The 1 in 4: Nelson Family

Our journey to parenthood started five years ago. We became pregnant and we were blissfully happy. Immediately we started making plans. My husband left to go visit family in Maine for about a week. During his trip I began to miscarry. I was so afraid. It completely broke my heart. Our doctor told us it was "normal" and probably would not happen again.

A few months went by and we decided to try again. Much to my surprise we got pregnant immediately.

Everything was going well. I went to our 10 week scan and there was no heartbeat. Again, I was shattered. We had a D&C the next day. After a few months we decided to try again, another miscarriage and another and another. This pattern repeated itself six times. We had genetic testing done and it was determined I have a balance translocation of chromosomes 3 & 4. We had appointments with doctors to determine what this meant for us. After much research, we decided to try again naturally.

We got pregnant again. I kept waiting to miscarry but I never did. We entered our second trimester and we were feeling pretty good! I couldn’t believe we were FINALLY getting our take home baby. We were so excited so we booked a private scan at 15 weeks to find out the gender. It was a boy! That was one of the happiest days of my life. We were on cloud nine!

We had four more weeks with our boy. I woke up when I was 19 weeks pregnant and I went to the restroom where all of a sudden my water broke. I think I was in shock. We rushed to our doctor where a scan confirmed my water did in fact break. We were admitted and told the chances were very slim our boy would live.

There are no words to describe how that broke my heart. A few days passed and I woke up one night and my body was going into toxic shock. I got very sick and our baby boy was born sleeping at 3:30 pm on October 3, 2015. I had him in my ICU room.

I don’t remember a lot about his birth. I stayed another week in the hospital. Leaving without my baby in my arms was one of the hardest things I have ever done. I don’t know how we got through those days, but we did.

It was determined I had an incompetent cervix. Our plan for our next pregnancy would be a vaginal cerclage at 14 weeks.

We got pregnant again. Like before, I was waiting to miscarry but I didn’t. When I was 14 weeks pregnant, we were admitted so I could get a vaginal cerclage. Surgery went fantastic. We were full of hope. So much so that when we found out we were having a baby girl, we named her Ainsley Hope.

Everything was going perfect until 22 weeks. I woke up and felt my water bag slipping out. We were admitted to the hospital and I started going into labor. Ainsley was born May 9, 2016. She lived for 7 hours and was held and loved every second of her life.

My heart was beyond shattered. How could this happen again?

As much as I was heartbroken, I was determined to be a mother to a living baby. We did a lot of research and thanks to my amazing doctor we found a specialist in Chicago who places transabdominal cerclages for women with an incompetent cervix. We flew to Chicago and I had the surgery.

Our take home baby was born September 6, 2017. While he can never take away our pain, he has helped to heal our hearts.

It is important for me that our babies never be forgotten. I am so thankful to Anna's Grace for allowing so many families to keep their baby’s memories alive. I am also thankful for all the support they offer to our loss community.

To make a donation to Anna’s Grace Foundation in honor of the Nelson Family, visit

About Anna’s Grace Foundation Anna’s Grace Foundation is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization supporting families in the Greater Baton Rouge Area who experience miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant loss. Each and every day one of our neighbors, friends, coworkers, or family members will experience the devastating loss of a baby, and Anna’s Grace is there to provide emotional and financial support so that families can focus on healing. The Anna’s Grace Quarter Marathon is on March 25, 2018. For more information or to register, visit

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