Pregnancy after loss can be a generally trying time in a woman’s life. After the trauma of losing a baby and the grief that goes along with it, by the time a woman is pregnant again, there is a good chance that she is both physically and emotionally drained. The precautions that are taken and the needs during a pregnancy after loss can make a woman feel like a burden, which in turn can lead to feelings of guilt. There were a number of things that I felt guilty for during my rainbow pregnancy, and as I’ve had time to reflect on some of these things, I realize there was no need to feel guilty. After feeling heartbroken for so long, I simply needed to do what I thought was best for both my baby and my heart.
Listed below are some of the things I felt guilty for, followed by one simple reason why you don’t have to feel the same guilt that I did.
But you don’t have to feel guilty about these things or anything else, and the reason is this:
You have the right to manage your pregnancy after loss in the way that works best for your heart, body, and mind.
It’s simple, I know. But it’s true. You have the right. It’s your pregnancy. It’s your baby. You don’t have to satisfy the expectations of others. You don’t have to feel a certain way or do things in a certain way. You don’t have to conform to the social norms of society. A pregnancy after loss is not a normal pregnancy and you have the right to take care of yourself in the way that best satisfies your needs.
Maybe that means keeping quiet about your pregnancy, or maybe it means shouting your big announcement from the mountaintops. Maybe it means doing things all on your own, or maybe it means asking for help. Maybe it means guarding your heart and putting on a layer of self-protection or maybe it means wearing your heart on your sleeve for all to see.
In any case, the decisions are yours to make and the feelings are yours to feel. You have the right.