I’ve heard talk from various Mormon sources that women who miscarry will “get to raise those children in the next life.” I can see how some women might find this statement comforting. It promises that the opportunity you once had is not lost, just deferred. I get it. But I actually hope that this statement is not true, at least not in my case.
I hope that my life is long and (re)productive enough that by the time I die and move on to the afterlife I will be done raising kids. Further, I wouldn’t want any child of mine to be kept in a state of arrested development on my account. And all of this is assuming a lot because I don’t even know whether my 10 week old fetus had a soul.
I can’t place my finger on what I had. It certainly wasn’t alive in the sense that you and I are alive, but when it died, I didn’t feel the loss of dead cells. It was something more than that. On the other hand, 25% of pregnancies end in miscarriage. Wouldn’t it be somewhat useless to place souls into non-viable bodies with such a high mortality rate? And like I said, I have no idea. But here is what I feel/hope:
I hope that the baby had a soul, or perhaps a soul assigned to it. I hope that the soul is free to move about between our mortal world and the immortal world. I hope that during pregnancy the soul can chill out and take a nap, or do tap dancing, or baby fight club in the mother’s womb in the morning. And then after lunch, skip up to heaven to check out a seminar on “How to be born to families with pet dogs.” I hope that when a woman miscarries, it’s more like a canceled flight at the airport. The souls belonging to children of miscarriage mommies would just catch the next pregnancy down to that particular family. I hope that the same soul I became so attached to will join us again soon.