Grief is a thief, stealing so much from the grieving and those close to them. The wake is messy with shrapnel flying and everyone in your life being hit by it to a degree. If you are close to the eye of the storm coming out unharmed is a miracle. Doing so probably means you either weren’t as close as you thought or you are one of the few that were able to swim through the mud being a fierce protector of the grieving Mom’s heart.
Grief, after your baby dies, isn’t only about grieving the baby you lost but also grieving the life you once lived. You grieve relationships you had with friends and family that once felt loving and easy and no longer are. You grieve all you had envisioned for your future that no longer can be. The ripple effect is so great that one day you wake up and reflect on the life you once lived and it feels like it belongs to someone else, with little resemblance to the life you now live.
People may give you grace and understand the profound sadness that comes when your baby dies. What is often misunderstood is the pain that is caused by the ripple effect of grief and all that was left in its wake. We feel the pain to our core when we see who ran and hid, who judged you, who justified their own behaviour, who talked to others about you and who was clearly lacking love.
Once the fog clears and you see the landscape you are now living in, it is impossible to un-see it. You see your heart was truly only safe with only a few people and feel intense pain from being abandoned or let down by those you thought were put in your world to support you and help protect your heart.
Relationships are easy when living is easy. The real litmus test of a relationship is when you have to ride the waves together. When the person you trust to have your back catches you without hesitation as you are falling, when your sadness isn’t frightening, or inconvenient, and they are more than willing to meet you just exactly where you are.
Relationships over time evolve, that is natural. When a life event like this happens you as a person is forever changed and with that, the relationship you once had is also forever changed. People either choose to love you through it and allow the quick evolution to flow and become more connected or choose you no longer fit into each other’s lives.
Grief is a thief. It steals so much from everyone involved. You are left with the gift of seeing who is still standing beside you and gently holding your heart. Grief steals so much but also gives the gift of deepened, stronger and more meaningful relationships once the aftermath is cleaned up. It is those relationships you know will last a lifetime because they stand on the foundation of unconditional love.
I am so sorry if you are a Mom who not only lost their baby but also had grief steal so much more from you. You didn’t deserve it.
Thank you to all who swim through the mud, those who stand in the fire, the ones who take the responsibility to safely hold the heart when it is broken, and those who can love stronger than the shrapnel of grief. You are the grieving Mom’s greatest gift.
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