Pin It

Why I believe in early pregnancy announcements despite the risk (and fear) of miscarriage

80 Comments

Why I believe in early pregnancy announcements despite the risk and fear of miscarriage

NOTE: I’m going to post this piece below, but before I do I need to tell you that since drafting it, we’ve lost our newest child to the beast that is miscarriage. I was eight weeks along—my earliest miscarriage yet—and I had a surgical removal (D&C) on Friday. The only reason I hadn’t published this post sooner was that I was waiting for an opportunity to edit it; I’ve now decided to post it as-is, even though it’s still quite lengthy.

Although I wrote a lot when we lost Scarlett Grace, and then again when we lost Oliver David, I haven’t felt I have much to say this time. I feel quiet, for now, like my words have all been spent. (Because what more is there to add after a third loss other than to say, again, how absolutely wrong it is? I could insert a few swear words here, but I won’t. The ache is real, friends. And yet God’s grace is also very real, so there’s that.)

It’s a shocking reality to discover that one out of every four confirmed pregnancies ends in miscarriage, and yet it’s true. Many in the medical field estimate the actual number is closer to one in three, or even as high as one in two, when you include pregnancies that end before a positive pregnancy test is taken. Any mother who’s lost a child will tell you that the statistics don’t make it any easier, and yet if this is such a “normal” occurrence, then I think we owe it to each other to continue to normalize the conversation surrounding the loss of any baby during pregnancy, but especially during early pregnancy (miscarriage) since the nature of this type of death feels so illusive and hush hush.

Anyway, my introductory “note” is turning into a blog post of it’s own so I’ll just leave it with this for those who are wanting a personal update: My family and I are doing well considering the circumstances. My D&C was straight forward, done by a team that looked after me with wonderful expertise giving professional, compassionate, and sensitive care. (After my first D&C, and then my natural miscarriage, this last one was my “best” experience so far, if I can even put such an ugly thing in those terms, and I’m so relieved that I opted for the surgical route.) I’m grateful to have friends who have rallied, faithfully texting, dropping off flowers, and generally just grieving along with us. It’s nice to know we’re not alone in our shock and disappointment. I’m as certain as ever that we need a village that is willing to both celebrate and suffer with us. Brokenness is not meant to be done alone. So as sad as I am about losing our much-longed-for child, I’m sharing this piece anyway. I’ve left it as I wrote it a few weeks ago, rather than editing it to make is sound like I just wrote it now. By leaving it as written from the perspective of a newly pregnant woman I hope to reinforce the notion that it’s okay to talk openly about this stuff, despite our immediate and very warranted fears, questions, and vulnerabilities. (If you’d like to read more about my experiences with miscarriage, you can go through my pregnancy loss archives here.)

* * * * *

Barely pregnant but telling you anyway

I’m pregnant with my fifth child.

I never thought I’d be able to make a confession like that. Five kids? No way. Crazy town. It just seemed too big a number, too much of a stretch to my imagination.

And yet now, five pregnancies and two living children later—wait, three! I’m pregnant!—and five feels like such a small number.

It feels small because it only looks like two.

Desperate

Just this week a friend hailed me as a “hero” because I’ve shared openly online and in person about our pregnancies and miscarriages. She’s not the first to tell me I’m heroic or brave. As much as I appreciate the sentiment, I reject those types of labels because I honestly can’t fathom the concept that talking about the loss of my children and how much it hurts makes me a hero. Doesn’t that just make me human?

How is it heroic to openly share and grieve the loss of a real flesh and blood child? I’ve felt more desperate than brave.

It’s not abnormal for a person to openly grieve the loss of their grandparent or spouse or teenager or even a baby born still. But the loss of a baby who’s not yet fully developed? Let’s call that a “pregnancy loss,” shall we? Because perhaps we’re not sure if they count as a whole person yet? For those of us who believe that an undeveloped child is still a child, that shouldn’t sit right. And yet still we use these terms.

Our language surrounding these issues matters because our words often unknowingly inform our beliefs. Do these little lives count? Or do they only count when we reach some socially, medically, or politically acceptable number of weeks gestation?

Silence breeds silence

It still astounds me that there is no cultural blueprint in most western nations for grieving the loss of babies lost during pregnancy. No doubt it contributes to the stigma surrounding loss. With no formal way to acknowledge such deaths, parents and others feel an open-ended grief and confusion with vague or non-existent protocol to inform their grieving process or help them know how to say goodbye. There’s so much unspoken fear and confusion, so much misplaced blame, and so much awkwardness surrounding the hush.

Perhaps the silence surrounding actual loss is what leaves women (and men) with no helpful ideas for how to deal with the fear of a potential loss. Either anxiety cripples us and our stomach ties in knots each time we take a trip to the bathroom (will I see blood?) or we stuff it down, ashamed of our own vulnerability. Or perhaps we have an irrational fear of admitting the fear out loud because of an unspoken belief that doing so will somehow jinx us. Still others are oblivious to the risk—ignorance is bliss, the old saying goes.

But what about those who’s innocence surrounding pregnancy is lost? And what about those who are determined not to be controlled by fear and yet also refuse to stuff their feelings into a straightjacket?

Thousands (millions?) of expecting moms fit into a description like that on some level or another.

Aware and yet hopeful

I’m overjoyed to be pregnant. Yes! Wonderful! We’re thrilled to add to our family! And yet I am very aware. I’m aware of the vulnerability. Aware of the risk. Aware of the potential heartache. Aware of people around me and what they might think. . . or what I think they might think about how they might be secretly afraid I’ll miscarry again, too. (And, oh! What will they say—or not say—if ‘it’ happens?!)

Is it possible to move joyfully into pregnancy when you know it’s fraught with unknowns? I believe it is. But we do each other a disservice by making the risk, the possibility of life not sustaining, and the reality of high rates of miscarriage something unspoken.

When I experienced my first miscarriage (and shared about it openly) I received several letters from women in their seventies and eighties describing their own experiences of miscarriage and stillbirth. Those many years ago it wasn’t spoken of. At all. People would simply be six months pregnant in church one week and not pregnant the next. It was not something to openly grieve over, nor was it something to fuss over publicly. The expectation was to pull it together and move on. Many of those same women also wrote how 40, 50, even 60 years later they were now learning to grieve the loss of these babies. (And not one of them forgot to mention how they looked forward to meeting them in heaven one day.)

Shedding the stigma (it’s risky)

Things are changing now, thankfully. I know that because every few months I see another friend or acquaintance posting on facebook about miscarrying. I can’t see those announcements without my heart breaking a little more, but I’m glad they’re there. As much as I’d like to shrink back and ignore the pain away, I know the power of empathy and love and sacrificial generosity and what it can do to a grieving parent’s heart. I know the hope and healing that can come when others are committed to walk through the grief right alongside you. I know how the ministry of a hand-written card or a well thought out message or flowers on the doorstep can be a balm to the hurting soul.

But I also know what silence feels like. I know how the world seems to pause with you in the pain (exploding all over your facebook page) and then before you’ve understood what’s happened it’s jumpstarted back to the racing track—speeding on without a glance, no need for a rearview mirror. I know what it feels like to wonder if your pain is too deep or to wonder if the measure of your grief is justified or ‘normal.’ I know what it feels like when friends don’t reach out because they have no idea what to say. I know what it feels like to stare at an empty fridge and wonder why it isn’t full of casseroles when it seems the entire world rallies around other hurting families who are walking through more tangible forms of grief or illness. I even know what it’s like to show up at church and have no one say a word. Not a word.

You see friends, support and “prayers” on facebook don’t always translate to support and prayers in real life. Let’s not get confused about that, dear ones. This is hard stuff. Telling the world about early pregnancy is risky. Telling the world about miscarriage is risky. Because what if you get let down when you need support the most? This is a real risk—be not disillusioned.

I have felt supported and I have also felt let down. And yet for me, the risk is worth it. I can’t imagine bearing the burden of loss in secret. The same reason people wait to “go public” in early pregnancy (what if we miscarry?) is the same reason we don’t (because WHAT IF WE MISCARRY?).

We were never meant to do brokenness alone. I’m utterly convinced of that.

On waiting until it’s “safe”

After I lost my fist baby someone I looked up to said to me, “that’s why I encourage young mothers to keep their news to themselves or among a small group of friends until twelve weeks into the pregnancy.” At the time I didn’t respond because I was still broken and tender (after my loss at thirteen weeks *ahem*) and was in no mood to defend our decision to “go public” about our pregnancy or our miscarriage. (I’ve never once regretted that decision, by the way.)

If that same woman—or someone else—ever says something similar to me in the future I’ll know how to respond. I will ask her: Why? Why would I keep my pregnancy secret until I was “safe” (which we all know isn’t really safe)? Is it because we are incapable of walking with one another when pain comes? Is it because we are so uncomfortable with death that we’d prefer to treat it as a private matter that has no implications within our extended circle and community? Is it because we’re afraid of things that can’t be “fixed”? Is it because suffering and pain and grief are best dealt with in isolation? In secret? In shame?

Surely not. (And I know she doesn’t think so.)

Why then are we obsessed with being secret until we have a greater guarantee of “viability?” Why then do we think we can hold our breath for twelve weeks and then exhale as if some magic number is our ticket to safety?

Faith not fear

I don’t have a problem with women keeping their pregnancy news private if that’s what they feel comfortable with—fertility and pregnancy are fiercely personal—but I do feel sad that women sometimes don’t feel safe enough within the world, within our communities, and within our churches to know that their baby’s lives will be both celebrated and—if lost—acknowledged, mourned, and remembered. I feel sad that we are welcomed—encouraged—to shout our good news from the rooftops and yet there’s an unspoken rule that pain and suffering be minimized, spurring us to do damage control by focusing on “being strong” and “moving on” should something go drastically wrong.

If women choose not to share publicly during early pregnancy, then let that be from a place of faith, not of fear. May they keep their secret because they want to, not because they feel they need to.

As for me, I want my babies celebrated and widely covered in prayer from the moment we learn of their existence.

A complicated tapestry

So this is me going public again, friends. I’m pregnant and thrilled! But along with my excitement I have a whole slew of other emotions, many of them unpleasant. I have moments of anxiety. I wonder if my body is doing what it should. I’m relieved when I feel a pregnancy symptom and get concerned when I feel “normal” for a few hours or days. I let my imagination go and dream about what our family will look like with four years between our second and third living children and wonder if the gap will make me miss our two lost babies even more. I tell myself I won’t check for blood when I go to the bathroom and then I do anyway. I think about birth, and then pull back—let’s just focus on staying pregnant, don’t get ahead of yourself I tell myself. I trust God and offer my baby to his care and then pull back and want to figure out how to do all the protecting myself. I imagine my youngest with a baby brother or sister and think about how my oldest will want to mother hen our new little one, and then I dismiss my thoughts, not wanting to let my heart wander too free.

Love is so risky.

It’s complicated to be pregnant after loss and this is one area of motherhood I never volunteered to gain more experience in. I have more Big Feelings this time than my last, perhaps because my “one off” miscarriage turned into a repeat occurrence and now I carry with me the question of will this become a pattern or has my body stopped working for good?

But I do know this: my new little baby is worth celebrating. They all were. The one who’s now five born in perfect health, the one who’s now three-and-a-half (remember when we thought he had Down syndrome all throughout the second half of my pregnancy. . . and then he didn’t?), the ones who were lost at 13 weeks and 10.5 weeks pregnant, and the one whom I carry now—six weeks along and working hard to form a beating heart, push out some arm buds, and find a way to grow in the world of my womb.

Can we change the conversation? Can we make it more authentic?

Rejoice with me, friends—I’m pregnant! And here’s what I want in the form of congratulations: a commitment from mothers to be honest with other women about motherhood. Let’s talk about our victories and our shortcomings, our proud moments and our deepest fears. Let’s support each other in vulnerability and applaud one another when we take the supermom capes off. Let’s share the stories of joy and the stories of heartache and strengthen the next generation of daughters to move into womanhood unashamed to love fully in the face of risk, and be wholehearted in our rejoicing and mourning, creating room for both. Let’s stop making apologies for not being strong enough or capable enough or wise enough or brave enough and recognize that it’s not about our ‘enough’ and never will be. God’s ‘enough’ is enough for us—his belief in us, his grace made available for us, and his strength perfected in our most monumental moments of weakness.

I’ve said it before and I’ll probably say it a million times again: We’re not perfect mothers but we’re the perfect mothers for our children so let’s just be ourselves, okay? Our brilliant, beautiful, flawed selves.

Brave

May we grow these little ones well, including the least of the least, the most fragile, the most undeveloped of children. (Yes, lentil seed-sized babies and all.) Protect them, God, as we give our bodies and hearts on their behalf. And protect us as we choose to be vulnerable with one another, sharing our elation and our fears, our hopes and our concerns.

Here’s to raising babies—a holy and important and wonderful work. And here’s to raising strong mothers who aren’t afraid to sometimes be known in weakness. If that’s what “brave” is, then I guess I’ll take it.

And so should you.

Love,
Adriel

 

p.s. To read my archives on loss, miscarriage, and grief start here (or read Scarlett’s story or Oliver’s story). I also have a resource board on pinterest here and a collection of other women’s miscarriage and loss stories here.

Sign up to MamaNotes for free — encouragement for new moms

Photo licensed under Creative Commons (Image Source)

See also:

Caring for a friend after miscarriage or stillbirth. (I hope I never need this.)

Pin It

80 Comments

  • Reply » Why I believe in early pregnancy announcements despite the risk (and fear) of miscarriage 18 April 2015 at 5:24 am

    […] Why I believe in early pregnancy announcements despite the risk (and fear) of miscarriage […]

    • Reply Stephanie 10 November 2015 at 3:54 pm

      Thank you for writing this! My husband and I are expecting our first, I am excited/scared and all sorts of a mess! My husband is just excited and confident in the whole experience, like always. I was hesitant at first to tell anyone, we have told some family and close friends because we are positive in our pregnancy and like my husband said if anything goes wrong the love and support of friends and family would be needed and appreciated. Hiding our excitement and joy is unfair just because of the “what-ifs”. I used to be so surprised when people would announce before the magical 12 week window. Now I can’t imagine keeping a secret like this for 3 months. While we haven’t told everyone, many close friends and family know and we are only 7 weeks. Telling people is so fun, I love sharing in the excitement and true joy they exude for us.

      • Reply Adriel Booker 12 November 2015 at 11:37 am

        Well a huge congratulations to you Stephanie! Wonderful news. Your husband sounds like an incredible man—wise and supportive. Sounds like you have a solid support community around you. That’s by far the most important thing as you begin your journey into motherhood.

        All the best. x

        (And remember you’re hormonal! Don’t let those hormones dictate you into fear! 😉
        Adriel Booker recently posted..Coming Clean: This teen star’s confessional should inspire us allMy Profile

    • Reply Laci 24 November 2015 at 2:22 am

      Thank you so much for sharing this. My husband and I lost our first baby together (my first pregnancy) in July at nine weeks. I’m currently five weeks pregnant and I go back and forth between being ecstatic and being terrified. We’ve been debating on when to tell the world; it’s so hard to keep it a secret. I really needed this article this morning. It definitely made me feel a little less crazy.

    • Reply Kari 7 December 2015 at 4:18 am

      Well said. I have had seven early term miscarriages and one full term bio baby. I am now 8 weeks with embryo donor twins. We have told my friends and close coworkers. And I continue to be questioned on why I am announcing so soon. Well why would I not? I think I have enough pregnancy loss experience to know that it does no justice to my babies or my own healing to grieve or celebrate in secrecy and isolation!

      • Reply Adriel Booker 16 December 2015 at 4:16 pm

        Goodness, Kari. You’ve certainly been through more than most women in regards to this highly sensitive topic. Huge congratulations on your twins and I pray they would be delivered straight into your arms, surrounded with love, joy, and peace. Wonderful!

    • Reply Castle 25 December 2015 at 12:33 am

      Thank you for this post. We were expecting our first and had told our family and friends early (at about 4 weeks – even though I’d heard the “you should wait until 12 weeks”) because of our excitement. Now, two weeks later, I have miscarried, and I am both grieving for our loss and feeling sorry for having told so many people. This post – the fact that there is no magic number and that we should be able to celebrate (and grieve if it so happens) with our friends and family instead of in isolation – made me feel better about our decision to announce early. We will try again soon. Thank you for your openness. Slowly but surely, perhaps we’ll erase the stigma.

    • Reply Kelly 24 January 2016 at 12:52 am

      Very beautifully written. Thank you for sharing, and I am so sorry for your loss.

    • Reply Cherish 10 August 2016 at 3:59 am

      I am so glad I found this blog. This post. I prayed that God would lead me to some great insight on how to deal with miscarriage. My husband and I have been trying to conceive for 7 months now. In June, I experienced an early miscarriage. No matter how early it was…it was a loss for us. I was pregnant…we were making plans. Because we didn’t tell anyone we were pregnant, I only told 3 people (my sister didn’t even know I was pregnant and unfortunately had to find out with me sobbing and on her doorstep) what I was going through, none that knew how to console me. It has been heartbreaking and hard. But God has helped me through this and we are trying again. I feel God is really pushing me to share my story. It has strengthened my faith and I am learning to lean on Him and trust Him with this journey. I think we should be more vocal about what we are going through. I have felt so alone because we didn’t share it with anyone and even though their is a risk of being let down when sharing the news early, in my opinion, t is better than the loneliness I have felt with not sharing. Thank you for this post.
      Cherish recently posted..10 Ways to Have True Intimacy with Your SpouseMy Profile

    • Reply Nicole Williams 1 February 2017 at 3:20 pm

      God bless you. I miscarried today, at 8wks 5 days. I had just shared the news on Facebook three days ago that we were expecting. And I couldn’t help but share about our loss today. Exactly like you explained… The love and support at both announcements will help to carry me through with God being the main source of course. But not hurting alone on my closet floor, I know is better. My daughter is almost 15, I had a loss by choice in 09 and struggles with infertility since. So this was my gift from God. But alas, our baby went to Heaven to be with his/her sibling.
      I don’t mean to carry on. I just thank you for your article. Brave. We can do that.
      Thank you

    • Reply Jennifer 22 February 2017 at 4:55 pm

      I had my first loss at 12 weeks last year, but we had told family and good friends. This would have been our fourth child. We were waiting for the 12 week scan to tell FB, but in the end the scan only told us our baby had passed away. I am so so thankful we had told everyone we had. My church, bible study group and friends covered us in love. We were supported by everyone we knew and apart from a few comments from well-meaning but misguided people, it was a great demonstration of love. I waited for a natural miscarriage and our lovely minister helped us celebrate this briefest of lives with a little ceremony when we buried our baby at home. I know we will meet our baby again one day. Going through the loss and openly talking about it has also helped make it easier for others to come to me with their stories. Sadly, my sister also had a miscarriage only a couple of months later. I am grateful that through my own experience I can help others. We are praying that God will bless us with another living child and I feel hopeful that this prayer will be answered.

      • Reply Adriel Booker 27 February 2017 at 4:25 pm

        Hi Jennifer. Thank you for sharing part of your story. I’m so sorry for your loss. It’s so heartbreaking. How wonderful those you told were able to share in your joy and pain. What a gift. I’m sorry for the loss of your little niece/nephew as well. So glad you and your sister have each other. Take care of yourself, and keep the faith, sis. x

    • Reply Rue 4 March 2017 at 2:33 pm

      Thanks you for writing this. I saw this in a time where I needed it most. I have had a miscarriage in the past and the feelings of stress, anxiety, love, excitement, etc. is a rollercoaster. Thank you for helping me remember the beauty of sharing pregnancy like the angels did with Mary and Joseph when Jesus was a little one in Mary’s womb. The supports are there we just need to let them be there and with prayers instead of shying away in fear.

  • Reply Katesurfs 18 April 2015 at 5:40 am

    Oh Adriel, I’m so sorry, sending so much love to you. Also, so glad that you shared this, you’ve truly changed my idea about early pregnancy announcements <3

  • Reply Bronwyn Lea 18 April 2015 at 6:40 am

    My friend: you and Ryan and your FIVE children are so in my prayers right now, and I mean in the real “I’m talking to God about it” way, not in the polite “it’s what Christians say on social media.” (although I confess, I have done the latter). So much love to you, and I am proud of you for continuing to champion that we celebrate life, no matter how briefly it is gifted to us.
    Bronwyn Lea recently posted..Celebrating The Chutzpah of Crazy Jewish MomsMy Profile

  • Reply Becca 18 April 2015 at 1:32 pm

    I completely agree. So much love to you and Ryan and the boys as you grieve and remeber and begin to imagine again. Xx

  • Reply Jody Lee Collins 19 April 2015 at 2:12 am

    “Love is risky.” indeed. Keep sharing it, Adriel. We need your words.

  • Reply Bree 19 April 2015 at 2:42 am

    I had my 2nd miscarriage in 6 months a month ago. I already have 7 children. It was totally devastating. I praise God for his mercy and pray to have another child on day. I hope and pray your pregnancy goes well and thanks for making it seem normal as often I feel abnormal to even talk about it.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 25 May 2015 at 7:48 pm

      I’m so sorry you’ve lost children, Bree. I hope you’re finding a sense of peace and beginning to heal. x
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Context is EverythingMy Profile

  • Reply colleen 28 April 2015 at 2:38 pm

    Beaytifully said.

  • Reply Liz Chapman 28 April 2015 at 5:53 pm

    Thank you for expressing so many of the thoughts and feelings that I have had about my miscarriage and the concerns I have for future pregnancy. I am truly sorry for the loss of your 3 children. Thanks for your honesty and integrity.

  • Reply smellyann 30 April 2015 at 5:15 pm

    Adriel, I’m so sorry for your loss. Great post.

  • Reply Neisa 6 May 2015 at 1:16 am

    It always hurts me to hear about someones miscarriages. I agree so much with the silence breeds silence. I never knew how many women around me miscarried, until I did. Suddenly, family and friends everywhere were telling me their stories. I couldn’t help thinking, why didn’t you tell people about it? Wouldn’t they have been there for you and supported you? But then again, I thought of how I felt and all I wanted was to be alone in isolation. I really think a lot of mother’s don’t tell and hide the pregnancy, because they feel like it was their fault. I remember feeling like it was my fault. I would ask myself. “What’s wrong with you? You can’t do anything right!” It was something that I had to really work and pray through for the first few months.

    I guess what made it even worse was the fact that I had been so naive. It came as a shock to my family and even my doctor. My second pregnancy, I regret not enjoying it as much, since I was busy worrying about losing my baby. We didn’t tell anyone except for our parents for a long time, and I didn’t let myself get into the excitement of pregnancy until I was well into my second trimester. Even then, I tried not to let myself get emotionally attached. I know it was out of fear as you said, because after losing my first, I remember hearing people like you did say “that’s why you should wait for 12 weeks before announcing”

    I think what really helped me get excited was finding out the gender. Once I knew it was a boy, it began to feel real. I also kept looking telling myself. “God does not cause pain, without allowing something new to be born.” Every time I worried, I told myself that and I thank God for my little boy! I have to admit that I am still terrified of getting pregnant again. Was the first a fluke? Is my baby boy just a miracle? Will he be the only one? I love what you said about being brave! Only God knows how many children I will have, and I have to rely on him to make things work, because after all he knows best.

    • Reply Bree 1 June 2015 at 3:02 pm

      Amen Neisa :)

    • Reply Adriel Booker 5 November 2015 at 11:30 pm

      Thanks so much for taking the time to share your experiences Neisa. I’m so sorry for your loss. As you said, struggle can be the birth of something new. . . if we let it, right? So glad you’re letting it.
      Many blessings to you as your raise your little one and think and pray about having more children. x
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Coming Clean: This teen star’s confessional should inspire us allMy Profile

  • Reply Charyse 15 July 2015 at 8:26 am

    This…yes! I have a seven year old daughter. We have dealt with infertility for three years followed by two miscarriages: one at 16.5 weeks and the other at 6 weeks.

    Today I am 6 weeks, 1 day into growing baby 4, almost four years after we started trying to give our girl a sibling. I saw this baby on the screen this morning and I know that I want to tell people. I’ve shared with 4 thus far.

    I remember sharing with my sister in October about baby 2. She responded that I shouldn’t go and tell a bunch of people this early.

    I responded that I’d rather have people praying for me and know why I’m crying than have to hide my tears.

    You have shared so beautifully and I pray that you will be blessed with more children to bring home and cradle. I’m looking forward to holding this one next spring. But I yearn for the day I can hold it’s siblings close in Heaven.
    Charyse recently posted..To Faith on Your Due DateMy Profile

    • Reply Adriel Booker 18 July 2015 at 4:30 pm

      Ahh, congratulations Charyse! It’s such an exciting, yet vulnerable time. And goodness, you’ve had a years worth of heartbreak on heartbreak. I’m so sorry. However you decide to handle the private/public nature of it all, I wish you nothing but God’s grace. x

  • Reply Sarah B 28 July 2015 at 1:53 pm

    Oh how I needed this. Thank you. I have not been able to put it into words myself although I tried in an attempt to be public with my miscarriage on my tiny blog. I had a miscarriage 3 weeks ago when I was 9 weeks along and just keep saying “I don’t know how to be a person” because you’re right, there is no script about how to behave after a miscarriage. I found myself telling people about the miscarriage who didn’t even know we were pregnant. I hurt because I had just told my family and my husband’s family about the pregnancy and felt like I was putting them through pain and disappointment too. Is it fair to do that to others? I am still grieving yet find myself eager to try again. Such a complicated grief to lose a baby so early. Thank you so much for writing so honestly. I want to re-read this post over and over and just let the words sink in because it resonates with me so.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 5 November 2015 at 11:34 pm

      Hi there Sarah. I’m sorry I’ve somehow missed this comment (and others). I guess something must have been wrong with my notifications. :( Anyway, I wanted to tell you how sorry I am to hear of your loss. Grief is so complicated and there’s just no linear way to get through it. And yet, healing does come… even while grief is still there. I hope you’ve found some good support. Have you? I’m glad you found this post helpful. I’ve written a lot about grief and miscarriage. If you haven’t already, you may want to click around my “loss & miscarriage” tab if you think that might be helpful for you. BIG HUGS. And thanks for sharing some of your story here. x
      Adriel Booker recently posted..When your kids teach you about hearing God’s voiceMy Profile

  • Reply Nadia 9 August 2015 at 11:44 pm

    I know this is a few months after this was written, and I’m so very sorry for your losses. I hope you are feeling stronger x

    I was so excited with my first pregnancy I told about 30 people… And after my second appointment at the Gynae I discovered there was a chance it was a blighted ovum (anembryonic pregnancy) and I was devastated. I regretted telling so many peoe because it now meant I would have to repeat the fact that there was no baby 30 times. My 3rd appointment confirmed that although I was pregnant and there was an embryonic sac, there was no embryo. I would have to encourage a miscarriage, in other words, have an abortion. I felt completely alone at the time, and I hated that I had shared my joy with anyone. I wanted to grieve on my own and didn’t want anyone to see my complete vulnerability, even my husband.

    I’m currently 4 weeks pregnant and we have chosen to tell 2 people-our witnesses at our wedding. I don’t know whether it’s fear, but I feel so strongly about this being just ours for a while.

    I do agree with silence begetting silence, but somehow the will to remain silent outweighs my agreement or any logic.

    Thank you for sharing your stories xx

    • Reply Adriel Booker 10 August 2015 at 10:30 pm

      Hi Nadia. Whether or not to share something this significant is obviously very personal. Clearly you’ve thought through your decision and you’re making the best choice you can given the situation, your history, and your feelings. I wish you all the very best. I’m so sorry you lost your first baby—it’s just so hard. May this new little one grow strong and healthy. Much love. x

  • Reply Shannon Borcky 21 August 2015 at 7:24 am

    Adriel,
    I have been following your blog for some time, stumbling upon it from a pin on your blog post the 100 things, and have found help, hope, and renewed faith through many things you’ve written. I came back to your blog recently as i found out this March that I was pregnant with my first child, a girl. My husband and and I learned two days ago, just after I reached the 18 week mark, that her heart was no longer beating. I have experienced loss before, losing my father at a young age, but never in my adult life have I felt so raw and hollow and, after knowing there was a life inside me for almost five months just to have it yanked away, so very very alone. I will have to have labor induced, but hopefully I will get to hold my fully formed, perfect little Aislinn Jade in my arms at least once in this life.
    Before coming across this post I was terrified of having to tell people that I lost my child before she ever even entered this world. What will people think? How will they respond? Will they care, will they blame me or will they be sympathetic? You are absolutely right, miscarriage is not something that’s talked about, but I’m no longer afraid to share my grief and ask for my friends and family to grieve with me.
    I want to thank you for sharing so much about what you have gone through. Having just gone through the same, I cannot imagine having had this happen three times, but I can somewhat understand now and as I grieve, I grieve for you and your family as well. My single solace in all this is that this is not the end, and while we don’t know what it is, God has a bigger plan for us all, and we will see our beloved babies someday. Thank you again for being a light and for showing someone like me that I am not alone in this pain and that there is always grace even through the storm.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 5 November 2015 at 11:39 pm

      Oh Shannon. I’m so upset that I’ve somehow missed several comments on this post. I don’t know how my notifications turned off and I feel terrible! :(

      I am SO SORRY for your loss. Thank you for taking the time to share your story and pour out your heart while it was all still so fresh. I hope you found the hope and encouragement and support you needed (and still need) as you began to share your loss with those around you. How are you doing now? How’s your heart.

      Believing with you that you’ll hold Aislinn one day again. x
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Coming Clean: This teen star’s confessional should inspire us allMy Profile

      • Reply Mimis 9 May 2016 at 11:33 am

        This broke my heart. I am a friend of Shannon’s and coming across this made me grieve harder. Shannon passed today and now she has Aislinn in her arms for good. Now we pray for her husband who is left here on earth battling cancer. Shannon helped me through my miscarriage and I tried so hard to be there through hers but I never found the words. Thank you for helping Shannon through that time.
        One day I will see her again and see just how truly beautiful her daughter is

        • Reply Adriel Booker 13 May 2016 at 9:16 pm

          Oh my goodness, Mimis. I am speechless. Thank you for your message and for sharing some of your grief. I am so sorry to hear of Shannon’s passing, as well as her husband’s battle with cancer… as well as your own loss of a baby. So much heartbreak and I barely know what to say. I’m praying for you and your circle of family and friends as I log off here for the night. Much love to you, sis.
          Love, Adriel x
          Adriel Booker recently posted..Tiny house, big love: Our life in a renovated vintage caravanMy Profile

  • Reply Kathee 16 September 2015 at 3:49 am

    Taking “Provera” was risky but the only way I managed to keep from miscarriage. This med is usually given to women in later yrs to keep them from having a period. I had a couple miscarriages within the first 8 weeks. Then FIVE lost babies all around 12 weeks even with doc trying several things. Finally Provera worked and worked every time if I started taking it soon enough. I have 5 kids all c-sections. After 3Rd csection we also lost a baby boy at 6 months along when his heart stopped beating. Honestly that was easier than all the early miscarriages because I went home from hospital to little arms hugging me. Nothing worse than a quiet house. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and lives so openly.

  • Reply Christina Kuske 22 September 2015 at 12:39 pm

    I needed this. All of it. I, too, have two little boys and this year has been marked by the loss of two children, two miscarriages. It has brought me to my knees, as well as into the Lord’s loving arms and to areas of the heart I cannot yet explain. We are beginning the journey to try and conceive again. I am terrified and yet intensely hopeful. I am not defeated, not at all, but I am humbly aware. I love four children desperately, indescribably. I kiss on the cheeks only two. It is really quite beautiful. I count them each as blessings, and I know they are all where they are supposed to be. I have written my story and pray the Lord will show me the day to share it. To raise others up through honesty and vulnerability. I LOVE your words, your honestly and your heart. Thank you… thank you and I am with you, you are not alone. I want to tell you something special. We have two boys, named Trevor Gabriel and Evan James,and before we were parents at all we had named our three boys (should that ever occur), our third boy name is and has always been Oliver David. My dearest friend, who also suffered a devastating miscarriage of her first child, named her second (living) child Scarlet Grace. Sweet coincidences that I hope warm your heart. XXOO

  • Reply Mallory Hawkins 5 November 2015 at 10:33 am

    Thank you for this. I had my first miscarriage last week and after infertility and getting pregnant it was a huge blow to us. I am mostly upset now that we hadn’t made the BIG announcement to many people so therefore not many share our grief and I’m so worried our precious baby will be forgotten. My husband said no way because we saw the baby on the ultrasound and the heart beat. I know he’s right, it’s just so hard to swallow. Thank you for your openness and bless you and your family!

    • Reply Adriel Booker 5 November 2015 at 6:02 pm

      Oh Mallory, it’s just so hard. I’m sorry to hear your news. Devastating.

      A friend of mine recently announced their pregnancy and miscarriage all at once. I haven’t seen many do that, but they were on the cusp of announcing when they lost their baby and decided they wanted to people to know anyway. It was right for them. I’m not at all suggesting you should follow suit, but you need to consider whatever is best for your own grieving process. There’s no straight way forward, sis. I just hope you get the support and care you and your husband need. Allow yourself time and space. Losing a child is no small thing.

      HUGS. xo

  • Reply Rayanna 6 November 2015 at 6:15 pm

    Hi Adriel, I guess even all this time after you wrote your post I wanted to say I know how it feels to be afraid and I know that waiting to announce won’t keep your heart safe. My first two pregnancies 6 and 4 years ago ended quickly. I was cautious, and I didn’t want to be hurt again. Infertility and the fear that we might not have another shot were my companions from that first conception until the third conception 3 years later resulted in our beautiful son. I was content and happy and willing for him to be all that I ever had. And then surprisingly with no medical help at all I was pregnant again when he was a year old. It seems that having him reset the system so I was finally ovulating as I should. For 20 weeks I dreamed of what our life was going to be like with 2 under 2 and then it all came crashing down again. Our second son stopped growing around 16 weeks and died sometime after 18 weeks and we found out at 20. I waited until we were safely out of the first trimester to announce and it didn’t matter one bit because long past that point Henry died. About the time you were writing this post I was passing his would have been due date. And now here I am 29 weeks pregnant with a daughter who would almost certainly not exist if he had lived. This time around I didn’t wait to announce because life has taught me that there is no such thing as safe. I’ve have a lot of fear, even now, that this will end without a child to take home, But I’ve been forced many times through these losses to trust our creator, who knew my childrens days before there was even one and who makes beauty from ashes.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 6 November 2015 at 6:22 pm

      Oh Rayanna. Thank you for sharing your heartbreaking, BEAUTIFUL story. (I’m crying over here.) There is no pain like losing a child and there is no joy like holding one. I pray your joy will be multiplied in the face of suffering and you and I together will look toward that day with HOPE when we get to hold ALL of our precious babies.

      BIG hugs to you sis as you remember Henry and your other babies. And lots of grace to you as you await your daughter’s upcoming birthday. xoxo
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Context is EverythingMy Profile

  • Reply Amber 9 November 2015 at 9:16 am

    I am definitely sharing this with people I know. My first pregnancy ended at 11 weeks with a miscarriage. I had told everyone I knew about the pregnancy and my husband and I were devastated when we went to our 11 week appointment on his birthday and received the news. My husband was the only one who consoled me. My family never said a word to me. It was one of the hardest times in my life. I was only 21 and it seemed they didn’t care. Three years later we were ready to try again and we conceived our now 6-year-old son. I didn’t even tell my family about him until I was 4 months pregnant. I didn’t want to have the extra hurt of feeling like they didn’t care if it happened again. When my son was 2.5 we decided to start trying for another child. We were unsuccessful for 3.5 years. Now after 2 months of fertility treatment for an unknown cause, I am happy to announce that we are pregnant again. I am 7 weeks and 4 days. We were going to wait to tell everyone, but I am just so excited that I want to tell the world. I have a whole support group at the fertility office I have been visiting that will be there if I need them. I believe everything happens for a reason. If this child is meant to be born then it will be.
    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I am sorry for your loss. It is one of the hardest things for a woman to go through.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 12 November 2015 at 11:42 am

      Thank you for sharing your story Amber. I’m so sorry for your loss, and so sorry you felt abandoned when you needed support the most. That must have been so awful.

      Huge congrats on your pregnancy now. Babies are such a miracle! I’m so pleased to hear you now have a wonderful support system through the fertility clinic. All the best as you grow that precious little one. x
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Coming Clean: This teen star’s confessional should inspire us allMy Profile

  • Reply Mrs C 18 November 2015 at 6:40 am

    Thank you so much for writing this with such courage and grace. Yes, Courage, because you’re speaking up and sharing words that flow against those of ‘the norm’. A norm that I don’t think a lot of us understand. I’m so sorry for your loss. It doesn’t matter how many times we experience loss, it doesn’t lessen the pain does it? If anything, it grows. I am pregnant with my fifth child, of which two have gone to heaven before I got to meet them. You’re so right about the fear; of feeling ‘normal’ and going to the bathroom. I brace myself every time I need to go. I would love to share our happy and wonderful news but my energy is consumed with my family and trying to keep a lid on the fear – not leaving much to deal with outside judgements on an early announcement. If only it were different. Your post reminded me I’m not the only one in this boat though, thanks again. xx
    Mrs C recently posted..The tween years.My Profile

  • Reply Melissa 19 November 2015 at 1:27 am

    Thank you so much for sharing this. It definitely hits home. We have one living son who is 19 months, and then lost a son at 21 weeks and then another at 5.5 weeks. The third pregnancy we didn’t tell anyone for fear of losing the baby, and the loneliness we experienced afterwards was almost suffocating. I now see the importance of early pregnancy announcements even if it’s with a close group of family/friends. Thank you for your bravery in opening up this conversation.

  • Reply Rachel 12 December 2015 at 6:51 am

    This was such a beautiful and welcome read. My husband and I just found out that we are expecting. At first, we were planning on just telling our parents in case anything happened. All the women on my mom’s side of the family have miscarried their first child, so I was a more than a little paranoid and fearful. But after much crying and praying, I came to the same conclusion you have. I’m only 6 weeks along, but we have been telling many of our friends and plan to announce it publicly on New Years Day. One friend did ask me why I was telling people so early. I had to think about it, but I told her that it was because I was not going to let Satan steal my joy and for me personally, not telling people was giving in to fear. Even if something does happen, God is faithful and there is no shame. As you say, fertility and the like are deeply personal things, but I want to encourage other women who read this not to act out of fear.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 16 December 2015 at 4:14 pm

      Huge congrats to you, Rachel. I’m so glad you’re determined to keep JOY surrounding this pregnancy. I pray God’s peace and fulfillment over you and your little one and family. x

  • Reply Justine 20 January 2016 at 4:21 am

    Thank you for this post. I just miscarried my much-loved and much-wanted baby two days ago. I have two bio children ages 15 and 12. Their daddy died when I was pregnant with my 12 year old daughter. I was a single mom for 11 years, adopting two children with Down syndrome during that time (they are now 15 and 5). Just over a year ago I married an incredible man. The best. He is 50 years old and was childless until taking on my crew. We started trying to get pregnant almost immediately, but gave up after many months. I am 45 years old and in perimenopause so I knew my chances weren’t good. We finally just gave up and gave it to God. We both were shocked and ecstatic when I turned up pregnant in early December. We told many people after telling our very surprised parents on Christmas. A week ago yesterday at 9 weeks I started spotting and didn’t think much of it, but it continued. I called and went in. The ultrasound showed that the baby had stopped growing a week and a half before and had no heartbeat. I went home and waited a sad four days for the inevitable. I am alternately doing well overall and am hopeful for the future, but in between I am so sad and sobbing and lost. Mostly I am thankful for the four living children I have, but I miss my sweet baby tremendously. My husband is a rock, but my heart hurts for him. He was so excited and is such a great dad. It would have been nice to give him a child who bears his last name. I have no regrets about my pregnancy or about telling people. It was exciting and fun and I enjoyed every minute of being pregnant (an experience I never expected to have again.) It has been hard to see people, in fact right this minute I am avoiding a gathering of friends who knew, but later at the right moment I can talk to them and right now they understand my reasons and are not hurt by my avoidance. Thank you so much for this post. I am so sorry for your losses and appreciate your vulnerability. The road of grief is not easy, but walking it helps us empathize with others.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 31 March 2016 at 1:28 pm

      Wow Justine, do you have some stories to tell! Thank you for sharing some of your beautiful and difficult journey here. I’m thrilled you found a wonderful husband to spend the rest of your life with, but so incredibly sorry for your losses, past and present. It sounds like you have a wonderful support system around you, and wow, doesn’t that make all the difference combined with the hope we can find in Jesus? God bless you as you continue to navigate the grief along with your beautiful husband. x
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Wings and roots: Of mixed metaphor and the search for homeMy Profile

  • Reply Megan 22 January 2016 at 1:48 am

    Your post was a great read for me as I am grieving the loss of my pregnancy at 10 weeks. It all happened so fast and was unexpected and now I am struggling to come to terms with it all. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 31 March 2016 at 1:29 pm

      I’m so, so sorry for your loss Megan. You are not alone, and I hope you always know that as you navigate your grief and healing process. xoxo
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Listen upMy Profile

  • Reply Nikki S 20 February 2016 at 1:35 pm

    PERFECT!!! Such a great read. We recently lost our first at 16.4 weeks due to an incompetent cervix on 11.26.15….. Happy Thanksgiving to us…. (Which we will deal with in every pregnancy) and we kept the pregnancy a secret until 16.2 weeks when I went in for an appointment because of spotting and cramping. At first we kept the pregnancy a secret, because everyone had been pestering us for over 5 yrs. for us to have kids, so the secret was exciting and we were going to share the news on Christmas. I had the perfect gift picked out for our parents, I was so excited, but part of me was scared something would happen. I prayed daily, many times a day for the protection of our unborn baby. I still had an uneasy feeling that we wouldn’t carry past 18 weeks, I would push that thought aside and dream about this baby and what he would look like, my gut said boy, my gut was spot on! I also felt guilty for keeping the secret, because I thought, what if something happens, at least if others knew, we’d have that many more prayer warriors. But when we did tell our families, the reactions were priceless. I have had a few comments from one sister, about my grieving and me buying things with our sons name on it. It was brought to my attention, that apparently how I grieve is a bit “ridiculous” So, needless to say, I wonder if they knew about the pregnancy earlier, if he would have seemed more real to them.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 31 March 2016 at 1:36 pm

      Wow Nikki, what a difficult experience you’ve had. I’m so sorry. On top of the suffering from losing your baby, there is also the suffering that comes with feeling isolated in your feelings. The comments you received reinforce those awful feelings of aloneness, and again, I’m so sorry you had to walk through that.

      I’ve lost three babies now and what I’ve learned is that grief has it’s own way. Even in my own life I’ve grieved differently three different times… and that is one woman and one faith and one worldview. Multiply that by all of our different experiences and there are infinite possibilities for what the grieving process looks like. I hope you know that. You are not alone and you are not crazy. There is not a single “right” way to grieve. I also hope you know that it wasn’t for a lack of prayer support that your baby didn’t make it. Please don’t carry that as your fault.

      I wish you all the best and a heart full of hope as you navigate your grief. Much love. Xx
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Love A Mama Midwifery Scholarship Fund: A Mother’s Day Gift that could change a generationMy Profile

  • Reply Emma 2 April 2016 at 11:59 pm

    Announcing early or late both have its advantages and disadvantages. Till today I used to think early announcements are more riskier, but your post actually is making me feel otherwise. Thanks for sharing.

    All the best to you!

  • Reply Nadia Falero 16 April 2016 at 7:21 am

    I am 6 weeks pregnant as of this weekend. I had a miscarriage in June 2014. It took awhile, why? Only God knows. The moment I found out I was sooooo happy then this dark overwhelming scared sensation came over me. Reading this blog made me cry, not in a bad way, but in a way that makes me feel better that I am not alone. My husband and 2 year old daughter are so happy, excited , jumping with joy and I believe they still do not understand why I am feeling the mixed emotions of why I am scared to be happy. We have announced the pregnancy to close family , but I am scared to announce it via social media. I am scared to show my joy and happiness with all my friends that has been praying for me as well, and then have to turn around and say well no baby this time AGAIN. Hubby wants to announce it because we waited so long, me, well, I want to but can not seem to make my self do it. I am learning to keep the faith , it is taking time but it is coming along. Every day I pray. This pregnancy is different I feel amazing , no headaches or cramping or nausea like the last one, but then I think OMG is this bad I am not sick, omg is there something wrong? All i can say is I thank him for another day. I am so sorry for your losses. You are in my prayers.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 19 April 2016 at 10:46 am

      Hi Nadia. I’m so sorry for your loss and pain. Truly. Thank you for sharing some of your story here. The mixed emotions you’re describing sound very normal to me. The truth is, there’s no one “right” way to navigate pregnancy after loss and you need to decide what you feel will be most helpful to you. I’m glad you’ve been able to tell some close family. Perhaps there are a few close friends who also might like to know so they can be praying not just for the baby but for your heart in this process. Good friends want the opportunity to support us, but can’t if they don’t know what’s going on. Social media announcements are certainly not for everyone!! But it’s the support that I think is the important thing. Please don’t worry about letting people down. What’s important right now is your baby and your heart. Take care of yourself, and don’t feel ashamed if you need to speak to a counselor or your doctor about some of your feelings. They can help.

      All the best for this little one, and for you. x

  • Reply Bethany 25 May 2016 at 12:31 am

    Hi, Adriel. Thank you for sharing. My husband Jordan(of 5 months) and I experienced the loss of our 10 week old baby (early pregnancy) a few weeks ago. He shared about it openly (https://www.facebook.com/jordan.cranfield.3/posts/10154129919822594) and our village was generous in their love and encouragement. The dust has settled now and the silence feels deafening. Trying to focus at my new job has been challenging. We’ve reached out for counseling to process the grief, as this is compounded upon the recent sudden death of my best friend. All that to say, thank you for writing this and for being honest. It is certainly encouraging. Many blessings xoxo

    • Reply Adriel Booker 30 May 2016 at 6:13 pm

      Hi Bethany. I’m so sorry for your recent loss. I wish I could reach through the screen and give you a hug. Your husband’s words are so beautiful and honest and honoring. I know how hard it can be when you feel the whole world has rallied… only to have them suddenly fall silent. I’m so glad you are seeking counseling—a very wise move. I wish I could fix it all for you with a nice 10 step plan, but grief doesn’t work that way. It’s a process. You know this, I think, but your grief will allow you to relate to Jesus in a way that wouldn’t be possible otherwise. There is something beautiful to be found in suffering—not despite it, but because of it. Not saying in any way that God caused this pain, but that he’s with you there in the midst of it. Hope you can find him.
      Much love,
      Adriel x

  • Reply Tracy Alcantara 29 May 2016 at 8:53 am

    Hi Adriel, this post is just beautiful and articulates so well many of my own feelings. I have three beautiful children on this earth and I had my first miscarriage in January of this year at 10 weeks. I embraced that child, Levi, from the moment I knew I was pregnant. He is my child as much as the others and certainly not a “lost pregnancy”. I shared our loss on Facebook and laid my heart bare. People said it was brave. But I felt it was normal to speak of the love of my child, the pain of his loss and the impact such a tiny life had on our family. Not to mention God’s plan, Grace and goodness throughout it all. I have a sneaky suspicion I’m pregnant again and have not shared with anyone just yet. I wasn’t going to (except for my husband) until we were “safe” but the points you make as reasons TO share the news have convinced me to do so as soon as it’s confirmed. The thought of carrying the fear and grief of another miscarriage alone is unbearable. And I want that baby covered in prayer as soon as possible. Thank you for being so open and honest about your experiences and feelings. I was shocked at how many of my friends confided in me after I announced mine, that they had also had miscarriages. It still is such a taboo subject and it feels so wrong to me! I definitely want to encourage women, and men, to speak out, reach out and not grieve alone (or worse not grieve at all). My husband felt very much that he wasn’t allowed to openly grieve because the pregnancy was mine. The reality is, Levi was our child together and we both have a right to grieve openly or privately as we choose.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 30 May 2016 at 6:16 pm

      Hi Tracy. Thank you for sharing your story. I’m so sorry for the loss you’ve endured. I know how difficult pregnancy after loss can be. It truly is a vulnerable time. Whatever you decide—whether to “go public” or not—I hope that you have a few close people supporting you as you move forward. All the best to you, sis. May your road to healing be paved with peace. x
      Adriel Booker recently posted..The 8 worst things about life in a tiny house (Part 1 of 2)My Profile

  • Reply Tracy Alcantara 29 May 2016 at 8:58 am

    This was my post on Facebook:

    A PERSON’S A PERSON NO MATTER HOW SMALL
    On December 15th Dan and I were delighted to find out I was pregnant with baby Alcantara No 4. We found it hard not to share our joy and tell the kids right away, so we did, and so began the building of excitement and hopes and dreams.
    This past Tuesday, January 26th, those hopes and dreams were crushed as we were devastated to find out I miscarried the baby.
    Finding the words to say here to express the journey we are on is hard. I want to write a whole book! It has been a rough and painful roller coaster so far and only the beginning. A lot of things happened that we we didn’t expect and were not ready for emotionally or physically. The biggest of which was the realization that we are not just mourning the loss of a pregnancy. We are mourning the loss our fourth child, the 6th member of our family.
    Amongst our pain and grief and sadness, God has shown us His sovereignty, His wisdom, His peace, His comfort and His love. And through our tears and sadness, we have been able to do a very difficult thing and praise Him with thanksgiving.
    Our child’s life in this world was short (too short to know if it was a boy or girl but in our hopes and hearts he was a boy) and we thank God that he didn’t have to suffer any of this world’s great pain. But his precious little life has made a large impact and brought us numerous blessings in the form of strengthening family bonds, bringing us closer to old friends and even bringing us some new friends. It has taught me new things about God and brought Dan and I closer to God and strengthened our marriage. It has given us much opportunity to share more knowledge and understanding of God and heaven with our children than ever before. And that’s only to name a few of the blessings we have seen. And, like the ripples from a pebble dropped in a pond, we believe there will be more to come.
    Therefore, we have named our son Levi. It means joined, unites, ties together. Its what we feel his short life in this world has accomplished. He did not depart too early, he was not too beautiful for this world. He accomplished all he was meant to do in this world and he is where he should be now.
    Our lives are forever changed. Levi will always be a part of our family and we will mourn for him and miss him for the rest of our lives. But we will also celebrate the gift of his life and that we were chosen to be his parents. We have loved him, and will love him, as much as we love our other three little ones. And we entrust him to the arms of Jesus until we can hold him ourselves in heaven one day. God is good. All the time. God is good. Rest in peace precious little one. I carried you every second of your life, and I will love you for every second of mine.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 30 May 2016 at 6:19 pm

      Thank you for sharing your story here. We also have a Levi (named with “joined or united” in mind but for different reasons than yours), but I love the personal meaning with why you chose his name. What a powerful reminder to you and Dan and the world. That little love’s life was not in vain.
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Tiny house, big love: Our life in a renovated vintage caravanMy Profile

  • Reply Sharon Alexis 9 July 2016 at 10:34 am

    We’ve had 8 losses (3 living children along the way). One healthy baby, 5 losses, 2 healthy babies, 3 losses. I find it hard sharing with lots of people. We’ve had the most damaging things said to us. Inevitably we do have to share what is going on because after so many losses it has such a huge impact on us. I think after multiple losses support often starts to drop off. I think people begin to think…..they’ve done this before, they know what they are doing, they are coping well. In reality….every time you lose a child there is enormous grief. You never get used to grief. You have to keep walking through it each time.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 11 October 2016 at 12:49 pm

      Hi Sharon. Thanks for sharing some of your story here. I’m so sorry for your losses—grief upon grief union grief. :( SO difficult.

      I think you’re right—people might tend to think you know how to cope because of your experience. I think often they just don’t know what to say as well. Perhaps they think “it’s all been said before so what else can I say? type of thing. I sometimes wonder if they also think you somehow brought it on yourself for continuing to try (knowing you’re subjecting yourself to it potentially happen again). What do you think about this theory? I’ve personally only had one person (close to me) say that they hoped it would be our last child because they didn’t want to see us go through it all again. I know the heart was in the right place, but it was still off-putting and hurtful for me to hear that. Have you experienced that since you’ve had so many losses?
      Adriel Booker recently posted..Rainbow babyMy Profile

      • Reply Sharon Alexis 11 October 2016 at 1:35 pm

        Thanks for the reply. Yeah….sure. I’ve had people tell me I should give up trying or just adopt or just foster or it’s not God’s will, or this must keep happening because He’s teaching you something. Well….it would be extremely hard for us to adopt (being in Australia) and fostering isn’t the same. The child is never yours and you open your life up to the department. I don’t think it’s people business to say when to stop trying or to say….I’m bringing it on myself. How do I know what the future holds? How would I know if the next one will live or die. For me there is no medical reason and it could just as likely be the male side playing into this. Also – other people aren’t Drs. My specialists keep saying I will definitely have another live birth if I persist. We’ve since had our 9th loss……I think the key is to nurture yourself and put limits around what you’re doing. I’m not causing this or putting myself through this……I don’t know what is around the corner. All I can do is a step by step and see what happens.

        • Reply Adriel Booker 11 October 2016 at 2:37 pm

          Yeah, I’ve had some of those comments too (why don’t you adopt, it must be God’s will, etc). Super unhelpful. I think you’re right: nurture yourself, determine your own boundaries, and then step by step see what happens. All the best to you, Sharon, and I’m sorry you’ve had yet another loss. x

  • Reply Leslie 2 December 2016 at 10:16 am

    Such a great post. Just found your blog, and this is the first post I’m reading. You have approached this topic beautifully, and I think, have honored it.

  • Reply KellyAnn 18 February 2017 at 4:42 am

    Hi Adriel,
    I wanted to thank you for your post. I find myself scouring the internet for answers, advice, and encouragement after our loss and this post in particular spoke to me. My husband and I have been praying so hard for our first baby for nearly a year and were overjoyed when we finally got pregnant. Though I wanted to tell all my friends and family right away, I held back because we wanted to be sure everything was ‘ok’ first, and I only told my sister. Devastatingly, we lost our baby at 6 weeks and I’m still not sure if we made the right decision to not tell anyone. Part of me is scared to tell close friends and family of our loss because I’m afraid I won’t get the support I am looking for in their response, or they will think I’m overreacting, or they won’t really acknowledge it as losing a baby. Part of me is sad that I didn’t tell people of our pregnancy because I missed out on the experience of having all the important people in my life excited for us and the baby, and now if I tell them it will only be about sadness. I’m not ashamed of losing this baby, I’m just fearful that telling people will make my pain worse. Granted I have the best family and friends and I love them dearly so I don’t even know where this fear is coming from, but it is there. We are planning on telling my family today. I want to acknowledge this baby because he/she was so loved in the short time I had him/her and I don’t want to pretend to everyone that it never existed. It’s a part of my journey and ttc story now. I’m hoping that telling them will ease my fears and give me courage to tell others who are close to me of our loss and to spread our exciting news earlier if we do get pregnant again.

    • Reply Adriel Booker 27 February 2017 at 4:22 pm

      Sweet KellyAnn, I’m so sorry for the loss of your baby. Nothing I can say will make that pain any easier. I can certainly appreciate your hesitancy and your uncertainty surrounding whether you should have told or if you should now. Obviously we can’t undo the past so it helps nothing to wonder “what if.” In saying that, I do hope you’re able to at least tell your close family and friends. They will want to know so they can have the opportunity to best support you. Them knowing could also be helpful for if/when you get pregnant again—you’ll have certain emotions surrounding that pregnancy that would be better understood if they were aware of your loss. Obviously you need to do what you’re comfortable with. I’m so glad you have a good support system around you. I hope you tap into it and I hope they surprise you with how well they love you through it. xoxo

    Leave a Reply