For Those Who Have Lost A Baby


Soon it will be seven months since she died.  I wrote this some time ago.  It's what I wanted to read that first day - 12.9.10.   

Hello, mama, and daddy too.  I'm sorry you have to read these words, but glad you have found them.  I'm sorry your baby is not in your arms.  I know your heart is broken and you can't see how life will ever go on from here.  I don't want you to feel like you are all alone in this.  I want you to be surrounded by love, kindness, care, and compassion as you face life without your baby.

You will survive this.  Right now it feels like the world has ended, but you will breathe again, and it won't be so painful.  It's going to take time.  Don't rush yourself.  Don't let others rush you.  This is your chance to be selfish, to protect your thoughts and feelings and your baby's short life.  Even though your baby is not in your arms you still feel a mother's pride and instincts.  Protect yourself and your emotions as fiercely as you protect your child's memory. 

You will have good days and bad days.  You will feel as if you are on an endless journey of grief, loss, and sadness, but there will be happy moments, little bursts of sunshine, too.  One day you will laugh without feeling guilty, or as if you are not mourning hard enough.  Focus on today.  Take one step at a time, and don't worry if those steps are small ones.  It's okay to feel scared and as if life will never be the same.  It won't, but it won't be as hard as those first days either. 

At the beginning of September, nearly four months after my baby died, I visited my aunt in Seattle.  Sitting at her kitchen table, looking out over the backyard with tears streaming down my face I heard these words:  This is one hard day in one hard week in one hard year.  The overwhelming pain, fear, and sadness will not last forever.  Remember this.  Remember that it will get better. 

You will carry this loss for the rest of your life.  You will always have a child in your heart.  Mourn as you need to.  There is no correct timeline, and there are no expectations.  I hope you have as much space and time as you need to grieve.  If you don't, create it.  It is okay to be selfish.  The world may not understand your grief.  It will make people uncomfortable to see the gaping hole in your heart, but that doesn't mean you should cover up or ignore the wound. 

Some will expect you to get over the loss.  Some may not see your baby as a viable human.  They don't understand what you have lost.  Refrain from telling them how lucky they are to stand outside of overwhelming grief and loss.  Never mind, don't refrain.  Always say how you feel, even if it makes others uncomfortable.

Find support.  The online community is amazing.  The mamas you meet online will help you through days that seem endless, nights that are overwhelmingly lonely, and, eventually, when you celebrate small triumphs, they will celebrate with you.  Connect with mamas who lost babies around the same time as you.  Find mamas who are six months, one year, three years, six years, or more even, out from their loss.  Surround yourself with these women and they will help you heal. 

There will come a time when you will look behind you and see someome trailing in your footsteps.  Reach out, clasp their hand, and pull them forward with you.  I know it doesn't seem like it, and I know you can't see it, but you are strong enough to do this. 

You will have seconds, minutes, days, and weeks when you feel entirely alone and so lost you will never find your way.  You are not alone.  Even in your darkest hour the memories you hold in your tightly clenched fists - her tiny feet, the feel of her downy head in your palm, her innocent face - will light the way to hope and peace.



Photo from here

11 comments:

  1. this is beautiful, angela. those who need it will be grateful to you for writing these lovely words.

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  2. This is really beautiful and inspiring. It gives me hope that somehow, things will get better and this grief won't be so overwhelming.
    I'm just 7 months on from tragically losing our last baby, our 4th boy.
    I really needed to read these words today as I've been on a real downer for too many days straight now.
    I'm going to add your blog to my reading list.
    Your Charlotte was just beautiful, and the image of you. Just beautiful. I'm so sorry she's not here with you.
    x KT.

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  3. Wonderfully, beautifully said. Thank you for sharing this. Many hugs and much love.

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  4. This is so beautifully written. I'm going to add it to our resource page on Mikayla's Grace. thanks for sharing!

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  5. I know this is an old post- but it's so poignant and perfect.

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  6. Thank you for writing this. I lost my baby this week, when my placenta abrupted. I'm grateful for your words.

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  7. Thank you for writing this. I lost my baby this week, when my placenta abrupted. I'm grateful for your words.

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  8. I am in the thick of it right now. Thank you for writing this. It gives me a little inkling of hope.

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  9. I am in the thick of it right now. Thank you for writing this. It gives me a little inkling of hope.

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  10. Thank you so much for these beautiful words. This is exactly what I needed to hear/read and will be coming back to it often. Our beautiful baby girl was born just over 2 months ago and we said good bye a month to the day after she was born. I love her and will miss her every day forever.

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thank you!

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