No Trigger Warning
This is the meme I woke up to, the first thing I saw in my social media feed. I did not receive a trigger warning for this meme. How very meta. We are used to memes filling our social media fees. Sometimes they are jokes that make you double over with laughter at their biting observational wit. Oftentimes they are platitudes that sound fresh out of a greeting card. Do I share memes on the regular? Absolutely! Do I have an app on phone to make memes? I do! Especially in October, Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month.
In October, my feeds fill up with memes with gut-punching feelings and facts about the month of awareness, about every aspect of losing a baby. I work hard on awareness during this month, helping to illuminate global landmarks pink and blue, shining our baby lights all over the world on October 15th. I stop often for self-care breaks that can include tears. I am usually steeled against the bulk of the impact of the deep, painful truths filling my social media. But I have seen these memes before, each year. Until this morning.
In October, the memes become more than trite cliches with pretty backgrounds. Their truths are triggering, hard to shake from your heart and your head and your gut, triggering truths without warning, pulling the trigger of the shot through your soul. Taking you to the truth of the matter, the base black bottom where your baby died.
This is where you feel so completely alone. It takes you back into that black hole where postpartum depression tried to swallow you whole. Above you is a light, so high above you, hands reaching down to hold you, to help pull you up because you are not alone. Others know your pain. You can clasp their hands as you climb and claw and crawl out of the dark. Discover yourself in a warm, loving crowd of families who also live in some shade of grief. Take their hands, hold their hearts: you are all in this together.
No matter how many times the triggering memory of the stark words of that meme ran through my head today – “my baby died.” My baby died. My babies died. - I reminded myself that it is okay to cry. Breathe deeply. Make tea. Have a snack. Paint your nails. Talk to friends. Do something today to help other parents who have lost babies. Celebrate the new memories we made with our babies this year. Start making plans for next October.
Do not give up.
Do not give up.
Your baby loves you.
Your babies love you.
That is a love that never dies.
That is a love that triggers life to action.
We have light to shine into the darkness for ourselves, for our children, for everyone still lost.
#PostpartumDepression #babyloss #InfantLoss #Miscarriage #SIDS #Stillbirth #medicalnecessity #PregnancyLoss #pregnancylossawareness #infantlossawareness #blaw2021 #WaveofLight #Loneliness