Feb 23, 2010


In the community of the bereaved, we speak of firsts. The first time doing such and such, or going somewhere without your loved one.

Yesterday was my first playgroup since having Brynn. My mother-in-law took Shane to the last one, and at my request gave everyone the news and fielded their questions.

As we arrived, I told myself it was just a door, and I walked through. Everything was fine at first, I was treated shyly and carefully. One mom had been out when my mother-in-law was there, and congratulated me as she could see I was no longer pregnant.

"No, the baby died." I don't say I lost her, or she passed, or stillbirth. She died. I don't see any value in mincing the words. I don't want to leave any room for confusion. The problem with my sentance of choice is that it's so shocking it seems like a really dark joke.

The mom was clearly taken aback. I started laughing at the absurdity of this moment, and to lighten the room. I was just trying to get through a 45 minute playgroup here. No one else laughed. Other moms came in to rescue me, saying they were so sad, asking about Shane.

That newly initiated mom did not seem to recover. She did not smile the entire time, nor did she speak to or look at me. Our children collided and her daughter's lip began to bleed. Fitting, I thought, now I can be the heartless, laughing mother of a stillborn and by offspring inflict bodily harm on your children as well.

1 comment:

  1. I think one of the hardest parts of the time immediately following a stillbirth is figuring out how to break it to others, and then being in that position of managing how they feel about it. Sometimes I felt like I was comforting others more than worrying about my own feelings, especially with people I didn't know well. But you made it through this "first," and as time goes on there will be fewer and fewer of those. Thank you for sharing your experiences with us. Love to you!