Sharing the Journey
Guest Post by Annie Willems
Sometimes I feel like I’m trespassing in a land that’s not my own. I have not lost a child. I do not intimately understand the feelings that overwhelm a family in the midst of that experience. I entered the land of child loss with a dear friend and I have been honored by the invitation to share her journey as she travels the road of grief that no mom should ever have to discover. Through my travels with her, the idea of a ministry to bless families grew from my heart (Calvin’s Hats)
After hearing thousands of birth stories over the last 3 years from families who contacted Calvin’s Hats, the “fix it” mode kicked in and I knew I needed to be doing something more. In my heart of hearts, I fully understand that I can’t make the experience of loss a good experience. And I know that I can’t take the anxiousness away during subsequent pregnancies. But I can share the journey. I can offer emotional support and empathy. I can assist in making plans for any outcome. I can validate fears. I can assist in helping family and friends know how to best offer support of their own.
With those goals in mind, I did training to become a Doula- with a focus on loss and subsequent pregnancies after loss.For those who are planning a subsequent pregnancy, I very much recommend looking at Doula options in your area. Ask about their experience with loss. These are women who will come beside you and not think you’re going crazy if you question why the baby hasn’t moved for the last five minutes. They won’t mind a late night text message that simply says, “I’m scared.” They will help you manage the what-ifs that wander through your mind. A doula is someone who is there to support you through your pregnancy, labor, and delivery…
Someone there just for you.