Lest we forget? Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness

Tomorrow is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day. 

I have long had an uneasy relationship with this event. 

On one hand I appreciate the acknowledgment and opportunity to raise awareness. Mostly so that women and families struggling with Loss may better find or be mindful that options for support and sharing exist. 

On the other hand I feel exhausted, suffocated and ashamedly silenced. I am among the lucky ones. A survivor of recurrent pregnancy loss. I have two living children for the dozen or so embryos and babies – each one a dream waiting to come true – I never got to cuddle and raise. 

I still experience sadness and loss viscerally. I still long for the daughter I lost and will never have. I grieve that loss.

Every. Single. Day. 

But. Because I have two small children -alive and well – I feel disentitled to share that grief or the longing that keeps it alive. My voice has grown thin and inaudible for the most part. 

I wanted a third (living) child. I looked into trying. I hoped the child would be a girl. But truth be told it was really about wanting one more child. 

There is no more “next time” for me. 

Another pregnancy is not an option – it’s just too dangerous. Too expensive. Too terrifying (the thought of orphaning my boys is more than I can bear). We can’t afford a surrogate. And it’s illegal to do that for money where I live anyway. 

So here I am. On the eve of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day.  Deeply and eternally grateful for my two amazing, exasperating, unspeakably beloved boys. Yet forlorn and feeling guilty even thinking about how the other part of my dream – sparked by the loss of my daughter, the baby whose loss spurred me to start this blog three years ago – will never come true. 

Most days I accept that this is how things are and shall be. I never say “meant to be”. Oh how I loathe that demeaning, dismissive turn of phrase. 

But the longing, the ache, the sadness over the babies and dreams we have lost, those things never really go away. That quiet ache never gets easier. It is never forgotten. 

They are never forgotten. 

Baby A has our first lost child’s given name as his middle name. We still talk about our daughter by the nickname we gave her. We have a name picked out for the daughter we will never have. 

I don’t even know how to wrap my heart around this grief. It feels so vast when I gaze into it to pen this post. Most days I stuff it down and let it be washed away with phrases like “we couldn’t manage a third child” or “we couldn’t afford another kid”. 

But there it is. There is no “lest we forget” with infant and pregnancy loss. 

We never forget you, tiny beloveds. In our hearts you live on. 

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12 thoughts on “Lest we forget? Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness

  1. Oh the tears.. You articulated what I was somehow unable to write. I am forever grateful for N, but I also feel the grief of the ones I never got to hold. Sending you so much love. ❤

  2. I often think of my son having two older siblings and I bite back tears. I’m blessed and thankful to have a child after that storm but my heart will always grieve my two lost babies. And I think it’s perfectly ok to feel sadness and anger about that even if we have been blessed with living children. Sending you a tight hug as you remember your lost loves

  3. Sis, I think you are putting God in a box. Reading your latest blog entry breaks my heart. There is NOTHING God can’t do ! Nothing. If it is in your heart to have a third child, there are many ways to make that happen. If foster care of an infant girl or adoption is not an option, I suggest actively praying AND searching for a young woman who will help you bring that life into the world.

    I, too, am in the impossible position of needing a surrogate to carry the embryos I will make from the 4 eggs I have on ice since the universe decided I didn’t need my uterus. Yet, God said He would give us the desires of our hearts should we believe and trust in Him !

    Azzolito 1 & 2 are living proof that God performs miracles. Trust in Him again ! Believe in Him just as you did before!

    And NO you are not tempting fate and NO you are not being selfish by asking for another child. Too many women out here are birthing kids like a litter and killing or hurting them. You are an amazing mother with a lot of love to give ! Maybe God will bless you with twin girls !

    Stop putting God in a box and stop limiting His power and tell him what you need and what you want and watch him work !!!

  4. No one is dis-entitled to grief. Least of all you. And you’re spot on about “meant to be.” I would love to banish those words, they’re utterly meaningless – and frankly, painful.

  5. ❤ I am sorry for your losses, and I believe you are still entitled to your grief and your voice about how you feel even with the success of two living children. They don't erase the pain you've felt, that you feel, nor should they. And you should not feel guilty, in my opinion, for feeling a sense of loss or grief over not having a daughter. It's unfair that these life decisions are made for us, and we don't get to take them ourselves and have no agency in the matter. Thinking of you and your boys, and the little loves you did not get to hold. Some day I hope our spirits will be reunited with our lost little loves.

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