Pregnancy is a time of happiness and joy. For many, it's full of fear and worry. When a couple brings home their new baby after losing one, life changes again. The fear and worry don't go away once baby comes into the world screaming and full of life. The fear and worry just shift to other things in focus. Many questions I have asked was: Will he die too? Is he still breathing? Oh no, what if he dies of SIDS?
As a mother of loss and a rainbow, here are a few things that I want my family and friends to know:
1. I'm more confused now more than ever. At times I may think I'm holding my angel when I'm really holding my rainbow. It's confusing because I'm holding my rainbow baby while missing another baby. Certain facial expressions that my rainbow makes has me doing flashbacks in my mind of my angel. Believe me, it sounds crazy but I'm not crazy. So, when I try to express my feelings to you, just listen. I know my baby is dead and isn't coming back. I understand that my rainbow is a completely different baby. It's hard enough on me without the judgement of others.
2. I'm still grieving. Some may think this way and it's wrong. However, just because I have this brand new bundle of joy in my arms, doesn't mean that I don't miss my angel. I hate how people describe grieving as a process. Just as I have read before, a process is something that has an end. When grieving the child you lost, there will NEVER be an end. Some may think that just because I have a living and breathing child in my arms, all should be better. Nope, actually this takes me back to number one and adds to the confusion. The questions I once asked when I first lost my angel come back once again. Why is my rainbow here with me and my angel couldn't be? What would life be like if my angel was here with my rainbow? These are just a few examples.
3. My heart longs for my angel and at times I want her. Don't get me wrong. I love my rainbow baby with my all being. It's not that I don't want him. Believe me I went through hell to have him here. There was A LOT of tears, fear, and pain to get where I am today. I worked with every ounce of who I am to ensure that on my end, my rainbow came into this world alive. I just wish with ever fiber of my soul that my angel was still here with us.
4. Fear and anxiety is still here but it's stronger. I'm really scared. Actually, this is my normal. For the past year this has been my life. Starting in October of 2013, I was scared that I wouldn't get pregnant. The anxiety took over with each pregnancy test. Then once I saw the test come back with a positive, the fear and anxiety shifted. I worried during the entire nine months and thought only about, "What if it happened again?" When I was about nine months pregnant, the fear and anxiety rocketed sky high. I learned that I had polyhydramnios. I was put on bed rest because this made me at a higher risk for preterm labor and once again the chances of another stillborn went up. I had two appointments each week from that point on. Labor came and I was induced. Fear and anxiety was at it's max and pushing itself to the limits. Up until the moment I heard his first cry, this was all that I felt.
Now that he's here.... that doesn't mean it went away. I worry about him ALL THE TIME. As I stated in the start of this post, I don't believe this will fully go away.
5. I have a hard time with others holding my rainbow or trusting them with him. The moment I'm asked, "Oh, can I hold him?" Or when someone reaches out and takes him from my arms, panic sets in. I'm super scared that something could happen which would result in his untimely death. There are so many sicknesses and diseases being talked about within the news, I'm worried that he'd catch it since he's only had two rounds of his immunization shots. Plus, he's still little and his immune system is still developing.
MOST OF ALL, I still need you. Please don't go. All may seem well. The heartaches is still there now more than it ever was. Don't drift away from me. I'm really not okay.