“It is understood that the beauty of a rainbow does not negate the ravages of any storm. When a rainbow appears, it does not mean the storm never happened or that we are not still dealing with it’s aftermath. It means 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.”
Getting pregnant with a rainbow baby can be very scary. All the fears, worries, and doubts you have of yourself, of your life, and what’s possible come flooding to the forefront of your mind. Death is so real to you, so you know that it doesn’t just happen to other people anymore. I love the quote above, because it shows the truth about a rainbow baby not changing what has happened, it doesn’t take away your grief, but it helps give a little bit of joy in the midst of your very dark time.
The stress and anxiety with a rainbow is completely normal. I often wonder if other people who have not experienced loss think it should be all great because you get to experience motherhood again and this baby will heal you. I think it goes so much deeper than that. There is no replacing the child you have lost. It’s possible you could feel guilt about that. Wondering if you think you are replacing them. Know that you are not. You are taking the risk to love again, you are opening your heart more for more love, not pushing out your child you have lost. There is enough room in your heart for all of them.
It can be stressful before pregnancy, when you are scared to get pregnant. It can be stressful when you are pregnant, when you worry if you even know how to be a good mother, when you worry about every kick, when you worry if you can love this child. It can be stressful after your baby is born, because it’s like walking on eggshells, waiting for this child to be taken as well. Every sickness, sniffle, and worry can cause this overwhelming anxiety that can be difficult to see if this was even worth it.
I’m not trying to make rainbow babies seem horrible, but this can be the truth sometimes. And it’s good to be aware of that. I also want to talk about how even with all of that, I still believe they are worth it. And I think if we hold ourselves back because we are scared of what will happen, we are closing ourselves off to the love we could have. There is nothing more comforting than holding a little baby again, that is yours, that is so precious after you have lost. And I know if it’s possible to have another child, you have enough love in your heart for another one.
The blessings and joys my rainbows have brought me have been amazing. I know our first rainbow is especially spoiled because she’s our only girl left, but there is something different about having children after you have lost another child. My lens of motherhood has changed. It does not mean I’m a good or perfect mother. Far from it. But when I am with my kids, and I feel contentment and peace, I notice that and lean into it. When I feel rushed and busy, I remember what’s important and try to take a breather and spend time with my kids. Family has always been important to me, but it’s changed on a deeper level after loss.
So when my rainbows were little babies, I held them and appreciated the time with them a lot more. I tried to take life a little slower, though I tend to not take life very slow. My rainbow babies have brought lots of joy into our lives. They do not take away our loss, and in some ways, it’s weird watching them grow as old, and then older than Aria. There are many things that are like that, that make you both happy and sad at the same time, but that’s part of our life now right? There are so many bittersweet moments. So many moments when you imagine holding your child who is gone instead of your rainbow baby. There are moments where I would hold them and wonder what Aria would feel like to hold again, or when she was the same age as them and try to remember. So they don’t take away the pain, but they bring so much joy.
Do you have a rainbow baby? Are you terrified of having a rainbow baby? There are so many fears, emotions, and worries surrounding rainbow babies that other people don’t even realize about. So I just want to send you a big hug. <3
—Have you felt alone in your grief? Have you felt like nobody understands?
I’ve been there and I get it. I think you can never truly understand unless you have lost a child. Even then, we all have our own stories and our own grief.
I see you. I know you are in a dark hole. I know you feel crazy many a times, and you think you have to keep it all together. But allow yourself some room for grace and time to grieve. I put together a little guideline called- What to Except When You Are Grieving.
There are so many things, both physical and mental that are a common thread with grief no matter our story. I put as many as I could think of in this list, so you know that that sickness you have come down with? That is something that happens to many. The groceries you have a hard time buying? Totally normal.
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