I see them. The social media posts, you and your swollen belly. Your feet surely aching from carrying that extra weight. I can’t imagine how tired you must feel… how nauseous you have been. Well, that I can imagine. I remember throwing up for four months straight too…
And I hear you. At the water cooler in the office. Going on and on about how miserable being pregnant has been… how exhausted you have been getting up every 2 hours during the night.
The diapers. The feedings. The extra money you’ve had to shell out to keep this little blessing alive and happy… I hear it.
And every, single, time. It feels like a knife through my aching Mama heart.
What I wouldn’t give to be exhausted, to be tired.
From something other than crying myself to sleep, clutching the blanket, we wrapped his lifeless body in… to have swollen ankles and stretch marks, and zero sleep, and less money, and puke and poop and all the things I hear you complain about…
What I wouldn’t give to get to complain right along with you.
And I get it. I’m certain if I ever get blessed to trudge the treacherous road of mothering a child this side of Heaven, I’m certain my lips will slip a complaint and a whine now and then too.
I will be exhausted; I will feel weak and not enough. I will take it for granted. I will complain too.
But right now, with almost six years of empty, aching arms, I just simply can’t hear it anymore. I can’t see it. I can’t just stand by and pretend it’s ok to listen to you complain about what I would give every limb of my body to have, what I wouldn’t do to have the “burden” of waking up every hour in the night.
I would change dirty diapers the rest of my life… to able to see my son run around in them. To be able to feed my child those “white tears” of milk my body still produced, even though my baby died.
I would give anything…
So please, don’t mind me if I stay silent, if I have to put on a face and pretend not to be “offended” at my desk while I listen to you complain about what I would give anything to have… because yes, those of us with empty arms, we aren’t given permission to be “offended” by these stories you tell.
And me? I’m not allowed to tell you how deep they cut into my already broken Mama heart…
But I will ask you, one simple request as I sit here, a month away from what would be my son’s 6th birthday, please. Please don’t “feel bad” for me.
But please, complain to someone else…
About the Author: Jamie is a single mother to a beautiful baby boy named Edwin, born sleeping at 20 weeks. She is passionate about breaking the stigma and silence on infant and child loss, and lives every day to keep Edwin’s memory alive, and walk alongside other mother’s who have joined this club. We do not heal by forgetting, we heal by remembering.