You love them from the very instant you see the word Pregnant.
From the very start.
The anticipation is real.
The love is real.
The connection is real.
But then you never get to hold them.
Or you do, but for too short of a time.
The only pictures you have are of a sonogram.
Or are from moments where you said goodbye.
Not of their first smile, or laugh, or cries.
Because you never separated your heartbeat from theirs.
You never got to feel them, laid upon your chest, breathing in and out.
They never got to feel the safety of your arms.
You never got to commit their fresh scent to memory.
Or stare at their eyes and decide what color they would be.
You wanted to feel their squishy feet. And feel their fingers wrapped around yours.
You wanted to learn their cries. And figure out how they wanted to be held.
You never got to experience their first night at home. Out of the hospital.
Or place them in their crib and hope that you do it all right.
Because their due date was too far away. And so they didn’t get to stay.
You have small reminders everywhere. And a hole where the hope had lived. And you know that even with time, the hole will not be patched.
Because you’re a different kind of mom. But you’re still a mom. And you’re scared they’ll forget. The people who haven’t been in your shoes. Even when you have other children, you’re afraid that no one will remember that baby that they never met. Because the story has a different ending.
The memories are fewer than you were hoping for. Different than you had dreamed they’d be. But will never go away. Because your heart will hold them for the rest of your existence.
They call it a loss. But even when you can’t hold them in your arms, you still carry them with you everywhere you go. Because you loved them. Right from their start.
Forever, you’ll be their mama. And your baby, they will always be.