Meet Nikki. A few weeks ago, Nikki shared some beautiful and inspiring art work with me – I knew I needed to share her painting with you all, and also wanted to share her story. I asked her to write about her painting, and she happily obliged, hoping it might help someone else walking this difficult journey. Without further ado – Nikki’s story:
It is hard for me to decide where I would like to begin. The exact moment that always plays over and over again in my mind is the doctor turning to us and saying “I’m sorry your baby has no heartbeat.” I have never felt so much pain in my life. I was young. 21 at the time and this was our first pregnancy. My boyfriend at the time, (now husband) and I had been dating for a few months after knowing each other for about 2 years. We knew right away we wanted to be married and have children together but we decided to do everything backwards, which is completely fine. It took us no time at all to conceive but very shortly after we found out I became very sick. I spent the better part of that following month in the hospital and when we finally made some progress we knew I would be heading home. My husband and I were thrilled we could get back to our somewhat normal lives, and when I returned home he had surprised me with a canvas,easel, and new acrylic paint. He wanted us to paint our first sonogram picture of our little peanut which I thought was the absolute sweetest gift. The following week was my checkup, and our 10 week appointment where we found out our little one was no longer with us. I didn’t know what to do. I knew what a miscarriage was but that was it. I didn’t know what caused them and sadly how often they happen.
I am thankful everyday for the sonographer who was in the room with us and I know now why she was there. I will never forget her gentle smile and the kind words of hope she gave to my husband and I that day. We told her about the painting and she encouraged us to do the painting in rememberance of our baby. To be honest it took almost 2 years for us to complete it, just because the idea of it made me want to scream. There were days when it made me happy to celebrate and honor our baby by doing the painting, and some days I wanted to throw it out the window and the hardest part for me was to paint the heartbeat. How can I paint these lines that indicate my baby’s heartbeat when it wasn’t there. But I reminded myself of when that heartbeat was there and how it was the most beautiful sound I have ever heard.
When we first decided to do it we were going to try to make an exact replica of the picture, but as it progressed we just decided to go in the complete opposite direction. I wanted it to be bright, I wanted to look at and see happiness, and think of our angel that is watching down on us from heaven every single day. I am not an “artist” per say but I love the painting and it will always be my favorite work of art. I wanted the painting where I would see it all the time so we decided to put it in my craft room and it fits perfect and is all the inspiration I need. We are praying for the courage to try again one day, and if we are blessed with another baby one day, the canvas will in his or her room.
I spent alot of time being absolutely miserable and depressed, crying every single day and asking myself why and how could this happen to me. What had I done to deserve this? It has taken me a very long time to get to the point I am at now but I want to be thankful for the things I have and the things I can do. I am lucky to be able to conceive at all because their are many women who will never know that joy. I hope this inspires someone, and I pray it gives you hope.