Autumn Tolliver Safley is the inspirational mom making headlines for her shirt. Yes, you heard that right! This young mom wore a shirt that read “You’re looking at a rainbow baby!” in her local Hobby Lobby. She was surprised to find that she would soon be recognized around the world for her bravery.
Safley is a young mom who is expecting her very first rainbow baby after 2 miscarriages. But, even after such a loss, she is a positive influence and inspiration for all of the mothers out there experiencing the same thing. I personally spoke with Autumn about her story. This is what she had to say about a time when she was throwing a baby shower for her cousin.
“I was hosting a baby shower for her in November, which I was in line to do before we lost our first child, so she insisted I bow out. But of course my loss did not hinder my joy for her and attending/hosting the shower still brought me happiness despite our recent loss. Upon arrival, my VERY pregnant cousin approached me bawling and presented me a beautiful necklace with a simple phrase engraved on it that said “EVENTUALLY” with a tiny heart stamped in it. She gathered every woman in the house to surround and anoint me with prayer to mend my heart and to provide me with overwhelming peace and the desires of my heart, a child. It was one of the most intense moments of my life as every chain just broke free and I felt free of all pain from my first loss and excited about what was to come. I had not told anyone but close friends and family about our loss until that day. On November 15. 2015, I shared a photo of my necklace and my story. I received an outpouring of response from other women who had experienced losses or were struggling just like my husband and I were. It was nice to know we weren’t alone!”
Unfortunately, this is a reality for so many more women than we think. That’s why “rainbow babies” mean so much to pregnant moms. A rainbow baby signifies a baby that is born after a miscarriage or stillbirth. You could think of this as a beautiful present after a storm in your life. They believed in God’s timing and it was perfect.
This topic is still so rarely talked about. Mothers are afraid to tell people when they miscarry. They are afraid to announce their news too early, because a miscarriage can mean a ton of public hurt and pain. Autumn hopes to raise awareness for miscarriage and infant loss with her new-found internet fame. I was able to ask Autumn a few questions about what is happening in her life now. She is now 29 weeks pregnant, and is fully committed to taking “belly pics” each week for her belly book. When asked how long it took to get to where she is today in her pregnancy, Safley responded:
“We got pregnant immediately after we made the decision to “try” and got off the pill. We lost that baby right before Halloween 2015. We found out Thanksgiving day we were pregnant AGAIN, my first doctors appointment was the first Monday in 2016 but I started spotting the Saturday before. My fears were confirmed and we lost that baby as well. I had to had a D&E (more invasive than a D&C) after two back to back losses on January 5, 2016. I found out at the end of March, just two days after losing one of my fur babies, that we were pregnant again! God knew I needed something to smile about! Here we are now!”
Autumn, we are SO excited for you, girl! Your bravery and courage to show the world your loss is what we ALL need to hear! I am so happy for you. I know that you have come a long way to wear this shirt. I know that you have had to hear the words no mom wants to hear. I know you have spent countless nights wondering what you did wrong. You have felt guilty, you have felt pain. You have laid in bed at night wondering if this day would ever come, and if it did, if your heart would be broken again. There is a certain shame attached to miscarriage, and you are breaking that down!
To all of the women out there that are still struggling unsuccessfully, I leave you with these words from Mrs. Safley:
“NEVER, ever give up or lose hope. God promises us that if we love Him and are called according to His purpose that ALL THINGS are working together for GOOD. This does not mean that things will always BE good. I realized that there could be a chance that my husband and I may not be able to have children naturally but were willing to do whatever it took to be parents which could mean seeing specialists, taking fertility medicines, surrogacy, adoption, you name it. God does not promise every longing woman a child birthed from their womb but if you give up easily you may never know. I encourage others to keep open hearts and open minds and to trust fully that God’s ultimate plan and will for their lives far supersedes their own.”