March 25th 2020
I crafted this memorial bead for Kasey to honour her son Elliot. Here is their story…
Around the time of my 31st birthday, I was feeling very strongly that I wanted to have a third child. I knew my husband had only planned on two children, but I brought it up anyway. To my surprise, he was really open to it, and we quickly decided to begin trying for a baby. We conceived the first month, as we had with our first two children. I had the perfect name picked out immediately.
From almost the moment we conceived, I was so sick. I was nauseous and tired, as well as very anxious. I noticed on Saturday, March 23, that I felt much better and was so excited! After going to the zoo with friends, we did a little shopping and I purchased a set of sleepers for our precious baby. We had lovingly nicknamed the baby, Peppercorn, and we were in love.
The next night, I noticed some brown spotting, and my heart sunk. I told my husband, and he tried to assure me everything was fine, reminding me that I had spotted brown with our first child, and she was perfectly healthy. I tried to believe him, but just felt to my core that something was wrong. Later, the brown became pink, and my concern grew. Somehow, I was still able to sleep that night. When I woke up, my fears intensified, as I was now bleeding bright red. I told my husband my fears, and he tried to reassure me, but again, I just knew. I wanted so badly to be wrong, but I knew. I begged and pleaded with God to spare my baby. This baby was so loved, so wanted. I couldn’t lose my child. I just couldn’t.
On Monday, March 25, 2019, around 10:00 am, I gave birth to my third child during the first trimester. Because of my bereavement doula training, I immediately recognized the tiny baby, and couldn’t fathom flushing my child. Instead, I held my peppercorn-sized baby in my hand and wailed. Thankfully, my mom had come right over after hearing that I thought I was losing our baby, and she held me tight. I told my husband that we lost our precious little one, and what seemed like minutes later, he walked into the bathroom, having left work. He held me as I wept, and I remember feeling a tear drop from his face to mine. Our baby was dead, and a part of me died with him.
I was a shell of myself the rest of the day. My mom tended to our children after my husband went back to work, as I barely functioned. My kids had no idea what was going on, but our daughter knew something was really wrong and was doing anything she could think of to comfort me. I went through the motions and had bloodwork to confirm the loss, which quickly came. Our baby really was dead. My body had failed me. My God had forsaken me. My heart had broken. All I could do was hold on to anyone who would hug me, and cry. Telling our children that their sibling that they didn’t even know existed had died was so hard. Our son had so many questions, and our daughter was very stoic – later we learned that she had pushed all of her feelings about it down to be released months later.
Somehow, the next day, even in my still intense grief, some hope came. My mother-in-law had assured me several times that my body did not cause this loss – I did not cause this loss. I was able to think a little more clearly and began to believe her. I also felt this overwhelming assurance that while our third child was in Heaven, that God was going to bless us with a rainbow. I was grieving hard, but felt such peace that God would give us another child, a healthy child.
In the weeks following, I bled, which was an awful reminder of what I had lost every time I used the bathroom. I also grew more and more anxious, and chose to contact my therapist and do EMDR therapy for the trauma of the loss. My husband and I talked about when to try to conceive again, and decided to wait for a little while so I could feel physically and emotionally.
This time last year I was weeping on my bathroom floor, holding my tiny baby in my hand. It’s hard to believe it’s already been a year. I remember it all so vividly it could’ve been yesterday.
I still love you, little one. I’ll never stop.
Happy Birthday in Heaven, Elliot.
I had big plans of scattering wildflower seeds for your birthday, but the pandemic situation squashed my ability to get seeds on time. Your big sis volunteered her sunflower seed stash instead 🌻
We love you, our little Peppercorn! Hopefully next year we can scatter seeds in your honor 🌱