My third baby would be five years old next month. I shared the details of my loss in my post for Remembering Our Babies last year. You can read that here. Losing a baby marks you. It changes you. As I shared in that post, when I got pregnant again after my loss, it was right around the due date for my loss baby. I spent the entire first trimester of my next pregnancy praying that God would let me keep this baby. That everything would be okay. When my son was born, I was keenly aware of how precious a miracle he was. He was my “rainbow baby” – I never wanted to take him for granted.
Urban Dictionary has this to say about the term “rainbow baby.”
A “rainbow baby” is a baby that is born following a miscarriage or still birth.
In the real world, a beautiful and bright rainbow follows a storm and gives hope of things getting better. The rainbow is more appreciated having just experienced the storm in comparison.
The storm (pregnancy loss) has already happened and nothing can change that experience. Storm-clouds might still be overhead as the family continue to cope with the loss, but something colourful and bright has emerged from the darkness and misery.
That is what my rainbow baby meant to me. I’ve been pregnant again since giving birth to Isaiah, and while I still had some fears and cherished the pregnancy, it just wasn’t the same. Isaiah’s birth had healed a part of me that was wounded after losing Ahava.
I love all of my children equally, but I’ve come to realize in the last several months that I do interact with Isaiah differently. He breastfed longer than any of my other children have up to this point (Nehemiah is still nursing). At four years old, he still comes into our bed at night, something I had put a stop to by the time Makaylah was two and by the time Sophia was three. In many ways, I’ve allowed him to stay a baby. There are probably elements of that which I need to work on, and now that I’ve recognized it, maybe I will be able to do that.
So today as I remember the baby I lost, I reflect on how my life has been changed. The way my life is still different because Ahava is not here. I’m a different person. And I always will be.