Pregnancy After a Stillbirth

 

PregnancyAfteraStillbirth

We Have Good News!

Today I am 9 weeks and 3 days pregnant with our 7th child.  I am due some time in September 2018, and our children are so excited to welcome another member to the crew.  My husband is positively giddy over the prospect of becoming a father again, and his service dog has become my shadow and wants to lay on me all the time.

Unfortunately, this is not our 7th living child.  January 22nd, 2017 I delivered a precious boy, sleeping.  He had gone to be with Jesus on January 18th and measured the exact gestational age he was on that day, which confirmed that he had died the same day.

What Does Confirmation of Pregnancy Look Like After Loss?

I can say that people are more likely to be excited for, and with you, as a large family mom for this new little one.  There is something about loss that gives people a greater perspective regarding the fragility of life, and it makes a new life that much more precious.  Is everyone going happy?  Unfortunately, there are always going to be people who think you are doing too much, or too much too fast, the choice is yours and your husband’s.

Some call these precious souls “rainbow babies” because they consider the previous loss akin to a rainstorm, and these are the bright promises at the end.  I use the term to explain our situation to others, but I don’t feel that our loss was a storm, it was merely a season in our parenting journey and now we have someone who is a part of our family that left us very early.

I was scared to take a pregnancy test this time.  It had been nearly a year, which has never happened in our marriage.  There were multiple times that I was certain I was expecting again because we choose not to prevent pregnancy, but each time I was not.  My twin sister is the one who ultimately gave me the pep-talk I needed to finally take the test.  She said, “If you test, what are the options?”  Well, either I am or I am not.  So pointed, and so simple, but my brain needed the directness of that statement to snap me out of my fear and look at the situation.

One day before our 6th child, McLeod’s, 1st Still-Birthday I took the test in a grocery store bathroom on the way to church.  It instantly turned positive, and this grieving momma felt the weight of that grief fall off of her shoulders, to be replaced by unimaginable joy and excitement.  I just kept saying, “Thank you Lord!’, over and over and cried.  We were going to have another baby!

My Plans

I am still relatively early, but this baby is going to be celebrated every chance we get.  I have never been much of a selfie person, but I love pictures of myself pregnant because I want all of our children to know that they were wanted and cherished.  It is the single most regretful thing from our McLeod’s pregnancy that I do not have any pictures of me pregnant with him.  I had caved to the pressure of potential judgment by others when I should have just done what I felt in my heart, and celebrate my baby anyway.

This time I take weekly pictures of my belly growth, which after as many babies as I have had happens much earlier than if you are on your second or third child.  I already have to wear larger skirts to feel comfortable, and I share my excitement with anyone who will listen.

My children were present when our son’s death was discovered, and they are keenly aware that life can end at any time.  We speak life into this pregnancy, but we also talk openly as a family when the fear of another loss creeps up in conversation because acknowledging our children’s awareness of this part of life cements the grieving process we have been on for the last year since his death for them.  We know where he is, and we know God loves all of us greatly in spite of the pain of losing him.

Please share in our excitement, and anticipation of a new baby sometime in September 2018.

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