What (and When) Is National Rainbow Baby Day?

Updated

For many people, having a baby is one of the biggest blessings they’ll ever receive. This blessing may feel even more powerful when it comes after a pregnancy loss. 

Life after a pregnancy loss can feel lonely and painful, and while you heal with time, the memory of the unborn baby you lost will stay with you forever. Some people experience repeated losses before it feels like the clouds part and they have their rainbow baby

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A rainbow baby is a baby that someone has or adopts after pregnancy loss. Having a baby after loss is something to honor, cherish, and celebrate. That’s why National Rainbow Baby Day was created.

What Is National Rainbow Baby Day?

National Rainbow Baby Day is a day to honor the babies that were lost, the parents that love them, and the rainbow babies that make their way into the world after heartbreak. 

Having a baby after a pregnancy loss can come with a whole mixed bag of emotions. Yes, parents may feel happy, excited, and joyful, but it’s also common to feel anxious, worried, and feel floods of grief. 

National Rainbow Baby Day honors this wide range of human emotions, the journeys, and the lives touched by rainbow babies and their angel siblings. Having a day dedicated to rainbow babies also helps shed light, awareness, and education on the painful, yet all too common reality of pregnancy loss, and what it’s like to have a baby after.

Rainbow babies symbolize love, hope, resilience, trust, and the incredible strength that humans have.

» MORE: Need help with funeral costs? Create a free online memorial to gather donations.

When Is National Rainbow Baby Day?

If you’ve been touched by pregnancy loss and have welcomed a rainbow baby into your life, you might want to know how you can connect with the community and come together over your shared experiences.

A great time to do this is on National Rainbow Baby Day. When exactly is it? National Rainbow Baby Day is celebrated on August 22nd. Of course, every day can be a day to celebrate your rainbow baby.

What’s the History Behind National Rainbow Baby Day?

Pregnancy loss and rainbow babies have existed since the beginning of time, the holiday to commemorate them is fairly new, however. 

An organization called “What The Fertility” created National Rainbow Baby Day in 2018, just a few years ago. “What The Fertility” is run by Alexis Delchiaro. A self-identified Rainbow Mama, Delchiaro has two children that she calls her “almost twins”. She adopted a newborn when she was just 22 weeks pregnant, so her children are only 5 ½ months apart.

The former T.V. anchor and host says that the journey she had to become a mother and raise her kids is her true passion and calling. This journey is why she created National Rainbow Baby Day.

How Can You Participate in National Rainbow Baby Day?

You’ve been touched by a rainbow baby in one way or another. Whether it’s your own or a loved one’s. You’re ready to get involved and participate in National Rainbow Baby Day, but are wondering just how to do that. We’ve got some ideas for you.

Here are some ways you can participate in National Rainbow Baby Day:

Join a rainbow baby group

It might feel like you’re the only one, but you’re not. There are so many other rainbow baby parents out there who are just waiting to connect. 

Joining a rainbow baby group could mean a support group, a meet-up, a Facebook group, an online forum, or anywhere else where parents of rainbow babies can gather together.

Even if you can’t find a local group, technology and social media have made it so much easier to connect with people around the world over your shared losses and blessings.

Give back

Another great way to participate in National Rainbow Baby Day is to contribute to an organization that is close to your heart.

There are so many ways to give back, whether that’s volunteering, donating money or goods, or connecting with someone who has experienced pregnancy loss and offering them your support and guidance. 

Some organizations you can connect with are:

  • International Stillbirth Alliance is a coalition of stillbirth awareness groups and organizations that works to promote research and awareness around stillbirth. 
  • The Compassionate Friends offers support, friendship, and understanding to families who have lost a child at any age.
  • First Candle is dedicated to ending Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and providing bereavement support to families who have experienced a loss. 
  • Baby Quest Foundation helps hopeful parents cover the extremely high costs of fertility treatments on their way to making a family.
  • Tommy’s provides free online resources for families experiencing loss and helps fund scientific research about pregnancy and infant loss.

Another way to give back is to connect with local birth centers, hospitals, and midwives to see if they can link you up with families who have experienced a loss and need emotional support or guidance.

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Share your story

Your story is powerful. It’s the backbone of how you got where you are, and what led you to bring your wonderful rainbow baby into the world.

Storytelling is a powerful tool for the person telling the story, and anyone who gets the honor of hearing it. Storytelling inspires people, instills hope, and builds a sense of trust and camaraderie amongst people who have been through similar experiences. You get to decide how much or how little of your story you want to share with people, and where you want to share it.

If you need a little extra inspiration you can add in some rainbow baby quotes like these:

  • “And then my soul saw you, and it said, ‘Oh, there you are. I’ve been looking for you.’” Anonymous
  • “There are no words that can describe the euphoria you feel when your baby recognizes you for the first time and smiles.” Jared Padalecki
  • “It was the Rainbow give thee birth, and left thee all her lovely hues.”  W.H. Davies 

You can share your story on social media or in a group for parents of rainbow babies, or you can submit it to an online or print publication.

Honor your lost little one

This is a day to not only celebrate life but honor loss. How can you honor your little one that passed and all the other people that have been touched by pregnancy loss?

This could be as small or as big of a gesture as you’d like. Here are some ideas:

  • Plant a memorial garden.
  • Paint a memorial mural.
  • Organize a fundraiser.
  • Spend time with family and friends.
  • Take a solo parent day for self-care and connection.

There are so many ways to honor the lives that were cut short. How you do it is up to you.

Gift giving

You can either give your rainbow baby a gift, give your spouse or loved one a gift, or give one to yourself!

Giving a gift for National Rainbow Baby Day is a way of giving yourself or your loved one the support they need and letting them know they’re in your heart. 

Looking for some gift ideas?

We have a few for you:

  • Rainbow or birthstone jewelry
  • A massage gift certificate
  • Rainbow baby clothes or blankets
  • A children’s book about rainbow babies or pregnancy loss
  • Flowers or plants
  • A family photoshoot
  • A meal train delivery

Any gift big or small is a meaningful way to participate in National Rainbow Baby Day.

Celebrate the rainbow baby

Your child deserves to know just how much you love and cherish them.

Depending on how old they are, you might want to tell them some of your story. Death and loss are a part of life, and it may be helpful for everyone for your rainbow baby to know, even if they can’t quite understand it all.

There are so many ways to celebrate your rainbow baby, and you can make education a part of that celebration so that they know why they’re having such a special day. 

Here are some ways to celebrate rainbow babies of all different ages:

  • Make a rainbow cake or rainbow sundae.
  • Get them a special rainbow baby day outfit.
  • Take them somewhere special.
  • Tell them the story of how they came to be in the world.
  • Organize a meetup with other rainbow babies and parents.
  • Paint rainbows together on paper, in chalk, or other kinds of arts and crafts. 

Who doesn’t love an excuse to celebrate life?

Celebrating and Honoring National Rainbow Baby Day

There’s no one right way to participate in National Rainbow Baby Day. If you feel triggered or sad on the day, it’s OK (and encouraged) to just take time for yourself and your family.

As time moves on, you might feel more inspired to get involved in organizations and communities that support rainbow babies and their families. 

There are so many ways to give back, share your story, connect, honor, educate, and celebrate. You decide how you’ll participate in National Rainbow Baby Day.

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