By: Nikki Grayson
Please be kind to me. Please be gentle and patient with my delicate feelings right now.
Keep in mind that it has not been too long since I lost my son, and I am still allowed to hurt. Try to remember that my heart has been broken by the loss of a very small and precious baby, a baby that I struggled to conceive from a womb that has held four other irreplaceable little ones.
Infertility and loss is not easy, and it’s not a topic to throw around, like people casually talking about the weather with a stranger.
A loss is not replaceable, a barren womb cannot be filled with your empty platitudes, and a broken heart cannot be stitched back together with well intended, but meaningless suggestions.
Slow down, think before you speak, and consider my unique situation in a world filled with expecting mommas and pregnant bellies all around us. With so many pregnancies around me, people say “It must be in the water here.” Hold that thought and please don’t tell me “not to drink the water,” as I have just lost my pregnancy. Be patient with me, try to understand the pain I feel when you tell me someone has had their baby, and hold back on the details, my friend. The pain I have experienced is still very raw right now.
Pause before you playfully ask if I am pregnant because I couldn’t remember what I was going to say or do in a specific situation. No, I don’t have “pregnancy brain,” but instead I’m going through a very tough time, and my mind is constantly thinking about what I have lost and where to go from here. I am trying to remain positive, yet balance my work with my personal hardship right now. Asking if I am pregnant is a very hard stab, when I only lost my son a month ago, and I am supposed to be 25 weeks along at this time. This isn’t the right time for a playful pregnancy joke.
To the ones who are pregnant, I know you are excited, and you have every reason to be.
I’m happy for you, and you give me hope that, maybe one day, I too can carry a healthy baby to term. I’m still reeling in the loss of my growing baby bump, and I still miss my pregnancy symptoms that kept my thoughts of miscarriage locked up safely. If you’re a soon to be mama, I ask you to please hold back your complaints from me; that you are tired of your ankles being swollen, you are tired of being pregnant, or that you are not ready for the coming sleepless nights. Try to consider the blessing you are carrying around, and the moment you will see your beautiful baby for the first time. One in four women have cried many tears in hopes they would be able to experience just that. Women all over have laid in the same hospital bed that you hold your precious, lively baby with laughter and smiles, but instead they’ve clung to their stillborn son or daughter with tears streaming down their cheeks.
To everyone, I promise it doesn’t have to be a struggle to find the right words to say to me. If we could all just pause, and think before we speak, there would be so many less wounds left on our hearts.
Some wounds are so fresh and every time we hear these searing words, it burns, leaving fresh tears streaming down our cheeks. Some words have faded into permanent scars. Although they will always be remembered, we have tried to let the words slip from our memories.
Consider asking me, “How are you doing” instead of asking me, “When are you trying again.” Silence on days when I am hurting is more meaningful than you’ll ever know. Letting me talk through my pain without trying to fix me with a simple, “I’m thinking of you” or “I’m praying for you” can help brighten a gloomy day.
Just as I am kind to you, please be kind to me in return. When you complain about pregnancy symptoms and offer suggestions that are not even reality, such as “I would give you my uterus,” or talk of how tired you might be because your baby doesn’t sleep, pause first.
Please try to contemplate how those words might wound me. Try to count your blessings because you are so blessed to have a baby growing in your womb, or a baby in your arms, instead of only a memory in your heart.
Please be kind, offer a hug, and acknowledge my loss.
“A little consideration, a little thought for others, makes all the difference.” Eeyore
About Nikki Grayson
I am a mom to 5 babies lost through miscarriages, the most recent one being my son at 16 weeks pregnant. I am a nurse, and I live with my husband and two dogs. We love to take walks, ride four wheelers, and do anything that involves being outdoors! I want others that are walking this journey of infertility and pregnancy loss to know they are not alone.