My heart hurts every time a name is added to this awful “club” no one wants to join.
One more family knows our pain.
One more family has an empty chair at holiday gatherings.
But I am thankful for the moms and dads that share their hearts in bereaved parents’ groups. I’m thankful for the safe space to speak honestly about what this life feels like and the challenges that greet us in this Valley.
A fellow waiting mom, Brenda Ehly, shared this on her personal Facebook page. I asked her if I could post it here and she graciously gave me permission:
“So, every now and then, I am asked, ‘How are you?’
Just in case any of them meant, ‘What is it like to be grieving a child during the holiday season?’ let me try to explain:
First, imagine you have stepped into a bear trap.
Sadly, it’s a magical bear trap, that you will never be able to remove. (That’s your initial loss). Weirdly, after awhile, you sort of (not exactly) get used to it.
Now, imagine that at completely random intervals, a large bear suddenly appears, and, mistakenly thinking that you’re the one who’s been setting bear traps in the forest, repeatedly punches you in the nose.
This bear throws one heck of a punch. (This is what happens when you go shopping at the grocery store and Andy Williams croons, “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!” at you).
So, is it all miserable, all the time?
Absolutely not; every now and then, an adorable, enchanted raccoon brings you a tall mocha and a blueberry scone, and that is very nice, because even if you’re stuck in a magical (and excruciatingly painful) bear trap, a tall mocha and a fresh scone are still welcome and refreshing.
That’s the best I can do right now.”