I think of all the signs the providers brushed off. I think of the other signs I just didn’t see. My heart hurts. I wish I could go back in time. I wish I had saved you.
holding onto baby weight after losing a child
One of the least-talked-about aspects of stillbirth and pregnancy loss is that postpartum bodies still carry weight & produce milk, whether you have a living child or not. This is my journey with my postpartum body after stillbirth.
After Adrian’s death, I came home from the hospital to a fully furnished nursery and without a living child. I wanted nothing more than to sleep for weeks, but I had to deal with milk, and funeral planning, and all the minutiae of being postpartum without a living child.
I have never struggled with the shape of my body; it’s just not something that has ever bothered me. But when my son died in my 41st week of pregnancy, I learned there were so many more components to the body image equation. I had a postpartum body and no living child.
You sheltered him for nine months. You expanded with him, kept him safe. I watched you grow stretch marks, tiger stripes. I talked to him through you. I never thought to say thank you. Thank you. Thank you for holding my son, for cradling him even in death. He only ever knew love in you.
I am probably one of those ghosting stories that people complain about on social media. I am probably that person who just disappeared, and people are wondering, “What happened? What did I do wrong?”
Today, I put on a pair of pre-pregnancy jeans. They are tight, and my body fills them differently, but they do fit. And this, surprisingly, is also hard for me—as hard as I worked to get here, as much as I thought wearing “normal” clothing would be a cure for at least part of what ails me, I also miss it. I miss being pregnant.