Author Archives: matushkaanna

About matushkaanna

Orthodox clergy wife, mom of seven, reader, knitter, blogger, skywatcher.

Caleb’s photographs and story

Earlier this year Kimberly lost a baby, Quinn Zoe, at 13 weeks, 6 days. She shared Quinn’s story and photos here. Unfortunately Kimberly has just lost another baby, Caleb, at 10 weeks, 2 days. She has generously shared her heart once again, giving us photos and her story.

Caleb’s photos are important because they show how the gestational sac is many times encased in the uterine lining and/or placenta when it is delivered, hiding the sac. This leads many people to think they haven’t delivered the baby or that they “weren’t really pregnant.” Gentle examination can reveal the sac and baby.

My grateful thanks to Kimberly for sharing her precious children with us here.

May Caleb’s memory be eternal!




New additions: Zion and Quinn Zoe


Heavenly previously shared her twins, Cedar and Arrow, with us and sadly experienced another miscarriage. Zion departed this life at the age of 9 weeks and was born after medical induction. She was born outside the sac and her body was not intact. Heavenly and I decided that it was important to share these photographs even though they may be difficult to see because this is not a rare occurrence and it may help someone else who experiences the same thing. They are on the Photographs page under 9 weeks.

Kimberly has shared her baby Quinn Zoe with us, departed this life at 13 weeks and six days and born at 19 weeks and two days. Quinn’s photographs are on the Photographs page and Kimberly’s story appears on the Your Stories page under 13 weeks. In addition, Kimberly shared a photo of her placenta which is on The Actual Process page along with photographs of placentas at other gestational ages.

Many thanks to Heavenly and Kimberly for so generously sharing the photographs and stories of their beloved children. May the memory of Zion and Quinn Zoe be eternal!


New additions to the photographs and stories pages

Two babies have been added to the site: Baby C and Baby Pax. You can see them on the Photographs Page.

Baby C was only 4 weeks and not easy to pick out in his intact gestational sac, but it is extremely rare to see a sac this small (approximately 3 mm diameter). Thank you to his or her mother A. for sharing her baby.

Baby Pax was approximately 6.5 weeks, born at 11 weeks. He was indeed a boy and had Trisomy 22. He can be seen very clearly inside his sac. His story is also posted on the Your Stories page. Thank you to his mother, Trisha, for sharing her baby with us.

May God bless these mothers for their generosity in sharing their beloved children, and may He grant them comfort in their grief. Memory eternal!

Baby Eden

Thank you to Roxanne for sharing photos of her baby, Eden, in the sac at 5 weeks. Edwin was born at approximately 9 weeks, 3 days gestation after multiple scans showing slight gestational sac growth but none otherwise. There is one detailed photo in which Eden is clearly visible in the sac (I added notations to help) even at such a young age and after so many weeks of waiting.

May Eden’s memory be eternal!

Twins, Arrow and Cedar

Heavenly was generous enough to share photographs of her twins Arrow (11 weeks) and Cedar (5 weeks) after they were born following expectant management for a missed miscarriage. Heavenly had felt she was pregnant with twins but only saw one baby at a 9 weeks ultrasound. When she miscarried she saw the tiny twin still in the gestational sac. You can see photographs of Cedar and Arrow on the Photographs page under the 5 and 11 weeks headings. Thank you, Heavenly, and may God comfort you in your grief.

May their memory be eternal!

Baby Peanut

Thank you to Myra for graciously allowing me to share photos of her baby, Peanut, who was born a few days ago. He died at 9 weeks, 5 days, and she courageously carried him for an additional 9 weeks. He was born after two attempts at medical induction (at home) and was beautiful and perfect despite the long wait. You can see his photos on the Photographs page under the 9 Weeks heading.

It hurts

It hurts. I felt exactly the same way after we lost Andrew, our second loss in 8 months, and with no explanation.

Every early afternoon, I would walk over to her grave, lay down across it, and listen to Marillion’s Afraid of Sunlight.  Sometime in the hour or so visit, I would just raise my fist to the sky and scream at God.  “You gave me one job, God, to be a father to this little girl, and you took it all away.” In my fury, I called Him the greatest murderer in history, a bastard, an abortionist, and other horrible things. I never doubted His existence, but I very much questioned His love for us.

Read the whole article here.

It does get better. I can’t logically convince anyone of that, but it does. God is merciful to have taken all of my rage and flailing about and love me anyway. I know all of this now, but reading the essay I look back and viscerally remember the pain. Lord have mercy.

Russian Orthodox Church approves rite of burial for unbaptized infants

July 14, Pravmir. The Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church has approved the rite of the burial of unbaptized infants during their meeting on July 14, 2018.

It was reported by Priest Alexander Volkov, Press Secretary of His Holiness, Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia.

According to Fr. Alexander, this rite will become mandatory for all parishes of the Russian Orthodox Church.

“As you know, earlier the Church did not have the opportunity to celebrate a burial service for unbaptized infants. Sometimes infants are stillborn or die shortly after due to various circumstances that cannot be overcome by human power. Naturally, grieving parents come to a church and ask priests to officiate at least some rite for their departed children and seek their own consolation,” the RIA news service quotes the priest.

Read the rest here.