Not too long ago, I didn't know what sunshine babies, angel babies, or rainbow babies were. I never had a reason to until I had my miscarriage. These terms, and the visibility they provide, have helped me and many other moms cope with the tragedy of pregnancy loss. For those who don't know, a sunshine baby is a baby conceived before a loss. I never knew there was a name for the child I had before I lost my baby, but I find it deeply comforting. That's why there is so much I want to say to my sunshine baby.
I was 33 when I got married, so my husband and I decided we'd start trying to get pregnant right away. Let's just say it wasn't nearly as hard as we thought it was going to be. I delivered a beautiful baby girl nine months and a day from the day of our wedding. We knew we wanted to grow our family before I crossed the dreaded "geriatric pregnancy" threshold. Then, about 10 months after the birth of our daughter, we conceived again. Unfortunately, I miscarried within a week of finding out we were expecting.
You would think having a normal, healthy pregnancy first would soften the blow. However, as I have learned, grief for a child doesn't work that way (at least not for me, although it's important to acknowledge that everyone processes grief differently). It did make me incredibly grateful for the gift of my daughter, and there are a few things I need my sunshine girl to know.