I’ve hesitated for a long time talking about this subject as it feels particularly vulnerable to me. (As if this blog isn’t vulnerable enough!) But I also promised I’d be honest in this journey and I feel it’s gotten important for me to be brave and provide more context.
Chad and I have been trying for another baby for over five months now. We started trying for a baby as soon as that became physically possible for us again. The first month we tried I actually felt relieved when I found out we weren’t pregnant. I felt too scared and too raw to deal with the anxiety I know the next pregnancy will bring. However, the last four months have felt devastating each time we found out we weren’t pregnant. The self-righteous side of me screams indignantly at God, “You took my baby! Don’t I deserve a free baby pass!?! Why am I not pregnant?!”
It has never taken us this long to get pregnant. Hailee took 2 months and Charlie took 3. But besides the timing, in this state of grief, going on six months feels like an eternity!
I think it’s hard as a woman when you want a baby, to be patient. I think it’s exponentially harder as a grieving parent to be patient for the soothing balm only another baby can provide.
I also don’t think there is any other time in a woman’s life when she feels as vulnerable as when she is trying to conceive and then is pregnant. Vulnerability has never been my strong suit. And since I’ve been thrust, against my will, into the most intensely vulnerable experience of my life through losing Charlie, choosing to be even more vulnerable on top of that through trying to get pregnant has almost pushed me over the edge.
Sometimes I have fallen off the edge. For example, we found out we weren’t pregnant in August while we were celebrating our 10 year anniversary at a beautiful resort in Park City, Utah. Instead of enjoying a romantic evening with my husband, I spent the night crying myself to sleep with Chad’s arms consoling me.
I can’t tell you how fragile hope is for me right now. Each time I find out I’m not pregnant, that hope is shattered. Then I try to rally my completely depleted reserves to pick up the pieces, glue them together, and clutch them in time to try again the next month.
In this process, I am really trying to believe that God has a plan for our family; a GOOD plan. It’s really hard learning over and over again, first through losing Charlie and then from not getting pregnant on my time clock, that I am not in charge of my life. I am really trying to trust in God in this process, but making that choice isn’t easy and I have to re-decide to trust Him…a lot. I appreciate that He’s a patient God and doesn’t begrudge me my wrestle with faith.
Chad and I feel we have so much more love to give as parents! We also know having another baby, while he/she will never replace Charlie or fill the void in our hearts, will help our hearts beat again! So each month, we are continuing to choose vulnerability and faith despite the pain, because we believe some day that pain will transform into joy.
Families who have lost babies, refer to their next baby as a rainbow baby. Here is a description from Baby Center that I really like: “‘Rainbow Babies’ is the understanding that the beauty of a rainbow does not negate the ravages of the storm. When a rainbow appears, it doesn’t mean the storm never happened or that the family is not still dealing with its aftermath. What it means is that something beautiful and full of light has appeared in the midst of the darkness and clouds. Storm clouds may still hover but the rainbow provides a counterbalance of color, energy and hope.”
Here’s to hoping for our own rainbow!