Remembering the past yearPosted: April 23, 2014 Filed under: The Story of a Mother 4 Comments
Will you do me a favor?
Let me know what you remember about how you’ve experienced Christian’s short life and his death. How has it affected you? What did you think or feel when you first read about the diagnosis or when you heard about his birthday?
I really want to feel like this is bigger than me.
I still don’t know how to feel about it. In a way, I think it was easier to cope with as it was happening, partly because we were supporting you and Jarom, and partly because it was a shared experience everyone was going through. I’m sure there are other reasons, but I’ve kind of got an emotional shield put up over that area now.
I think my first reaction was that I was glad that this wasn’t your first childbirth experience and that you guys had that month to prepare. Looking back, I really think that those were ‘tender mercies’ making an unbearable situation the tiniest bit more bearable.
And since trying experiences can tear couples apart or bring them closer together, I have been pleased to see that you two seem to have kept yourselves together in your mourning.
I always loved the endearing way you talked about Tiny Baby. I was shocked at the news that there was no chance he would ever live. I ached for you through the whole experience. I felt happy when you were finally told he was a boy. I enjoyed you telling me about Diet Coke making him wiggle. I longed for the doctors to give you some other news that would cancel out the previous bad news. I didn’t know what to say…still don’t. I felt inadequate in supporting you through the pain…still do. I admire how open you were/are about your thoughts and feelings surrounding Christian’s life and death. I have been strengthened by your testimonies of the Atonement.
In my pregnancy almost exactly a year after your pregnancy with Christian, I have thought often about you. It has added great stress that things won’t go as easily as they did during my last pregnancy. Even now I feel my baby kick and cannot possibly place myself in your shoes one year ago. I admire that you have taken Christian’s birthday and turned it into a day of giving and doing good. I hope many people will be involved in Doubleplusgood Day. I want it to be successful in honor of Christian.
It’s expanded my knowledge of the human experience. You hear about this happening to other people, read about it in books, in family histories or see it in movies as some plot point, but to have the death of an infant happen to someone you care about and to see the pre, during and post experience has really shifted my view of the world. All I know was that the day he was born, I was so glad for you that he was born alive and that you got to hold a living and breathing Christian. It didn’t change the fact that he died and that he’s not here now, but I hoped at the time it provided you the slightest bit of relief in the wake of all the sadness that was to follow.