New Zealand

I’m very aware that at this time last year I was visiting my sister friend, Laura, and her family in New Zealand. Eva and I boarded a plane by ourselves and had the most amazing trip, 7,500 miles away from home. It’s the last time I truly enjoyed my blissful pregnancy. As we enter July we move into the season where we started to unravel the mystery that was Eva. I wrote the following in January 2018, two months after her death.

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Among the majestic Castle Hill boulders she is fearless while carrying a 19-week old babe nestled inside. She knows loss, so she thinks, but in this moment all is as it should be. Blessings abound.

In a week and four days an ultrasound will start to shake that fearless feeling.

In a month, while sitting in a cold, vinyl chair she will listen to a list of concerns about that now 23-week old babe.

In two months she will have the answer to it all—the DIAGNOSIS.

In four months from this photo that babe will receive an eviction notice.

In five months it will all end.

In seven months she will have lived a lifetime since this day among the majestic boulders. No longer naïve, she’s waking up. Standing among the mothers from the past, present and future who experience birth and death so closely intertwined. She will make their stories known. 💫

I have learned that in “the United States, the death rate for babies between twenty weeks gestation and one year of age is similar to that of people in their sixties, when death starts to be considered normal and sometimes expected. Furthermore, for every four confirmed pregnancies, one baby dies before birth at some point during the pregnancy. That’s about twice the death rate of adults eighty-five and older. So where do we get the impression that babies never die? Because nobody wants to talk about it.” (Empty Cradle, Broken Heart)

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