It has been awhile since I have been on here. The last couple days I have had a strong pull to write on here.
Writing this on the night before Christmas Eve (and finishing it on the morning of Christmas Eve). This post is mostly for the child loss community, the bereaved mothers (and fathers) community, however you want to categorize us but, anyone can read this and maybe even benefit from it.
I know this holiday season has been hard for me and the anticipation leading up to Christmas and I know I am not the only one.
This could be your first holiday season, having to survive Christmas without your child(ren). Maybe it has only been a few weeks since you said goodbye to your baby. Maybe it has been only a few months. Maybe this is your second or third or twentieth or fortieth Christmas, without your baby. Maybe you never were able to see your baby alive. Maybe you never knew if your precious baby was a boy or a girl. Maybe you were able to watch your baby grow into an adult but they were suddenly taken away from you and you were left to bury your child.
What ever the reason that finds you here, I am sorry.
I am so so sorry you are here.
I am sorry you are living without your child(ren).
I am sorry you had to endure the loss of your child. No parent should ever have to go through that.
I am sorry your baby isn’t in your arms.
And I am especially sorry your arms are empty during this holiday season. With everyone posting family photos gathered around the Christmas tree. Siblings wearing matching pajamas on Christmas eve. A baby wearing their “My 1st Christmas” onesie. It is beyond hard to watch. Imagining what your life SHOULD be like is excruciating. There are really no words to describe what it is like without your children here on earth with you. No one except us bereaved parents will understand the never-ending pain and longing for our children. The grieving of our children is like no other grief. It is a timeless grief, with no ending becuase our love for them is timeless. Love is what keeps us going.
I’m going to be honest with you, I had this whole post planned out in my head and writing it down my words now escape me. I wanted to get out a post before Christmas just wanting to let other bereaved parents to know they aren’t alone this Christmas.
You aren’t alone, you are never alone. I know this baby loss journey can be very isolating. You can’t relate to others anymore. Your view on life, in general, is a little rougher around the edges. The menial things you once cared about, you don’t anymore. Your life is now separated into a “before” and “after”. The way your life was supposed to play out has been completely turned upside down. It is unnatural to have to bury your child. It just isn’t suppose to happen, period. And because of all this, you do what you need to do to survive the holiday season.
Whether you don’t celebrate this year or next. Whether you don’t attend any family functions because you just can’t be in a room with a newborn or a pregnant woman. What ever is best for YOU is what is most important right now.
You are a survivor. You are surviving right now. You are still breathing.
You are surviving and that is all you need to do. You do what you need to do to survive each day. Whether that is staying in bed all day or isolating yourself inside your house or deciding to make that trip to the grocery store. You know your heart the best. Give yourself permission to do what you need to do or not do on any given day.
In the early months of my extreme grief I couldn’t see into the future. I couldn’t imagine being able to survive this. I didn’t think I was. And still to this day, there are moments where I go back to that early grief and it almost feels suffocating. Thinking about all that I have endured and I am still here, that is a miracle in itself. Know you are doing the best you can.
I want you to know I am here. I walk alone side of you. You are not alone. You are never alone.
Wishing you a peaceful holiday.
**Bradley’s Memorial Tree**
I have created this project in memory of Bradley. I have 56 baby names on my tree so far. This tree is dedicated just for those children who aren’t here on earth with you anymore. I am still taking names (and dates are optional) if you would like your baby’s name to be on the tree. Check out my Instagram and personal Facebook page where I post photos and video of the tree and each individual ornament.