Dear Mama, who just had a Rainbow Baby,

My name is Katie, and I’m going to be your nurse until 7:00 pm. I am going to do an assessment on you and then baby, and then I have some paperwork in this folder to go over with you real quick. It’s a lot of information, but I will try to make it fast so you can rest and relax.

Mom and newborn in a hospital bed - Dear Rainbow Mama: A Letter from Your Postpartum Nurse

Shutterstock/Natalia Deriabina

Congratulations on the baby! What is your baby’s name? I love that name. It was one that my husband and I considered for our girls. You have one other child? How old? Are they excited about the baby? That is so exciting. I’m glad I’ll be here when the older sibling gets to come to meet the baby.

I heard you call baby your Rainbow.

I’m just going to sit here on this couch for a few minutes while we talk. Congratulations! I have a Rainbow Baby myself. I’m sure you are so relieved baby is finally here! I know that feeling. I completely agree with you, the pregnancy was hard. You say you could never relax, there was always a feeling that something was always about to happen to make you lose this baby. I felt the same. You tell me that you told people about your previous loss, because you felt it was important for them to know about the baby that was never celebrated, never here on earth. Once you started talking, it was almost jaw-dropping how many people you knew confided to you that they had losses as well. That is why I share my story, too, so other people know they aren’t alone. Oh, I felt such isolation as well! You are right, it really is a shame that those are all the feelings that come with a miscarriage, but the subject is still considered taboo.

Dad, I see you sitting here with your partner and me, not really knowing what to say. Feeling a little awkward.

I make a point to include you in our conversation because, after all, having experienced loss, I know it was my husband’s loss just as much as it was mine. I know you got the tail end of all her anxiety through this pregnancy; I did the same to my husband. It’s unfortunate and probably not what should happen, but please don’t think she is the only woman who reacted that way. She doesn’t hate you or take you for granted. She needed an outlet for her feelings, and right or wrong, you were the one who was there. Kudos to you, dad, for actually being there through all of that. I know what a strain all the stress of being pregnant after a loss can put on your relationship. It’s hard.

I hear you and completely agree that opening up about your miscarriage was difficult and healing at the same time. Who knew that so many others have had losses like you? You said it best, it is weirdly comforting finding this community of others who have lost babies. Oh, you are part of a support group as well? Awesome, these need to be more accessible and discussed so others know about them. Even if people just listen to others, just knowing that you are not the only one going down this road is so helpful. I’m glad you could find comfort in the support group and were able to make it through the pregnancy, and now have your little Rainbow right here.

Well, I’m going to go to the desk and release your new orders.

Thank you for sharing your story with me. I’m glad I was able to share with you too. It is helpful to relate to my patients when they share. I love connecting, not only as a mother myself but as a loss mom too. I will be back in about 45 minutes to check on you guys. If you need anything before then, just push your call-light.

Thank you again for being open. I’m not trying to take any much-deserved attention away from you. I noticed you speaking of something we have in common and was only trying to relate and continue to open the awareness of miscarriage. It is easy to be empathetic towards someone when you have shared different chapters of the same story, like you and I. We now have a mutual respect and understanding that is only present in those mothers who have babies who are not with us. Please know that we will take care of both you and baby while you are here, and I hope that your anxiety can fade away as you transition and go home. Remember, there is always the support group for when you need it- it has helped you this far, and we will still be here.

Take care, Rainbow Mama. Congratulations again.

Katie RN

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