My husband texted me this morning and asked what the due date for our first baby was. He said he had been thinking of that baby and wishing we had both of our babies with us.
As the day has passed, I’ve noticed a lot of people posting about their infant and pregnancy losses. I knew it was the awareness month, but I completely forgot that today was the actual remembrance day.
I’ve shed a couple of tears today for that baby of ours and the loss we’ll always feel for him or her. Even though I was only pregnant somewhere between 8-10 weeks, I loved that baby so much. Sometimes I look at the people I know who have lost babies far enough along that they delivered, or that lost a child somehow after birth and I wonder if I have much to complain about. They held those babies and had to bury them–at least I didn’t have to endure that, right?
While I can’t imagine going through that, I also can’t imagine telling someone else in my situation that “it’s not as bad.” Thankfully, I’ve never had anyone give me that impression either. All I’ve ever felt from others in regards to losing that baby is love. My mom never made me think that her stillborn son was harder than a miscarriage. The day I had the D&C, I texted several people who didn’t know I was pregnant yet and explained what happened and that I needed their prayers that day. Their response was love. The nurses were kind. My work was understanding. I’ll always be grateful to those who showed us their love and empathy. They made me try to be better for others in pain.
I found a couple of infant loss remembrance ideas on Pinterest that I saved. Maybe I could have a necklace or something that reminded me of the baby and that the whole thing wasn’t imaginary. Something to validate that life. Probably once a month I get a notification on Pinterest saying one was re-pinned and my heart breaks for that person trying to find some peace.
That’s why I’m grateful for days like today. It’s not a “my pain is worse than your pain” thing, but a chance to know that people get it. That others validate your baby’s life too. That you don’t have to be alone in your pain. As the years pass, it can become a day of seeing how strong you’ve become and what your baby taught you in the short time you had him or her here with you.
If you are going through this, you can get help at your school’s counseling center. You could talk to HR at work and see if they have resources for you or what bereavement time you can take. Call your insurance company to see if your benefits cover speaking with a counselor. You can also look at the official website of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day or at Saying Goodbye. Make sure your significant other gets help too, frequently the daddy’s aren’t remembered as much and they need it just as much.
Use today and this month to be reminded that you’re loved and thought about.