now i lay me down to sleep

‘I’m having a hard time finding the baby’s head,’ the doctor said. ‘Were you bit by a mosquito during pregnancy?’: Mom births miracle baby with microcephaly, ‘He brings us endless joy!’

“I went for my routine check-up with my OB. The vibe of the room felt off. My doctor asked, ‘Have you been out of the country while pregnant?’ So many questions went through my head all at once. Is my baby alive? Is he okay? How’s his head? How many fingers and toes does he have? I was already in love with him, but so scared. And then I felt it. ‘This baby isn’t going anywhere.'”

‘Am I really going to be a dad?’ He smiled. ‘You aren’t mad?’ We were too young to have kids.’: Mom suffers PTSD after son is stillborn, ‘they couldn’t find anything wrong’

“He sat on the couch next to me. HE STARTED CRYING! As soon as I stepped on the linoleum, I felt a HUGE gush! A puddle of bright, red blood. His face turned white, his eyes were huge. ‘Has he moved at all today? Could you feel him?!’ I felt my heart shatter. I had one job. All I had to do was keep my baby safe. This can’t be real, it’s a nightmare. ‘Taylor…I’m so sorry.’ We studied him so we wouldn’t forget anything. He was perfect. It actually surprised me.”

‘Sweet boy, Mommy and Daddy love you so much.’ His silent 3-pound body was wrapped in a blanket.’: Parents of child loss know they will see son ‘in heaven,’ celebrate living twin’s life while grieving their loss

“We cried, touching him gently. The room was filled with silence. ‘What color would you like Noah’s casket?’ ‘What outfit will he be buried in?’ I struggled to answer. I couldn’t stop thinking, ‘I’m not supposed to be making these decisions. Parents aren’t supposed to bury their children.’ We celebrate his twin brother Liam as we grieve Noah. But death is not the end. We will see Noah in heaven some day.”

‘Are you ready to hold your baby?’ She takes a deep breath, sits up as straight as she can. We’re very careful.’: Child loss photographer reminds grieving parents ‘this little life mattered’

“The room is still, almost silent. I meet their beautiful baby, I hold their baby, talk to their baby. All while taking a mental assessment of how much posing I can do. I ask who he got his beautiful wavy hair from, or his button nose or long toes. I talk, but not too much to overwhelm anyone. I work gently, efficiently. I capture every single detail. No one wants this. Their child existed. Their child was so loved, and so wanted.”

For our best love stories, subscribe to our free email newsletter: