Monday, 4 March 2013


This is a post that I've had inside me for a while now and one of the reasons I needed to start this blog. Last September I lost a baby. I was 19 weeks pregnant, nearly halfway. It's commonly assumed once you pass the 12 week mark, you're safe. So it was entirely unexpected. There were no signs, the pregnancy had been uneventful, and there was no pain or blood to indicate something had gone wrong. I found out at the morphology scan, a routine ultrasound performed at the halfway point. It was a shock. And devastating. And we still don't know why.

This post is not about the event and the history behind it though (that will come later). It's about grief. Because I feel like I've had my fair share of it now. I feel like life needs to deal me a break. I lost a best friend 6 years ago to a brutal, unfair cancer. She was young, vibrant and beautiful, and she had a baby son who was left motherless. That changed me as a person. Then my father had life-threatening cancer. He thankfully recovered. Then my mother was diagnosed with her serve of it. Hers had already travelled from bowel to liver and the prognosis was not good. I was terrified. She went through a debilitating and disfiguring treatment and survived. But I grieved for her too. For her suffering and her loss. 

Now this. Sometimes I feel so fragile I don't think I can handle this world. I can't read the newspaper anymore and if something sinister is happening in a movie I turn it off. I feel weak. 

One of the hardest things about grief is the way other people acknowledge it - or don't. When you go through something so vicious and painful, you need the people you love around you. You need them to let you know they care. But people find pain hard to handle. They don't like seeing you cry. And if they don't know what to say they feel uncomfortable. I get that. 

And dead babies are one of the hardest things to talk about. 

It doesn't make it any easier though when you see people you've known for years, who you thought were among your closest friends, and they don't acknowledge what happened. That hurts. This grief is part of my identity now. I live with this pain every minute of every day. Sure, it gets softened with the passage of time, but it's there and it's part of me now. I know it's hard to talk about. And hell it gets boring. This lyric from a Clare Bowditch song keeps running through my head:

The thing about grief is

It gets kind of boring for the
People who don't yet know.
Your friends - some they will wander off and
Most will just wish you'd move on sister

That rings so true. I feel like people must be thinking I should be over it by now. I haven't heard from a lot of friends in months. But I won't always be this broken. I'll mend and one day I'll be there when they feel like life is falling apart. If they could just stand by me now...

On the flip side, I have been so touched by new friends who have demonstrated amazing friendship and empathy. But it doesn't replace the sense of loss of the people I've known for 10 years or more who seem to have deserted me. 

I posted this picture on Facebook when I lost Benjamin. It perfectly sums up how I need people to be. I don't expect anyone to "fix" me, find a solution for my grief. I just need support and understanding. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.