‘I’m incredibly lucky to have my rainbow baby’
- Credit: Lexi Taylor
As Baby Loss Awareness Week draws to a close after another year, one mum from Suffolk is sharing her experiences with baby bereavement – and explains how she found light at the end of the tunnel after unexpected turmoil.
In 2015, Lexi Taylor of Bury St Edmunds was looking forward to a bright future.
Along with her husband John and two sons, she’d just moved into their new home – and on Boxing Day announced they were expecting a third baby.
“We were so happy – new house, new year, and a new baby on the way. I already had two pregnancies that were successful, so the thought of a pregnancy being unsuccessful didn’t even occur to me.
“I believed, through my naivety, that because everything had gone well before that this this kind of thing would not happen to someone like me.”
But on one January morning, Lexi woke up and realised she was bleeding.
“The day it happened, even stopping to think about it makes time stand still,” she says.
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“The bleeding wasn't heavy, but enough for me to freeze with fear and then call my husband through.”
The pair soon called their midwife – but unable to get to get through to anyone, rushed to the A&E department of West Suffolk Hospital.
“At this point, I knew deep down what all of this meant - but I clung onto hope. My husband had a look of fear and being lost in his face. I think it is often overlooked how this affects the partners of the women,” she adds.
“I had an ultrasound scan and I remember looking up at the ceiling and putting my hands over my face as I didn’t want to hear what the midwife had to say. ‘There is no heartbeat’, she said.
“I inhaled so loudly and let out a cry I didn't think I was capable of. My husband put his arms around me and for that moment time really stood still.”
At around 19 weeks pregnant, Lexi had suffered a miscarriage.
A miscarriage is defined as a loss of pregnancy during the first 23 weeks, and according to the NHS, around one in eight pregnancies will end in miscarriage.
Heartbroken and devastated, Lexi and her husband made their way home shortly after. “We were utterly broken by what we had been told, but we were asked to come back the next day as we needed to ‘pass the foetus through’.”
“However that night I was in the shower and I felt a sudden urge to push before I passed my baby. I screamed for my husband, and we stood hugging each other with this tiny baby in my hand that I pressed against mine and my husband’s hearts, knowing it would be the only time we would ever get to cuddle as a three.
“There are so many medical terms, such as ‘the foetus’ and ‘unsuccessful’ - but to me and to thousands of other people she, Annie, is our baby that passed away before we got to meet her.”
And this Baby Loss Awareness Week, Lexi wants people to know that as hard it may be when a miscarriage happens – time is the best healer, and things do get better.
“There is hope, as in July 2017 I gave birth to my daughter Ellie,” she says.
Now four, Ellie has just started school, and Lexi says she is incredibly lucky to have her rainbow baby.
“Hope is a very powerful strength, and I lost that for some time after we lost Annie. But time moves on, and I came to terms with what had happened.”
Every Baby Loss Awareness Week, bereaved parents, and their families and friends will unite with others across the world to commemorate the babies who sadly passed during pregnancy, at or soon after birth, and in infancy.
Participants are encouraged to take part in the Wave of Light, where they can light a candle at 7pm local time and leave it burning for at least one hour to remember all of the babies who have died.
This year, the Wave of Light will be taking place on Friday October 15.
“I will be thinking of our Annie and all the other babies that grew their wings and babies that were born sleeping. Sometimes pain unites people, and that then turns into hope,” Lexi adds.
For further information and advice on pregnancy and baby loss, visit sands.org.uk