Today’s post comes from Nicole, who had to say goodbye to her preemie son, Kade, far too soon. The experience is one that has taught her a lot, and she has graciously been sharing her thoughts and feelings on our blog in case it can help new parents dealing with the loss of a preemie.
September 3rd was our original due date for our precious boy, Kade. That date seems like a landmine now as it gets closer. Unfortunately, Kade had to come too early and was born on April 17th. He had 99 beautiful minutes on earth before he passed away in my arms. He weighed 9.5 oz and was 9.5 inches long. This letter is to the mommas out there who are hurting. You’re not alone.
Dear Sweet Momma,
I am so incredibly sorry you are here. I’m sorry your heart is broken in a way that can never be fixed. I know your heart has a huge hole and is beating the best it can, but it will never be the same again. Your heart will always yearn for the baby that should be in your arms.
My heart hurts for you as you stare at the calendar, watching your should’ve been due date creeping closer and closer. My heart breaks for you because that due date will never come. My heart breaks for you because no one understands the pain that day will cause you, but you are a warrior. You are a fighter.
The reality of losing a baby is horrific. I know you have days where you just function… and that’s okay. I know you have days where you survive off dry shampoo, leggings, and junk for dinner… and that’s okay. I know you have days where you plaster a fake smile on your face… and that’s okay, too. You are doing the best you can.
On the days you simultaneously feel happy and heartbroken, just hang in there. Each baby announcement, gender reveal, maternity photo, or baby photo that pops up on social media will make your body ache a little bit. You wish your friends and family would understand that you aren’t mad at them, you aren’t jealous of them, but that you are just sad for you and sad for your baby who won’t get to experience life. You can’t help but wonder, “what if my baby’s story played out like that?”… it’s a weird feeling when someone else’s joy can bring you joy and pain, but you’ll get used to that feeling.
On the days where no one mentions your baby’s precious name, know that they are still real. They still matter. You are still their momma.
On the days when people ask the questions that feel like a piercing sword, “how many kids do you have?” or “so when are you going to try again?”, you’ll go into a panic because you won’t know how to respond. Remember to take a deep breath.
On the days where you feel like your friends or family have abandoned you, remember that they probably just don’t know how to be there for you. Pregnancy and infant loss is hard for others to understand unless they’ve been there.
On the day your co-worker says something insensitive to you about your attitude about work that day, remember that your co-worker has no idea that you are supposed to be at a doctor’s appointment that day for your baby that died. Ignore the comment and go on with your day. There’s no way for people to know that a certain day has a heartbreaking significance for you. You can do this, momma. Keep your chin up—even at work when you don’t feel like it.
On the day you have to decide whether or not you can go to that baby shower you were invited to, remember to protect your heart first. If you can’t do it, don’t be afraid to stay home that day. Your friend will understand.
Sweet momma, there is no pain like the pain of losing a child. There is no pain like the pain of having to box up your baby’s unused room. There is no pain like the pain of leaving the hospital after giving birth with empty arms. There is no pain like the pain you are experiencing. It gets easier as time passes, but that pain will never fully go away. That hole will always be there.
I am grieving with you – it wasn’t supposed to be this way and you are not forsaken.
Your baby will always be remembered.
A Momma That Knows