I was still pregnant and I was 9 weeks along with a seemingly healthy fetus. I called my husband and he was dumbstruck. The doctor had made it very clear in that first appointment – there was zero chance of a baby. Yet here we were, with baby still growing. We were able to see a fetal specialist the next day. He confirmed that our baby was healthy, and that we would continue to monitor for any abnormalities that could be caused by the misoprostol exposure.

If at this point you are wondering wtf happened (as we were), the only explanation that makes any sense is that I tested positive very early on in the pregnancy. For those who are planning on having children, figuring out ovulation cycles is an art that is a combination of both luck and science.  I have always had an irregular period, which made tracking my cycle even more challenging. My doctor never asked me about my period history nor did he seem to realize that could play a factor in the timing of our ultrasound appointment. From talking to the doctor, it seemed that we were actually 2 weeks behind the “timeline” based on the initial at home pregnancy test.

I’m happy to say that we have reached 39 weeks, and I am due next Sunday. I cannot wait to meet my miracle baby. 

Pregnancy After Loss

Pregnancy After Loss: Katie

Some people have described pregnancy after loss as holding your breath for 9 months. To me, holding your breath means you have some kind of control. I feel like it’s better described as gasping for air but not being able to fill your lungs.

My last pregnancy followed a soul-crushing time in which I lived through 6 miscarriages back-to-back, one with complications that traumatized me to the point that I’ll simply never be the same. Through that time, I had so many blood tests that my phlebotomist knew me personally. I had multiple procedures, including a uterine surgery that resected a septum thought to have caused my issue. But even after surgery, I had my sixth loss. I felt so defeated. I had a wonderfully compassionate doctor who had done everything she could possibly do in my situation, and I still couldn’t keep my baby. And I couldn’t stomach the thought of going through any more heartache.

But after finding a beautiful support group of women struggling with similar feelings, I decided to keep going. My desire to have another living child outweighed my exhaustion. And in a few months, that second line appeared… again.

How can so many conflicting emotions exist at one time?

I think for the first 5 minutes of that line appearing, I felt excited. But then I quickly dug a deep hole in the sand and buried my head in it. I didn’t want to call my doctor; I didn’t want to tell my family; I didn’t want to acknowledge what might finally destroy me if I lost this one too. I was paralyzed.

But this is when finding the right support group is so crucial. Because I chatted with my new friends every day. And while they couldn’t do anything about my crippling anxiety, they were there. They were my cheerleaders, giving me a sounding board to process everything, sitting in my feelings with me, and offering advice when I asked for it. No one ever really knows what to say. But showing up and checking in matters.

Given my history, I was a high-risk patient. Not only was I at an increased risk of miscarriage in the first and second trimester, but I was at an increased risk of my own health complications, including uterine rupture. I had more appointments and ultrasounds than most pregnant women. And while many women feel excited seeing their baby on the ultrasound screen, I found it triggering. Every appointment, I prepared myself to hear the same cruel words, “There is no heartbeat.” But this pregnancy continued.

I thought when I saw my beta blood tests come back great, I’d feel better. I didn’t. I thought maybe after my first viability scan at 6 weeks, I’d calm down. Nope. Surely when I made it out of the first trimester, I’d feel safer. I was waiting for a time when I felt comfortable and confident enough to share with family and friends that my daughter was growing well. But even after the 20-week anatomy scan, after the week of viability, after I entered the third trimester and officially became full-term, I never felt the joy you’re supposed to feel.

My entire pregnancy was me expecting to see blood when I went to the bathroom. It was not knowing how to respond to people when they asked how many children I have. It was wearing baggy clothes because not only was I acutely aware of how triggering my bump would be to other women struggling with infertility and loss, I realized that it was triggering for me too – my own bump. Every milestone I made with my daughter was a reminder of the milestones I didn’t get to have with my other babies. It’s hard to describe the guilt of that. My daughter is so loved and wanted, but she could not have existed if my other babies hadn’t died. And I often struggle with mourning them and celebrating her at the same time. And that’s when I realized the feeling that was most overwhelming during this pregnancy was grief.

There is no healthy pregnancy or baby that will ever be able to fully heal a miscarriage. I’m coming to terms with that, and I’ve grown exponentially through processing everything that has happened. I’ve become great at setting boundaries with people and topics, I’ve become more compassionate with those within the loss and infertility community, and I’ve accepted that I’ll never get my innocence back.

Was it worth it to bring my daughter into this world? Absolutely yes.
Am I still broken having done so? Also yes, but I’m working on it.

Pregnancy After Loss

Pregnancy After Loss: Megan

Back in July, we thought we’d be bringing home a baby in March. And then in September, We thought we’d be bringing home a baby in June. And then in November, we didn’t dare to think of the end result. We just were thankful everyday that I woke up still pregnant, still with a baby inside of me. 

We are so lucky to say that we are looking forward to bringing home a baby in August as we near the halfway mark of this pregnancy.  

March was the month I first expected I would be becoming a mom, and it also happens to be Pregnancy After Loss Awareness Month. To everyone pregnant after loss, I am sending you so much love and strength. I know how quickly emotions can go from hope to fear to anxiety to happiness and back again. I know the only thing scarier than trying again is never becoming a mom. So you choose to try. To those still struggling with infertility or recurrent losses I am so sorry and I hope you get your miracle soon.

To this little one, I cannot wait to be your mom. Through all of the ups and downs of the last year, I find peace in knowing I was supposed to meet this particular little baby. You are already incredible. See you in August.  

Pregnancy After Loss

Pregnancy After Loss: Brooke

My husband and I were ecstatic when we found out that we were expecting our second child in July of 2021. We were excited to be expanding our family and for our older son to have a sibling. Just a few months later, we lost our precious baby girl at 17 weeks gestation. We deeply mourned the loss of our baby, Jedah, and talked about how our desire for more children hadn’t changed.

Just 3 months later we found out we were pregnant again. I was flooded with fear and worry immediately. Would this pregnancy be like the last? I felt like every doctors appointment would be the one where we would be told that our baby no longer had a heartbeat. I felt a panic every time I laid on the table to hear our baby’s heartbeat. But, time and time again, we heard that strong thump thump of a heart beat and saw our baby’s perfectly formed body. I began to feel God’s overwhelming peace and comfort. I reminded myself over and over that this is a different baby, this is a different pregnancy. I now hold our sweet 4 month old son in my arms.

We will always miss our baby girl and continue to honor her through our lives everyday. Our rainbow baby, Jensen, is a perfect addition to our family. I am gently reminded how precious life is every time I see him smile or pass a new milestone. A rainbow baby is not a replacement, but a miraculous addition.

Pregnancy After Loss

Pregnancy After Loss: Kristin

Pregnancy after loss for me was the hardest thing to go through.  It is a mix of happy, sad, fear and a lot of anxiety.   Not to mention how people magically think pregnancy after loss is the cure all for your previous loss.   I don’t think anyone can understands this mindset unless you have been through it. 

I have had multiple losses at different stages, including chemical, missed miscarriages and a second trimester loss. From the first pregnancy test to delivery, during PAL, there is no safe anything anymore. No safe space, no safe time frame, no safe ultrasound, no safe bathroom wipe, no safe cramping, no safe doctor appointment.  You are constantly waiting for the bad news to hit. You are waiting for your body to fail again. Those feelings do not stop. They are a constant battle in your mind.    

Luckily my doctor read, understood my chart and losses, especially my second trimester loss from the first appointment. They took the time to talk to me about my losses and how they can help get through PAL.   They brought up triggers that would happen before I even mentioned it. They set up ultrasound every other week up to my loss week to set my mind at ease.  They also had me do cervical length checks up to 30 weeks.  During one of those length checks, they discovered I was having contractions and was put on pelvic rest. 

It’s true – PAL is holding your breath for nine months but PAL is also so much more that no one sees.  
Happy – yes, you can have happiness and joy during this time.  You can enjoy the milestones of this pregnancy. 
Sad – yes, you can be sad because this baby is missing a sibling, you missed these moments with your baby that passed, you missed the milestones. 
Fear – yes, it was fearful.  Every time you go to the bathroom and look at the toilet paper, searching for pink or red on it.   You almost want to hold it and not go to the bathroom because you are so fearful of what you will find.  Fear – this pregnancy won’t last.  Fear – when is the bad news coming.  Fear – to buy anything during this pregnancy because you might not use it.  Fear – since this pregnancy might not last – you wait and decorate when the baby comes home.  Fear to announce a pregnancy that you might have to take back.
Anxiety – yes, especially during ultrasounds and dopplers.  You hold your breath waiting for the tech to not find a heartbeat or lack of movement. 
Anger – yes, especially towards the ones who feel this pregnancy cancels all the pain and love you have for your baby who passed.  How magically this fixes and heals everything.  All those times they told you “everything happens for a reason” or “it wasn’t the right baby” or “something just wasn’t right with this baby and your body knew it what it had to do”  PAL is supposed to erase all of that. 
Hard – its down right hard and draining with all these emotions going on 24/7.

No one tells you about the triggers like your baby’s birthday, due date, death date while PAL. Nothing prepares you for the “is this your first?” or “how many kids do you have?” All still triggering for me. No one talks about the emotions you partner feels during PAL. 

All of these things, no one tells you about in PAL. PAL is not easy even though the world tries to paint this picture that this is all sunshine and rainbows. My story is helping change that and give the world a real life view of what nine months of PAL is really like. 

Our Story, Pregnancy After Loss

Our Pregnancy After Loss

I never thought to write this story.

As soon as I had a second to process my miscarriage, I wrote down every detail. I didn’t want to forget the baby the world never got to meet. I wanted them to know he was here, even if it was just for a few weeks.

When I got pregnant with my living daughter, everything looked different. The way I shared with others, the way I monitored my body, the way I checked food labels, the way I held my breath every time I went to the restroom. When you are pregnant after you lose a child, you also lose your innocence.

I often encourage women and families to share their stories about their pregnancy loss experiences. These stories help others to know they’re not alone and that their babies matter. But what about pregnancy after loss stories? When I was pregnant after my miscarriage, I looked for signs constantly that this baby was safe. I felt manic, constantly assessing how I felt and wondering if today would be the day that I lose this one too – every day, for nine months.

My hope for whoever decides to read this is that you take parts of my story and know that the feelings you’re feeling are allowed. There is an AND that comes with pregnancy after loss.

Being sad for the baby you miss AND happy for the one in your belly.

Worrying about what could happen AND being excited about what’s to come.

Choosing not to buy anything AND creating a secret Pinterest board to design their nursery.

Honoring your baby AND honoring yourself in this next pregnancy.


The morning of June 11, 2020, it was that time again.

I grabbed a disposable cup, my phone with the timer app opened and that dreaded box of pregnancy tests.

I sat with my husband curled up on the bathroom floor as we waited. I felt like I was going to puke; from nerves and from my newfound unexplained nausea that lasted from the morning until 4 PM…

It was positive. About 7 months to the day where I saw my first positive test.

My second positive test. My second pregnancy.

Here we go again.


When you’re pregnant after a loss of any kind, you envision what you’ll do differently the next time. Not that what you do affects the outcome, but you simply know more than you did before. I chose to advocate for myself more.

I called my doctor’s office immediately after the test and requested an appointment and ultrasound. I also requested blood work at their earliest convenience. I wanted a full panel and then to check in again a few days later, to ensure my levels were increasing; a staple for a loss parent.

We were moving in a month, but this meant I had to return to the doctor’s office that royally mishandled my miscarriage for one month before we moved across the state. “I can do anything for 30 days,” I thought. Then I would never have to set foot in their offices again.

It was no surprise my request to have recurrent blood draws in order to check rising hCG was denied. This was to be expected from them. They didn’t take care of my baby the first time around, why give me the peace of mind now? I settled for a blood draw and early ultrasound and also set up another ultrasound an appointment with my new doctor where we were moving. This way, I would get a blood draw at 5 weeks, ultrasound around 7 and another one at 9 with my new doctor.

Early on, every time my symptoms ebbed, even for a moment, I was convinced this was it. Instead of enjoying the moment of relief, I told myself to batten down the hatches for another loss. Truly a roller coaster when you’re in fight of flight for 12 weeks.


Going into my first ultrasound, in a pandemic, after loss…needless to say I had to go alone and it wasn’t fun.

P drove me and sat in the parking lot. I checked in and prayed so hard between feelings of wanting to puke (from my fancy *afternoon* sickness and also, nerves). I entered the room alone, the same room where I had been told there was no heartbeat and no baby almost 6 months earlier.

I remember seeing the baby and hearing the heartbeat. This already looked and sounded different than the first time. I just felt it. They printed the first of many pictures of my baby and I speed-walked out to the car to show P.


We told our parents the day we found out we were pregnant. With all the changes we were about to make with relocating closer to them, we basically had to. Between my appointments, living with my in laws upon our move and having to paint almost every room in our new house (paint fumes = not kosher for preggos), we needed to tell them earlier, and honestly I’m glad we did. To have some support during this scary time (for so many reasons) meant the world.

Telling people was weird. Some people reacted the exact same way they did when we told them about Anthony; excited, screaming, jumping up and down. Others hit us with the hesitation, “oh. Okay then! Congrats…???!” I can’t blame them. I want to believe in my heart they were trying to be strong for us or themselves, I’m not sure which. But I’m not gonna lie – it hurt. I didn’t take any videos of telling people this time as I had with Anthony’s pregnancy…I guess I’m not sure I believed it either.


I handled our second ultrasound alone as well. While the first one definitely sent me reeling, this one felt some symbolic and more of a milestone – 9 weeks was when I bled with my first pregnancy. To me, this was the threshold for which my body could maintain a pregnancy. Everything was fine until the expiration date of 9 weeks and 6 days.

Much to my surprise, my new doctor entered the room with a calm and respectful demeanor. I shared my worry about being pregnant after loss to which she said “oh, well let’s not make you wait any longer then” and proceeded to set up the ultrasound equipment before moving on with the rest of the appointment. Compassion. What a concept.

And there she was again. My little baby…dancing.

Yep, you read that right. She was dancing. She would not stop moving. I giggled at her tiny moves and teared up. I think the doctor proceeded to ask me questions or make comments about how good the baby looked that warranted a response but I was speechless. Grateful is an understatement.

But that relief only goes so far.

Between every ultrasound, it would come in waves. The high from seeing the baby and confirming everything was okay, to the next few days riding the high down, down, down until I convinced myself it was all too good to be true. Doubting I actually felt sick or wondering if I didn’t feel movement yet because she stopped moving and I was just too inexperienced to notice. What kind of mother was I?

This was the self-talk going through my head for 18 weeks. Not the most healthy, and also, not true at all. My awareness can ironically be attributed to the fact that I was noticing these changes and was, in fact, had more self-awareness of my mind and body than I ever had before.


My pregnancy didn’t feel real until the day of my anatomy scan.

We walked into the scan in the busy medical building. P was excited and ready to see this baby again as he had with my NT scan. I was excited…and also so nervous I could puke.

It was that weird time no one tells you about. During your first trimester, you know everything’s okay because you’re sick. Third trimester, you feel kicks. Beginning of your second trimester? Good freakin’ luck, your guess is as good as mine.

I didn’t want to use a doppler for two reasons: user error and worst case scenario. The last thing I needed was to misuse a piece of equipment meant for a medical professional and find myself in a panic in the ER twice a week. Also, if there wasn’t a heartbeat…at home on my couch without someone to give me answers isn’t where I would want to be in that moment.

All this to say, I was still waiting to feel kicks. I had felt tiny little turns here and there the weeks prior but wasn’t sure if that was it (it was). I didn’t know if she was okay and I hoped and prayed she was.

This was also the scan where we would find out the gender. I wanted them to tell us right away and, much to my dismay, my husband felt differently. Surprisingly, he wanted to do a big gender reveal. I purchased a plastic basketball to be stuffed with gender specific confetti that he would dunk and explode. This all felt very anti-feminist to me – the phrases “gender is a construct!” and “we will love this baby no matter what, so what’s the point?!” echoed through my head. He laughed and asked me to humor him, so I did. We invited our families over for a party the day after our scan.

During the scan, the ultrasound tech was very kind and again, didn’t waste time finding the baby. There she was, dancing again. Except this time, she was huge! The anatomy scan wasn’t what I expected either. Getting to watch your baby move in your belly for a straight 20-30 minutes…a loss mom’s dream.

The ultrasound tech shared that she was going to take pictures of the reproductive areas next so if we didn’t want to know, we needed to close our eyes. My husband obliged and, as much as I hate to say it, I kept mine open. I thought maybe if I just so happened to see it, he couldn’t be mad, right? I mean I waited nearly a year for this…well, truthfully, my whole life.

“No seriously,” the ultrasound tech laughed, “I’m doing it now.” I closed my eyes too. Dang lady, way to call me out.

After the appointment, we made a quick trip to Target for the party the next day. I suddenly felt very invested, very curious. My incessant fear for this pregnancy was absent as we picked out some plates and napkins and a quick “baby” banner as we shopped. What was this feeling? Trust? Excitement? Whatever it was, it felt kind of good.

We got home and P went upstairs to do the bills. Again, this feeling took over. I grabbed the sealed envelope they sent us home with and held it up to the light. I quickly saw what looked like a “y” shape and threw the envelope down. That was it then, right? Did I see that or make it up? A boy?! A boy! I smiled and walked over to the new 3D ultrasound hanging on the fridge.

A boy.

His little face.

…his dad’s face.

There have been very few moments in my life when I have truly screamed out loud.

I let out a noise that I didn’t even know I was holding in. A cry? A yelp?

And out came the fear I had been carrying for 18 weeks. For 9 months since I lost my son.

This was real. And this baby was mine.


My shock continued when P dunked the basketball and pink confetti exploded all over the concrete.

A girl?!

A girl.

The “y” I thought I saw was a drawing of two baby feet. That’s what I get for being nosy.

I never thought I would have a girl – my husband’s family is full of boys and I only have one sister along with two brothers. The odds were not there. But this baby liked to prove everyone wrong already, huh?

My baby girl.

It was finally real.


Throughout my second pregnancy, I told myself an incredibly irrational narrative. That every time I had an ultrasound, it wasn’t actually my baby safe and healthy in there, they just uploaded a recording from someone else’s pregnancy and at some point toward the end when I started to feel comfortable, the doctor would throw the ultrasound wand and yell “gotcha!” and it would all be a big joke. The tech would laugh and throw off her gloves and turn off the machine. I would lay there, holding my belly thinking “I guess that makes sense. Why would I have ever been so lucky?” These are the lies we tell ourselves to survive this journey, the intrusive thoughts we endure. I know how ridiculous this sounds, but I felt it to my core every single time I had an appointment. Why not me?


For the rest of my pregnancy, I had days of calm and excitement and days of deep fear and denial. The weeks leading up to the birth of my daughter were filled with so much anxiety.

We set up her crib, and I texted my friends with instructions of where to hide it in our house if something went wrong.

I washed her clothes and tried not to get used to the smell.

We installed her car seat and I hoped she would get to use it.

All of these things and more, loss parents don’t take for granted.


Shortly before I went into labor, my group of friends asked how I was doing. I wrote this response and saved it:

“It’s like my entire life is about to change and I can see these beautiful moments happening and I can almost feel how it will feel to hold her and it makes me want to burst but then I think of how difficult it will be and how I know myself and how hard I will be on myself to take care of her and I want to protect myself and her from those hard scary moments. And then I worry about my marriage. And COVID. And how all the classes I took are fantastic but also seem like a lot of info to live up to. 

I also think about the honor it will be to just have her here and ALIVE and to be able to get in the car, put her in the car seat and take her home. That is such a privilege and something we never got to do with Anthony. And it still scares me that it won’t happen. But I can feel that it will? It’s very bizarre.

I also have this deep sense of connection to her already. I had a dream she was infused into my bones (weird, I know) and that is the best way to describe how I feel. She is a part of me. And she understands me. Sometimes I’ll think “she hasn’t kicked a lot recently” and she’ll move. This feeling is terrifying and the most beautiful thing.”


My water broke 5 hours after Super Bowl LV. I was shocked by the amount of peace and I power I felt as my husband rushed around me, packing last minute things. I contracted and almost smiled through it. It was almost time to meet her.

My labor was (thankfully) relatively uneventful. While I was pushing (for 2.5 hours) one of the midwives said “I see some hair!” I asked what color it was and they said it looked brown. I started sobbing because I knew she was almost here. I was so ready. A few pushes later the midwife changed her mind; “oh, actually maybe it’s blonde! It looks lighter now!” Cue the sobs again. All these months, years of waiting were coming to an end. 

At 3:58 PM on Monday February 8, 2021, I finally got to hold my baby.

Even 2 years later, I look at her in amazement that she’s here. One day, she’ll know how much I longed for her to be here. One day, she’ll understand why we pray for her brother every night. And one day she’ll understand why my love for her runs deeper than any love I’ve ever known in my life; she was and still is, my biggest dream come true.

Pregnancy After Loss, Uncategorized

Pregnancy After Loss: Vitoria

I didn’t know if I would ever be ready to talk about it.

I don’t think people talk about this enough, it’s such a lonely pain and I wish I knew more about it before it actually happened to me, like it happens to so many other women.

A loss so painful that it left me speechless.

It’s very difficult to lose something you didn’t have, to lose a dream that had just begun, that you were going to hold your baby in your arms, smell it, put it to sleep, wake up tired at dawn, being hard or not, in 9 months I would have had the chance to feel the strength of being a mother and celebrate it for the rest of my life.

Nobody prepares us for this loss, there is no book, video or advice that prepares you to go through one of the most difficult moments of your life.

It’s not easy to share this pain, and it’s more common than you might think, 1 in 4 women go through what I’m going through. And how should I feel? What can I do with the guilt? Was this my fault? Even knowing I didn’t do anything wrong, that it was completely out of my control, how do I deal with the emptiness of a little piece of life that was taken from me?

I don’t have answers, I still can’t understand why, but I know that everything happens for a reason, our pain makes us stronger.
And the fear of trying again, the fear of allowing myself to hope, I don’t know if it will pass, but I hope I can give myself the chance to feel the joy of being a mother, once again.

Then this year started and people always say there’s always a rainbow after the storm, and as I write this I can feel my rainbow baby growing inside me. The anxiety wants to win, the doubts crippling in, but I will remain strong for me and for my little peanut!

It’s not an easy journey to be going through pregnancy again, without knowing the outcome, with all the fears of what can happen.

But I do believe, and I do have hope.

We will grow together and I am a mother, once again.

Pregnancy After Loss

Life After Pregnancy Loss: Jessica

Jessica shared the story of the loss of her daughter Emily back in August. Here, she details what life has been like after her miscarriage.

Once we got the miscarriage diagnosis , I learned life doesn’t stop moving – even for the death of your sweet baby. I still went to work and told coworkers (who had no idea I was pregnant- let alone had a miscarriage). There were moments of sadness to be sure but life keep going so you wipe away the tears and tackle the next project on the list.

We visited my sister in Atlanta in March shortly after, which was healing. Once of her roommates was pregnant and the room that my husband and I stayed In had all the baby stuff. It didn’t bother me as much as everyone thought it did because I was literally 8 weeks pregnant when I had my miscarriage – we hadn’t bought anything so that was just interesting to see people trying to care for me in that way.

Mother’s Day was hard. We skipped our normal family gathering, skipped church, grabbed coffee and walked a park on a very cold Mother’s Day. It looked like winter was dying but spring hasn’t made her appearance yet (Minnesota weather). It was kind of beautiful to see nature hadn’t turned quite yet and I didn’t need to be fully healed in that moment either.

The summer went along as normal and then September hit.

As soon as September came, my anxiety came back online because I was supposed to give birth this month. Instead, my body had no baby in it.

My husband and I started trying again in the summer. I had been tracking my cycle which hadn’t been consistent since the miscarriage. Suddenly, I was late – I got up the morning my period should have began and no blood to be found. I grabbed a pregnancy test from under the sink and said “I’ll take one and hopefully it negative so I can get on my with my day.”
I took it and saw that it was positive. After freaking out for a couple minutes in the bathroom I quickly told my husband the news. We prayed immediately and made a plan.

I called the doctor on my lunch break and begged them to check my levels to confirm the pregnancy. They agreed to do one test on Friday and one test on Monday (in order to be pregnant your levels needed to double between the two dates) the Friday test didn’t scare me – Monday did. If it rose I was pregnant – if it dropped or stayed the same, something was wrong. This is what ultimately determined my miscarriage. To say that weekend I was scared was understatement. I was freaked out and literally had no control over it. I went in Monday, got the blood work and went on my day.

My results on Friday were 350. In order to be pregnant, I needed at least 700. Monday results were 1300. When I got the email I was driving and called my husband. We knew then this pregnancy would be different. We wouldn’t wait the 12 weeks to tell people – we wanted the support early – the support that got us through the miscarriage back in February.

We told close friends and family, it felt there was an army now actively praying for this little one.

We made it past some scary milestones, past the 6 week mark when we lost our precious Emily back in February.

We made it past the first ultrasound sound at 9 weeks where we saw the body and heartbeat where I cried because it suddenly was real. There was a baby in me.

We made it to 12 weeks, into second trimester for the first time.

We made it to 20 weeks, we found out is it a girl (just like we wanted) and she let us knows she is alive by moving and refusing to let me sleep.

We just made it to 24 weeks. If you are in the baby loss community, you know this is viability week. Our little girl could survive on the outside (though I would really prefer if you stayed inside. Also I literally have nothing for you – please stay put baby girl – just until May).

Pregnancy after loss makes me sad that I should have a child here already. But then there are moments with this new little one that remind me that I’m blessed. I blessed to carry a child, to be her home and her safe spot for now. I’m glad that’s what I was for my pregnancy and I’m super glad that’s what I am for this new little one. I pray for everyone who lives with pregnancy loss because it something I don’t wish on anyone.

To my new little one that is moving and making it very hard to sleep – thank you. Thank you for your strong heartbeat, all your movements, all the times you have made me throw up. Thank you for being an awesome gift from your big sister. I can’t wait until May to meet you face to face and tell you all about your big sister in Heaven.