Pregnancy After Loss from a Doula's Perspective

To me, vulnerability is one of the most important pieces of being a doula. Our load is lightened when we share. Speaking our truth allows us to own it rather than letting it own us.

My truth is that this pregnancy comes after a loss which has forever changed me, as loss does.

The first half of this journey was rooted in fear. I think I peed on about 40 pregnancy testes (even after visiting the doctor), ran my HCG and progesterone a dozen times, had 4 ultrasounds, and cuddled the fetal doppler at night instead of my husband. I barely had the energy to get a load of laundry done. My time was taken up by sitting in bed with my hands on my stomach waiting for any sign of life to be felt.

Mirror bump selfies noting the number of weeks gestation are a thing of the past for me this time around. I have two pictures of this baby belly and neither show my face. I can’t bring myself to pose in front of the mirror (even though my sister repeatedly asks me for a bump shot). It feels trivial this time.

Why am I not celebrating this baby the same way I did with my daughter?

Because this pregnancy is not the same. Period.

This pregnancy, even with all of its fear and anxiety, has given me the gift of learning to be present. Elijah (We’re having a boy!) has given me the ability to slow down, to rest, to listen, to talk, to touch, to breathe, to pray, to meditate, to connect with the universe and with my body. He has given me the gift of allowing things to not be perfect and to live in the moment.

Laundry can be folded tomorrow… or next week.

Elijah has helped me to appreciate intimacy. We are so deeply connected already, a connection that I don’t remember forming with my daughter until I saw her face. In this moment my biggest fear is that he is going to pee on me when I’m changing his diaper. And that’s all I have, this moment, so I’d say things are going pretty well.

This is me. Who I am today. In this moment.

I am a doula, a mom, a wearer of many hats. I am an open book for those that need it. I am an ear for others. I take care of families, just as I have been taken care of myself.

Written by Kami Wagner