Today is October 15th. Today is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. Today, I want to wrap my arms around everyone I know and anyone out there reading who has experienced this type of loss. It’s still crazy to me that those of us who have faced losing a pregnancy or infant almost feel ashamed to grieve beyond a certain ‘acceptable’ time period. Even fellow moms judge you on what they think is ok and right. And that is not right.
So any opportunity I have, I bring up this day and others like it because as mothers and parents…we think of our loss all the time. It doesn’t just go away. Yes, we carry on with the day to day…but you know that a big part of your heart is missing and that you are forever changed. It’s hard to understand if you haven’t been there. It just is. It’s easy from the outside looking in to say, “well you’re blessed with a healthy, happy family now so stop thinking about the past” or “at least you have nieces, nephews.” It’s hard to hear those comments. And those of you who get that, well you just get it. And so this is for you. I’m posting today to remind you that it’s ok to feel sad, feel angry, feel like you aren’t complete no matter how much time has passed, no matter what has transpired since. It’s all irrelevant.
Between us Chai Mommas, several of us have experienced the devastation, confusion and sadness that’s secondary to losing a baby or pregnancy. And so over the years we’ve written posts on different aspects of loss, when the timing was right for each of us and when we were emotionally ready to share with the world. It’s not the easiest to share this side of ourselves. Society’s views on talking about this type of loss makes it that much harder. Being so vulnerable with something so personal to us and our families, that’s hard. But we always go back to the mission of our blog…to provide help, inspiration and a safe place to share and hear stories – of the good and bad and in between – with you. And so again when we were ready…we’ve shared posts on grieving miscarriages, signs of losing a pregnancy such as ectopic pregnancies, books to help not just yourself but kids with loss and even helping loved ones cope with this type of devastating loss. We hope they have helped and continue to help.
In addition to our posts, a couple of weeks ago, I came across a Huffington Post article where a doctor (who suffered a miscarriage at four months) created cards specifically for grieving this type of loss. I hadn’t seen anything like these before and I so wish they had been around when I suffered all my losses. I would have loved to receive one or all of them. The words on these cards…well, she totally hits the nail on the head. They’re perfect for anyone who doesn’t know what to say or do when someone they care for goes through this type of sadness and pain. Words are hard, words are tricky and they can come out so wrong or be taken so wrong. I remember thinking that I’d rather have silence than the risk of someone saying something that just did not sit well with me during those times…because often, the completely wrong thing would come out of even the most well intentioned and loving mouths. These are cards that just get it right.
I’ll end with this. There is nothing that I can say even being someone who’s experience a loss like this, in this post that will make it right. But what I know to be truth and right is this. Deal with the loss and continue to remember your baby in any way that feels right to you (in a meaningful, healthy way)…today on the 1 day that’s designated for it and on each of the remaining 364 days in the year.
Sending lots of love and light – especially today – to all of you.