There is a term used to describe a baby which is born after the immediate loss of another baby, they are referred to as “rainbow babies”. I had never heard that until after reading blogs following the loss of Nathaniel. I have nothing against anyone who wants to refer to their blessing as a rainbow baby but the more I thought about it the more distant I became from ever deciding to use that terminology if we would become pregnant again.
The simple explanation is this…The term comes from the idea that you went though a terrible “storm” in life, a horrific loss. Some feel more pain than others, some are able to distance themselves from personalizing their babies life especially if they weren’t able to meet them. Every emotion and heartache after losing a baby can absolutely be deemed as a storm… this much is true. To have hopes and dreams of a full life with the baby growing inside of you can be such a joyful experience, only to have the joy overshadowed by deep sadness when that life has abruptly ended. Storm…yes, without a doubt…a storm.
What comes after a storm? well if the sun is shining just right in the sky as the rain still falls, its beams of light enter each raindrop and we are able to see colors that are always there but can not see. Without the rain, the sun shines down and the only color visible to our naked eye is white. Isn’t that amazing how after a storm… if we are lucky, we are able to see something as beautiful as a rainbow? God is AMAZING!
Rainbow babies are the ones that are brought to us after a terrible loss…the storm. This is what the name alludes to. If I hadn’t been impacted so deeply by our personal loss, by the life taken from us way too soon, then I wouldn’t think twice about how beautiful that name is. However; the more I thought about it, I came to realize that “my storm” IS “my rainbow”. Nathaniel started off as an answer to prayer, his life was celebrated and his future began to be mapped out in our minds. When his heart stopped, we were faced with “the storm”. His future on earth was over, our lives were changed forever and we got hit hard with a torrential downpour of emotions that crushed our hearts. This was our storm. However during our pain and suffering, we had the Son with us. What happens when there’s a storm and the sun? a rainbow. Colors that we cannot see without the beam of sunlight mixed with the rain. Our Son wasn’t the physical beam that shines down from the sky. We had the Son of God carrying us. Although we cannot see Nathaniel right now here on earth, just like at this moment in time I cannot look out the window and see all the colors of the sky, I know that they are there. I know that Nathaniel is there. He was my storm and he is my rainbow. I know that when I see the Son face to face I will see my Nathaniel. His life was not just a storm in our family. His life brings hope and joy because we know that when the conditions are just right, when we are no longer needed on this earth, we will see him. How amazing!
With all that being said. Justin and I are so pleased to announce that we are expecting again. This baby will not be our rainbow. This baby will be refereed to the same way as our other three…a tremendous blessing! As you can imagine this pregnancy has been much different than the previous three. Anxiety mixed with joy and topped with feelings of uncertainty have been consuming us. We are faced with the truth more so than before, that we are not guaranteed to parent our new little one here on earth. Our hope and prayer each day is that we can separate Nathaniel’s life and death from our fourth baby.
We have seen the baby three times, and each time that I am blessed to listen to the sound of his/her heart I am brought back to the reality that nothing is certain. We are very blessed and excited for this pregnancy. We are trying to overcome human emotions of fear and doubt and are desperately focusing on trusting God and His will.
If all goes well we will welcome baby Miller #4 in January. He/she is due just around the time that Nathaniel was born. Such a bittersweet time it will be. Children are a blessing from the Lord… we have been blessed beyond measure!