I cradled her head delicately, supporting her, and felt pride in her heft, her fully developed form, this tiny human we had created together. “Is this what being a father feels like?” Then I placed her tenderly in the hospital cart, and watched as the nurse dutifully rolled her away.
Reality of life after the loss of a child
Sometimes I think we can get caught up in the idea of a new year being a fresh start. We look forward to everything being different on 1 January. But will it be? Are we leaving this pandemic and the rest of our lives behind us? Or do we carry these things with us into each new day?
I am a growing and evolving creature. I am a grieving mother, and I am ALSO so many other things. And this is where I am today–exactly who and where I need to be. And I am both messy and complicated and also uniquely human. And I love being able to accept that and just be okay.
Reading other people’s experiences made me feel less alone after Adrian’s death. These are more than 70 blogs and Instagram accounts about child loss and grief, with descriptions.
Sometimes I feel like the bereaved live in the real world and everyone else lives in the fantasy. It’s the only way the world makes sense.
Before Adrian died, I always thought of tragedy and loss as something that happened to OTHER people, but not to me. Of course I feel differently now.
It feels like we are conditioned to look on the bright side of every dark situation, but sometimes there isn’t one. Sometimes, things just need to suck
I think somehow I felt like I would be healed now, like your birthday would be a healing event. Like I felt about that cruise. I will never be healed.
This time last year, I was still pregnant. This time last year, I was probably settling down on the couch with Netflix and thinking about you. I was always thinking about you.
I started school this month. It’s been intense, learning to live again inside rules and structure. I can’t get up and walk away when I need to be alone with you.
I hear the children playing in the daycare down the hill, and I think of you. Rosemary* is talking. She said the word, “Mama,” and I think of you.
I’ve told people that I feel more awake now, more present. I think I’m only now beginning to understand what this fork in our road means.
Someone asked if I was “better” today. I don’t think she meant it to be hurtful, but I can’t fathom what she means.
I don’t sleep normally. I’m tired all day, but I have trouble at night. I often forget what day it is.
I’m home now, and it’s like you’re gone all over again. The tears rise up, they cover me. I am made of water. It rains.
It’s not normal yet. I told March it all feels like a dream, like something that just didn’t happen. I struggle to remember I was pregnant at all.
I say your name. That part is easy. I will forever love the sound of your name, the feel of it in my voice. What I can’t say is what happened to you.
I was afraid to kiss you, when they first brought you to me. I was afraid they would think I was strange.
I think your Aunt Alexis worries about me. I worry about me. I am going through the motions, but inside I feel helpless. It wasn’t supposed to be this way.
I think about running away. I think about starting a new life, where people don’t know, where they don’t stare at me with pity in their eyes.
Even now, everything was worth it. I will never regret anything I did to prepare for you.
I didn’t ask to live here. I loved Sunshine. I had so many plans. I built my peaceful house there. But my key doesn’t fit.