Losing a child pushes you to a place you don’t ever want to be. You are suddenly thrown into this internet web, where you find solace in the fact that the child loss on its own is not an end to your story, and that people go on to have other babies and complete their families and everyone lives happily ever after.
You find yourself daydreaming about when you will finally hold your own rainbow baby and testify about how good God has been to you and how you are a better person now because of your loss.
Before I continue, what is a rainbow baby? The internet has the perfect definition for this. According to urban dictionary.com, a rainbow baby is a baby that is born following a miscarriage or stillbirth. 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 question. The storm (pregnancy loss) has already happened, and nothing can change that experience. Storm clouds might still be overhead as the family continues to cope with the loss, but something colourful and bright has emerged from the sadness and misery.
That is such an eloquent definition isn’t it? Sadly, some people will never experience this rainbow baby. For some, the child they lost is their last chance to ever become a parent and that realization that they may never carry another child in their body does not quench the intense desire to want to.
Whilst attempting to break the silence surrounding child loss, we should remember that, there is no guarantee of ever walking out of the hospital with a living, chubby, beautiful baby. Some go ahead to face a future of secondary infertility, several other miscarriages or they just lose the desire to ever want to try to conceive again.
Most of us distance ourselves from the thought of never having our rainbow, we read these rainbow birth announcements online with the hope that we will share our stories soon but what if we never get to?
The weeks after the loss, you find yourself attempting to cope, to hold on to hope by reading stories of women who went through what you are trying to survive and how they went ahead to have several living babies. You see, it is great to be hopeful, to know that somehow someway, it will end in praise. You dream about having a baby by the anniversary of your loss. You dream about having your empty arms and hearts filled again.
But what if, you go ahead and get pregnant again but end up miscarrying? What if your attempt to conceive again takes longer than planned? What if, God forbid, but you become part of the percentage of women whose loss is an end to their story? Then what next?
After a while, the rainbow baby blogs become boring, the birth announcements become stale, you shut yourself off social media- it does nothing but to remind you that everyone is a mother but you. You stop visiting those rainbow baby blogs, it makes no sense to hurt yourself on top of your already broken heart.
It hurts so much that you stop to pretend to be happy for others when you still have a hole in your heart and your arms are still empty. You see, you make new friends. People who get your pain and your desire not to talk about it. Maybe that is how best you can deal.
But do we really have to continue carrying this pain around? Sadly, it is what it is. The storms are still raging, your emotions are still all over the place, you are still hurting, you are still getting negative pregnancy test results and you are still getting your periods which launches you to a monthly place of hurt and pain and bitterness but it is what it is.
Let’s talk about this. Have you ever been there? Did you ever finally get your rainbow? How did you cope during the waiting period? How do you get out of that dark gloomy place which is now your new reality.
Naa Kaay is a Ghanaian writer, who has been blogging for years, but recently started blogging about issues closer to her heart. Her blog mantra is ‘Holding on to faith, Meditating on the WORD, and reaching for the rainbow after the storm!’ (http://www.herecomesrainbow.blogspot.com)