After Matthew passed away, I started searching for an online support group for mothers like me who had suffered a uterine rupture. When I was accepted to the group, I had an eager expectation of finding someone I could relate to and I started reading. I read a couple of stories and tried really hard to keep reading, but I couldn’t stand the pain I was feeling.
I couldn’t bear to see the photographs of the precious babies, to know that so many mothers hurt the way I hurt. I thought for one second it would be easier to grasp the reality of my own loss. I was wrong. I wasn’t ready.
I wrote to the administrator and politely stated that I was going to leave the support group because I wasn’t ready to be there.
I never looked back, but I always remembered the stories I had read. I remembered the pain, the struggle and the “what ifs” that these mothers wrote about. I was afraid to find “me” and my pain within the women who had suffered loss. I was afraid of it, yet I was seeking it. I ran from the internet, from the broken hearted mamas and from the pain of it all. If I didn’t read about it, perhaps so many people weren’t saying goodbye to their babies. Perhaps.
I was given many books that remained closed. I tried to open them, I really did. But there was something in reading about loss that I couldn’t bear. In reflection, I believe it was because I had to face my pain and accept the huge gaping loss in my heart and life. Challenging, to say the least.
Some years later and after I wrote my book, I connected online again with the support group and connected with the world in the baby loss community.
I often wonder how many of you have felt the same way. You are reading this now, so you are one step ahead of where I was. Did you ever experience the “not ready” as I did?
Most of the families I have met over the years want to research, read online and delve into books right away and I admire that. It wasn’t for me for quite some time.
I remember when I read my very first blog over at Small Bird Studio, I saw the term “Rainbow Baby” and as I read about it, I realized here I was with a 5 year old “Rainbow Baby” and I had no idea that in our loss community what that meant. To say I was behind a tad is probably an understatement.
I am not too sure of how I kept myself offline and out of the internet blogs and so on, but today I am so grateful for the way it all unfolded. When I was “ready,” I stepped out. I joined the support group (again), I found Fran, our wonderful editor and visionary leader at Still Standing and I am here with you all today.
I used to give myself a hard time about not being able to envelop myself into the stories and losses of others, but since then I have learned I did what was best for me at that time. I had to respect my heart, the pain that was processing through it and when the time was right, I jumped in.
Yes, this is a community of such extreme heartache and loss… yet it is also a community of “Rainbow Babies” and love!
If you are “ready or not” today, it’s okay…be kind to yourself… and allow your heart to lead you, when you are ready you will find yourself right where you need to be.