The sense of loss and grief that couples, especially mothers, go through when they lose a baby to miscarriage is simply shattering. Imagine what happens when one mom decides to “wear” her child loss in public despite her husband’s initial misgivings!
Autumn Safley, a mom-to-be from Jacksonville, Arkansas, was surprised while shopping at a local Hobby Lobby store when quite a few heads turned around to see the “special” T-shirt she was wearing. The T-shirt was printed with a rainbow heart that read, “You’re looking at a rainbow.” And her beloved husband was not really excited about her “strange” dress!
The dress and the text on it was something very close to Autumn’s heart; it referred to “rainbow babies”—babies conceived after a miscarriage, and just like a rainbow after a storm, these babies are like a beacon of hope for their parents.
Some couples are often scared and overly cautious about pregnancies after a miscarriage, thinking that something unfortunate might happen again. But Autumn, after losing two babies to miscarriages, took it as a call for celebrating that new life growing within her.
A fellow shopper, Courtney Mixon, in Hobby Lobby that same day was so deeply touched on seeing Autumn’s T-shirt that she started tearing up. Autumn approached her and asked if she could hug her. This instantly created a bond between the two of them. Courtney, who could relate to the painful experience of losing a baby, was so encouraged by Autumn’s positive attitude that she clicked a photo of her and shared it on Facebook. It has, since then, gone viral.
Later on, Autumn and her husband were blessed with little Jas, their beautiful rainbow baby, on Dec. 7, 2016.
Courtney told Babble, “I saw the rainbow heart printed on her belly, and I automatically knew what it meant. She had suffered a miscarriage and was now carrying a beautiful rainbow baby.”
While Autumn said, “As I was walking into Hobby Lobby, I saw Courtney. We made eye contact and I noticed she had big tears welled in her eyes. I walked over to her and asked if I could hug her.” “I told her to not give up, never lose hope, and that God had a perfect plan for her and her little family,” she added.
“I wanted Autumn to know she was so strong. The whole taboo surrounding it is just awful. We need to end it. People shouldn’t have to walk on eggshells to talk about it,” said Courtney.
This simple act of wearing a T-shirt actually represented courage and hope of a would-be mom; no doubt it touched the hearts of many.
Courtney said, “My inbox is flooded with messages. I’ve had complete strangers reach out to me, and opportunities to connect with people all over the world.”
“I’ve had so many women message me and simply say, ‘Thank you!’ I love the fact that women are speaking up about their losses. It shows we’re not alone.”