How to survive

June 20, 2013

how to survive

After years of fertility treatments, when we found out we were expecting triplets I avoided the horror stories. I clicked away from tales of early labor, grim statistics and the unthinkable… losing one or more of them.

I couldn’t bear to think anything could happen to my unborn children. Truthfully, I wondered how women who suffered the loss of a child continued on. I could not imagine life after loss, burying a child and having to move forward. It was all too heart-wrenching to think about, so I never did.

Then came the day it was me,

when my husband and I found ourselves debating over a casket or an urn, trying to decide if we should hold a funeral or wait and organize a memorial when our heads were more clear.

The unthinkable had happened and I would quickly learn the answer to a question I never wanted to be asked:

How to survive.

First, you find a reason to move forward and you concentrate on putting one foot in front of the other and sooner or later you have reached the end of the hallway or a crying baby or an empty refrigerator.

Next, you wake up in the morning, swallow the tears and you get out of bed. Not because you want to but because you have to. Because the school bus is coming or you are out of milk or it is Christmas.

And you repeat and repeat and repeat again, until one day your mind catches up with your body and remembers how to smile and how to live.

But this time it is not for someone else, it is for you. You deserve to feel it all, the warmth and the hugs and even the pain too. Bittersweet memories are part of your life now, who you are.

And you realize it is time to be proud of yourself.

You have survived.

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    Jessica Watson is the stay-at-home mom to five, four in her arms and one in her heart. In 2007 she lost her infant daughter, one of triplets, and has been writing her way through the pain ever since. She is a freelance writer with a passion for grief support and working with special needs families. Jessica blogs with her heart on her sleeve at Four Plus an Angel.

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