Bastion Porter Cohen was stillborn on March 25, 2020. An awful time in history, I know. He is our second child, and we were expecting for him to be our last.

In the hospital, my husband and I declared that if having children was going to be this frightening, we shouldn’t try again. But I later realized I didn’t want fear to win. I didn’t want to live with regrets.

I wanted to try again…

While grieving Bash’s death, we decided on a name for our rainbow baby as a sign of hope for our future. We weren’t even trying to get pregnant yet. But we needed this. This name meant that we wouldn’t live in darkness forever. We came up with Colby Ray for a boy, and Colbie Rae for a girl: our ray of sunshine.

Spoiler alert: It’s a girl!

I got pregnant with her quickly after our loss. Too quickly. I was still in the first year of grieving baby Bash. I was terrified, not ready, and a mess.

I tried to feel her movements very early on and went in to triage to get checked out OFTEN. Crying hysterically and alone, mind you, because this was 2020, and the restrictions were high. I was taken into the very same room where I was informed that Bash no longer had a heartbeat. But this time, I was alone.

Hands on a rainbow pregnancy belly - My Rainbow Pregnancy and the Mental Struggles that Coexist

Author’s Personal Collection/Autumn Cohen – Photo Credit: JVV Photography

Mentally, my rainbow pregnancy wasn’t easy, however, she was actually the perfect baby in hindsight.

Pregnant mom with her daughter - My Rainbow Pregnancy and the Mental Struggles that Coexist

Author’s Personal Collection/Autumn Cohen – Photo Credit: JVV Photography

Every time I would start to get frantic that I hadn’t felt her move, she would kick. Bash was born a few days after his 37-week check-up, and I was worried for that week to arrive with Colbie. In my two previous pregnancies, my water has never broken on its own. On April 21st at 3 am, my water broke, just a day shy of 37 weeks. She was ready to arrive. She KNEW what I needed to mentally survive this. Colbie was my first c-section, and everything went well.

Newborn baby - My Rainbow Pregnancy and the Mental Struggles that Coexist

Author’s Personal Collection/Autumn Cohen

She’s a beautiful addition to our family. Although, a lot of the times I feel like she was handed to me like an adoption situation, and I detatch myself from everything I went through with her. Rainbow pregnancies are hard. So, I can see why I tend to dissociate.

Baby girl with Bash's bear - My Rainbow Pregnancy and the Mental Struggles that Coexist

Author’s Personal Collection/Autumn Cohen

I honestly thought that after her safe arrival, my intrusive thoughts would ease up.

Unfortunately, this wasn’t the case. I live fearfully and anxiously. Afraid of what the future can hold for us. The loss of Bash has made a major impact in my life. Every day is a learning curve, and that’s my reality. It’s not neat and perfect and to be envied. I’m full of flaws and nervous habits. That might be the beauty of this community, we come knowing that it’s imperative to be gentle to one another because this isn’t easy. This journey is hard. But in the end, life is messy, and we overcome our challenges the best we can with what we’ve got.

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