When the World Doesn’t Remember, But You Do
By: Natasha H.
It was January 27 and I sat in the cold at my uncle’s burial. Since this was the first close family member of mine who had passed away, I wasn’t sure what to expect from myself and everyone else emotionally. What I realized over the course of the few days my family was all gathered together was that although we were deeply saddened by his loss, the overwhelming feeling there was love.
Love as we remembered the happiness he brought to our lives and family gatherings.
Love as we laughed and cried over the tender memories we had with him, and the ones we will miss the most.
Love as we remembered his life together.
Fast forward a few months later. I had been seeing a counselor for the grief that I couldn’t shake since our 3rd devastating miscarriage.
As I sat in her office, I spoke words that I didn’t even realize I felt until I heard them come out of my mouth: One of the reasons miscarriage had been so devastating for me is that when a family member or loved one dies, everyone that knew and loved them grieves together. You talk about memories. You look at old pictures. You laugh together, you cry together. You remember and honor their life every day thereafter.
When miscarriage occurs, it feels as if it’s only you and your husband mourning a life that should have and would have touched many.
Only you and your partner share the memories of pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, and doctors visits. Only you remember the date that your baby was both brought into this world and taken away from it. Only you truly grieve the life that was ripped away from you. There are no memories shared with loved ones. No old stories and photos to remember and admire. There are just hospital bills, calendars with appointments and due dates that will never come to be, ultrasound photos, and a hell of a lot of “could have beens”.
I can’t blame others for not missing and loving my miscarried baby the way I do.
I just wish that the life that I had the opportunity to nurture for only a short while could have touched their lives the way she touched ours. In my mind her name was Mia. I’ve never actually researched the meaning of the name until today.
“Mia: A wished for child.”
Here I am 11 months and 3 days after our most devastating loss. Still grieving;
Still seeing flashbacks of that day and the weeks both leading up to it and following it; feeling emotions that for the most part are resolved but occasionally hit me out of nowhere and so suddenly, as if it happened yesterday.
According to some unwritten rule set by the world, I should be over this by now. My baby wasn’t carried to full term, wasn’t born into this world for others to know and love, so my grieving process and timeline is limited and invalid past a certain timeframe. At some point, I’m expected to stop remembering and move on.
I am not sure what my purpose was in writing this. I guess that when we lose someone we love, we want the world to know that we remember them.
A mother of a miscarried baby is no different. I want people to remember her life. I want people to know that this baby was very real to us and her loss was very real to us and no passage of time could ever change that; just as with any death or loss. We talked about her life with us, asking her to please stay healthy and strong. We needed her. We loved her fiercely and celebrated her life, albeit hesitantly because of the losses we had previously experienced. She had a collection of cute clothes already acquired that her dad was slightly unaware of. She would have had an impressive amount of the cutest baby rolls just like both her parents both did. She would have been such a special light in this world and in our home. She would be 11 days and 3 months today, and we wish the world could have known, loved, and celebrated her, too.
About Natasha H.
Natasha is currently completing her last year of education to become a dental hygienist. She also has a background in psychology and journalism and greatly enjoys writing, nutrition and exercise, and traveling. Natasha and her husband have been married for 8 years and have 3 little angels in heaven. She is active in her church and community and hopes to help open the conversation about pregnancy loss and help others to share, grieve, and heal.
Fantastic article Natasha. I think about you all the time. You are an incredible woman and I look up to you. Love you.
Thank you so much for sharing. It was just what I needed to hear today.
Thank you so much for sharing. I gained comfort knowing that others feel the same way about loss. My baby never had a heart beat so i feel i dont deserve or no one will understand my grieving. You made it so normal for any grieving parent to feel this loss and that their childs voice was missed in the world. Life goes on but it stopped for me… i dont have it easy having children so it feels worse.
Everyone deserves a chance to grieve their baby, including you. You will always be that baby’s mom.
Your article is phenomenal- Your words spoke to my soul. I’m so glad I came across this article.
Thank you for sharing your heart…Your words touched the inner depths of my soul. Love your transparency. I am so glad I sat and read your article.
I’m so sorry for your loss. You’re not alone. Grandparents share your loss too. Let them help you share your grief. It was their loss too.