I can say with complete confidence that before losing a baby I did not know how to react to someone who had lost one. And I can also say that before losing a baby I could not even begin to imagine what a woman, a couple, a family goes through when they lost a baby.
Those are the things I keep reminding myself of as I go through each day. Well, among the other things.
I went back to work this Monday and one of my co-workers came into my classroom and asked how I was doing and my response to him was, “Well, I woke up this morning and didn’t want to kill anyone so I’m running with that positive thought for the day.” We both chuckled a bit but it was clear that what was behind those words meant much more than anything else.
I constantly have to remember that this type of situation is quite possibly one of the most awkward things for someone on the outside of it to understand. And I have tried very hard to make sure that I react to people with compassion and understanding even when I don’t feel like they are reacting to me in that way.
I cannot begin to tell you the number of people who have said to my face, “Well, I’m not going to ask how you are because I’m sure everyone is asking and I already know how you’re doing.” I finally responded to one individual with, “Actually, not too many people have been asking but I understand this is difficult for people to know what to do. It’s an awkward situation for those on the outside.”
I think they were even more uncomfortable after that.
I also cannot begin to tell you the number of people whom I have not heard a word from and who I thought were our closest friends. It is shocking to me. But again, I remind myself that this is unchartered waters for so many people and it’s very difficult for people to know what to say at a time of loss, especially this type of loss.
What I can begin to tell you about are the absolutely amazing people who have stepped up and in when my husband and I never, ever expected it.
The friends and family who called, texted, and bbm’d their words of sorrow and support, their offers of any time of the night phone calls, the genuine sadness at our loss. The amazing people on Facebook and through this blog who have emailed and messaged me to let me know they are here and there for us. The flowers that came from a co-worker and his family with a kind note. The emails that came offering words of comfort or offers to buy us dinner.
The outpouring of love for us during this time has been incredible and I cannot even begin to express the gratitude that we feel. Thank You.
I look at the experience and I try to pull as much positive from it as possible. I look at the fact that we have been reminded of the incredible support system and friendships that are around us. I recognize that nothing will ever replace the baby that we lost but that the love and support we have received will hold us up in times of sadness. I firmly believe that out of our sorrow and loss there will come something amazing and wonderful. That wherever we go from here we will carry with us an angel that will remind us of where we’ve been and how wonderful where we are really is.
Among everyone else I cannot begin to express how wonderful my immediate family and my husband have been during all of this. Their support, comfort, and love are the backbone of what have brought me through so much of this.