October 2- one year later

A "rainbow baby" is a baby that is born following a miscarriage or still birth - I'll be buying this when I have my rainbow baby
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content of research proposal One year ago today, I began the darkest period of my life. On October 2, 2015, we received the devastating news that our second child’s heartbeat was slowing and was on the brink of being gone forever. The news was particularly heartbreaking, as we’d really struggled to conceive this child. Several hours later, everything would be over, and that little life would be no more. In the months following, I truly didn’t think I’d ever emerge from the pain and depression I felt. All of this may sound quite dramatic and ridiculous, but it’s truly how I felt.

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We also had lost Emorie’s identical twin when we were eight weeks pregnant with her, but the joys of having one healthy child remaining overshadowed any grief we felt for our lost child. This is why the loss of our second baby hit us so much harder.

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I could be sad today and mourn the child, but I’ve spent so many months doing that already. So, instead, I’m going to be grateful for what has happened since. It took me almost six months to feel like myself again, and during that six months, I did the only things I knew how to do- pray, get reacquainted with my Bible, and lean on those the closest to me. Only after months of prayer and the shoulders of some very dear friends did I feel myself coming back to life. 
Out of the darkness came a renewed faith in God, a stronger marriage as the two of us needed to lean on each other to understand this, and the comfort of a loving God who never left me, even when I was so sure He had. I learned to trust Him even more. 
I remember driving to work one morning sometime in January 2015, and crying and asking the Lord if I ever would have anymore children. I can’t explain it, but after saying those words aloud, I immediately felt comforted. I decided then to just trust God’s timing. 
Two months later, on the day before Michael’s birthday, I found out we were indeed pregnant again. I was overjoyed, but overly worried as well. “What if” after “What if” circled around in my head, and with every ultrasound and doctor’s appointment, I’d hold my breath, expecting the worst. I had to remind myself that God knew what He was doing, and His will would be done. 
One year after losing our precious second baby, we are now 32 weeks along with another sweet girl- Aubrey Reed. After every storm comes a rainbow of hope. Though we’ve yet to see her face, I can already tell she is full of personality. I know in my heart if either of those other babies have lived, we’d never have had any other children, and Aubrey wouldn’t be arriving soon. God knew what He was doing. I’m not saying I’m thankful for the miscarriage, but I am thankful for the blessings God gave us afterward. 
I would never wish this experience on anyone, but if you’re ever faced with a miscarriage, do whatever you need to to grieve. Cry, mourn, or talk about it, and don’t feel guilty about it. Depression is real and it can’t be swept under the rug. Pray about it, even when it’s hard. Even when you’re angry at God (I was. It’s normal). Lean on your spouse, close friends, or family. You need to hurt and you need to grieve.  Some have suggested planting trees or rose bushes in memory of your child. Others have suggested participating in a Walk for Remembrance. 
Most importantly, take care of yourself. Don’t lose hope- God has a plan for your life and only He knows what’s in store for you. 

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