Welcome to Paradise

Welcome to Paradise

by Sarah Grandfield-Connors

Hannah's Heart and love, babyloss, baby loss, pregnancy loss, stillbirth, miscarriage, 1There is a short essay called “Welcome to Holland” which is meant to comfort a parent who has recently received information that their child has some type of developmental disability. The premise is that you have booked a trip to Italy, but your plane was re-routed to Holland. You miss the idea of Italy, the culture of Italy may always be a mystery with its own language and art — but Holland is stunning itself. Beautiful but different.

When we first understood that things with Beatrix may not go well someone sent me this essay. It was welcome as an affirmation of the life I was embarking on — the life I assumed included a child with Down Syndrome — because whenever there’s a problem in pregnancy, that’s the “worst” that could happen, right?

 (Disclaimer here — I was excited about the possibility… there was a not so tiny part of me that was thrilled that I would be given the opportunity to mother a baby with exceptional chromosomes. I do not see a baby with Down Syndrome as a negative. It’s just the first thing that people imagine when they learn that their baby is going to be atypical.)

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Jason versus the Pennsylvania State Division of Vital Records PART 1

Jason Versus the Pennsylvania Division of Vital Records Part 1

by Jason Kimble

aca0e-1434430_56924540When Hannah passed away, Heather and I were absolutely devastated.  Having been given a fatal diagnosis, we knew the tragic day would come when we would face the this heartbreaking and difficult time.  Knowing this did not make the time any easier, but it did allow us to consider some things about what was happening.  That said, one thing that came up was the idea of a birth certificate.  Initially this did not cross my mind.  At this point, I can’t recall where I heard about it first.  I think Heather told me she had seen something about it online. There was a birth certificate that our state would produce for families called the “Birth Resulting in a Stillbirth” certificate.  It sounded like something that would be a great thing to have and would add just a little bit of peace in the recognition of our baby girl… or so we thought…

This was a way for families to have their baby recognized by the state as more than just a “medical issue.”  It was a way for the family to mark this moment and remember the baby that was lost.  It was something that a family can have as something to hold to and show that while their baby couldn’t come home with them, the life of their baby was no less important than anyone else.  I didn’t NEED this certificate to allow me to know my daughter existed or mattered, because she did, but in my mind it was nice to have that simple piece of paper just like a “normal” family would. 

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This New Life

This New Life

by Ashley Bowman

new-life-3-1249701-639x480February 1st marked six months since I said hello then goodbye to my angel, Bentley. 6 MONTHS. It seems like such a short amount of time when you think about the length of a whole human life, but it’s an excruciatingly long time when you are missing someone every second, of every day.  I have come to find that grief and that incredibly painful ache I feel every day living without my son only gets worse with time. Probably because every day is one day longer that it has been since I kissed him and held him. I already feel like he is quickly disappearing from our lives. Other than pictures and a few mementos, there is no sign that he was ever here. It kills me to know that I will never have anything more of him than I do now. I will never get take his picture as I  see him off on his first day of kindergarten or see his first steps. None of that, it has all been taken from us for reasons we will never know or understand. Everything happens for a reason has no part in baby loss.

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Dealing with Stress – 10 Practical Ways

Dealing with Stress – 10 Practical Ways

by Heather Kimble

2baf3-199102_4646Stress is completely unavoidable after our baby dies. I wish it was. I hate it. But then again who doesn’t hate stress? The emotional and physical reactions suck. We all react in different ways. I just want to break something to release the stress. Chunks of my eyebrows literally were falling out. My hair overall got much thinner and one section completely broke off. I have also felt physically sick and just extremely nauseous.  I am trying to learn to release this stress. I’m still learning different ways that work for me. It’s not an easy fix as some would like to think. It doesn’t make us bad people, it makes us human.

I just want to share some ways that have personally helped me release the stress even if only slightly. Continue reading

This Wasn’t My Dream

This Wasn’t My Dream

by Chrissy Storr

9278a-chrissy2bstorr2b-2bjoelThis wasn’t the dream I had for myself; parenting a baby for a couple days and then being a parent from afar when he ended up passing away. My dream had been very different. From a young age, I had wanted to be a mother, have a family that gathered together for the holidays, and shared memories. I imagined myself with little children who I would teach and raise to be productive, successful members of society. We would laugh, love, and create a family legacy. I believed that you got pregnant, had a beautiful baby, and brought it home.

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