Friday, June 13, 2008

Let me be serious for a moment

Last year I had a miscarriage. That and my brother's death are the two most traumatic events of my life. I still grieve for the baby I'll never know. It's one of those things that no one talks about until it happens to you and then you find out how many people you know have also lost a child. People say all kinds of unintentionally hurtful things like "These things happen for a reason" or "you can have another baby". They want to help but they can't. On top of the grief you feel guilt. You wonder if something you did caused this or if there was something you didn't do that could have prevented it. Possibly the worst of all is the fear that you'll never be able to successfully carry a baby. When you do get pregnant again it's tarnished by the fear that you'll lose this one too. You're afraid to love this baby and have your heart broken again and then when you inevitably wind up falling in love you feel guilty as if this were an insult to the memory of your first child.

A couple I care very much about are going through this rite now. I would do anything in the world to make it better for them but I don't have that power. I will be there for them if they need me. To listen and not give them meaningless platitudes or tell them stories of how it worked out for me or others. Those stories don't help. They won't bring back this baby that they wanted so much.

If you have children hold them close and know how lucky you are. If you have lost a child know that you do not suffer alone. If you ever know someone who is going through this be there when they need a listener or someone to cry with them.

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