Childless Mothers: The Grief and Bereavement from Child Loss
Am I Still a Mother
The Grief and Bereavement from Child Loss
It is time for "Childless Mothers" to deal with this, and to overcome childless tragedies. It is time to stop acting as if this does not exist; stop hindering our thoughts, obscuring our emotions; it is time to stop working so hard not to say their names just to make others more comfortable.
Common feelings from the loss of a child are most definitely including, but not limiting to, despair, agony, grief, disappointment, anger, blame, helplessness, hopelessness, bitterness, and too, too many more. Unfortunately, some feelings are not even able to be expressed; they just don’t make dictionaries that large, or that elaborate or concise to sum up what so many mothers feel during this time.
For any mother who has experienced childloss at birth, still births, maybe even miscarriages, are these mothers alone in their sentiments that so many awful parents in the world who do not even want their children, or who don't have a care in the world for them, have an abundance. And why on Earth do you not have yours? Even the fowl of the air, the beasts of the Earth and the creatures of the sea are able to perform life's simple task of giving birth, where did you go wrong?
Has any mother that has ever experienced the loss of a child ever felt disappointment, and useless helplessness of trying to justify your child’s unjustly death? Any sentiments during this time of playing, the infamous “Blame Game,” that you’ve wondered how any anger within your normal, average, everyday life could ignite feelings of vast, destructive anger, hatred and spitefulness within you to destroy the whole world? It’s easy, and sometimes necessary to blame yourself, your spouse, the doctors, the hospital, your family, your stressful or hideous job, your economic circumstances, and much more, but for what? It is still all in vain because even if blame can be placed on the shoulders of a tangible source, your little boy, your little girl, is still gone. There is still nothing left that you can do to bring them back. There still is, and always will be that part of you that has shifted into a sea-deep abyss, that part that is gone…dead. Even after life, “moves on” as everyone encourages, even with present children or ones after, you still shall carry the void. And yes! Of course, NO ONE understands! Even those who have experienced exactly what you are going through, and who are able to empathize with exactly how you feel, even they don’t REALLY know; no one can know because this is your baby we are talking about here, not just some one else’s.
Is it right or even necessary to attempt to justify the level of a mother’s loss based on the time spent with her beloved child? Or perhaps, the circumstances that rendered the loss of the child? It does not matter if the child passed because of the oxymoron of "natural causes" which should be very unnatural? It does not matter if the child had leukemia, or was even murdered? Does it really matter if the child passed in the womb, at birth, at age 5, at age 35, or at age 65? Is not the mother’s grief still the same. No time is ever enough time. I say this because I was angry at one point for NOT having TIME! But if God would have intervened to spare me the extra time, could I have been able to put a time-frame on my child’s life and have been able to better cope WITH TIME? With renewed healing, strength and logic, I now know that I would not have been able to do so, and that the time does not matter. Yes of course I would have loved to know and to have experienced and witnessed, the first crawl, walk, hear the first words, kindergarten, graduations, marriage, on-and-on. But too, now, because of his brief stay, I do not have to experience the difficulties of sickness, worrying about the evils of this world which can and will make him suffer, and of course now, I definitely do not have to worry about the anticipation of death; he will never suffer; he is at peace.
In Memory of Shakir: From the Diary of TajmaHill
That once sweet smile from the sun
That use to greet you with a kiss,
Now rises every morning
To just laugh in your face.
Stupid body! Still produces milk?
Milk for what? For whom?
Does it not know that you are gone?
Does it not know that this process is unnecessary?
Why is nature so cruel?...
The birds still sing, and for what?
People all around you have just moved on,
Or even worst yet, never stopped or
Slowed their moving at all.
And why should they? It’s of no concern to them.
You cry yourself to sleep every eve,
Even without adequate energy or tears.
You silently pray that tomorrow passes you by
To shelter you of all of your pain and your fears.
But, O’contraire, mon frere!
Day breaks again;
And you are left to wallow
In shame, pity and pain.
This agony and despair may be a natural reaction and sentiments to what appears to be grim circumstances, but how many know this chapter of your life, “AIN’T OVER?”
For: “Joy cometh in the morning!!!!”
Joy is not based on circumstances and happenings like happiness; one can be experiencing less than favorable conditions, yet, still have the experience of peace that joy brings. Joy is a state of being, not a fleeting feeling. In God, suffering will always be followed by peace and restoration; a type of molding, an innovative creation!
Even Viktor E. Frankl (one of Europe’s leading psychiatrists, and concentration camp survivor) concluded that those experiencing the traumatic horrors of concentration camp were more likely to survive if they lived in the optimistic world of “hope!” Those who felt hopeless, and who had nothing to hold on to (no hope, no higher power…nothing) were not survivors.
My hope is in my faith, my faith lies within the word of God… “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (John 1:1)
I thank you God for saving me from myself. Thank you for all of the resources that you have placed right before at the time that I needed them the most; this includes family, friends, strangers, neighbors, church family, doctors, counselors, and even those who made me feel like they were my enemy. They felt like enemies, but they were the sandpaper sanding me into a smooth, beautiful finish. Thank God!
Embrace God’s healing powers. Fight the enemy (Satan-the master of deception, lies and sorrow…do not claim this sorrow for your own, give it to God).
Pray-ask others to pray when you do not have the strength, desire or words.
Face the problem head-on
Be honest about your feelings, even if they are out of character with your spirit (at least then, you’ll know exactly what you are working with. You can relate to where you were yesterday, where you are today, and amazingly, be able to awe at where you end up tomorrow!)
Steps to healing MAY include
**Those things that are therapeutic for YOU! (Forget Grand-mom, your best friend, your well-meaning co-workers…this is YOUR healing! Just like no one can claim the child that was yours, no one can claim the healing that is to be yours as well.)**
Some things that I have found to be very therapeutic…
**Give your child a name (If your child was stillborn or passed shortly after birth, you still can, have the right, and should give your child a name. That child has earned its place in the world just as you and I!**
**Keeping a diary** Include ALL feelings, events, hopes, wishes, dreams, successes, failures.
**I celebrated my son’s birthday every year with a birthday card to keep in a photo album (losing a child at birth did not give me the opportunity to build tangible memories…this did!)
**I also celebrated his birthday for the first five years or so with a simple cake/cup cake/candle** (You may choose to do this for 1 year or 20 years…it’s your healing!)
**I read self-help books on Grief, Loss, Bereavement** (Yes, this will force you to bring forth a lot of anger, guilt, crying, but for some odd reason, dealing with it in private, and dealing with it head-on, helped me to heal much faster, than wallowing in these emotions and attempting to sweep them under the carpet, and/or praying that one day this will all be over…the pain will subside over time.)**
**Obtain pictures, baby’s Affidavit, “cool caps” from the hospital that all babies get at birth, infant blanket, and keep them in a special keep sake box. **
**Visit the cemetery to pay respects, laugh, cry, have private moments, to feel close to your loved one, but only if this is therapeutic for you, and not forcing you to regress in your healing.**
**Counselors are there to listen, not diagnose you as crazy or weak…Use them!**
**Psychiatrists are there to listen, but can and will medicate** Use them as needed.
****Only pull out mementos, photo albums, diaries, keepsakes AS NEEDED, not out of obligation. And only use these to promote your healing. Once you feel that they are not needed, put them away and keep them away…no problem!****
You may feel that on the outside looking in you LOOK, or should FEEL ridiculous, but let me assure you that these ridiculous practices aided me in my healing. God allowed me to be angry, bitter, sorrowful, guilty-feeling, hopeless, helpless, blame-seeking, while he continually comforted, loved, respected and HEALED me.
I pray for your continued healing through faith and prayer. If you are too weak, too tired, too disgusted, too ashamed, too angry, or just feeling like the living dead and can’t pray…I will pray for you.
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