Scarred Joy respects and honors that October is recognized as Pregnancy Loss Month. As a way to highlight and remember those who have experienced pregnancy loss I present this original Scarred Joy short story.
Her Name Is Gabrielle!
Upon learning she was pregnant the young wife was elated. She told everyone meaningful to her that she would be a mother in a few months. She and her husband shared in the joy that came about as a result of their happy news. Both decided when they planned to marry they wanted a family. Now that it was coming true they would now make plans to welcome the baby. One of the bedrooms in their house was designated for the baby. It would have to be painted with a baby in mind. They gushed over how exciting it was to anticipate what the little one would look like. Would it be a boy or girl? What color eyes would he or she have? All sorts of exciting things went through their minds as the thought of their child.
The young woman had dreamed of becoming a mother someday. Her imagination ran wild with ideas. She and her husband would do the best they could to give this child a wonderful life. This child will be part of their lives forever! Perhaps one day she and her husband would welcome being grandparents. For now her dreams were to have a healthy baby they would both love and care for. Through her vivid imagination she beamed with happiness at the stages her child would experience through life.
Her dreams saw the baby grow to infancy then school years and even graduation. She realized in her excitement she had to take things as they came. She had to admit she was partial to having a girl. Although she hadn’t as yet discussed names for the baby with her husband she had a name for her girl in mind. Her name would be Gabrielle!
Gabrielle’s birth went without incident and her parents loved her from the first second. Her grandparents were at the hospital in hopes of seeing and holding the baby as soon as possible. It comforted the mom and dad to have their parents present for the birth. They enjoyed a close relationship with each of their parents. The birth of the baby brought joy to all of them.
At birth Gabrielle weighed a healthy seven pounds eight ounces. She was perfect! As she grew into infancy Gabrielle was a happy child. She couldn’t hide her happiness for her eyes and nose would crinkle into small lines. Her smile was impossible to ignore. One of the games she enjoyed playing was standing on her tippy toes and reaching her arms up as far s she could. When her mother asked her what she was doing Gabrielle said she was trying to reach up to heaven.
One day Gabrielle complained to her mother that she didn’t feel well. She said she felt warm and had a tummy ache. She seemed to become weakened as her mother helped her to bed. She began to cry and asked her mommy not to leave her. Mother said that if Gabrielle didn’t feel well in the morning she would take her to the doctor. When the child’s father arrived home from work Gabrielle was feeling worse. He decided they weren’t going to wait until morning. Mom and dad drove Gabrielle to the hospital. Fortunately Gabrielle was attended to by a doctor only a few minutes after they arrived. She was crying and noticeably uncomfortable and in pain. Through her tears she begged her parents not to leave her. They assured her they would be with her to care for her and she would go home with them soon. They were so sure!
Once the young wife regained consciousness and was stabilized she realized she was lying in a hospital room. She wondered what was going on. Her husband broke the news to her. As tenderly as he could he informed her she had “lost” their baby. After telling her the news his heart skipped a beat. He held his wife while she wept. Her mind swirled. “What are you talking about?” she said. “She is going to be fine! We told her we would take her home with us!” The woman then realized that something was indeed wrong. The news made its way into her thoughts that losing the baby was true.
There would be no Gabrielle! The young wife now remembered she had been taken to the hospital because something just wasn’t right. She knew that the pain she had been feeling meant more than indigestion or something else. It struck her she was going to lose the baby. Now the news assaulted her mind and struck her heart. There would be no Gabrielle!
The significance of pregnancy loss is underrated in our culture. It is something not discussed often. To the moms, dads, siblings and grandparents, who experience this family loss it is a stark reality in life. To recognize such a loss is to acknowledge a baby died. A baby never born yet forever loved!