Experiencing Pregnancy Without Parents That Are Alive

Breathing deep as I begin this one. I’ve wanted to go deeper into this topic for some time here on the Edible Goddess blog, and it’s clearly the appropriate moment. It’s easy to keep the sadness of this issue to yourself, and it really feels like my role to make the connection and acknowledgment with other women who may relate.

As of today, I do not know anyone who is in the same situation as me, and I invite you to share this with them if you do! You can believe they’ll need to hear it, not because I am giving life-changing advice, but because they need to know they are not alone.

If you have ever “lost” a parent, and are a divine female in physical form, you may wonder (perhaps dread) what it would be like to go through pregnancy without your mom or dad being alive.

Want a little more background of my story? Read that HERE.

With a swell of emotion, I will share that I do not have any living members of my family left with the exception of my half sister, and despite attempts to be closer, we are distant. In this picture below you’ll meet my parents, Carol and Joe (on the right). The man standing up is Richard, and he introduced them. There’s a theme of UNITY in my life, and they met at Unity Church (attending even though they were not overly religious).


My due date (if we’re calculating according to when we conceived), is the very day my mom passed exactly 15 years ago. We conceived within just a few days of when my dad passed, 23 years ago. I was 23 when my mom transitioned to another dimension. I believe in beautiful synchronicity, not coincidences!

A tiny part of me was not eager to be pregnant because I didn’t want to be without the wisdom, support, guidance, and unconditional love that my mom would have brought. At the same time, I knew I’d be heartbroken if I ever found out I couldn’t have children as I knew this was something I genuinely desired to be a part of my future, so I’d have to face this hard-hitting truth at some point, and move through it with grace. Here I am.

Some people may say they cannot stand their mom or dad and they’re just fine with not having them around. I’ll respect your misguided opinion, and will strongly encourage you to learn to forgive whatever may need to be forgiven. “Oh no, you don’t know what they did or how it was…” Well, you’re going to have a hard life with that attitude, and live in resistance instead of the freedom you could consciously choose. Is it easy? Of course not. There are always things we didn’t prefer, and may even hold against our parents – but I am here on the side of not having them, totally forgiving them for any wrongdoings, and to share that you should really acknowledge that you wouldn’t even have the right to be so upset with them if they didn’t give birth to you. You wouldn’t be here. So, a thank you is in order – not resentment! It only hurts you and will haunt you for life.

Little side note.. I’m a mix of calm + composed, and a crying mess while writing this for you. I hope it sincerely helps someone! It’s helped me tremendously being courageous, vulnerable, and transparent.

I was a really happy joyful child… and early teen … and then one year in high school everything changed. Within a very short period of time, 2 of my best friends killed themselves together, 5 weeks later my dad died, and around that time I found out some crushing news about my mom that had a pronounced impact everyday of my life until she passed. My dad’s wake was at the same place as where my friends was, and it was incredibly challenging to walk in those doors again… yet I did with the gentle coercion of my dear friends Emily D and Emily K – after at least an hour of saying I couldn’t do it, and that I’d rather just turn away and go somewhere else. I wanted to run, to escape the devastation that I was drowning in. Thankfully I did not listen to myself that day because any chance we have to connect with someone who is near leaving us in this realm, or who just has, is irreplaceable and forevermore life-changing.

hasn’t been as bad as I thought it would be; in fact, there have been less than a handful of times where I’ve felt the deep ache in my heart of this heavy reality. If it’s something you cannot change, you really need to surrender and just accept it. Read this sentence over and over, and see with wise eyes how you can possibly accept your circumstances even if you’d do anything to change them.

There are times in our life where we have to make due with what we have. Do the best we can with the cards we are dealt. I feel like I called in the challenges (aka opportunities) up to this moment, and that it’s all for 1 reason: to help me evolve into the very person I am today.

Odd as it sounds, I need her to not be here with me for whatever reason is obviously in my highest. Life is about evolution, and I clearly did not want to take the easy road!

What I wanted to avoid was the sense of not having anyone being there for me (not even knowing how this may look) – since it would be a brand new, huge life change and you do not really truly know what your needs will be until you’re actually pregnant. Your real friends though, can and will stand in to play the support team. It’s not the same, but it is powerful to have a circle of sisters who stand by you.

There are times during pregnancy where you may want to ask your mom private things, like stuff that isn’t always part of the growing babies conversation with friends. Since I cannot do this (aside from in meditation and hoping to hear an answer), I have to rely on my friends who are going thru pregnancy with me or have before. To the handful of women who have opened the doors to these conversations with such invitation, I thank you so much. I really hold you in high regard.. and you know who you are because you’ll feel it, that you’ve been there for me these past several months – it’s mutual sisterhood style support and every woman needs not just the idealized talk of it, but the actual living of it!

I will acknowledge that 1 of the most difficult things for me is to see my friends, who have moms (whether they get along really well or not) – to turn to, ask questions, and for support – whether that’s emotionally or financially. Your mom is always there for you no matter what. It’s not jealousy that I feel, it’s more disappointment and sadness that I don’t have that. I feel like I’ve been hit when this arises, but I remember… I will be okay.

What I want you to know is that you shouldn’t dread getting pregnant for fear that you won’t be able to experience it with your mom. She’ll be with you, every single step of the way – I can promise you this! You’ll feel it, and you won’t be able to explain it. You’ll have a sense of protection, trust, and faith in yourself, even though you won’t know its’ origin. It comes from the undeniable motherly presence that will never leave your existence while you’re here on planet Earth.

Why do I still get brought to tears if I’m so okay with moving through this rite of passage on my own? I wish she could verbalize to me that she knows exactly what kind of journey I’m on, and that she can see how empowered I am, how amazing I’ve been at taking exceptional care of myself. I wish she could meet the love of my life, Mark… and give me that mama approval and pride in attracting someone so perfect for me! I wish she could reinforce and tell me that I have it in me to do this, to labor and give birth to a human being. I’d love to hear how proud she is of me, how excited she is to meet my little angel baby, how special it is to have children, and that I could gift her the blessing of being a grandparent (she passed just months after my sister had her 1st child).

For now, I go on the 3 words she begged me not to forget – the most important words she could ever share with me. BELIEVE IN YOURSELF, Bethanne. “You may not understand its’ significance, or see how relevant it will become right now, but just trust me. It’s everything”.

And so I’ve made my entire life about the journey of believing in myself. I take her, and her message with me. Pregnancy, labor and birth are the culmination of this message. It’s ALL for this. This is the test for how much I believe in myself. There are endless choices to make during this time and it truly comes to how much you believe in what you’re capable of, and your power as a woman. It’s the BEST FEELING EVER!! 🙂 Like you’ve been training for something and didn’t know for what, and now you get the most divine experience to really show (yourself) how far you’ve come!

The more you believe in yourself, the less fear you’ll have, and the easier your birth will be! It’s all connected. (click to tweet!)


I close my eyes, breathe in deep, and feel the energy of that belief sink deep into my cells. I will be okay. This is a message someone who has lost their parents needs to know. It is my truth, I know it now, and reaffirm it. I can handle anything, and it was my mom’s lesson for me – those few magical words, that ingrained this so deeply.

1 of the things I’m most looking forward to is living life with my children, being their friend, and doing everything in my power to let them know that I will always be with them.

Part of me has wished for an alternative reality, where everyone I love is alive and here with me. I could spend my days wishing for something that I’ll never have, OR embrace what I have been given, swim freely in this delicious life I’ve designed, and create my future as I desire it to be. THIS IS CHOICE, and 1 of our greatest gifts. The other – and most significant – is creating life!

May you always know that you are not alone. It may take you 15 years like it has for me to transcend this feeling and that’s okay. For the first time in a long, long time – I will have family. I will never not have family, and I’m super excited about this! I’ve spent years without one, and now I get to give birth to an adorable little being, and he or she will always be a part of me! My stunning, most loving, deeply supportive man Mark, is my family as well. We’re in this life together, and he’s shown me what family and the truest of love feels like.

By having this baby in the next few weeks, I will have the first full blood family alive in 11.5 years (when my grandma transitioned – she was like my 2nd mom – we were the best of friends and I genuinely miss our playful friendship). It’s REALLY exciting to be starting a family from scratch in a sense. It feels incredibly creative, and there’s no family baggage or drama (brought in from others) that has influenced my pregnancy journey. This has been absolutely phenomenal!

I spent some time in the earlier part of my pregnancy thinking “why why why is this the way things are… right when I need you the most (mom / dad / gram), I don’t have you. I have questions, I need my mom and grandma here with me, I need …..” But, what do I need that I don’t have within myself? If my mom taught me anything it’s that I have everything within me, and I have to believe her.

HOWEVER, the thoughts have risen: Who will I call if there’s an emergency during pregnancy, labor or birth OR to announce the news right away? Who will care (like my parents would have) if something happens to me (in life in general)!!? This has always been the hardest thing for me to get my head around. You can suggest a dozen things, but it feels different when you’re talking to someone in a situation that you’ve never been in, versus being in it and feeling your own truth about it.

Well, my magnificent Mark has and will be by my side and will continue to be, I know that! I have an unbelievably strong angel team in the skies, and honestly do live in full trust.

We cannot spend the moments in our lives wishing it were another way; it would be wasting time and disregarding the infinite blessings that are ever present in every waking moment. It’s too easy to overlook them and want something else. Don’t be one of those people!

Part of the reason I do not talk about my past family situation is that I do not want pity, apologies, judgment, or anyone to respond with feeling bad for me. I took care of that 15 years ago myself 😉 Yes, sure – COMPASSION, but not turning me into a victim. This is my life, and I’ve created it on a grand Universal scale. This is for my highest evolution, and am the woman you know me to be because of the loss, tragedy, heartbreak, and unfortunate scenarios!

Some think that not having parents around for their wedding is the worst thing ever. I have yet to be married (it is coming), though I will say that as a woman, it feels more powerful to have the presence of your mom during pregnancy and in the rejoicing and relating of the birth experience, than the commitment to the man (or woman) you love. I am already convinced she’s the one who set us up in magical ways from above, though as mentioned, I’d give anything for my mom and gram to meet my love. Will our wedding be another emotional ride for me? I bet, and I’ll hold the same feelings I do today that I share with you, on that most wonderful day of our love celebration.

How we respond to life is important, and I’ve been given grand opportunities that not everyone receives. I don’t feel this is a warped perspective trying to make myself feel better; I’ve had many, many years to think about this! I feel that by not having parents, grandparents, or anyone else really as blood family is a blessing in disguise that I have been granted, because I can do something with the wisdom, and transformation that occurs as a direct result. There’s no other option for someone like me (living with depression sucks). Here I am with yet another thing to add to the list of things that can either take you down and ruin your life, or truly empower you to be your best version ever. I’ll go with the latter thank you very much!

The best thing you can do for me is to believe in me like I do, like my mom did – as this is what (re)birth is about. This is a true new beginning for me, I get to create a family after longing for one for sooo long, and do it in the super healthy, progressive, empowered way that represents the new paradigm. As my baby will be transitioning earth side, I will be symbolically reborn!

Life is lived with an assumption that people’s parents are alive. It’s a challenging feeling to hear “are your parents doing this or that for you?” No, they are not. Remind me 1 more time, please. On my own, I literally have no family that will be providing anything material to us to support this journey in terms of gifts. As encouraged by friends who felt that my severe self-reliance tendencies can take a mini-break, I started an angel baby registry (on Amazon!). I am not directly asking for anything, and am sharing with you in case you’re inspired to contribute to this rising into motherhood, or peek at what kinds of things I’ll be using for my newborn! You can bet this perfect pumpkin will be raised organically.

Please share with anyone who may be moved by my words – THANK YOU for being with me on this indescribable journey, reading this heartfelt private story of mine, and for forgiving your parents and moving on.


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About Bethanne Wanamaker

Bethanne Wanamaker is a certified holistic nutritionist, conscious living expert, and the founder of Edible Goddess, an international health & lifestyle brand that cares deeply about your empowerment. She teaches progressive strategies that awaken you to your highest potential by following the body's inherent wisdom and aligning with an intentional mindset, holistic approach, self nourishing practices, and high self value. Bethanne advocates gradual yet significant shifts of upgraded dietary choices that ultimately lead you to the freedom and confidence of eating intuitively. By living in harmony with nature, you can have what you want. She is known for getting results quickly with committed clients who want to live a wildly rewarding, super fun, truly healthy and happy life!