Gratitude for the time I had

May 22, 2009

Today Jack checked the mail. He walked in with an envelope and opened it. Quickly he tore it in half, glanced at me with a look of apprehension and tossed it. My lovely insurance company. I had enrolled in the “healthy mothers program”. This letter was a reminder that you have not filled out your questionnaire and we really want you to have a healthy pregnancy and need this information to help you as much as possible. Never mind that I was on the phone with my insurance company when my baby fell out of me and onto the cold bathroom floor. Never mind that the next day they promised to remove me from the list.

Ready to retreat into my dark place I instead tried losing myself in the book Waiting for Daisy. Peggy’s husband said instead of feeling loss after they found out they would not be able to adopt a son they had hoped for that he felt grateful for the time he had with him, and the dreams he briefly held to be his father. I am considering this concept, turning it over in my mind. Those few months of my pregnancy, I fell asleep dreaming of his little heart beating, his little toes forming, this small being floating within me. I spoke to him and I felt an outpouring of love. I can still remember lazy Sunday mornings lying with Jack, and saying with a giddy infatuation this time next year he will be with us. I imagined him so clearly he became real. And then he was gone. He went from my child, a grandchild, a nephew, to nothing, just an embryo or fetus that did not reach viability. Someone I pinned my hopes on and prayed for and would give my life for, has no name, who is he? He’s suddenly nothing in the eyes of the world. A chromosomal abnormality a it happened for a reason for the best banal entreaty.

Okay, sorry, I went into a moment there. The point of this post is I am grateful for the time I had with him. I’m grateful for the two red lines on the pregnancy test. The dreams he let me dream. I’m grateful I saw his heart beat. I’m grateful I saw him wiggle on the screen. I’m grateful for the days he exhausted me and left me queasy. I am grateful he lived inside me. I’m grateful he will always be the first to do so. He holds that honor, always will.

I have pushed aside suggestions to perhaps honor my loss through a means of memorial such as planting a tree in his honor. Now I think I want to do something to honor the time he was on this earth, however briefly our time together was, he meant the world to me. I’m considering donating money to an orphanage in his name, or to the march of dimes. I will figure out over time what I will ultimately do. I miss the possibilities that vanished on April 13, 2009, but I don’t want my memories to be only of my loss- I want them to also be tinged with the reality of the joy that I did know albeit briefly.


  1. I’m still looking for a way to memorialize my boys. Nothing feels right. I had plans for those boys just like you did for your baby and now they are gone. I know it’s hard to more forward when all you want is your baby. It’s been a year for me – a whole year – it’s not any easier. I’m so sorry, I wish I could give you some great advice on what to do or how to feel but I can say, everything you are feeling is normal and you aren’t alone. I wish I could give you more than that.

  2. Sweetheart, what a moving post.

    It reminds me of the Japanese concept of mizuko (‘water child’) around which rituals have sprung up to allow mothers to grieve and to commemorate.


    Planting a tree that will shade and shelter you and fragrance the air as it grows seems a wonderful way to honor his memory and to feel his presence with you always. And giving back to a child in need is a beautiful and worthy thought too.

    Much love to you,

  3. mkwewer, thanks for validating my feelings. I’m sorry that a year later you still grieve. How can you not though I guess. Thanks for reading and for letting me know what I feel is normal.

    I read about water babies recently. I think its a good idea- I need to reflect on what I will do. I think it will help give me peace.

  4. That is so beautifully put. However you choose to memorialize your baby, I’m sure it will bring you comfort by commemorating his life.

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