Friday, August 1, 2014

Dear Beautiful Mother: A Letter From One Carry to Birth Mama, to Another (and one for Daddies, too!)

by Heather Kimble

Dear Beautiful Mother,

I am sorry that you are going through this. My heart breaks for you. I know the pain all too well. I wish there was something that I could or say to take your pain away or even just lessen it a little. Please know you are not alone, even though it probably feels that way right now. You are a brave, selfless, loving, and strong Mother. You chose life in the midst of darkness and maybe even against the recommendation of others. You chose to enjoy and spend all the time that you have with your precious baby. You refused to allow anyone to take that away from you.

But inside I know you are broken, devastated, confused, and scared. I know you are in so much pain that your heart physically aches. You cry yourself to sleep. You are so angry at times that you just need to scream at the top of your lungs. Nothing else matters to you right now except for your baby. You tell and ask yourself, This can’t be happening to me, It wasn't supposed to be like this, Why will my baby die but hers get to live, What did I do to deserve this, Why me, Why my baby,” and so many more questions and thoughts. I wish I could tell you that you will get answers and understand, but, even though you may get some, most will go unanswered. Understand that you are not to blame; you did, and are doing, everything in love for your baby.

You will come to feel aged well beyond your years. You will not know what to do or what to say next. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Please know that it is ok to break down. It is ok to have all of these emotions. You are living every parent’s worst nightmare.

I wish I could tell you that it will be ok, but I can’t. I can tell you that you will get through this and you will be forever changed. Take everything second by second, then minute by minute, then hour by hour, then day by day. Allow yourself to grieve and feel all of your emotions. Don’t rush yourself, there is no time limit. This grief is part of your “new normal.” Don’t allow others to rush you or tell you are doing it the wrong way. Surround yourself with people who love and support you. Distance yourself from those who don’t.

I am sorry those around you are telling you it will all be ok. They share stories of miracles and compare carrying your baby to term with their friend’s miscarriage. They tell you that the doctors may be wrong because of some “a friend of a friend” story. I am sorry some of your friends and family are avoiding you like you are contagious. I am sorry for all the horrible comments people are saying to you, Will you try again, At least you’re young and can have more, Can you have more, At least you didn’t have much time to get too attached, and so many more. Some mean well but just do not understand. You want this baby. You are attached to this baby. You love this baby.

You enjoy every precious moment with your baby. Make memories (like seeing Santa Claus, vacation, etc.) eat food that you love (like strawberries, steak, etc.) and that kids usually love (chicken nuggets, mac n’ cheese, etc.). Sing, talk, and read to your baby. Do all the things you are able and want to do with your baby. It does not matter how small or big, how inexpensive or extravagant. The only thing that matters is that you enjoy the time and do what feels right and what is important to you.

When your baby is born (passed away or alive) spend all the time you need with your baby. Hold, read, sing, talk, and just be in those moments with your baby. Take lots of pictures with and of your baby (even if you choose not to look at them). Bring a special blanket, outfit, stuffed animal, or whatever you want for your baby.

It does not matter what others think.

Communicate with your husband/partner. Each of you will probably be grieving differently from one another. Spend time together as a family. Go on dates, listen to one another’s thoughts and feeling, cry together, and just hold each other.

Take care of you. I know it is hard to even think about that right now, but it is so important. You need emotional, physical, and mental breaks from everything around you. Listen to music, enjoy a cup of tea, read a book, enjoy quiet time alone, take an extra long warm shower or bath, paint your nails, whatever it is that you enjoy.

Oh sweet beautiful Mother, I wish I had the words to truly tell you how sorry I am. It hurts, and while the pain will not always be so raw, it will always be there. A piece of your heart will always be missing. Know that you are not betraying your precious baby by living your life and moving forward, because you will always have their memory and the love you have for them in your heart.

I have you my prayers and thoughts, Matthew 5:4.

You are a beautiful Mother.

Love Always,
Heather
~ ~ ~ 

Dear Dads,

I wanted to write you a letter now that you are a father who is living with a baby that has received a fatal diagnosis. This could be the hardest thing a person has to deal with. Not only do you know that the end result is nothing that you want, you are stuck being unable to hold or comfort your baby. The good news is that your wife is carrying to term. This may seem silly to you as a guy, but these moments are the only time you will have to spend with your baby. Cherish these moments.

Another thing that is possibly even more important is to support your wife and her decision. Even if you don’t understand her choice, support it. She is going through as much anguish, if not more anguish, than you are and she needs you more now than ever. This decision matters to her and she needs you to be there to hold her up when she is weak. The time ahead is going to be very hard to struggle through.

You are travelling down a path that you already know the ending to, and there is no changing that. You have to go down this path together. If you are not united, you will not make it.

Don’t lose sight of the fact that this is your chance to make the most of your time with your baby. Try and enjoy all the things that you can. Make every moment you can special while you have a chance. If you don’t make the most of it, you will regret it. This is your chance to make as many memories as you can.

In God’s Love, 
Jason Kimble
~ ~ ~

Heather Kimble lives in the Philadelphia area. She is married to her best friend, Jason and is mommy to Hannah Sue Kimble. Hannah is her only child. Heather carried Hannah after receiving a fatal diagnosis and was told to terminate. Heather was told to terminate based on the serious risk to her own personal health. She doesn't believe in termination and chose to carry Hannah with love. Hannah passed away and was born sleeping on December 23rd, 2013. Heather and Jason treasure every moment they had with Hannah during pregnancy and after delivery. Hannah has inspired a nonprofit started by her parents to help others and to help break the silence by sharing their journey of baby loss. Visit her blog, Hannah's Heart and Love, and follow her page on Facebook

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