Rainbows are beautiful loops of colors that give us all hope that the sun is on its way out to stay.
When tragedy and struggles come, there is never an easy way out; some never find the way out.
It's time to break the silence and to make sure everyone has an outlet.
Let's all start the conversation about PPD, miscarriage, infertility, and infant loss; make sure every woman and family knows they are not alone!
Proceeds of this beautiful shirt will be donated to Project Sweet Peas to help them continue their mission to help families.
Rhys. 05-02-2017. You are missed greatly.
Rhys's Story told by Ashley Gable
I was the kind of woman who had become used to getting pregnant, going well past my 40 weeks and giving birth to a chunky baby. I had had previous miscarriages but never let that shape me, or shake me to my core. I wouldn't say I'd taken getting pregnant for granted, but by my fifth pregnancy in 6 years I was accustomed to a favorable outcome. We found out our fifth baby was a boy, so we'd have 3 boys and 2 girls and I felt fulfilled, complete. As my pregnancy progressed, everything was perfectly on track, like so many times before. On a Sunday evening, I realized I hadn't felt my baby boy Rhys moving. It seemed odd to me, but not too concerning since I’d just seen him in an ultrasound Friday morning. I told myself my due date was in a week and I was most likely going into labor. I woke up Monday and plugged away at the to-do list before baby came, assuming my backache was most likely early labor pains. Monday night I slowed down, drank some water and ate a nice big dinner and waited for him to kick and move. He didn't. My husband said I was crazy, I had myself worried and everything was fine. I figured he was probably right. I mean, we've had four beautiful children already. Clearly my body knows what to do. That night I sat up crying, some ugly crying praying to God to help me, to let me keep my baby. Then I realized I was crying over an outcome that wasn't in my control. I prayed for God to comfort me through His will. The next morning I headed to labor and delivery where I heard the most horrific words of my life: "his heart has stopped beating."
I'll never forget the look on the midwife's face and the tears in her eyes when she moved the ultrasound wand. I said "you’re scaring me" and she sadly replied "you’re scaring me a bit too kiddo." Everything after that was a blur. I went from a mother expecting to take home my son to needing to decide if we'd bury him or cremate him. I was thrown into a world I'd never thought I'd be a part of, ever. When I gave birth to my sweet angel Rhys, it was the most peaceful moment of my life, and yet the worst all in one. Surrounded by the best midwife and most amazing nurse, who delivered my daughter years before, I gave birth to my angel at 9:43pm on May 2nd, 2017. He was perfect, 8lbs 13oz and almost 22 inches of just pure innocence. He looked so healthy and developed when they put him on me, I expected him to open his eyes and to hear him cry. The hospital staff was wonderful, and while it was overwhelming and horrific, it was as peaceful as it could be. I'll never know what went wrong, should I have been healthier, or less stressed and busy? Had I known, would I have read to him and talked to him more? I know one thing and one thing only, Rhys is not mine, he belongs to Jesus and right now Jesus is holding him until I can again.
Having this shirt, my After the Storm shirt, means the world to me. It's rare for people to say my son’s name, it's rare for people to ask me about him, and to want to hear our story. Very few people bring it up. Even much of my family is hesitant to even touch on the subject. They’ll briefly say things like "oh I'm sorry for your loss" and move on. All I want as a mother is to talk about my baby. I want to hear his sweet name, Rhys, and tell everyone how much he weighed and when he was born. I want to tell you, if you’re reading this and you have a friend who has lost a baby, don't hesitate to say their name. There is no greater fear for a mom who's lost a baby than to think she may never hear their name again. This shirt gives me hope. Hope that someone will say "what is your shirt about?" Or "what does your shirt mean?" It gives me one more chance to speak about my son Rhys, our loss, my aching heart. A dear friend of mine sent me this shirt, only a week after I loss Rhys and at that time I couldn't comprehend what a beautiful gift it was. Now I can.