I sit alone, staring at the Christmas tree still up. The lights during this often dreary time of year make me happy and God knows I need it this year. Lately, I ebb and flow between being numb with a wall up and emotional as I reflect on the loss of our baby a few months ago. I avoided sharing more through the holidays as it’s not a “happy” topic. Although I struggle to share, I feel such a tug on my heart to do so in the slim chance that just one mom reads this who feels alone in her grief right now. To write an unpopular article just for her is worth it to me….so here it goes…
A letter to the one I lost. I have been holding on to this letter I wrote a couple of months ago for the daughter I lost. I have been waiting for the right time to share it. I have been reluctant because it’s sad and I have felt like losing a child the way we did isn’t something many feel comfortable hearing.
My daughter was due tomorrow, January 2, so as everyone celebrates their past year and new year to come I sit in a place of sadness.I have thought how I should write this for months, feeling torn by the fear it’s not positive and “inspiring ” enough. I have decided not every story is positive and not every moment we sit in life is easy…and that’s OK.
Hope can still be found in darkness. Some days it is a fight but I still choose it.
I am going to keep it REAL in hopes other mothers grieving with their infant loss can find their voice in what ever way serves their healing. The hope I have in SLOWLY (it’s so hard) sharing our story is 2 fold; first to hopefully help someone else who may read this suffering a loss similar to ours to prevent them from feeling alone and secondly, to encourage hope and faith in a God bigger than anything imagined as I share some of the beautiful things that took place in our journey.
To be honest, I need to share the “good parts” to keep my hope alive for the future. I look forward to sharing with you how even in the sadness of finding out our daughter had a lethal genetic malformation I saw a love and empathy in humanity like never before, the chilling yet amazing way our daughter was named and how God orchestrated every step of our journey that offered A LOT of peace beyond human limits.
I will continue to share these parts of her story in fragments. I promised my daughter as I prepared to lose her that what I learned from her beautiful life would not go without purpose.
Today I share my letter reflecting on my infant loss as I sit in grief alone instead of holding a new born baby in my arms.
Dear Sweet Baby Girl,
I’ve learned a lot in the last several weeks of your life. Actually, it would be more accurate to say that in all my life I have never learned more than what the last four weeks after your diagnosis has taught me.
I’ve realized how much we as mothers hope and dream for our babies. We imagine when they are in our womb what they might look like and what personality they will have. We start envisioning the child God has woven into us and thus the dreams and hopes begin.
I was planning to have you in my arms by Christmas time, because all my babies like to come early. I was already problem solving how I was going to make it to the hospital in time in case of a snow storm. I pondered how we would do Christmas with your siblings if you decided to surprise us right on Christmas day. What an amazing gift you were going to be!
I imagined you bundled under the Christmas tree. This year was the year I was going to finally mail out Christmas cards with a gorgeous picture of your sweet toes peeking through a blanket as you lay under the Christmas tree.
Christmas trees and babies are two of my favorite things so that plan made sense to me.
I was going to nurse you and co-sleep with you from the beginning this time. You were going to be my fourth sweet child and I’ve learned some things by now, I thought.
When you got big enough I imagined you sleeping with your big sister. The one who calls you a “princess” and her “little marshmallow”. Girl days and drama was all played out in my head. I was excited.
I even imagined your 2 brothers and your sister and you, arm over shoulders as teens and young adults together smiling as I took pictures of my beautiful grown children. In this daydream I imagined myself looking at all of you as I feel an immense pride.
You, Sweet Baby Girl were perfect in my mind and I couldn’t believe God had given you to us. It seemed to good to be true.
The moment I got past the illness of pregnancy, my tummy was popping out to that cute pregnant belly, I started feeling you move and I was falling more in love with you. I can remember the day I expected to see you with no concerns. I remember finally seeing you on the ultrasound as you were forming into the cute baby you were and as you appeared to be sucking your thumb. As fast as I fell more in love with you at that moment my hope to have you was all ripped out of my hands as I was told something was missing in your appearance.
I’ll never forget the day. I expected more good news but only left that doctors office full of fear and sadness.
Something was horribly wrong with our baby girl.
This was the beginning of a journey of gaining more than I could ever imagine through a trial no person should have to ever imagine or experience.
Now in the depths of my soul as I wipe away the tears I know as hard as our loss hurts there is beauty, life long gifts and hope in our tragedy. God knows how much this mama loves babies and now I get to be greeted by one in my arms in heaven one day. I learned even more that LIFE IS VALUABLE no matter the duration here on earth! When the days are hard I fight for hope because until I meet you in heaven… it’s all I can hold onto of you, Sweet Baby Girl.
The pain and emptiness seems unbearable at times.
Sweet Baby Girl, my little mama… I love you.
If you know anyone struggling with the loss of their baby, or possibly that someone is you…please know you are welcome to email me or privately message me on any of my social media channels any time. You are not alone. As I lay in bed at night thinking of my daughter I will say a prayer for you.Hope must be held on to as it offers the endurance one needs for this life! Dovidenia. XO