Jill Duggar Dillard Has Happy News After Suffering Tragic Loss

The last year has been a difficult one for Jill Duggar Dillard, to say the least. The former star of TLC's "19 Kids & Counting" and "Counting On" suffered a miscarriage early in her third pregnancy in October 2021. The baby would have been a sibling for sons Israel, 6, and Samuel, 4. "Even though it was too early to tell the baby's gender, we picked a name that we feel encompasses our baby's significance and the life we will always remember: River Bliss Dillard," Jill and her husband, Derick, wrote on their family blog. 

Happily, the Dillards' grief has turned again to joy. On the evening of February 27, Jill and Derick unexpectedly announced, "We've been keeping a little secret! Ever since we were devastated last fall by the miscarriage of our sweet baby, River Bliss, we have prayed that, if it was God's will, he would bless us with another baby. We are excited to announce that God has answered our prayers and we are expecting our rainbow baby due July 2022!"

The couple shared two photos: one of them tossing colored confetti into the air, and another family portrait that clearly showed Jill's bump. She and Derick held aloft a gold balloon saying "baby," while Israel and Samuel sported black T-shirts saying "Big" and "Middle," respectively.

The Dillards are thankful for the blessing of a "rainbow baby"

A child born after a previous miscarriage or stillbirth has come to be called a "rainbow baby," because it signifies something beautiful that comes after a period of darkness and sorrow. Obstetrician Jennifer Kulp-Makarov told Parents, "It's an extremely emotional and devastating experience to lose a pregnancy [or baby]. To create a life or bring a baby into the world after such a loss is amazing like a miracle for these parents."

After losing their third child Jill Duggar Dillard and husband Derick leaned on their Christian faith to support them through their grief. They wrote in their family blog, "Our baby doesn't get to live here with us on earth, but is forever with the source of the river of life, in the presence of the Lord!" Still, it was a shattering blow, and Jill found healing in memorializing River through a memory box containing letters for the baby and other mementoes. She also had inspirational phrases tattooed in henna on her hands for solace. 

Jill and Derick Dillard concluded their pregnancy announcement by saying, "We are so thankful for a healthy baby and pregnancy so far and we look forward to finding out the gender soon!" Their news was quickly met with more than 52,000 likes on Jill's Instagram account, including congratulatory messages from fellow reality-show alums Josie Bates Balka and Carlin Bates Stewart. Jill's aunt Amy King wrote, "What a sweet picture!! Couldn't be happier for y'all!!"