The 1 in 4 Project: Jessica S.

October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month. As many of you know, this is near and dear to my heart, as we have experienced multiple losses.

I have been (and will continue to be throughout October) honored to spend time with fellow loss mamas, capturing their stories and love for their babies. Some of these stories will be shared with video, some text, some simply photographs. I welcome you to join in remembering our babies and bringing awareness and normalcy to talking about these short but precious lives.

Getting pregnant at a young age is a scary thing. Losing your baby at a young age is even scarier. In July, 2015, we lost our first baby, Oliver, the week I turned 19, Jordan was 21. I can still remember every single detail of all of the doctors appointments, ER trips, the faces of every single doctor and nurse I saw during that time. I remember the smell of the room when the first doctor said “The fetus is not viable”. The second those words came out of her mouth, I shut down. I emotionally and mentally blocked out every single thing any person said to me, and anything I felt emotionally. At first I heard a lot of “Losing the first baby happens all the time and is ‘normal’”. It helped eased my mind very little, then we lost our second baby, Georgia. Immediately I started to get concerned about my fertility and if I would ever be able to carry a baby full term. My doctor ran what felt like a million tests on me, they all came out “inconclusive”. My doctor, and others assured that even two losses were still “normal”. Normal or not, I wanted to be able to hold both of my babies in my arms, and I wasn’t going to be able to do that. Soon after, we got pregnant with baby Alex. At our 12 week appointment, we found out that we had lost our sweet baby Alex. Third pregnancy, third baby lost. My heart was shattered. My doctor ran every single test again, some a third time. After they all came back inconclusive again, I had given up. I had given up on everything. Being a mother, having a family of my own, setting up a nursery, changing my baby’s dirty diaper, losing sleep because of late night feedings. All those things that moms hated doing, I would’ve given anything to be able to do. Friends and family tried to be supportive after each loss, but if you’ve never experienced this before, you don’t know how to be there for someone going through the loss of their child. I had people tell me “It just wasn’t time.” “God needed another angel” “Maybe you just weren’t meant to be a mom yet”. I will tell you, that none of that is what any mother wants to hear as she is losing her babies. After losing Alex, I went into a very deep depression. I was in a very dark place. No one really knew how to help, except say “if you ever need to talk” but I never wanted to talk because all they would say was “I’m so sorry.” I had never been so broken in my entire life. I was scared to even try to get pregnant again, because I couldn’t handle losing another baby. In January, 2017, we found out we were pregnant for the fourth time with who would be our “rainbow baby”, Carson. To say I was terrified would be an understatement. I was scared to take the pregnancy test, go to my first doctors appointment, and even go to our first ultrasound. I was terrified the entire time. What should be an amazing, joyful, happy experience was haunting. Around 24 weeks pregnant I was finally starting to realize I would be able to hold this baby! I was going to finally get to build that nursery, . I will never be able to get over losing my babies, but I will forever be thankful for their lives. Their lives, as short as they were, had meaning. They were meant to be a part of our family. I say their names every chance I get. Ask me about them. Ask about all of my pregnancies, not just my pregnancy with Carson. All of my babies matter.

– Jessica



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