A Letter From a Bereaved Mother About the Pain of Pregnancy Loss
I am in grief groups mostly because my 20-year-old son was killed. During seven years of barrenness, I also lost two pregnancies and later I lost two more. Although I did, by the grace of God, bring four children into this world, my grief centers on one of those four. However, though now elderly, I still remember my four that didn’t survive.
They are not, nor shall ever be, forgotten by me. I know when I pass over they will be waiting for me. I anticipate huge hugs and smiles when I meet them for the first time. Getting to know them, and who they may have been in this life, will be a wonderful reunion because I never ceased being their mother.
Back in “my day,” losing a child in pregnancy carried a stigma with it. There must have been something wrong with me. After all, all of my friends were having babies, few with any difficulties. I felt like an outsider. Barrenness, in itself, is a form of grief for what could have been but isn’t. Those pregnancy losses I traveled through alone with my Lord. He knew my pain. Folks simply did not speak about such things back then. It happened, and it was expected that the mother simply “moved on” and “tried again.” The loneliness and feelings of being ostracized from all of my friends who were rejoicing, and rightfully so, over their newborns left me feeling like an outsider from their conversations. I was on the outside looking in.
I have no way of knowing if things like this have changed much over the decades, but if they haven’t and you are one of the many walking a journey like mine, my heart goes out to you. And also to those who have lost children by means of divorce, court proceedings, adoption, barrenness, pregnancy loss, death, stillborn, “prodigals,” etc. All parents grieve and their pain must be validated. Although the circumstances vary, all of which carry their unique marks, the bottom line is pain is universal among all bereaved parents.
Your grief is very real. Your child you hoped to hold, and all of the dreams and hopes you carried for that child, have been dashed to the ground. Your heartache should be validated. If your child has been taken from you through whatever means, your excruciating pain is valid. If your adult child has shut you out of their life, your loss and heartache are nearly insufferable. All child loss, no matter the cause, is nearly intolerable. I know the loss fills your thoughts, both waking and asleep, often. The tears you shed behind closed doors are infinite and exhausting. I do not dismiss any of it and it is my hope that others shall not either.
Please know that you are not alone. I believe God is with you and countless bereaved parents stand alongside you. I extend my love and prayers for you as you travel this journey and season of grief.
This story originally appeared on bereavedparentsblog.wordpress.com.