I’m Amanda and my journey to motherhood began with a missed miscarriage in 2017, followed by the birth of my living daughter. A little over a year later, I got pregnant with her little sister, Nora. Perfect in every way, we discovered she had no heartbeat at a routine ultrasound at 38 weeks as a result of a cord accident, and she was born on New Year’s Eve 2019: the worst possible ending to that (or any) year. After Nora died, I was connected to Carol and Empty Arms and it was the life vest I so desperately needed to stay afloat in those devastating times. My husband and I still wanted another living child so we tried again and unfortunately had another miscarriage. It all felt very unfair given everything my family and I had been through, but the supports I made through Empty Arms helped me survive that loss, too. We persisted and ended up subsequently having a living son. Now, my family is learning to live with both living children and our babies who didn’t get to stay. Of course, this comes with triggers and trauma that are an ongoing learning process as well. I’m a strong advocate for asking providers for what you need and seeking support through groups, individual connections, therapy, and providers. Together, we can support each other and help get rid of the stigma of pregnancy and infant loss.
I co-facilitate the Subsequent Choices Support Group with Jenn and I’m so grateful to hold that space filled with trepidation and hope, but especially knowing there’s a group of people feeling hopeful for each other even when they struggle to have hope for themselves.