Two years ago today we were at the hospital giving birth to our stillborn son, Andrew. It was by far the hardest day of my life, even more difficult than loosing my mom this past summer. My mom’s passing has brought up the grief of loosing Andrew all over again, and also the fact that in just four more weeks we will meet our newest little addition to the family, William. People have asked me if being pregnant and having this new baby very soon will help with the grief of loosing Andrew. It will be a nice distraction for sure, but William will never be a replacement for Andrew. I will always have a son that I lost and nothing will change that. I will always grieve for him and I will always remember each September 29, his short little life. We have had four pregnancy looses but Andrew’s by far was the hardest. There is nothing as traumatic, that I have experienced, like being induced and delivering a stillborn baby. I will never forget leaving the hospital that day, sitting in a wheelchair and waiting for Glenn to bring the car around. I sat there as I had four times before that waiting for Glenn with a baby in my arms, but this time, my arms were empty and so was my heart.
The months after his birth were a blur really, of just trying to get out of bed each morning, having cried most of the night and putting one foot in front of the other because I had to. I had to keep going for my other kids who needed me, but I was a shell of a person during that time. We went to counseling and that helped, but time was really what helped the most. Then a year went by, and I couldn’t believe it. One year after Andrew’s birth, I found myself in the same hospital with my mom who was very sick and then started a journey of her decline and ultimately her passing away and here we are again, another year later. I pray this will not be another year of loss, like the past two have been. I pray we will soon meet little William and all will be well with him and his birth. It’s been very difficult to believe that all is well with him. The doctor’s are watching me very closely with weekly non stress tests and ultrasounds to make sure he is doing well. We never got answers as to why we lost Andrew and that’s so difficult. Everyone is hopeful that since we are now 35 weeks with William that all will be well, but having been through so much loss lately, I have to fight the voices in my mind that say it will not turn out as I hope. I have battled anxiety this pregnancy like never before and it has manifest itself in physical symptoms and I work hard to keep under control. I will put one foot in front of the other and not give into fear these last few weeks until I hold my little William. It’s all I can do.
Loss changes you. We are not the same people we were before we lost Andrew and not even the same people we were before we lost my mom. I’m glad we aren’t. God is teaching us empathy for people who are in this situations. Everyone will loose someone special to them at some point and for most people they will loose multiple people. They loose a parent, or spouse, or a child. Each of those losses are different and yet the same as well. We know now how to allow someone to grieve in their own way and in their own time. There is no timeline on grief and there is no right way to grieve. The fact is though that we all must grieve, if we don’t it will come up later. So, today we remember our sweet boy, Andrew. We thank God for his life and all it has taught us and we look forward to seeing him again someday.