By: Laura Curran
In the summer of 1990, I had never even heard of Share or its mission. Yet, by the autumn of the same year, I could not have imagined how drastically our lives would change and how important Share would become to my husband Kevin and me.
Pregnancy for the first time, we anxiously awaited the September 1990 arrival of our newborn. Of course, we wanted to be surprised in the delivery room and learn our child’s gender, as he or she emerged into our world crying. We imagined we were having a daughter wo would have long legs like her daddy and, hopefully my nose instead of his, blonde hair like me, her dad’s sense of humor, and my kind heart. As obstetrics appointments became weekly, our excitement grew and we knew it would not be much longer before we held our baby for the first time. Yet, at one such appointment, our world was shattered forever when no heartbeat was heard with Doppler nor seen through ultrasound images. We delivered our beautiful daughter (with long legs like her daddy) a few days later on a Monday. Lonely and sad, the only cried in that delivery room were ours.. and they continued late into the night until two strangers appeared in our hospital room doorway, Cathi and Chuck Lammert.
The strangers said they understood our pain and loss. They asked our daughter’s name and we proudly told them, “Rachel Jane.” At first, we just wanted them to leave us alone. No one could possible understand how we were feeling. Keven and I were such private people; we didn’t want to share our broken hearts with anyone. The pain was too intense, too overwhelming to express rationally, and it frightened us. Several hours later, after the strangers left, we talked about how brave we thought they were to share a portion of themselves with us in our most difficult hours. After all, we were strangers to them too, they reached out to us. We cried because they were sent to us, and we needed them.
A month later, we attended our first Share support group meeting. It was an enormously difficult thing for two private people to do, but our survival depended upon it. While our family members were wonderful sources of love and encouragement following our loss, only Share offered us a common bond of support. In addition to Cathi and Chuck, the parents we met at the support group had firsthand experience with loss and we needed to lean on each other. We have discovered ways of coping and ways of celebrating our babies. We have gained lifelong friend of strong character. Share has given us a positive outlet for our grief and we are eternally grateful.
About Laura Curran
Laura is the mother of Rachel Jane, stillborn due to a cord knot on September 17, 1990. She and her husband’s living children include Michael Kevin (May 14, 1992), Steven Patrick (December 8, 1993) Alexander Joseph (November 25, 1995), and Margaret Mary (April 8, 1997). They lost a daughter, Faith Ann, at 20 weeks on March 14, 2002, and suffered an early loss at ten weeks in August 2002.