Tag Archive | Kyleigh

October 15, 2013 ~ Candles

Candles lit on October 15, 2013 ~ National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day, in memory of babies who have left us too soon …

The Wave of Light candle was lit in memory of over 100 babies, including Kyleigh and our two miscarriages, from Nora’s mom on Still Breathing.

Thank you to everyone who lit a candle. Whether it was in memory of your own baby, or for Kyleigh, you are helping to bring awareness to pregnancy and infant loss by remembering.

Seven Months

It has been seven months since Kyleigh went to heaven and every day, her brother tells us he misses her.

My fingernails have stopped growing. They are back to their pre-pregnancy-non-growing self, which means that one more part of my body has returned to “normal.” It took seven months for this to happen.

After seven months, it’s still hard to concentrate and remember the details of day to day life. I fail to return phone calls or answer emails in a timely manner. If I don’t write it down, I don’t remember it. Even as I type this, I forget what I was going to say.

It has been seven months and life for most of those around us has gone on. Work, school, daily activities, vacations, holidays, weddings, family photo shoots, births, soccer games, etc. happen around us every day. I know we are not forgotten, but some days it sure feels like it.

I continue to drive the 40 miles one way to get my hair cut. I do this because I know that even after seven months, Lois cares. I can go get my hair cut and spill my guts about whatever is going on and I know that she is listening. I can talk about Kyleigh, my grief, my family, my God and no matter what I say, she has words of wisdom and honors God in all she says.

After seven months, I can walk into the houses of my friends and see pictures of Kyleigh. Some are on refrigerators with magnets, while others are in frames on a dresser. They have not taken them down. They didn’t just put up her picture for a month or two. Her picture is there to stay.

It has been seven months and I still lack the motivation needed to lose the extra weight. Exercising just sounds dreadful and while I am attempting to eat healthier, the Halloween candy is not helping my cause.

Today I met one of my nurses for coffee. After seven months, I am able to enjoy conversation with others and even laugh a little. It is good to share the details of life with someone who was there with me during the hardest time of my life.

After seven months, there is still sadness in our home. Sure, we have lots of fun with lots of laughter. How can we not with two little boys? We enjoyed our family outings this fall … the zoo, pumpkin patch, trick-or-treating … but we are still very aware that someone is missing from our family picture.

After seven months, I still miss my baby girl. I love her just as much as I love her brothers. She will always be a part of who I am.


As a child, I did not like hospitals. At all. I was not a fan of needles, blood or anything medical. Thankfully, I was never in the hospital as a child, but visiting others was always an uncomfortable experience. Even as an adult, I prefer to stay away from hospitals unless absolutely necessary. When I was in the hospital to give birth to my children, the only way I made it through was to remember that I was there for my children. I’m sure I would have handled it differently if I was in the hospital for another reason. My fears were subsided, but not completely gone.

Obviously my experience in the hospital when Kyleigh was born was much different than when I had been in the hospital before, both emotionally and medically. I had emergency surgery, a variety of tests/procedures done and many vials of blood drawn. Not my idea of fun, even if my daughter had lived. Somehow, I made it through. I think my emotions had overtaken my body so much that they could have poked and prodded me all day and I wouldn’t have noticed. I became as comfortable in my surroundings as I could. I’m sure having a very supportive doctor and wonderful nurses helped immensely.

A family member has been in the hospital for the last few days. I have been to see her three times, once, staying as long as four hours. In the past, I would have been a ball of nerves and probably would have only gone once or twice for a very short amount of time. This time, I felt comfortable going. It wasn’t a big deal to walk into a hospital that I had never been in on a Sunday afternoon. Since it was the weekend, there was nobody at the information desk to tell me where to go. I navigated my own way to her room without any anxiety. I was comfortable talking to the nurses and making requests on the patient’s behalf.

So why then did I burst into tears last week when I read Curious George Goes to the Hospital to my boys? Did I really cry over a monkey? It wasn’t because Curious George was sick. It was because of the detail it gave about being prepped for surgery. And we’re talking about a children’s book, so the detail was really not that detailed. About a month ago, I was among a group of about ten people. Someone started talking in detail about a surgery that they had. I had to get up and leave the room. I have discovered that any talking and I guess now reading, about surgery is a trigger for me. I can’t handle it.

On Saturday I went to Kohl’s to do a little shopping for everyone. I needed to pick up a few things here and there for both boys, as well as Rodger, and I was hoping to find some new clothes for myself. As soon as I walked in the door I knew I was in trouble. Christmas decorations were everywhere. All I wanted to do was turn around and walk back out, but I knew this was the only time when I could get this shopping done by myself. I was doing okay until I went to look for pants for Oliver. Of course the Boys section is right across from the Baby Girl section. I tried not to pay attention. Then a “Mommy’s Little Turkey” outfit practically jumped off the rack at me. It hit me like a ball to my gut. I might as well have just left at that point. I struggled the rest of the time that I was shopping and while I found what I needed for all the boys, nothing fit or looked right on me.

I’ve figured out why I am seeing so many “I’m expecting!!” posts on Facebook these days. And why everyone is now due in April. This is the three month mark. Twelve weeks. End of their first trimester. The point when most, except for those who find it acceptable to snap a photo of their pee stick as soon as it turns positive, announce they are expecting. Another trigger. Another thing that brings my emotions to the forefront. Another thing that hits me out of nowhere and upsets me, usually for the remainder of the day. It’s not that I’m not happy for these people. I just don’t want to share in their happiness right now. It’s just another reminder that at this point last year, I was almost four months pregnant with Kyleigh. All was well. We made it to the end of our first trimester. After that, there was nothing to be worried about, right?

Some of these things that trigger my emotions are expected. I know that hearing or reading about someone else being pregnant/having a baby upsets me, except for a few dear souls in my life. The problem is you never know when someone is going to post that fact on Facebook, or how they are going to do it. It’s almost become an unwanted contest of who can do it the best.

Other triggers come out of nowhere. I don’t know what others are going to talk about around me or even how it is going to affect me. I don’t know what is lurking around the corner at the store or what song is going to come on the radio next. I heard a song on the radio just a few days ago that I had never heard before. It was a beautiful song and the lyrics were written for me, I am sure of it. As I listened, the tears started. I haven’t heard the song since. At some point, I know I will hear it again. Will it trigger me to cry the next time? I no longer cry at the songs that we played at Kyleigh’s service, but I’m always quick to turn the radio up extra loud and tell the boys to listen when they come on the radio.

There are some triggers that are diminishing. Thursday’s used to be horrible days for me. Those around me could pretty much count on Thursday’s being the roughest day of the week. That has stopped. I have admittedly lost count of how many weeks it has been since Kyleigh left us. I’m sure that has something to do with Thursday’s not being a trigger for me anymore. I am still very aware of the 5th of each month and expect that that day will be a struggle for some time now. I wonder when I will stop counting the months (it will be seven months on November 5) and only count the years. Does that progression happen just like it does for the aging of a living child? I know for me, I told my boys’ age in months until they turned two. Will it be the same for Kyleigh?

I know all of this is normal. I have been told by some that even after five or more years, something still comes out of nowhere and makes them stop still in their tracks. A smell, a sight, a sound or a taste takes them back to a place they never want to go to again. But, at the same time, it makes them remember their child and brings a smile to their face, even after all the tears.

Paying Attention

As I was leaving preschool this morning from dropping the boys off, a woman stopped me and asked, “How’s that baby of yours doing?” Her question about knocked the wind out of me. I did not recognize her and assumed that she was a mom to a preschooler. It took me a few seconds to formulate an answer, but responded by telling her that my baby had passed away during childbirth. I have come to really dislike the word ‘stillborn’ and feel that saying ‘passed away during childbirth’ provides a clearer picture of what really happened, because that really is what happened.

Anyway, instead of turning the other way and running as fast as she could, this woman stood there and took the time to talk to me. She told me she was sorry for what had happened. She asked me if my family attended church and upon hearing that we do, was encouraged that we are receiving support through our church. She gave me a hug. She asked what my baby’s name is and when I told her, Kyleigh, she told me that was one of the girl names she had picked out had she ever had a girl. This woman asked how we were doing and how my boys were dealing with Kyleigh’s death. She asked if we prefer that people talk about Kyleigh or don’t say anything at all.

We talked for probably 10 minutes or so. She was not intrusive, but genuinely cared and showed compassion. At one point, we did introduce ourselves because like I said, I had no idea who this woman was. As we started to go our separate ways, I thanked her for taking the time to talk to me. I told her that she was the first person to ask me about my baby who did not know what had happened and that while it took me off guard, I truly appreciated her asking.

This woman, a mother to three boys, is paying attention to life around her. She’s not caught up in the little stuff that we let get in the way. She didn’t know my name, but she remembered seeing me at preschool the year before. Five months later, she remembered that I had been pregnant. I have often wondered as I walk the aisles of the grocery store or take the boys to check out books at the library if anybody there realizes that I was pregnant. They couldn’t have missed my enormous belly. In fact, I’m sure many of them were fearful that I would go into labor right there in the middle of the food or book aisles. I didn’t run any of my regular errands for almost three months after Kyleigh died. Is that enough time for people to forget? Or are they just afraid to say anything? Or were they even paying attention in the first place?

Do you pay attention to those around you? I don’t. I am clueless when it comes to new hairstyles, if you’ve lost or gained weight or if you got new glasses. I think this is why I was so touched and caught off guard at the same time today.

I cried happy tears as I headed back towards home this morning. One more person has heard Kyleigh’s story and I don’t think this woman will soon forget it.

Picnics in Heaven

A few weeks ago, we attended the Midwest Transplant Network Donor Family Picnic. It was located just a few miles from our house at a ranch. They had a lot of activities for children (pony rides, bounce houses, hay ride, games, etc.) and provided a BBQ dinner for donor families and volunteers. When we received the information, we were hesitant to attend. After thinking about it for a few weeks, we decided that it would be a good thing to do and a way to get more involved with other donor families. I dressed the boys in their Big Brother t-shirts the day of the picnic and off we went. It was the one and only Saturday where it rained all summer, but the rain stopped just long enough for everyone to enjoy the picnic. Rodger and I bought Donate Life t-shirts and we had four buttons made with Kyleigh’s picture on it.

When we first arrived, we were filled with an unexpected emotion. The button table was the first thing we encountered when we walked in. Handing over Kyleigh’s picture to have buttons made was almost too much. Others families had buttons made as well and some had their own t-shirts made using their loved ones photo and name. As we walked around and enjoyed the activities, I made note of the other buttons and t-shirts. I saw a few pictures of women, but most were men. It was easy to assume who the person was, a grandmother, older brother or father. There was one family who probably had four or more children. They were all wearing t-shirts and buttons with pictures of their dad. He was younger then Rodger when he passed away. As I looked around, I never did see anybody else with a button of a baby or young child. We got a few sympathetic looks from others when they realized that our buttons displayed a picture of a baby, but nobody said anything. We walked away with mixed emotions … happy for having a good time with the boys, but sad for the reason that we were there. Rodger and I both said we would go again, so maybe this was the first of many Family Donor Picnics.

Today, I am wearing my Donate Life t-shirt in honor of Kyleigh’s 5 months in heaven.

As I was cleaning up the dishes from lunch today, Oliver asked me what I thought Kyleigh was doing. It was one of the out of the blue questions that just about knocks the wind out of me. I told him that Kyleigh would have been 5 months old today and that I thought she was celebrating with Jesus. Then he asked what I thought she would do tomorrow. I started to tell him that she would probably be tired from celebrating and would have to rest. Then I stopped myself. There is no rest in heaven! Our bodies are made whole again and we don’t get tired. Oliver and I talked about heaven for a few minutes and concluded that it’s such an awesome place that it’s hard for us to imagine what it will be like. He also decided that Great-Grandma was celebrating with Kyleigh today and that our dog, Boston, was waiting for Kyleigh when she got to heaven. He also said that Boston will be excited when he gets there so they can play fetch.

I often catch myself looking at the world around me and being sad because Kyleigh isn’t here to see it with me. Of course a lot of that is because I miss her terribly, but a lot of that is also because I wanted her to see rainbows, mountains, flowers and butterflies. Then I catch myself and remember that what Kyleigh is seeing in heaven is so much more beautiful than what I am seeing here on Earth. It’s so much greater than what any of us can imagine! And that brings me comfort.

Happy 5 months in heaven Kyleigh! One day we will all have a picnic together in heaven. I love you!

4 Months

Today marks 4 months since Kyleigh was born into Heaven. Sometimes I think the anticipation leading up to days like today are worse than the actual day. I was a mess yesterday. Cried at the drop of a hat. We took the boys to a movie in the morning and had a great time. The boys were so excited to see the new Thomas the Train movie on the big screen and we loved hearing Oliver sing along to the songs. We stopped at one of our favorites, Red Robin, for lunch on our way home. Then we got home. And it hit me. The tears started flowing and didn’t hardly stop until God delivered what I needed.

We have been in a major drought this summer. No rain and hotter than usual temperatures. Last night after dinner, Rodger convinced me to step outside with him and the boys. I really wasn’t in the mood, but a cool front was blowing through and it sounded nice to get out without it being 100+ degrees out. As I stepped outside, it started to sprinkle. Not much, but just enough. The sun was still shining and all I could think of was, “Please God, send me a rainbow.” I searched the sky and saw nothing. I told the boys to keep their eyes on the clouds because when there is rain and sunlight at the same time, there is sure to be a rainbow. Of course, the rain did not amount to much more than a few sprinkles every few minutes. I quickly became disappointed because I knew it wasn’t enough to make the beautiful rainbow that I had been hoping for.

The boys wanted to take a walk, so we ventured down the street. As we got to our turn around point, I looked up and saw the smallest sliver of a rainbow. It was just enough to make me smile and make me content in my wish. Nobody saw it but me. The boys were already too far ahead of me to call them back, so I enjoyed the bright colors all to myself. I thanked God and turned towards home. That’s when I saw it. One of the biggest rainbows I have ever seen, right over the top of our house. It literally looked like the rainbow was engulfing our home. It started on the left side and ended on the right. No other house underneath. I’m sure God got a good laugh out of this one. He was making sure I knew who was in charge and that He wasn’t done yet. He was also giving me the reassurance that I needed yesterday. Kyleigh is okay. She is safe in heaven and resting in Jesus’ arms. While we continue to grieve for Kyleigh and miss her terribly, God is holding us in his hands, just like that rainbow was holding our home. There was an immediate sense of peace and calmness that came over me. I asked Rodger to take pictures with his phone and I think we ended up with a few dozen. It was absolutely beautiful.

We ate our dessert on the deck out back and went in shortly after to get the boys ready for bed. As I went in the kitchen to close the blinds, God showed me that He wasn’t done yet! Another wonderful rainbow graced the sky behind our house almost an hour after the first one. The top of the rainbow was covered in clouds, but the left and right sides were clearly visable. By this point in the evening, the sun was beginning to go down and the sky was no longer blue, but pink. The most beautiful pink clouds surrounded the rainbow. The brightest pink that I have seen in the sky in a long time. This time I grabbed my phone and started snapping photos.

God showed me three times last night that Kyleigh is at peace, free of pain and full of joy. Each time was more beautiful then the one before it. All of these rainbows in the sky above our house where only a few sprinkles fell. God knew what I needed yesterday and He provided, just like always.

Happy 4 months in Heaven Kyleigh! We love you!


Double Rainbow

A beautiful double rainbow graced the sky on the morning of Kyleigh’s celebration of life. Most of the pictures we have of it only show one of the rainbows. This picture, sent to us from a friend, clearly shows both rainbows. The last song played at Kyleigh’s service was “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole. Our Pastor and friend, Megan, talked about the rainbow during her message in the service. We did not know that there was a rainbow that morning until Megan spoke of it, only had prayed for a sign from God that Kyleigh was okay. What a beautiful sign from God that Kyleigh is safe in the arms of Jesus!


A Walk in My Shoes

It has become very clear to me in the past three and a half months that I will never look at things the same way again. Everything is different. Nothing has stayed the same. One thing that has changed the most is the way that I interpret people’s comments, whether spoken or written. Just because I look at things differently doesn’t always mean that it is a negative viewpoint. I just have a much different view on life than ever before.

I saw a post on Facebook this morning regarding having children. The post expressed the author’s happiness at having children when he was younger. He pointed out that raising children, especially newborns, is the “most time consuming hardest thing in the world” and was glad he was past that. He is the same age as me. There were a mix of comments, some agreeing and some stating that they were glad they waited until they were older. I commented with, “Rodger and I were married 7 years before we had kids. Wouldn’t trade it for anything! Keep in mind, too, that not everything goes as planned.”

I quickly learned that my interpretation of “not everything goes as planned” is much different than the general public. A few of the comments that followed referenced having more children then were in the plan. Someone referenced a comment back to me saying that their family didn’t go according to their plans, almost as if they were agreeing with my “not everything goes as planned” comment. It didn’t even dawn on me that someone would read my comment and connect it to failed birth control, or lack thereof, hence having more children than they had planned on. At first, I wanted to respond with an explanation of what I meant by my comment, then I decided against it. Knowing how sometimes comments can be taking the wrong way via text, I didn’t want to offend anyone or make them think I was upset by their comments because I wasn’t. I just clearly knew at that point that my point of view is very distorted these days and that most people don’t hold that same point of view.

When I made the comment that not everything goes as planned, I was referring to how our plan is not always God’s plan. We can have this master plan for our lives, but guess what, it doesn’t always happen that way. In fact, I think anybody would be hard pressed to find someone who can honestly say that their life has turned out exactly the way they wanted it to.

Rodger and I had the Five Year Plan in place when we got married. We didn’t want to have children right out of the gate. We got married really young, although we would not have admitted it then. If we waited five years, we would have time to enjoy the early years of marriage kid free, yet still have children by the age of 30. At that point in our lives, thirty seemed forever away and kind of old. Remember, I told you we got married young! Well five years came and went and no baby. It wasn’t because we weren’t ready. We were, God wasn’t. He made us wait two more years before we had a child. Those two years were filled with ups and downs and a lot of heartache, including one miscarriage. Seven years after we got married, we delivered a healthy baby boy. We were both 29. A second miscarriage occurred almost a year and a half later. Then, our second baby boy was born two and a half years after his big brother. We learned a lot during those two and a half years, the most important thing being that it’s God’s plan, not ours.  That lesson has stuck with us and has helped us many times during this journey of losing Kyleigh. Having a third child was definitely in our plan. Her death was not.

Compassionate Friends posted a picture on their Facebook wall today that reads: You will never truly understand something until it actually happens to you. We have all heard this before, or at least something similar. It wasn’t until later today that it hit me, I read things differently now, I see things differently now because of what happened to me. Nobody else can understand that except me. Even those who have lost a child will still see things differently then I will, although they will certainly have a better understanding than most.

Nobody was going to understand my comment today for what I meant it to be because they have not walked in my shoes. For me, it meant that my family has not gone as planned because three out of five of my babies are in heaven. Yes, I would have had children at a younger age too, had I gotten pregnant when I wanted to. It didn’t happen. If all of my children would have been born alive, I would have five children ages 6, 5, 3 ½, 2 and 3 ½ months. For someone else, her family has not gone as planned because she planned on two children and now has five healthy children here on earth. This is not a bad thing by any means. I can tell that she loves her children more than anything and goes above and beyond to be the best mother that she can. Let me make this clear, I am not upset by any of the comments from today. What upsets me is that my understanding of life is forever changed. My view of life is forever changed. I look at everything differently. I look at everything from the perspective of a mother who has lost three children. I don’t expect too many other people to have that same perspective.


Today has just been one of those days. One of those days when nothing really went wrong, it just would have been better had I stayed in bed. My emotions this week are all over the place.

Sunday, we went back to church for the first time since Kyleigh was born and died. We had intended to go long before now, but we didn’t want the first week to be a holiday (there have been three: Memorial Day, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day). Other weeks we just weren’t up to it and then my grandma’s death set us back a few weeks, as well. The boys were starting to ask about why we haven’t been, so we decided it was now or never. Overall, I think it went well. The fact that we had waited so long probably helped. We saw some friends and a few familiar faces, so that always helps, too. One thing that Rodger commented on later was how he had forgotten that there were so many babies in church. I tried not to pay attention. Since I was very pregnant the last time we had been, I expected the boys’ Sunday school teachers to ask about the baby. Nobody said anything, so I figure either we had been gone so long that they forgot I was pregnant, or someone had told them what happened. Either way, I was glad nobody said anything.

Sunday evening, Rodger and I went to the cemetery and saw Kyleigh’s headstone for the first time. You can probably imagine the emotions that surround that, although we were not surprised to see it in place. When we were out there last week, the temporary marker had been removed and flags had been placed to mark the ground for her permanent marker. Kyleigh’s headstone is beautiful. It just makes everything so final. Now, instead of looking down at dirt and hints of growing grass, I see my daughter’s name. I see one date, where everyone else around her has two. Having her headstone placed was the last step in the “funeral” process. Now all that’s left is paying off the credit card that we used to buy her headstone.

Thursday marks three months since Kyleigh left us. Three months is a big milestone for me, and not in a good way. At three months, babies turn from newborns into infants. They start to develop a personality. They don’t sleep as much during the day. It becomes harder to tell how old a baby is starting around three months. It’s fairly easy to tell when a baby is a newborn. Guessing the age of infants is harder, especially if they are smaller or bigger for their age. I find myself less aware of newborns now and more aware of infants, wondering how close in age Kyleigh would have been. These are the babies that will enter Kindergarten the same year as Kyleigh would have. I wonder if in five years, I will look at five year olds the same way that I look at babies now, with envy. Three months also marks milestones for me physically. My hair is still falling out; a daily reminder that I was pregnant. The maternity clothes still hang in my closet, although I refuse to wear them anymore. Newborn items can be found throughout the house. Items that would have been put away by now if Kyleigh was with us because she would have outgrown their use. Three months is a quarter of a year. A quarter of Kyleigh’s first year is already gone.

Friday is the light of my week. Oliver turns 5 on Friday and I am so excited for him! He is excited as well and we have a lot of fun things planned throughout the week to celebrate him.

Can you see why my emotions are like a roller coaster this week??

One thing that makes my emotions crazy like this is being aware of so much more then I used to. Some of it is good, most of it is bad. I am super sensitive to babies and women who are pregnant. They are everywhere. I always noticed them before Kyleigh died, but now, they are coming out of the woodwork. Since I have two children under the age of five, most places we go are kid friendly. Enter the abundance of complaining pregnant women and crying babies. Rodger and I went on a weekend getaway last weekend and the first night, there was a baby crying in the room below us. On the flight home, the lady sitting next to us was pregnant with her third child. The flight attendant thought this was the greatest thing since sliced bread and stopped to chat with her every time she walked by. We heard the whole family story and how number three was not planned, but they were so excited anyway! Sense the sarcasm. I wanted to scream, but figured that would get me kicked off the plane and all I wanted to do was go home to see my boys.

The other thing that I am much more aware of is the death of other children. In the past three months, I know of two other families who have suffered the loss of a child. Another is fighting for his life at a local children’s hospital as I type this. These are not families that we know directly, but are friends of friends. Just yesterday, I connected with a mother who lost her daughter a year ago in a tragic accident over the 4th of July holiday. When we visited the grave of my grandmother over the weekend, there is a mother, father and daughter who are buried not too far from Grandma. The mother lived to be 100, the father was in his 40’s and their daughter passed away when she was 7. What a story that woman must have had to live so long without her husband and daughter. Children die every day. Did I turn a blind eye to it before?

I know that I am more aware of these things because of my loss of Kyleigh. If Kyleigh was with me, I would look at other babies and expecting mothers with joy, not sorrow. I would see them, but would ignore them at the same time because I would be focused on my baby, not theirs. If Kyleigh was with me, I would hear these stories of children dying and while it would make me sad, I would say “I can’t imagine going through that” or even as more say “I’m glad I’ll never have to endure that pain.” Well, guess what? I never thought I would have to go this and endure this pain. But I am and so are they.

Awareness leads to sensitivity and empathy. I am sensitive towards babies and pregnancy. Having these feelings is part of the grieving process. I will not always turn the other way when I see a baby. For now, it’s the only way I know to deal with my pain. I have extreme empathy for those who have lost a child. My heart breaks for these families who are experiencing the pain of the death of a child. I feel like I grieve all over again when I hear of these tragic stories. Knowing of two, possibly three, deaths of children so close to Kyleigh and through people who are connected to us, is just overwhelming. I prayed to God tonight that he would heal the little boy that is clinging to life. I prayed that He would spare this mother from the pain that I am going through.

These are only a few of the things that I have become more aware of these days. There are others, such as the smiles on my boys’ faces, laughter in our home and the number of kisses I get each day from all of my boys. There is good in all of this. Some days are just still so sad.


With technology the way it is these days, you can connect to anyone, just about anywhere. And for just about anything. Sometimes this is good. Sometimes this is bad. I suppose one of the “good” things about this is finding support in others who have experienced the same thing you have.

After our first miscarriage, I ventured out onto the web and found numerous websites that offered support, whether it was through written articles or other’s stories. I found websites that were very helpful and some that were not so much. I quickly found myself getting sucked into the stories of others, many of whom had far greater losses then my own. I had just lost my baby whom I carried for 11 weeks, but many of the stories that I read were from women who had lost babies at 30 weeks, 36 weeks or even full term or after. I couldn’t imagine going through something like that. If I had only known what was ahead …

I became devoted to reading a handful of blogs about these women. I even continued to read their stories after I became pregnant with baby #2. Reading their stories while pregnant should have set off a fear in me for my own pregnancy, but it didn’t. Once Oliver was born, my time quickly diminished and reading blogs was no longer on my to-do list.

I always wondered why I continued to read about the tragic stories of people I did not know for so long. Now I know. It was preparing me for what was to come, even though I didn’t know it at the time. Those stories have always been in the back of my mind. I just never imagined that I would walk in their shoes someday. Over time, I would check in to see where the lives of these families had taken them. Most of the blogs had turned from sorrow to joy. They were documenting more of everyday life, the good times. Some were still documenting the pain, sorrow and tears.

In the past week, I have started researching again, looking up websites that deal with grief, loss of children and loss of newborns. I have signed up for newsletters, liked them on Facebook and bookmarked them for later use. As I have been researching, I have once again stumbled upon the stories of others. One website, in particular, is nothing but stories. It is specific to miscarriage, stillbirth and infant loss. You can submit your story, as well as your blog, for those that have one. I have read a handful of the stories and clicked on a few of the blogs. These women are bearing their souls for all to read. In my opinion, some of the information is too personal to share with the entire world. The idea is that women who have had a miscarriage, stillbirth or infant loss can find comfort and support through the stories of others. While I can see some of the content as beneficial, some of it is not so much, at least not yet.

One of the benefits to many of these baby loss communities, as they are called, is that you can find others who have been through what you are going through. While certainly nobody’s story is the same, there is a sense of comfort in knowing there are many, many other people out there that have gone through what we are going through. We have a wonderful network of family and friends that have supported us beyond our expectations. Having connections outside of this network, even with people we don’t know personally, is a positive thing as well. We have been blessed to be connected with two families outside of these baby loss communities who have also lost baby girls to stillbirth. They have been a great support and sense of strength during these early weeks of losing Kyleigh. Sometimes it is beneficial to have someone to talk to who has been in the same valley as you, whether it is face-to-face, through email or a blog.

The jury is still out as to whether I will find any of these baby loss communities helpful. I’m sure over time they will be. I have to be careful not to get sucked in though. Quite honestly, a lot of the content is depressing to read. I don’t need to read other people’s depressing stories. My goal is to find two or three blogs that are not only helpful, but inspiring. I don’t need to read about someone who lost their baby a month before or after me. I need to read about someone who lost their baby two years ago or ten years ago. I need to see that it does get better. Life does move from sorrow and tears to joy and smiles.

I have not decided yet whether or not to add this blog to the list of others within these baby loss communities. I’m not sure that now is the time. If I decide to in the future, my hope is that Kyleigh will be honored through posts of happiness, not sadness. That others will see the progression from pain to healing and that they will see a love for a baby girl like no other.