rainbow over green tree covered hill

Dear Rainbow Baby

Rainbow Baby,

I found out about you two days ago. My period was 2 days late and I thought I must have just tracked it wrong. I had a dollar store pregnancy test in my suitcase (we are living at your grandparent’s house right now in transition from one chapter of our life to another). I have started buying pregnancy tests from the dollar store because when you are a rainbow-baby-hopeful, taking so many tests gets expensive! Anyhow, I took it, sure that it would be negative like all the rest. I waited to see that one dark line. I didn’t stare desperately at it, but walked away, washed my hands, prepared to throw it all away, and after a minute or two, picked it up and saw the faintest second line appearing. I stared in disbelief. I didn’t know if you were even possible. After two d&cs each complicated by infections, I feared my uterus was filled with scar tissue and therefore would be unable to conceive. I sat with this new knowing silently and alone, wanting to just be alone with you in this moment. This is in stark difference to the two other times I’ve been pregnant where I wanted to immediately tell the world.

I have been through it recently. I told the world (my small conglomerate of social media followers) about my miscarriage. I explained how traumatic it was and how deeply wounded I was. I wanted other people to understand so that they can reach out to women like myself, and I wanted women going through it to understand they are far from alone. But man, was it lonely anyway. And it didn’t end when the miscarriage ended. The final d&c (followed by endometritis followed by an ovarian cyst) was followed by this dull achy time that shook my identity and rocked my confidence in my ability to become a mother again. It felt like this weight in my chest that was always there, sometimes lighter when distracted, but when everything fell away, unwavering. This heavy cloud of doubt and leftover grief sitting in my chest, refusing to leave. I could not find peace, try as I might – and I did try.

I read self-help books, journaled, talked openly about it when it felt appropriate and began therapy. I tried to wrap my head around adopting and even contacted an agency, but it didn’t feel right yet. We want to adopt, but the plan has been our third child. And the plan is to do it shortly after our second child – not wait until our first is 19 months old. Adoption takes time and I desperately want you all to be close. I want you all to be able to relate to each other, share your joys and triumphs, and appreciate how each of you handles life differently. I want you to be friends but I also want you to know how to be around others that have different thoughts, beliefs, and ways of going about problem-solving different than your own. All this to say, that cloud never lightened in my chest.

A week ago I went to yoga, but not just any class. I went to Nancy’s class who has been, for the past 8 years, someone I call my spiritual guru. She is not a guru. She is gifted with this ability to know what people need. I asked her once and she said she feels like people are brought together at the same time who need the same lessons and she is somehow able to sense what they need. I have never walked away from one of her classes not receiving what I so desperately needed. I can’t explain her gift, but all I know is that she has it. This particular class she talked about healing. She explicitly and powerfully told us to ask for what we need. Ask for it! Can I do this? Do I get to just ask to be healed? I did – I asked for my uterus and my heart to be healed. And it felt so right. I am allowed to ask for what I need. 

I have lots of quotes I hang on to. One of the longest standing is a kitchen magnet that reads, “What if you just knew everything was working out perfectly.” When I look back on my life, this has been true in so many ways. I trust. With all my might, I try to move through life and believe that this web of energy is working in my favor, just as it should and on purpose. So when I was trying to cope, I was trying to surrender. I let go of this notion that having children is easy and in my control. And I tried to let go of this deeply held belief and knowing that I am meant to have children and birth babies more than any other purpose I have. And that’s the part I couldn’t seem to let go of. So I asked for it back.

And here I sit, one week later, now knowing that you exist. On the day I found out, I thought I would keep you a secret for just a little longer; my own spark of joy and possibility pushing out that cloud in my chest. Then, that evening we went for a walk with the dogs and – I am not exaggerating – the clouds cleared and this beautiful, large, clear as day RAINBOW appeared. In that moment, I felt like it would all be ok. I felt like I could begin to trust that I would actually get to meet you someday. And I didn’t want your dad to miss the moment, so I told him.

The cloud is not completely gone, but now it has morphed into something different. That space in my chest holds a mix of fear, hope, possibility, and cautious optimism. If I could start walking on clouds and wrap myself in bubble wrap and not have on-lookers be concerned for my mental state of being, I might really consider it. This pregnancy is already different, and I suspect it will remain that way. Whereas my other two were filled with joy and fantasies about who those sweet babies would be, this one will be tainted by fear. And that is OK. I am going to continue therapy. I am going to continue exploring my feelings. And I am going to enjoy every single miserable symptom the first trimester throws at me. Because this time is different; I am different.

But I want you to know,

I love you already.