Half of me is REALLY feeling, it’s about time.

And the other half of me cannot even fathom that this journey is coming to an end.

Franky's 38-week bump - The Finish Line

I remember all too clearly when this point felt like an unfathomable outcome, that I would make it this far and I would be weeks, days, possibly even hours from meeting the baby I longed for quite some time. As cliche as it sounds, pregnancy after loss in particular really is a day-by-day process. You can’t think too much into the future, not even because of every bad possibility, just because of how important it is to be in the moment, and how pivotal it is to surviving such a trying time.

In a lot of ways, I took much more out of this pregnancy than I did with my first rainbow baby.

I learned so much more about myself and my trauma from my loss and nearly losing my daughter too. I unpacked a lot of ugly feelings that allowed me to believe that I was not capable of carrying a healthy pregnancy. To be honest, there was so much more in my way to overcome with this baby than there was when I was pregnant with my first two. Yet, I feel more resilient and capable than ever.

One of the biggest takeaways I’ve had from this pregnancy was that I was not in a position to play God. No amount of panic or detachment would ensure a baby in the end, and there was no way that celebrating would mean that I would go through another loss. I knew from the moment that I found out I was expecting, that no matter where fate would lie, whether it would end in life or death, I would still choose to do it all over again. Whether we spend 5 weeks or 100 years with our babies, the inherent love we possess for them will always be worth more than the pain that may accompany it.

Suffering in the past didn’t make me exempt from another loss. It doesn’t make me immune from something bad happening in the future.

I’m so aware of how lucky I am to continue carrying, and will more likely than not, be delivering a healthy child. I know so many other mothers in this community who haven’t been awarded the same grace. My heart is heavy and lifted all at the same time with that knowledge. Even though my story is not every story, I’ve been so grateful and humbled to have had this opportunity to document this journey, and hopefully provide some comfort to whoever needs it. This is such important work that I hope to continue to keep doing, as this is the most courageous, yet underserved group I’ve gotten to know and love.

This is my last Bump Day Blog before I eventually return with my birth story. It is bittersweet, to say the least. I decided not to disclose my final birth plans or when we expect our girl to make her arrival, so I could take this last little while as the family we know before our lives inevitably change for the better. We wanted to do that without so many questions and distractions. I’m both happy and relieved to close this chapter and begin the next one as a newborn mama again.

Sweet Joey, your onesies are washed and hung, ready to hug your little wiggly body. Your swing is assembled, and your big sister Madeline has been practicing how to rock it so she can help soothe you when you need the comfort. Your bassinet is parked right next to Mommy and Daddy, so we’ll always be close. Our hearts and our arms are so ready for you, we can’t wait for you to be ready for us too.

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