Welcome to Mommies with Hope

Come and find solace as you get to know us who share in this journey of grief. We have been praying for you and extend our deepest and sincere sympathy. We “hope” you experience comfort and peace in this safe haven of love and support.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Sneaky Grief

This grief stuff sure is sneaky. We can be going about our day, fine one moment and in tears the next. Certainly I think about my babies each and every day, yet as time has passed, there are longer spans of time in between my "moments" (meltdowns). I tend to have my moment (meltdown), wipe the tears from my eyes, and carry on about my day. Typically, I expect such moments when anniversary or due dates approach, or when the holidays draw near.

It's not always so cut and dry though, ladies. Sometimes the grief just sneaks up on us. It can come in the form of a newborn baby's cry, reminding us of the cry we never got to hear. Or maybe it's the 2-year-old at the grocery store who so innocently toddles about. After all, the baby you lost should be about that age. It quite possibly may be the wonderful news of a friend, relative, or neighbor's healthy birth that spins you into questioning why you can't be in her place.

I recently fell prey to the sneak attack of my own grief. I think it's a combination of many things, all of which culminated in quite a moment (or two) for me just yesterday. It may seem silly, but the two things that caught me totally off guard were a visit to my neighbor's and a Time magazine cover. Let me explain...

My neighbor recently gave birth to a baby girl. The baby was born 6 weeks premature and spent at least a week in the hospital. They are settled in back home and things are going well for them. They aren't plugged in to a church and do not have any family nearby, so I was very eager to take some food to them, knowing how much of a blessing that has been to me in the past. Yesterday, I packed my bag with all the food I had prepared and confidently marched across the street to deliver the meal. We chatted briefly, exchanged small talk, and she thanked me for the food. Then....just across the room, I spotted her. That tiny little baby girl. I couldn't not acknowledge her! She was, in fact, the reason I was coming in the first place. So I mustered up the strength to say something, only then to find myself holding and embracing this precious little baby...all 6 pounds of her. Sneaky grief. I felt my heart sinking as I thought about how empty it was not to have a little girl of my own in my arms, as I was supposed to. It was nearly a year ago that we experienced our most recent loss of Riyah Mae. Had she been born full-term, she'd be just a few months old. I gently handed this precious little baby back to her mama and walked back across the street...empty.

Soon, my husband arrived home from work. Enter Time Magazine. This magazine laid on our island in plain sight with a front cover plastered with the image of a nude woman, posed in a manner that covered anything inappropriate, yet her full-term pregnant belly billowed out across the page. The title of the cover article stated, "How the First Nine Months Shape the Rest of Your Life." Jokingly, my husband said something to the effect of "what are you doing on the cover of this magazine?" I can't really say what he was thinking or why he would have said that, besides the fact that he was acknowledging that this woman was beautiful and was trying to pay me a compliment. At least that's what I'm telling myself! Sneaky grief. Immediately, my eyes welled up with tears and I left the room, trying to hold them back. He followed me, realizing why I was upset and just hugged me apologetically.

Later that night, after the kids were in bed, we snuggled on the couch and watched some television. The storyline of the show we were watching was that of a mother who had forgotten her baby in a hot car, resulting in the death of her child. Sneaky grief. Another moment. Tears. Remembering. Hurting. Longing.

Not long after that, my husband very lovingly said, "Maybe you should just go on up to bed and get some rest." He walked me upstairs to bed and said goodnight. I clung tight to Chloe's blankie, which was draped over my shoulder and across my face, serving the purpose of catching any tears that fell as it has so effectively done countless times before. Sneaky grief.


Feel free to share your "sneaky grief" moments in the comments, along with any thoughts on how to cope in such moments. I'd love to follow this post up with those thoughts, as well as some encouragement from God's Word as it relates to this issue!


Jamie said...

Awww, man! You are so right- it just sneaks up on us. Just when we think we can 'handle' whatever situation we may enter and then BAM! Reminders everywhere! I wonder if too, something about this month conjures up feelings, emotions. I know as I thought in the shower this morning about what I all wanted to do this month to honor my babies I just began to cry silent tears. HUGS Teske! And thanks for being so real- for allowing God to use you to minister to us all!

Nichelle said...

Hugs Teske...that sneaky grief gets me EVERYTIME...ugh....a faint cry of a baby in a store...a toddler bouncing around at church...or the first day of school. Watching the bus pass by. Even in my grief...GOD IS OH SO GOOD. Where would I be if I did not have HIM?