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Parents of lost babies and potential of all kinds: come here to share the technicolour, the vividness, the despair, the heart-broken-open, the compassion we learn for others, having been through this mess — and see it reflected back at you, acknowledged and understood.

Thanks to photographer Xin Li and to artist Stephanie Sicore for their respective illustrations and photos.

ttc | pregnancy | birth after loss > TTC after loss: how long did it take?

We lost our 15 month old son 12/18/16 to pneumonia. We want another baby and starting trying in January. We didn't get pregnant in January and I will know next Wednesday if this cycle worked. We never had a problem getting pregnant before, I had 3 children (2 living daughters and our youngest was our 15 month old son) and one miscarriage between #2 and #3. I no longer have confidence that it will be easy to get pregnant. I have no idea how grief will affect my ability to conceive. I was 30, 34, and 36 when I got pregnant before and now I am 39.

I was hoping for others to share their journey to conceive after the death of their child. How long it took, any unexpected issues, was there a grief milestone you think you needed to pass before your body was ready?

February 17, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterDenise
Hi Denise,
I'm so sorry for your loss. It always took us years to get pregnant. (4 years, 2 years, 3 years). So when we decided to TTC, we thought it would be a while. And to our shock, we got pregnant this time on the first attempt. This was especially shocking because this time we were told the time would probably be LONGER because of scaring and such. The bottom line is that you just don't know how long it may take. Don't try unless you both feel ready, because it could be on the first try! I thought the grief and general nervousness would make it take longer but I guess it did not.

At first- I didn't think I needed any kind of grief mile stone before trying again. However- I had to heal from my c-section so I was told by doctors to wait a year to physically heal. That sounded unimaginably long and painful-like an extra piece of bad news. I was SO ready at a year. My husband wasn't yet- which was it's own struggle. Then all of a sudden he was ready at a year and a few months- and that terrified me. I somehow after being ready for over a year, was too afraid/not ready. So we waited some more. At a month shy of two years after losing our son- we were both suddenly ready. Now we are excited/scared/freaking out since we found out TTC actually worked. A new kind of shock.

I have read a few studies that talk about how much reducing stress increases your odds of conceiving. Get massages, relax, breath. Ever wonder why it's so easy for teenage girls to get pregnant? Because they have no jobs or bills or stress or worries! At least, that's what my doctor told me once. You MAY want to consider seeing a fertility specialist. Ask your doctor if they think this is a good idea. My sister who just turned 40 (who has never been or TTC) was told to see a fertility specialist because she wants to get pregnant and the closer you are to 40 the harder it can potentially be. An early consult a few months before MAY make the difference.

And don't put all your stock in it happening- especially right away. We kind of came to a peace that if it was meant to happen at all, on whatever timeline we would make sure we were ok, and we would figure it out as we go. Now I'm in the mindset that if it's meant to be hopefully I can remain pregnant... and that this baby will be born ok, and live. ... But it's out of my control. So, I rest in the thoughts that I am doing my best and just don't have control over all the things I want control of. Like even getting pregnant, let alone the possibility of actually having a baby.

I am sending your thoughts of love, balance, and understanding. I hope everything aligns wonderfully and you are able to get that perfect healthy babe when you are ready for it.
February 17, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterapril