The Gift of a Rainbow Baby
For parents who have lost a child, nothing will ever be able to replace that baby. But sometimes out of sorrow is the gift of a “rainbow baby,” the healthy baby who follows loss.
There are times in our lives when we experience moments of trauma that are forever stamped in our memories. For me, some of those were when my parents divorced or when my grandfather passed away. And most recently when friends or family have shared with me me that sadly they had miscarried their precious babies.
I remember the email one of my best friends sent our girlfriend group to let us know she lost her baby. I had just delivered my first son a few days before. That made my sadness greater, knowing that my friend’s pregnancy wouldn’t end with the same joy that mine had.
I remember the phone call from my mom telling me that my sister-in-law would have to give birth to my nephew at only 22 weeks. His little body and organs had stopped growing and he wouldn’t survive.
My sister-in-law emailed us, explaining how she and my brother had cried out to the Lord to save their son. And when He didn’t, I remember hearing about them worshiping that same Lord as they held their teeny, tiny son to say goodbye.
Sadly, these are only two of the many miscarriage stories of friends and family in my life. You may have heard the statistics that one in four women suffer a miscarriage at some point in their lives.
If, like me, you haven’t suffered a miscarriage yourself, you can still understand at least some of the grief and sadness that accompanies the loss of a baby. The emptiness of a hollow womb. The silent lack of little kicks. The knowledge that it will take the remainder of your lifetime until you see that sweet baby again.
Miscarriages and rainbow babies
Miscarriages are devastating, confusing, and heart wrenching. We will never know answers this side of eternity as to why things like this happen. Why babies lose their lives before they even get to feel the sun on their faces. Why death should impact the most innocent of all God’s creation.
It can be so hard to trust God, to understand His ways when we experience a devastation so deep. But in His Word, God promises that good will come out of our sorrow. Genesis 50:20 says, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good…”
He also promises us an eternal glory for all the trials and difficulties we face in this life. “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:17-18).
For parents who have lost a child, nothing will ever be able to replace that baby. But God promises to always be with us, and that good will still come into our lives. In many circumstances, the good that God brings out of our sorrow is the gift of a “rainbow baby,” the healthy baby who follows a miscarried baby.
Joy from sorrow
One of the first Bible stories young children learn about is Noah and the Ark. At the end of the story, God provides a rainbow to remind His people of His promise to never again allow rain to destroy the whole world. He created a beautiful image to illustrate the end of a devastation. In the same way, a rainbow baby is a beautiful creation, brought out of sorrow. Just like rainbows after a storm, rainbow babies don’t encourage you to forget the sadness, but to see the joy that God can bring from sorrow.
We can rely on God’s promise that His new mercies will come in the morning. (See Lamentations 3:22-23.)
Gordon Ramsay’s rainbow baby
Well-known celebrity Gordon Ramsay recently announced the birth of a rainbow baby. He and his wife, Tana had their fifth baby in early April. This may come as a shock to many people, since Gordon is in his 50’s. Not to mention that their four other children are 16 years and older.
But this news also comes as a welcome blessing since Gordon announced three years ago that Tana suffered a miscarriage. Their willingness to be open and honest with their heartbreak was an encouragement to so many others. Thousands of people commented about experiencing miscarriages and thanked Gordon and Tana for sharing their pain with the world.
Unfortunately, this is a very common devastation. But if it’s not discussed, it can lead to incredible loneliness. By sharing their pain, Gordon and Tana became relatable and helped take away the stigma of shame that can be associated with miscarriage.
It’s encouraging that even in his “older” age, Gordon and Tana are still celebrating new life with a rainbow baby added to their family.
Congratulations to Gordon and Tana Ramsay on the addition of sweet baby Oscar. We are over the moon for you both. Thanks for being an example of what commitment to family looks like, even in the public eye.
Copyright © 2019 Jenn Grandlienard. All rights reserved.
Jenn Grandlienard grew up an East Coast Philly girl, but now loves calling the Midwest her home. She lives in Xenia, Ohio with her husband, Stuart, two sons, Knox and Zeke, and pup, Stella. Jenn and her husband work with Athletes in Action, a ministry of Cru that teaches college athletes what it means to have a relationship with Jesus. She loves to read, work out, laugh really hard with friends, and spend time with her husband and boys. You can check out her blog about all these things and more at OurGrandLife.com. Find her on Instagram at @mrsjenngrand and on Facebook.