October 15th: National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day

I didn’t want today to pass without saying something about the Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. This month, this day in particular, honors the children mothers will only ever hold in their hearts. Until I had a pregnancy loss of my own in 2009, I had no idea how many women were impacted by miscarriage (and stillbirth) yet it’s something most people don’t talk about. I thought I’d share my story…if you feel inclined to share yours, feel free in the comments.

My husband and I were completely surprised (and elated) to discover we were pregnant in 2009 with an estimated due date of June 6th 2010. We’d just moved into our first home that July and were both settled into jobs we loved. Life was great. We had an ultrasound and announced our pregnancy just after, running under the assumption that everything was going to be just fine. It wasn’t until November 2009 that we found out that we lost the baby. It was a pretty devastating blow to us. It was painful and it was difficult. I remember hearing comments about how it was “God’s Will” or “When you’re ready to be a mommy, God will grant you a baby” and a whole slew of really insensitive remarks by people who didn’t know what else to say other than to try to find some sort of reason for our loss. Here’s the thing about life: sometimes it sucks. Bad things happen…for no reason at all. Less is more. Sometimes a simple, “I’m sorry, let me know if you need anything” or “I’m thinking about you” means the most.

We were given the all clear to start trying again at the end of December and so we started trying immediately thereafter. By April, we still hadn’t gotten pregnant. We took a trip to Disney World with my mom, brother, and my niece who was three years old at the time. On the final day there, we went to Magic Kingdom (just the two of us) and ended up by Cinderella’s “Magic Wishing Well”. We both threw in two pennies and made the same wish…for a happy and healthy pregnancy.

I’m not saying that our wish helped facilitate our pregnancy with C but it does stick with us as a memorable moment in our lives…it was the moment we decided to stop worrying so much about it and let the universe run its course. It did.

We found out that we were pregnant with C on June 22, 2010 and discovered that we’d gotten pregnant with her the same weekend we would have been due with the pregnancy we’d lost. I can’t tell you the number of times I checked for blood in the bathroom and the number of night’s I worried that something might happen with my pregnancy. It didn’t and I have an amazing, incredible, wonderful little girl to show for it.

Today, we’re on the tail end of our vacation back East and we’re spending the night in Orlando, Florida. We spent some time this evening venturing around Downtown Disney. While we were there, I saw some beautiful Disney earings with C’s birth stone (February). I knew I had to have them. How fitting that we were here today, at Disney, which will always hold a very special place in our hearts.

It was where we wished upon a star.

I will never know what our first child would have been like had he or she been born but I am beyond grateful to have C in my life. I learned something through our loss: never take life, no matter how short, for granted and love, always, no matter what.

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