The Loss of a Child

January 19, 2010 at 10:57 PM 2 comments

I’m amazed to find out how many women (couples) have lost a baby. It really is like some “secret” or “taboo.” I bet if you’re reading this there are several other people in your life who have lost a child and you might not even know about it – a relative, a co-worker, a neighbor. Before I lost Hailey I didn’t know anyone who had lost a baby from anything, but since I’ve lost Hailey 5 people I know (some whom I have known for my most of my life) have come forward and shared a little bit of their story of loss with me.

Josh and I aren’t close to any of our neighbors here in AL, but we do the occasional casual conversations and the waves, etc. Well today out of the blue one of our neighbors (an army wife) appeared on our doorstep with her two little kids. To keep it simple, I’ll just say she cautiously and nervously managed to ask us if we had lost our baby and apologized for not knowing and not being able to do anything to help us. So I told her all about our little Hailey and how she was born with Trisomy 18. She told us that she doesn’t usually tell people or talk about it, but she lost a baby also. I asked if she minded telling us how old her baby was when she lost it. She said he died at birth. Her eyes were welling up with tears and I could tell how hard it was for her to come to our door step, so I didn’t pry any further. I don’t know how he died or what his name was or how long ago it was… But I appreciated her sharing her story with me and caring enough to come to our doorstep – it had to have taken a lot of courage.

It surprises me that many mothers don’t talk about their babies who they’ve lost – but I think it’s just because my perspective is different from theirs and everyone handles loss differently. I just have to say that I am not like that – obviously you probably know that since you’re reading my blog. I love talking about Hailey – I think I’ve mentioned that once or twice before. 🙂 I absolutely love talking about her – not just the fuzzy, warm memories of her, but I will talk about Trisomy 18 and any difficulties she/ we had… because it all makes up Hailey’s story. And like I’ve said before, I want the world to know her. I respect mothers who don’t wish to talk about their baby if they lost him/her, but as the same time, I wish they would…

I should also mention (forgive me if I’ve already mentioned this in a prior post – my mind is mush these days) that there is another army couple in our town who lost their son from Trisomy 18 – I believe their son lived to be a few months old. We might be getting in contact with them at some point.

Anyway, Hailey’s grandma was given an article from someone at our church in IL about a couple whose daughter only lived for 2 and 1/2 hrs. The article contains a section about how to help someone who has lost a child and thought I would share the advice that the article shared because I think it’s perfect! This is the paraphrased version from The Thriving Family, Jan.-Feb. 2010 edition, the article is titled “Hours with Audrey: Celebrating Life in the Shadow of Death” by Pam Woody:

-Be available – help, pray, do whatever they need
-Be a good listener – sit in silence, weep with those who weep
-Allow them to be honest – even if their thoughts/ feelings aren’t “theologically accurate” don’t jump to criticizing them
-Send letters, cards, and e-mails – acknowledge significant birthdays and anniversaries
-Don’t avoid asking them how they are doing
-Talk about the baby by name – “you can take cues to continue talking or change the subject according to the response of the grieving parent”

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Entry filed under: Trisomy 18. Tags: .

“this is not how it should be” Empty House, Empty Heart

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Anonymous  |  January 20, 2010 at 2:08 AM

    Hi Krissy, I sent you a facebook message a while back, and just thought I would reach out again and tell you that I've been reading your blog and thinking of you and your family frequently. My mom had twins before I was born, and it's somewhat of a secret in our family. I think that the way you are dealing with Hailey's death is much healthier — and I really hope that you do not feel alone. Everyone has dealt with loss in some way. Hopefully right now, some of those people can help you — and maybe some day, you will be able to help others. You've already helped open my eyes — I know that I will think carefully before I decide to bring a child into this world, and make sure that I am as prepared as I can be for it. It had also been so encouraging to see how much love you pour out to Hailey — being able to experience that love (even though blog posts) is really beautiful.And again, even though I'm not much for prayer, I've been praying for you and your family.-elyse

    Reply
  • 2. Ilea  |  January 20, 2010 at 2:10 AM

    I am SO glad your neighbor did that for you. What courage! I too am surprised so many have lost a child and don't talk about it, but I'm awfully glad that they've shared it with you and let you know you aren't alone in what you are going through.

    Reply

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Dedication

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In Loving Memory of Hailey Marie

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