Sharing our Story for Kicks Count Rainbow Baby Day

Hello

I am Jennie

The mother and writer behind this blog

I feel as though I have been absent for a while

So I want to reintroduce myself

And tell our story

The story that brought me here

The story that led me to supporting certain charities

Bliss

The Lullaby Trust

Kicks Count

Back in 2014

It was Kicks Count (then Count The Kicks)

That supported me through my first rainbow pregnancy

With our first rainbow baby

Bea

meeting bea

They gave me the confidence to trust my body

They helped me get to know Bea and her movements

They held my hand

For 40 weeks

And I will always be very very grateful

tiny tilda toes

Today Kicks Count are holding their first

Rainbow Baby Day

Remembering little lives lost

And supporting those that follow

The day is to raise money and awareness

For the charity’s new appeal

Finding a Rainbow Project

Our Finding a rainbow project, made possible by Frugi and their customers, is our way of offering support to those who are pregnant following a previous loss. We understand first hand how hard a rainbow pregnancy can be, it’s an incredibly anxious time and we hope to help comfort families during this time. We have created helpful bundles for families, presented in a limited edition organic cotton bag made by Frugi. The loss of a baby can be a confusing and distressing time for older siblings and they may need additional support when another baby is on the way. We have therefore created a sibling bundle alongside our bundle for parents.

https://www.kickscount.org.uk/rainbow

This is such an amazing initiative

Supported by one of our favourite family brands, Frugi

frugi rainbows

To help raise awareness today

I have been busy sharing bits on Instagram stories

And I wanted to retell our parenting journey here today

The highlights and low lights

The life and the loss

The sunshine

Our angel

And our rainbows

my bounty babies

David and I decided very quickly after meeting

That we would like to have children together

We had no idea how hard our road to parenting would be

After a long time of trying

We had some fertility investigations

That led to us having IVF / ICSI

We were young and in love

Completely naive

We thought that the treatment would work

I ever did learn

Every cycle I would work out the dates

When a single baby would be born

When twins would come

What their names might be

What baby bits we would buy

After four failed cycles

Physically battered and bruised

Emotionally and mentally torn apart

We turned to one of the top IVF clinics in London

We went through our most invasive and intense cycle yet

Daily blood tests

Multiple injections

Hormones, steroids

SO MANY DRUGS!!

But it worked

We fell pregnant

With twins!

On top of the world

We carried on

We were both busy working

Planning our wedding

Enjoying time together with family and friends

Finally it was going to be okay

Our parenting adventure was underway

At six months pregnant I was rushed into hospital

So ill and yet no one knew what was wrong

We honestly did not know if I would live or die

If our longed for babies would live or die

After major abdominal surgery

They found and fixed my twisted bowel

It took a long ten days and a blood transfusion

For me to recover enough to leave hospital

But I did still with my babies tucked safely inside

Until 10 days later

At 27 weeks and 3 days gestation

Our tiny twins were born

We spent 59 days in NICU and SCBU

Never truly knowing if we would one day bring our babies home

But on the 59th day we did

Baby Intensive Care NICU

Baby Intensive Care NICU

Not the start to parenting we had hoped for

But we were more fortunate than many we met during that time

We got to bring our babies home

together

My mental health was not great

We had no professional support when we left the hospital

Life was very lonely for much of the time

Our babies could not mix with other babies or children

For fear of getting ill

Their first winter was long

And incredibly hard

But also all kinds of wonderful

When the twins turned one

I was already pregnant with our miracle baby

Naturally conceived

Born on her due date

Our beautiful daughter

Matilda Mae

#matildamae

#matildamae

I was mummy to three babies under two!

And the nine months we had Tilda with us

Were probably the happiest I have been

The fear of the impact of prematurity felt over

And we had conceived a baby naturally

I had given birth at term

And Tilda was a beautiful healthy and happy baby

Nothing could have prepared us for her dying

Without warning on the day she turned 9 months old

Just like that

Our lives were shattered

Our world torn apart

Nothing could ever be the same ever again

Our baby was dead

Esther and William’s baby sister was dead

She was dead

I still cannot explain how that feels

To have your baby die

To lose a baby

The baby that grew inside me for nine months

The baby girl I nursed for nine months

The newborn that grew into a beautiful cheeky chubby baby

Those eyes

That smile

Just gone

And with her

A huge and irreplaceable part of me

TILDA AND ME

I have not felt whole since the day that Tilda died

And I know that I never will again

Our family can never be complete

One of us is always missing

From every meal

Every holiday

Every photograph

Every event

She is just not there

Where she should be

Beside her siblings

Her cousins

Her friends

I often wonder what our lives would be like now

If she had lived

We will never know

We will never know what she would have been like

As a toddler

A preschooler

Child

Tween

Teen

Adult

We will never really know our little girl

And that is a pain that never ever goes away

How can it?

Matilda Mae

And yet

There is light in our lives

Our sunshine twins

And our rainbow babies

We fell pregnant again

Fairly soon after Tilda died

But I miscarried that baby

My heart was broken all over again

But then very soon we were blessed again

With our first rainbow baby

Our bringer of hope and joy

Beatrice Hope

dadbea

A rainbow baby

Is a baby born following the loss of another baby

A rainbow is something beautiful that follows a storm

And while it doesn’t deny the storm

It offers beauty and hope of brighter days to come

bea 9 months

Growing our rainbow

And raising our rainbow

Was not and is not easy

Pregnancy and parenting after loss are incredibly hard

I am incredibly anxious

About everything

I worry and panic and can be fiercely over protective

I have real anxiety around health and my children getting poorly

I cannot cope without information

For events, outings, anything new I hate not having a plan

Baby Bea

Baby Bea

Parenting after loss

You always fear the worst

Because you know

That it absolutely can happen to you

Alongside anxiety

There is also guilt

Guilt for being alive

For loving your living children

Life after loss has no innocence

No room for naivety

No carefree happiness

Every silver lining has a cloud

For always

And that is why I am so glad

That Kicks Count have started their

Finding a Rainbow project

For families navigating pregnancy after loss

It is an emotional minefield

And there is very little professional support to be found

With Bea

I was lucky enough to have a very on the ball community midwife

And with our second rainbow

Edie Mae

I accessed a CONI (Care of the Next Infant) Health Visitor

Through The Lullaby Trust

I was one of the lucky ones

edie mae 7 months

We should be doing more to support all mothers

And we definitely need to be doing more for those parents who have lost

I have had four failed IVF / ICSI cycles

Twins born at 27 weeks

A baby lost to Sudden Infant Death at 9 months old

An early miscarriage

An awful medically managed miscarriage

And I have never been offered any professional support

For myself or for David

No one has ever even asked about Esther and William

Not since the night Tilda died

And so I am so glad to see Kicks Count offering support bundles

Not only for parents

But for siblings too

Our Matilda Mae

Remembering Matilda Mae Hats

I have donated this first Rainbow Baby Day

And I hope that you will too

https://www.kickscount.org.uk/donate/finding-a-rainbow-appeal

Written in memory of our Matilda Mae

a

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