Anger: A stage of grief that I tried to deny access to my heart. Two days after I saw the ultrasound that was still, quiet, and lifeless, I went back to the hospital to do what no mommy should ever have to do. February 17 I delivered our sweet baby Kate; still beautiful, still loved, but stillborn. During those the following week, I felt just about every emotion; sadness, confusion, denial, joy, happiness, despair, sadness. I believed I was dealing with enough emotions – I simply could not and would not allow anger in.
Moms buy flowers for dance recitals, graduations and weddings for our daughters, so as I shopped for funeral flowers for our stillborn baby, anger unexpectedly crept in.
Anger finally pushed its way in.
A week after we delivered, we found ourselves planning a memorial, the only celebration we would ever get to give Kate. Planning a memorial for someone who never got to take a breath in our world was a foreign concept. I decided flowers would be a good place to start. And that is where I met my anger. I was angry at the florist and the flowers for Kate’s memorial of all things. It was the middle of February, a week after Valentine’s Day, in North Idaho, so you could imagine the floral options or lack thereof. I imagined having beautiful white hydrangeas, I thought it would represent Kate’s pureness. I started to become frustrated when all I saw was one wilted blue hydrangea. Trying to accept the reality of the season and location, I finally picked out a premade bouquet and some pink daisies. The florist agreed to add the daisies to the bouquet for a fee. My mom explained the situation. Clearly, if she knew the situation, if she knew my daughter had just been stillborn, she would do what she could to help us.
Her fee did not budge or change.
There I was, in the floral department of the grocery store screaming in my head, “Don’t you understand?” “My baby is gone.” “I don’t even want your flowers, I want my baby.” “Your flowers are not even good enough for Kate. No flower is good enough. No flower can represent her life and her beauty and our love for her.” “I don’t want to do this. I don’t want to say goodbye.” So I did the only thing I could do at the time – stormed out, went home and sat in the corner of my bathroom with unshakable anger towards everyone and everything. Which lead to the big question. “Who am I really angry at?”
Who am I really angry at for my daughter being stillborn?
Am I angry at God for taking our baby or not saving our baby? According to many grief sources, I am allowed to be angry at God. But I am not… and I never have been, and I never will be. Here’s why – shortly after delivery, I realized that if I were to be angry with anyone I should be angry with Satan. God never wanted this for us. He never wanted me, His precious daughter, to be hurt, sad, angry, depressed or lonely. Those emotions are not of God. He planned a perfect world with no sadness or tears. But Satan slithered in and brought sin into the world that caused destruction and despair.
Since the moment we knew Kate was gone Satan has attacked our family with his weapons of guilt and despair and instincts to isolate. As if our grief was not enough we have been in the middle of a spiritual battle and Satan has continued to try to blind-side us with his low punches. Yet, God has refused to let us go. He held on to us during the worst of the battle and when we were at our weakest He cradled us and whispered His sweet love to us. He loves us too much to let us go. He wants us to be in Heaven with our baby one day. The only moments of peace and comfort we have had were because of God.
The big picture.
Our world has fallen, we cannot expect good here. Jesus tells us we WILL encounter troubles, but He has overcome the world and given us the gift of hope and eternity in Heaven. It is a terribly unfortunate consequence of our fallen world that our sweet innocent babies leave us too soon. But too often, it does happen, and He weeps with us just like He wept with Mary and Martha.
During our grief, God has lifted us up and sheltered us with love and comfort while Satan has attacked us with thoughts and emotions that are bred in Hell. So how could I be angry at God? Without God’s love where would my family be right now? I remember weeping the day before I delivered Kate stillborn with so much agony and pain that it spread beyond my heart, my whole body ached for our baby. Inside I was so weak I knew that all I could do was to cling to Jesus with whatever strength I had. When we are weak it is so hard to cling and hold on to something, how much easier would it be to fall? Fall into utter despair and loneliness and depression that Satan wants for us.
All God wants is for us to trust Him and allow Him to comfort us. If anyone deserves our anger, it is Satan.
About the Author Lynsee Leonard:
I am a wife. I am a mother. I am a teacher. I am a daughter to the One True King. After we lost our daughter Kate at 27 weeks, it has been put on my heart to advocate for and love other grieving mamas.