By Nancy W. (Part 5 in a series)
In the series of articles beginning with What Is Grief Work? I have tried to deal with some of the big issues in the grief process after ending a wanted pregnancy. I absolutely understand your feelings, the crazy ones, the guilty ones, the ones where you hate your body for betraying you, the frustration with family and coworkers and their callous remarks and attitudes, your fear and ambivalence about trying to conceive again, not to mention your cravings to be with child again, your ambivalence about what comes next, your grief with subsequent fertility problems. Oh boy, what a predicament.
Many people voice the thought, “I will never be the same person again” as if that is so terrible. Let me reframe for that comment: No, you will never be the same again. All of you bereft mommies and daddies are, nonetheless, parents to a child who did live, and whose short life has had a profound impact on your lives. You must believe that there is now a greater purpose in your life, like one dad speaking of his son “being with him” while surfing on the Outer Banks, your babies’ spirits are with you always.
Honor that spirit by living well. Seek to grow in compassion and understanding for others. Renew your faith if you hold one. Reach out and give back. The love you felt for your baby will always be with you, and you can turn that love around and with it, be there for others in this sometimes heartless world. Find the message. I guarantee it is there waiting for you.
I came to the grief community years ago to give back what Katie has brought into my life: love, understanding, compassion. My life is fuller, richer because she lived. I shall love her to eternity. Nothing can shake us apart. And I thank God for her presence in my life. Yes, nothing has been the same in my life since I experienced the deaths of my first husband, and my babies, Brewster, Cary and Katie . . . but how rich is the tapestry of my life.
Have faith. Do the work you need to do to grieve your losses. Believe that you will find joy in your life again … speak it into reality with all of us right here. I am here to tell you to keep moving from the darkness to the light – for there is light, glorious light out there for each one of you as you complete your healing journey.
Editors note: Nancy W. has given us permission to divide her “long post on grief” into this series of five articles: