Three years ago, I would have said suicide was cowardly. I didn’t understand, then, how quickly life can change. Suicide may not be an ideal answer, but I better understand the complexities behind the issue now. Awareness isn’t enough—suicide prevention starts with understanding.
I don’t want to think about the future because it’s a future without my son
I promised you I’d be okay. I’m really really trying. But sometimes I realize I didn’t know what I was promising.
I read a story a while back about a father who planned the cutest keepsake, having his daughter’s teachers sign a special book throughout her school career. I planned to do the same thing, & set myself this timed email as a reminder for the future. And even though my son died, the email still came.
My son died at the end of a term pregnancy, and I was so thankful for every tangible piece I had of his memory. Not only our photos, but also our baby shower, our plans for the future; the time and energy I put into his nursery. This is why I celebrate every moment of my pregnancy after loss.
When I chose to try for a second child, these feelings hadn’t changed for me. I wasn’t trying to replace my son; I was adding to our family. My daughter was going to be her own person, and I couldn’t let her be defined by who or what came before.
It feels funny to say that: I miss you. It feels like there should be another word, something that acknowledges that part of what is missing is this unrealized idea.
I think about “moving forward”. I think about “trying again”. These words are hurtful. These words feel like I’m trying to replace you. It isn’t possible to replace you.
Over the past few years, I’ve come to view birthdays as a means of marking time, another year forward in the future I had planned. I had so many plans!
My son, Adrian James Hernandez, was stillborn exactly one year ago today. And his loss was the first time in my life where there was nothing I could fight and nothing I could do or say. These are my reflections on the past year since his death.
This instinct for planning is painful to me. The best parts of my future are still achingly incomplete. I didn’t find him here because I carried him with me. I carry him and the world and the world is so heavy.
Death has never been my friend. The necessity of her existence is no more comfort than my own. I don’t hate her, but I look at her the way she looks at Disease. We are all harbingers. We all bring Pain.