AUTHOR: Carolyn Savage | POSTED: October 16, 2012 | COMMENTS: 11 Comments
CATEGORIES: Infertility, IVF,
Warning…I swear in this post! Big nasty swear words and not just in words but also in symbolic gestures. If this offends, you, allow me to apologize in advance. I just had to, though. Couldn’t help it! Sorry Mom and Dad.
Yesterday was National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day.
I didn’t even know there was such a day until I saw tributes written by friends on Facebook. How did I not know this day existed? Honestly, it’s probably the same reason that I didn’t know today was National Dictionary Day.
Of course, on 101.5 The River, Rick and Mary Beth are always reminding listeners that any given day is a “national day of something”. Usually it’s funny or obscure. Of course, there’s nothing funny about National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. It’s a gut-check day for anyone who has experienced either of those tragedies. Seeing as how for every living little miracle I have under my wing, I have one who didn’t make it, shouldn’t I feel compelled to remember the day?
Tough question because, honestly, I haven’t even come close to figuring out how to honor those five little souls that we lost. I didn’t plant any remembrance trees. I don’t have any traditions that we carry out on the anniversaries of the losses. In fact, I think I’ve done everything humanly possible to erase the memories of babies with no heartbeats on ultrasounds. And the two phone calls about failing bloodwork that indicated an early failed pregnancy…I’ve tried to dim the memories as well. I don’t want to live in those moments. Dwelling isn’t my style.
But dwelling, and honoring are two different things. Sometimes I forget that.
My dad has always said that if someone–or something–knocks me down they’d better prepare for the inevitable tire treads I’d leave on their face.
True statement, but a double edged sword.
Because, yes, after a fall I’m going to pick myself up, dust myself off, and roll full steam ahead to a place I’d rather stand….but….and this is a big but…sometimes I’m so focused on the goal of erasing, doing better, and beating the hell out of whatever set-back I’ve experienced, I forget the lesson in remembering.
Get pregnant with the wrong baby…Try like hell to have my own baby.
I’m a fixer. My experiences with infertility, pregnancy loss, and giving “L” up after birth have all motivated me to beat the odds–come hell or high water. Stand in my way? Eff off. I’ll eat you for lunch (eventually).
Because of that attitude, I struggle with painful remembrances.
But then I read posts by Kait….
And I get it. National Pregancy and Infant Loss Day isn’t just about dwelling. It’s about shedding light on an experience that many women go through, but others hesitate to talk about. After all, what’s harder than acknowledging the death of someone’s beloved child? And the silence that ensues is deafening…and lonely.
It’s a day about standing on top of a proverbial chair and shouting, “I will remember. I will never forget. And you should remember too, God dammit!”
I love that.
It’s defiant. Like a flip of the finger at the silence that accompanies the loss of a child…born or unborn.
Maybe National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Day is my style.
Eff off silence. I am going to talk about my child. I’m going to honor my child. I’m going to think of them when I see a butterfly, or hear the wind chimes in my back yard. I’m going to imagine that each of those little souls is a guardian angel to Drew, Ryan, Mary Kate, Reagan and Isabella. And when I swear to high heavens that one of my angels brushed my cheek in the middle of the night, I’m going to know that it’s true.
They are real. They happened.
And for them, I’m going to suck the marrow out of each and every minute of my day with my family.
I’ll remember and honor and celebrate the lasting lessons of those losses.
What a blessing.
If you are struggling with a recent pregnancy or infant loss, reach out. I’ll listen…I promise.