Today was the day. I should be laughing and smiling with my one-year-old daughter, but I’m not. I should be getting her pretty dress ready and fixing her hair, but I’m not. I should be getting ready to eat cake sing happy birthday to her, but I’m not. Instead I’m holding my beautiful rainbow baby, so in love, but still longing. 

The thing is, we don’t talk about loss, it’s too taboo. Only the women who have felt the magnitude of our loss, can understand. I carried her inside of me from September, through December. I was in “my safe zone”—the second trimester. But, she was gone. My world was completely empty, except for my toddler. My husband and I were lucky that she did not understand the loss of her sister. That she only knew to be happy. She was my light in my darkest hour. 

The Christmas cards, they went out. They had announced my pregnancy. The Facebook post, announcing my daughter was to be a sister. All the excitement and love I felt at that time. Everyone knew I was expecting, my belly was growing, I was glowing.

Then on Christmas Eve, I knew something wasn’t right and they told me, the baby was gone. I was empty inside but I carried you inside of me for five more days.


I was at my bottom when you left me. Would my daughter ever be a sibling? Why was I so naive to announce my baby to the world? Could I ever stop crying, or screaming? Would I ever hold my own little baby again? 

But now I have him, my rainbow. 

I cringed every step of my rainbow baby’s pregnancy. Wondering if he was still alive inside of me. Praying he would be healthy. Eating all the right foods and avoiding the harsh chemicals of modern life. Telling myself to think positively, and fighting others who offered their unsolicited advice. Thirty-nine weeks of self-torture and doubt. 

Now he is here. He is beautiful, and he makes my heart burst with love, for I am his mama.

I am grateful to all of the people who sincerely reached out in my time of great loss and longing. I may have never seen my angel baby, but I knew her, and grieved her death like the loss of a close family member. I think about her every day, but let a sigh of relief when I look into his eyes. He is the one I’m destined to mold and shape in this world. 

He is my rainbow baby. 

And if you find yourself in these shoes one day, know this: you are not alone. You are strong enough to get through this. The love you felt for your baby will never leave you, for a mama’s love is infinite and transcends the heavens.

Holly Campanelli

Mom of Fiona, baby Leo, and Dempsey the schnauzer. I live on Long Island and work as a speech-language pathologist.