My pregnancy was announced the week before at my church and during the following week I lost the baby. It was my 12th week of pregnancy. I rang my Pastor before the Sunday morning service and shared with him what had happened and asked him not to announce the miscarriage during the service. I told him that I would rather the word got out by word of mouth. We didn't attend the service that morning. But imagine my horror when my miscarriage was announced against my wishes.
The next week we went to church and had people with good intentions saying, "All things work together for good for those that love the Lord", or "There was probably something wrong with the baby that's why you lost the baby." Every well intended comment cut deeper and I felt very alone. I also heard whispers through the church of, "Why didn't they leave the announcement of the pregnancy until she was 12 weeks?" It was sad and isolating time.
No-one knew what to say and I didn't know what to do. So it wasn't talked about much. But I cried a lot, and then when we were ready, my husband and I tried again for another baby and became pregnant with our son. I didn't think a lot about the baby I lost and focused on the one that was growing within me. I did however think of the baby around the time that she was due to be born.
Time passed and I was so happy to become a mother with my first son. 2 and 1/2 years passed and I gave birth to my second son. I was in the Christian book shop one day and picked up a book titled, Jesse: Born in Heaven by Chris Pringle. It was the only Christian book I ever found on the subject of losing a baby.
I took this book home and read it and all these feelings and emotions that I had suppressed over the 2 1/2 years came flooding up and I weeped, howled and cried. I found such healing from this book. Learning that I had a baby waiting for me in Heaven being raised by angels.
More time passed and I was due to have my 3rd baby, I was sure that this one was girl. But the ultrasound showed that it was a boy. I was puzzled as my husband and I had picked a girls name but not a boys. So I now have 3 gorgeous boys and was happy with my family.
Then one day, my sister rang me and asked if she can come over that afternoon. She said that she had a gift for me and that she wanted to give it to me today as she was going away for a few weeks and it couldn't wait until she got back. I was very curious.
When she turned up she had a copy of Jesse: Found in Heaven in her hand with a beautiful card wrapped up in a ribbon. (I had given my copy away to a friend that had a stillborn and didn't want to ask for it back.) My sister didn't realise that I had already read it, but was thinking of buying a copy again for myself. She had just been to a Ladies meeting where the author Chris Pringle was speaking and sharing her story.
The card was hot pink and had a picture of an angel holding a baby and read:
"To My Darling Beautiful Sister,
Please be blessed by this gift....
Please forgive me for not acknowledging your loss. I felt God say to me 'The baby in Heaven is the daughter Jo-Anne thought she never had."
Love Fi xo"
I was so touched. It was a precious moment. My baby had a gender. I immediately thought of the name that my husband and I had picked for a girl - Lanay. Yes, I do have a daughter and she's waiting for me in Heaven. I happily tell everyone that I have 4 children, Lanay, my daughter waiting for us in Heaven and three boys.
This post originally appeared on Jo-Anne's blog, Princess Warrior Lessons.