Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Project   

It's been nine years to the day since I laid on a hospital gurney in a hallway outside of operating room two. Shaking, silently crying and clutching my middle. "Let me give you something to help with your nerves," the anesthesiologist said as he walks to my bedside. I look at him blankly and say nothing. My nerves are hardly the problem but whatever he pushes into my IV has the desired effect I stop crying, I stop shaking, but my hands stay clutched to my middle. A nurse comes out and pushes me into the operating room. It's freezing; there are more nurses and a doctor inside. My eyes scan the room and land on the stirrups suspended from the ceiling. Dread and humiliation wash over me and mingle with the deepest sorrow I have ever known. The people in the room are talking amongst themselves, about their day, plans for their weekends, something on TV. I am silently falling apart. A nurse asks me a question and smiles; I mumble something back, this is no place for smiling. I'm asked to count backward from 10. I make it to seven before darkness. The days that follow are the darkest of my life. It takes me a long time to put myself back together. There are cracks. Twice more I end up in the hallway outside of that operating room but I was more prepared, not caught off guard, the walls had been put firmly in place.

Nine years to the day.

Now I have three beautiful living children one of my heart and two of my body. The ending is happy and full of genuine miracles but the beginning still happened, it is the dark bits of my journey to motherhood. I speak openly about it all now, but for a long time, I was so full of guilt and shame in my body for not being able to do what it was supposed to do. I felt ashamed for being so affected by my miscarriages, no one else seemed to be falling apart like me, why couldn’t I get over it. As I grew bolder and stopped caring if I was making other people uncomfortable, I found that the more I told my story, the more I heard in return. There were so many women just like me that wanted to be seen, heard and have the lives of their babies recognized and remembered.

From that truth, this project is born. I've asked women in my community if I could take their pictures and if they would share their stories to accompany them. My goal was to help spread awareness if only in our small community, to help women who feel alone and maybe give them the courage to tell their own stories and most importantly spread a little healing.

-Kandyce Joeline

 This is one of the hardest things I’ve ever gone thru in my life. I was 14 weeks when I started to spot a little. I wasn’t too worried until it got heavier. I went in to urgent care and they ordered an emergency ultrasound for the next day. I tried to convince myself everything was going to be okay. When I knew it wasn’t. I didn’t sleep. I went to the ultrasound the next morning with my two year old. The tech had a difficult time finding a heart beat. My worst fears had come true. But she soon loosen the giant knot that formed in my throat. She said the baby was healthy and even asked if I’d like a photo. I eased the mind of my frantic fiancé, I left him the ultra sound photo on his pillow as I left on a 3 day road trip to Alberta. She was wrong. She was really, really wrong. That night in a hotel in a small town I started to miscarry. Right there, in a hotel room without my fiancé. Without the professional care I should have had. I had my two beautiful little girls with me and my mom. After that I tired to continue the trip normally. Pretend nothing happened. Enjoyed myself best I could. But I’ve never felt a loss like that, the heart ache I couldn’t describe dragged me down daily. A few weeks went by and something wasn’t right. The bleeding hadn’t stopped, the headaches still throbbed daily. I went back to urgent care. I had actually never fully miscarried. In a cold room on a Friday night, with my feet in stirrups and a warm blanket covering any bit of body it could. With forceps in his hand he completed the miscarriage. I laid there. I wanted to weep, I wanted to scream, I was SO mad. Mostly at my myself, my body and the disappointment I had in myself. I carried two beautiful girls to full term previously. Why couldn’t I a third time. This time was different. The man that stepped up to help raise two girls wanted to share the happiness of pregnancy with us. And I couldn’t do it. The disappointment is what hurts the most, I think.  -Jessica

This is one of the hardest things I’ve ever gone thru in my life. I was 14 weeks when I started to spot a little. I wasn’t too worried until it got heavier. I went in to urgent care and they ordered an emergency ultrasound for the next day. I tried to convince myself everything was going to be okay. When I knew it wasn’t. I didn’t sleep. I went to the ultrasound the next morning with my two year old. The tech had a difficult time finding a heart beat. My worst fears had come true. But she soon loosen the giant knot that formed in my throat. She said the baby was healthy and even asked if I’d like a photo. I eased the mind of my frantic fiancé, I left him the ultra sound photo on his pillow as I left on a 3 day road trip to Alberta. She was wrong. She was really, really wrong. That night in a hotel in a small town I started to miscarry. Right there, in a hotel room without my fiancé. Without the professional care I should have had. I had my two beautiful little girls with me and my mom. After that I tired to continue the trip normally. Pretend nothing happened. Enjoyed myself best I could. But I’ve never felt a loss like that, the heart ache I couldn’t describe dragged me down daily. A few weeks went by and something wasn’t right. The bleeding hadn’t stopped, the headaches still throbbed daily. I went back to urgent care. I had actually never fully miscarried. In a cold room on a Friday night, with my feet in stirrups and a warm blanket covering any bit of body it could. With forceps in his hand he completed the miscarriage. I laid there. I wanted to weep, I wanted to scream, I was SO mad. Mostly at my myself, my body and the disappointment I had in myself. I carried two beautiful girls to full term previously. Why couldn’t I a third time. This time was different. The man that stepped up to help raise two girls wanted to share the happiness of pregnancy with us. And I couldn’t do it. The disappointment is what hurts the most, I think.

-Jessica

 They prepare you. The doctors and midwives and family members. They prepare you for everything. How to tell when your water has broken. The difference between Braxton Hicks and real contractions. How your body will change even more once the baby arrives. But no one, no one, can prepare you for this. The pain. The anger. The sadness. The hurt. The confusion. The heartbreak. Two words. Two words changed my life forever. Two words shook me to the core. Two words are the only thing I can remember from the entire conversation. "No heartbeat." It's been 11 and a half years and there still isn't a day that goes by where I don't think of her. I carried her for 32 weeks and then she was gone. Gone before I had a chance to hold her in my arms. Time goes by and new life events can dull the sadness, but my heart will never fully heal. And that's okay  -Jenny

They prepare you. The doctors and midwives and family members. They prepare you for everything. How to tell when your water has broken. The difference between Braxton Hicks and real contractions. How your body will change even more once the baby arrives. But no one, no one, can prepare you for this. The pain. The anger. The sadness. The hurt. The confusion. The heartbreak. Two words. Two words changed my life forever. Two words shook me to the core. Two words are the only thing I can remember from the entire conversation. "No heartbeat." It's been 11 and a half years and there still isn't a day that goes by where I don't think of her. I carried her for 32 weeks and then she was gone. Gone before I had a chance to hold her in my arms. Time goes by and new life events can dull the sadness, but my heart will never fully heal. And that's okay

-Jenny

 It was the morning of aug 29, I was just over 38 weeks pregnant headed to work. I was feeling a little different this morning but didn't think twice about it. Today was my baby shower with my coworkers and last day of work. By the time I arrived at work, my contractions had already started, but I wasn't convinced or even certain I was in labour. An hour went By and my coworkers decided to shut the office down to have my little celebration as they could see I might not make it until the end of the day. After only a short time they sent me to my midwives who informed me I was already 5 cm dilated. I was shocked and had to pack up and head to the hospital immediately. It was noon by the time I arrived at the hospital and I was full into labour. id had a healthy pregnancy so there was no need for me to be hooked up to any Monitors. After a few hours it was time to push, and I pushed and I pushed and I pushed. Over 3 hours went by, pushing every minute or two and I was exhausted. All of a sudden An oxygen mask was placed over my face and what felt like a hundred people flooded the room and I was worried. I heard them say, they were unsure if it was myself or my baby that was loosing oxygen. The doctor decided that the baby needed to come up immediately and used the vacuum extraction. The vacuum was unsuccessful the first time and the second time. The third and final attempt, SHE was finally here and was rushed away. I had waited for the moment to meet my baby girl but the more time that passed the more concerted I become until the doctors informed us that her heart rate had stopped during the intense labour. although they were able to start her heart again, there was a significant amount of brain damage. She looked so normal and beautiful but would never walk, talk or eat on her own and would not survive past a few hours without life support. that night we made the hardest decision of our lives and took our sweet baby Jean off life support. She was only given a few hours to be with us, and after saying our goodbyes we retreated to our hospital room. What felt like an eternity passed and we got a knock on our door. It was our midwife, and she wanted to let us know baby Jean was still with us ( after many hours) and wanted to bring her in with us. We were able to spend her last few hours together as a family before she passed and took her last breath in my arms. I miss her more with each passing day. Jean Richelle aug 29 2012- aug 30 2012  -Renee

It was the morning of aug 29, I was just over 38 weeks pregnant headed to work. I was feeling a little different this morning but didn't think twice about it. Today was my baby shower with my coworkers and last day of work. By the time I arrived at work, my contractions had already started, but I wasn't convinced or even certain I was in labour. An hour went By and my coworkers decided to shut the office down to have my little celebration as they could see I might not make it until the end of the day. After only a short time they sent me to my midwives who informed me I was already 5 cm dilated. I was shocked and had to pack up and head to the hospital immediately. It was noon by the time I arrived at the hospital and I was full into labour. id had a healthy pregnancy so there was no need for me to be hooked up to any Monitors. After a few hours it was time to push, and I pushed and I pushed and I pushed. Over 3 hours went by, pushing every minute or two and I was exhausted. All of a sudden An oxygen mask was placed over my face and what felt like a hundred people flooded the room and I was worried. I heard them say, they were unsure if it was myself or my baby that was loosing oxygen. The doctor decided that the baby needed to come up immediately and used the vacuum extraction. The vacuum was unsuccessful the first time and the second time. The third and final attempt, SHE was finally here and was rushed away. I had waited for the moment to meet my baby girl but the more time that passed the more concerted I become until the doctors informed us that her heart rate had stopped during the intense labour. although they were able to start her heart again, there was a significant amount of brain damage. She looked so normal and beautiful but would never walk, talk or eat on her own and would not survive past a few hours without life support. that night we made the hardest decision of our lives and took our sweet baby Jean off life support. She was only given a few hours to be with us, and after saying our goodbyes we retreated to our hospital room. What felt like an eternity passed and we got a knock on our door. It was our midwife, and she wanted to let us know baby Jean was still with us ( after many hours) and wanted to bring her in with us. We were able to spend her last few hours together as a family before she passed and took her last breath in my arms. I miss her more with each passing day. Jean Richelle aug 29 2012- aug 30 2012

-Renee

 On November 3rd it will be one year since I lost my baby at 15 weeks along. It will also be my 25th birthday, a day I will no longer be celebrating but remembering my child and everything I lost. Waking up every morning and realizing that I wasn't pregnant and I didn't have a baby was like living the worst day of my life over and over again. I couldn't talk about it, I just wanted to sleep and cry, and be allowed to sleep and cry. I can't say that it has gotten much easier, I think about it everyday, and still cry most days, but it's not all day everyday anymore. I'm still terrified to ever try and get pregnant again, and I still blame and hate my body for losing the baby. I don't know if that will ever stop. I feel grateful that I had a partner who supported me through this, I know it was really hard on him as well. I also feel grateful that I had the miscarriage at home, and got to keep and bury my baby. I found that as far as support goes, it didn't extend much farther then my home. A lot of people told me to get over it, or that I should be grateful that the baby aborted itself because their was probably something wrong with it. These words made it harder for me. It was like being told my baby didn't matter and that I should just make a new one. But it would never be that baby. You lose so much more then a pregnancy, you lose the entire future of that child  -Cassandra

On November 3rd it will be one year since I lost my baby at 15 weeks along. It will also be my 25th birthday, a day I will no longer be celebrating but remembering my child and everything I lost. Waking up every morning and realizing that I wasn't pregnant and I didn't have a baby was like living the worst day of my life over and over again. I couldn't talk about it, I just wanted to sleep and cry, and be allowed to sleep and cry. I can't say that it has gotten much easier, I think about it everyday, and still cry most days, but it's not all day everyday anymore. I'm still terrified to ever try and get pregnant again, and I still blame and hate my body for losing the baby. I don't know if that will ever stop. I feel grateful that I had a partner who supported me through this, I know it was really hard on him as well. I also feel grateful that I had the miscarriage at home, and got to keep and bury my baby. I found that as far as support goes, it didn't extend much farther then my home. A lot of people told me to get over it, or that I should be grateful that the baby aborted itself because their was probably something wrong with it. These words made it harder for me. It was like being told my baby didn't matter and that I should just make a new one. But it would never be that baby. You lose so much more then a pregnancy, you lose the entire future of that child

-Cassandra

 At the time I acted like it wasn’t a big deal, I didn’t want my pain to be a burden to others. But inside, every part of me was screaming, like my soul was on fire. There was no way to prepare for the words of a doctor saying “There is no heartbeat, go home and miscarry your baby”. No way to fully express the agony of a labour to a dead child. No way to explain how it feels to hold your dead child in your hands. The confusion, the anger, the tears, I wanted that child so badly.. I got pregnant again before my next period, but I wanted the baby I lost. I was thankful for the new hope, but I was afraid to breath. I was terrified to mess this up, to have this pregnancy end in loss as well. I just laid in bed for months afraid to move. There was a sense of suspended time, like there was a rainbow but the rain had yet to stop falling. I wanted so badly to close my eyes and simply disappear, but I couldn’t because this baby needed her mother. When my rainbow baby was born, we shared an incredible bond, it was like she knew how deeply I was hurting. She was there and felt my pain, while I tried to cope with the loss, silently trying to reach out. I named my rainbow baby Luna. She is the moon that gives me light on my absolute darkest days, and I am forever thankful to her.  -Amanda

At the time I acted like it wasn’t a big deal, I didn’t want my pain to be a burden to others. But inside, every part of me was screaming, like my soul was on fire. There was no way to prepare for the words of a doctor saying “There is no heartbeat, go home and miscarry your baby”. No way to fully express the agony of a labour to a dead child. No way to explain how it feels to hold your dead child in your hands. The confusion, the anger, the tears, I wanted that child so badly.. I got pregnant again before my next period, but I wanted the baby I lost. I was thankful for the new hope, but I was afraid to breath. I was terrified to mess this up, to have this pregnancy end in loss as well. I just laid in bed for months afraid to move. There was a sense of suspended time, like there was a rainbow but the rain had yet to stop falling. I wanted so badly to close my eyes and simply disappear, but I couldn’t because this baby needed her mother. When my rainbow baby was born, we shared an incredible bond, it was like she knew how deeply I was hurting. She was there and felt my pain, while I tried to cope with the loss, silently trying to reach out. I named my rainbow baby Luna. She is the moon that gives me light on my absolute darkest days, and I am forever thankful to her.

-Amanda

 Imagine a love so strong it made saying hello and goodbye in the same day worth all the pain. My first pregnancy was easy and normal. All of those firsts were so exciting and despite the constant morning sickness, nothing was better than hearing my baby's heartbeat and watching my belly grow. When I found out I was pregnant with our second baby, things felt different. I told myself it was just normal second pregnancy nerves. I felt nervous about having another baby and taking time away from my first, and wondered if I would love this baby as much as my first. It turns out this sweet girl taught me more about love than I ever imagined. My second pregnancy started pretty normal. The excitement of seeing the heartbeat for the first time never gets old and I remember the feeling of relief I had when we finally heard the heartbeat at 14 weeks. The next few weeks progressed normally and we even starting feeling our sweet baby kick. At 18 weeks, during our anatomy scan, we found out we were having another girl! But we also found out that she'd be born with a rare and complex congenital heart defect. The next couple of weeks were spent meeting with specialists and other heart families while we tried to gather as much information as possible about what would happen when she was born. We didn't question the possibility of not making it through the pregnancy. One day shy of our 23rd week, our baby girl's heart stopped beating, and two days later I delivered our beautiful, sleeping angel. The physical pain of labour was nothing compared to the heartbreak we were feeling. Never in a million years did I think I would be choosing a funeral home in between contractions or having to decide if I wanted to hold and take pictures of my baby knowing I'd never get to hear her cry. The hardest thing I've ever done is walk out of the hospital without my baby, knowing the next time I see her will be when we go to pick out an urn. I remember my milk coming in 2 days later like a giant slap in the face, feeling so broken and so alone. Everything was different after that. So many of my relationships changed, some for the better and some completely disappeared. Not a day has gone by where I haven't thought about her or wondered what her laugh would sound like. Since her passing, we have had her baby sister and I truly feel blessed to have my girls, but I'll forever grieve the daughter I never got to know. Every milestone, holiday, and adventure I find myself wondering why she couldn't be here too. Grief is hard. But as hard as all of this has been, I'm incredibly grateful she chose me to be her mom. She has taught me so much about myself and has shown me strength I never imagined. Because of her I have a deeper understanding of gratitude and living with purpose, and never again will I question the amount of love I have in me.  -Jenna

Imagine a love so strong it made saying hello and goodbye in the same day worth all the pain. My first pregnancy was easy and normal. All of those firsts were so exciting and despite the constant morning sickness, nothing was better than hearing my baby's heartbeat and watching my belly grow. When I found out I was pregnant with our second baby, things felt different. I told myself it was just normal second pregnancy nerves. I felt nervous about having another baby and taking time away from my first, and wondered if I would love this baby as much as my first. It turns out this sweet girl taught me more about love than I ever imagined. My second pregnancy started pretty normal. The excitement of seeing the heartbeat for the first time never gets old and I remember the feeling of relief I had when we finally heard the heartbeat at 14 weeks. The next few weeks progressed normally and we even starting feeling our sweet baby kick. At 18 weeks, during our anatomy scan, we found out we were having another girl! But we also found out that she'd be born with a rare and complex congenital heart defect. The next couple of weeks were spent meeting with specialists and other heart families while we tried to gather as much information as possible about what would happen when she was born. We didn't question the possibility of not making it through the pregnancy. One day shy of our 23rd week, our baby girl's heart stopped beating, and two days later I delivered our beautiful, sleeping angel. The physical pain of labour was nothing compared to the heartbreak we were feeling. Never in a million years did I think I would be choosing a funeral home in between contractions or having to decide if I wanted to hold and take pictures of my baby knowing I'd never get to hear her cry. The hardest thing I've ever done is walk out of the hospital without my baby, knowing the next time I see her will be when we go to pick out an urn. I remember my milk coming in 2 days later like a giant slap in the face, feeling so broken and so alone. Everything was different after that. So many of my relationships changed, some for the better and some completely disappeared. Not a day has gone by where I haven't thought about her or wondered what her laugh would sound like. Since her passing, we have had her baby sister and I truly feel blessed to have my girls, but I'll forever grieve the daughter I never got to know. Every milestone, holiday, and adventure I find myself wondering why she couldn't be here too. Grief is hard. But as hard as all of this has been, I'm incredibly grateful she chose me to be her mom. She has taught me so much about myself and has shown me strength I never imagined. Because of her I have a deeper understanding of gratitude and living with purpose, and never again will I question the amount of love I have in me.

-Jenna

 My story: in 2009 me my partner found out that we were going to be parents. The excitement was short-lived because at 3 months along i had a miscarriage. Fast forward 2 more months... I'm in the hospital in unimaginable pain and we hear those words again... "Congratulations! You're pregnant"... Only this time it was something else. After a few immediate tests due to the pain i was in, we found out that not only was i experiencing a tubular pregnancy, but also that i hadn't miscarried 2 months ago, my tube ruptured those 2 months ago. I was then rushed from port alberni hospital to Nanaimo hospital to undergo emergency surgery to remove to ruptured tube, remove the previously deceased fetus and stop the internal bleeding. This surgery saved my life, however it scared me tremendously. 2 years later, when i found out i was once again pregnant, my doctor also got me an early ultrasound to make sure that this baby was where it was supposed to be. I was scared my whole pregnancy that this baby also wouldn't make it. I didn't take pregnancy pictures, i didn't do announcements, and i spent my whole pregnancy fearing the worst. On October 3rd, 2012, i went into labor and after only 47 minutes, i gave birth to my beautiful son, Matthew James Acker. He was a happy and healthy baby. I chose now to think that the loss of the first baby was meant to be. I wish i had taken more pictures of my pregnancy with Matthew, but in the end, he is here and still healthy and happy... We both are.  -Elizabeth 

My story: in 2009 me my partner found out that we were going to be parents. The excitement was short-lived because at 3 months along i had a miscarriage. Fast forward 2 more months... I'm in the hospital in unimaginable pain and we hear those words again... "Congratulations! You're pregnant"... Only this time it was something else. After a few immediate tests due to the pain i was in, we found out that not only was i experiencing a tubular pregnancy, but also that i hadn't miscarried 2 months ago, my tube ruptured those 2 months ago. I was then rushed from port alberni hospital to Nanaimo hospital to undergo emergency surgery to remove to ruptured tube, remove the previously deceased fetus and stop the internal bleeding. This surgery saved my life, however it scared me tremendously. 2 years later, when i found out i was once again pregnant, my doctor also got me an early ultrasound to make sure that this baby was where it was supposed to be. I was scared my whole pregnancy that this baby also wouldn't make it. I didn't take pregnancy pictures, i didn't do announcements, and i spent my whole pregnancy fearing the worst. On October 3rd, 2012, i went into labor and after only 47 minutes, i gave birth to my beautiful son, Matthew James Acker. He was a happy and healthy baby. I chose now to think that the loss of the first baby was meant to be. I wish i had taken more pictures of my pregnancy with Matthew, but in the end, he is here and still healthy and happy... We both are.

-Elizabeth 

 Feeling like I was having a smooth pregnancy with no issues, we didn't know what suprises lay ahead. I went in to my 19 week ultrasound to get the coveted first pictures of my second baby, only to walk out in tears and shock. I didn't know what was happening,  but I knew it wasn't good as I was told to go directly to the hospital.  Over the next several hours my husband and I would be told how our baby was dying and no one could save her. Only half her tiny heart was working and her kidneys had already stopped working, so there was almost no amniotic fluid, she was suffering. Our naive little world came crashing in, I had no idea this could happen to my baby. I chose to give birth to her, so we could meet her. It was like any other labor,  painful and emotional. The only difference was the ending. One day shy of 20 weeks I gave birth to our sleeping baby. For 3 days I was able to hold and visit with her frail little body before she was whisked away to be cremated. I named her Silver Iris Storey despite not being eligible for a birth certificate,  because i had to imagine what her eyes looked like, as she never opened them. It hurts that she was not acknowledged as a life, as i felt her tiny movements for weeks and held her in my arms. She is our angel and is forever in our hearts. Friday the 13th of January 2012 is the day she came into this world and the the day she left.  -Heather

Feeling like I was having a smooth pregnancy with no issues, we didn't know what suprises lay ahead. I went in to my 19 week ultrasound to get the coveted first pictures of my second baby, only to walk out in tears and shock. I didn't know what was happening,  but I knew it wasn't good as I was told to go directly to the hospital.  Over the next several hours my husband and I would be told how our baby was dying and no one could save her. Only half her tiny heart was working and her kidneys had already stopped working, so there was almost no amniotic fluid, she was suffering. Our naive little world came crashing in, I had no idea this could happen to my baby. I chose to give birth to her, so we could meet her. It was like any other labor,  painful and emotional. The only difference was the ending. One day shy of 20 weeks I gave birth to our sleeping baby. For 3 days I was able to hold and visit with her frail little body before she was whisked away to be cremated. I named her Silver Iris Storey despite not being eligible for a birth certificate,  because i had to imagine what her eyes looked like, as she never opened them. It hurts that she was not acknowledged as a life, as i felt her tiny movements for weeks and held her in my arms. She is our angel and is forever in our hearts. Friday the 13th of January 2012 is the day she came into this world and the the day she left.

-Heather

 It was October 26th 2012, I was 16 weeks pregnant with my second child. On this morning I was asleep dreaming. In my dream I was in labour in my room with my midwife assisting me. I gave birth to a baby the size of my hand, she was screaming and crying until I laid her down on my chest, she stopped crying and then I woke up. I felt off all day, like something was up but I did not know what. For 3 days I tried my home Doppler and couldn’t find anything, I chalked it up to the fact that I didn’t know how to use a home Doppler well and I was only 16 weeks pregnant and not sure where placement was. On Tuesday morning oct 30th I went to my midwife appointment, we had a student there, she asked if she could use the Doppler, I said sure. She couldn’t find anything and so my midwife stepped in, nothing came across the Doppler and I knew something wasn’t right. My midwife sent me for an emergency ultrasound, it felt like it took hours to perform the ultrasound and the tech left me laying there alone for what also felt like an eternity! Then there was a man in the room, the radiologist. He informed me that my baby had passed, there was no heart beat, I tried to hold my tears in but was not successful, my partner came in and he was holding back his tears as well. After we finished with the ultrasound I asked for photos and we left. My midwife had instructed me to drive back to her office once the ultrasound was finished. When I got back to her office she was standing there with open arms and tears down her face, we hugged and cried together. I then went to the hospital ER where I sat with my partner and my 1.5 year old son. After 4 hours of waiting I instructed them to go home and have a quiet evening, I would call when I was finished. I sat in the ER alone until 1am waiting for a procedure to remove my baby from my body, I was anxiety ridden and very heartbroken. I had 3 options, wait for my body to do its work, have some medicine to start labour and go home to birth my baby or have a DNC (which is more invasive than a DNE) I knew I needed to care for my son still and so I chose the DNC. I met with a dr before this surgery and I asked him “is it okay to go home and nurse my son after?” And this dr told me that maybe now is the time to stop nursing him instead, I was shocked and angered by his comment. I did not choose to stop nursing my son, nursing my son helped me through my grief during this loss. It back to that night, I was prepped for surgery, rolled into a bright hallway and left outside the OR until it was time to be moved in. They rolled me into the OR, a nurse held my hand as I drifted off to sleep. I woke up a while later in the recovery room, crying. Then at 3:00am my partner and son came and brought me home, I snuggled my son extra tight that night. When I was pregnant I had bought 1 item, a pair of rainbow padraig slippers, I still have those slippers, they hang on my dresser when not in use by my current daughter. I still wonder everyday who my baby would have been. I did end up pregnant march 2013, my 3rd child was born November 2013, she is one of my two rainbow babies! Again a few years later, in October I had a second miscarriage at 9 weeks gestation, I thought if I ever lost a baby before 12 weeks it wouldn’t be as hard, I was wrong, it hurts your heart as much as any other. But, I got pregnant again and had my second rainbow baby September 6th 2017! I have 3 beautiful children earth side I am thankful for and two angels watching over us.  -Amanda

It was October 26th 2012, I was 16 weeks pregnant with my second child. On this morning I was asleep dreaming. In my dream I was in labour in my room with my midwife assisting me. I gave birth to a baby the size of my hand, she was screaming and crying until I laid her down on my chest, she stopped crying and then I woke up. I felt off all day, like something was up but I did not know what. For 3 days I tried my home Doppler and couldn’t find anything, I chalked it up to the fact that I didn’t know how to use a home Doppler well and I was only 16 weeks pregnant and not sure where placement was. On Tuesday morning oct 30th I went to my midwife appointment, we had a student there, she asked if she could use the Doppler, I said sure. She couldn’t find anything and so my midwife stepped in, nothing came across the Doppler and I knew something wasn’t right. My midwife sent me for an emergency ultrasound, it felt like it took hours to perform the ultrasound and the tech left me laying there alone for what also felt like an eternity! Then there was a man in the room, the radiologist. He informed me that my baby had passed, there was no heart beat, I tried to hold my tears in but was not successful, my partner came in and he was holding back his tears as well. After we finished with the ultrasound I asked for photos and we left. My midwife had instructed me to drive back to her office once the ultrasound was finished. When I got back to her office she was standing there with open arms and tears down her face, we hugged and cried together. I then went to the hospital ER where I sat with my partner and my 1.5 year old son. After 4 hours of waiting I instructed them to go home and have a quiet evening, I would call when I was finished. I sat in the ER alone until 1am waiting for a procedure to remove my baby from my body, I was anxiety ridden and very heartbroken. I had 3 options, wait for my body to do its work, have some medicine to start labour and go home to birth my baby or have a DNC (which is more invasive than a DNE) I knew I needed to care for my son still and so I chose the DNC. I met with a dr before this surgery and I asked him “is it okay to go home and nurse my son after?” And this dr told me that maybe now is the time to stop nursing him instead, I was shocked and angered by his comment. I did not choose to stop nursing my son, nursing my son helped me through my grief during this loss. It back to that night, I was prepped for surgery, rolled into a bright hallway and left outside the OR until it was time to be moved in. They rolled me into the OR, a nurse held my hand as I drifted off to sleep. I woke up a while later in the recovery room, crying. Then at 3:00am my partner and son came and brought me home, I snuggled my son extra tight that night. When I was pregnant I had bought 1 item, a pair of rainbow padraig slippers, I still have those slippers, they hang on my dresser when not in use by my current daughter. I still wonder everyday who my baby would have been. I did end up pregnant march 2013, my 3rd child was born November 2013, she is one of my two rainbow babies! Again a few years later, in October I had a second miscarriage at 9 weeks gestation, I thought if I ever lost a baby before 12 weeks it wouldn’t be as hard, I was wrong, it hurts your heart as much as any other. But, I got pregnant again and had my second rainbow baby September 6th 2017! I have 3 beautiful children earth side I am thankful for and two angels watching over us.

-Amanda