Ranbow Baby Charlotte – Miscarriage Awareness

Newborn Baby Rainbow
Newborn Baby Rainbow
Rainbow Baby Charlotte

As part of my campaign to break the silence and taboo surrounding miscarriage, infancy loss and fertility issues, each month I will be photographing a special setup dedicated to rainbow babies.

A rainbow baby is a baby born after the loss of a baby due to miscarriage, stillbirth, infant loss, stillbirth, or neonatal death and refers to the rainbow that appears after a storm.

This month Cheryl got in touch to put her daughter Charlotte forward. You can read her story below.

When we were pregnant with our son Cameron in 2013, I had the most hellish pregnancy with Hyperemesis from around 6 weeks to 36 weeks when Cameron was born due to my liver failing due to the levels of sickness. As a result of this it took us many years to even begin to think about another pregnancy and baby. In 2017 when we got married we finally agreed that it would be worth the sickness to make Cameron a big brother and complete our family. We got our positive pregnancy test in August 2017, with a rough due date of our wedding anniversary the following year. From the start of that pregnancy I had a strange feeling that something was wrong, I had absolutely no sickness and began spotting at around 5-6 weeks. We were given numerous scans at the Early Pregnancy Unit and it was felt initially that my dates were wrong but a few weeks later we were advised that the pregnancy wasn’t progressing, we sadly miscarried naturally later that same day. As we had no issues in our first pregnancy, the reality of losing the baby came as a shock, we had set ourselves up for numerous hospital admissions and sickness but we had genuinely never considered that this may happen. It was after this that we realised how common miscarriages were and became more aware of the silence and stigma around it. We were very open with our family and friends who offered lots of support. It took us roughly 6-8 months to feel up to trying again and we got another positive pregnancy test in July 2018, I began feeling sick quite quickly and felt that this was a really positive sign. Following some spotting we were offered and early scan again, the initial scan wasn’t positive with us being told to come back in a week. A week later we went back to EPU (felt like regulars by this point!) and we were elated to see a little heartbeat, we were offered a follow up scan a few weeks later just for reassurance. Sadly at the next scan we were advised that the baby had no heartbeat and again we were devastated. As we had now had two miscarriages in the year, we asked the unit about testing and other help that could be available but we were advised that unfortunately we had to have three miscarriages before it would be considered recurrent and investigations completed. We were absolutely devastated and couldn’t believe we had to go through it for a 2nd time. We hadn’t even got round to discussing whether we would try again when I unexpectedly fell pregnant in Oct 2018. At first we were unsure if it was left over hormone from the 2nd miscarriage in September. I remember the overwhelming panic of wondering whether we could go through it again. When I was about 8 weeks, the hyperemesis kicked in and I had a reassurance scan at EPU, followed quickly by admission to hospital for fluids. Thankfully our early scan was a positive outcome, and we agreed to take things day by day and not get overly excited. My hyperemesis became so bad that i was hospitalised around 8 times by the time my 12 week scan came – to be honest I was so happy to be sick as I knew that was a good sign. After the two miscarriages, I was a lot more anxious, I had sleepless nights before any scans, we went for several private reassurance scans to try and make things easier. I had well over 20 admissions to hospital for fluids and treatment but I genuinely could have been admitted for the whole 9 months if it meant my wee baby was ok. The hyperemesis continued until our little rainbow baby Charlotte was born at 34 weeks. When we agreed to start trying for our 2nd child we could never have imagined the pain and journey we would have to go through to complete our family but we consider ourselves lucky to have such a positive ending to a hellish few years!

When we seen Danya advertising for a rainbow baby shoot we just knew we had to do it. Its the perfect way to commemorate our two losses and journey to having Charlotte.
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