Tuesday, July 16, 2013

When the Questions are Impossible

It’s been twenty months since our Eve’s stillbirth, and I still choke when I find myself confronted with one of those impossible questions.  You know the ones — the questions that make you avoid small talk with new acquaintances, the ones for which there is no easy answer.

This evening, I found myself facing down another one of these questions again at a party.  I introduced myself and our rainbow son to the group, and suddenly there it was.

“Your baby is so sweet . . . is he your first?”

“No,” I managed, and then — I choked.  It quite literally felt like all the words that I might say to illuminate our family bottled up tight in my throat and I could not manage so squeeze a single one of them free.  My husband had to finish for me, finish explaining why we both do and do not have another child.

How is it that, twenty months later, I still flinch and falter in these situations?

I remember, in the early months of grief and my subsequent pregnancy, rehearsing my reply to a fellow loss mother, trying to convince myself that I had the courage to boldly say, “I have one living child.”

I thought that by now, surely I would have been comfortable enough to offer the truth with the same confident love I feel for our daughter.

And yet, I don’t. . . .

Today I am writing over at Still Standing Magazine!

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"I am glad you are here with me."
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King