Our first child would have been 1 year old this past month. That got me thinking (crying and thinking of course). A big problem with miscarriage is that you never really get to grieve properly. Part of the grieving process of losing a loved one is marked by a funeral. People come to pay their respects... they send flowers... they attend the burial, which brings me to this problem... the grave. When you lose a loved one you have a grave to visit on such milestones. Birthdays. Anniversaries. Etc. But when you lose a child before a certain time, there is no "body" to bury. Sure, there was a body... but that body was then declared "tissue" and passed (to the outside world) without much of a second thought. You never get a funeral... You never get a burial... You try to grieve the best you can without these final traditions.
So what about the grave?
Yes there is a grave. I carry it with me. I carry it in my heart. I visit it often. It reminds me of the poem by E. E. Cummings:
I carry your heart with me
I carry it in my heart
I am never without it
I used to fear this grave. Thinking about it used to upset me. Now it is my safe place. A place I can visit in my heart and mind to acknowledge that I am a parent. I became a parent the day our first child was conceived. Although, to the people who don't know me I appear to be childless. I am and always will be a mother.
On that day, April 20th, I woke up in an awful mood... not wanting to face the day. I was difficult to deal with. I was angry, so of course I took it out on my spouse. Let's face it, that is hard not to do. It didn't last long... of course he called me out on it. I cried. I told him how I felt and why. And I felt better. I wouldn't call it a fight, it could have been a fight but he wouldn't participate. Which right now makes me laugh, at the time it was infuriating. Then we decided to make that bad day a great one.
We spent every moment together. We worked in the flower beds... oh how I love my flowers... We bought lots of beautiful plants... we enjoyed each other's company. It was a wonderful domestic beautiful day. My sweet husband once again reminded me that I am never in this alone. We are a team. Always. No matter what. Our loss is a burden I will never have to bear alone. Our infertility is no different. This battle, I never have to fight alone.
We also decided to honor the day. We bought a birthday balloon and each wrote to our little angel a birthday message on it. We released it together. This small gesture meant the world to me. We watched it until we couldn't see it anymore. I felt better. I felt SO much better. I just wanted to do something to acknowledge the day. In the pictures you will see a little rainbow. A rainbow on this perfectly sunny beautiful spring day. It felt like a sign... everything was okay. Our angel is happy. Of course he's happy, he's in Heaven with our Lord and Savior! What could be better than that? ... and we finally have a plan to hopefully be parents to a rainbow baby here on earth.