I realized that I should probably get around to writing this post after discussing loss with a friend this week. She told me that When Solomon passed away, she simply didn't know what to say to me. I know many “close” friends and family have not (and still haven’t) reached out for the same reason. I just want to get this out there that I do not think “Not knowing what to say” is a good reason to ignore the loss of a friend or relative. No matter how uncomfortable it may be for you, what matters most is showing that you care.
Full disclosure, I still have some bitterness to work out but I am not ashamed. Grieving is a process and sometimes it can get a little messy.
Understand. Understand that the loss of a pregnancy, baby, or child is the greatest tragedy a mother could ever experience. Understand that this mother has been cut open in the most unimaginable way. The pain of an empty womb is unbearable. Just Imagine the silence of an beautiful yet empty nursery.
Let her talk, or not talk. Sometimes a mommy wants to tell the world of her pain. If not, sit there and listen to the silence. Don’t be afraid to feel the weight of death. Its ok to cry together. Sometimes this can be the most healing.
Acknowledge the lost little one. Acknowledge that he lived, that he mattered, that he will never be forgotten. Mothers love to hear their child’s name, say it as often as possible. Tell her she is still his mommy and nothing will ever change that.
When she says don’t visit, still do. Quickly stop by and show that you care. Bring roses, tell her that she is the most beautiful and strong mother you have ever seen.
Purchase a thoughtful gift. A journal, teddy bear, candle, necklace, the book We were gonna have a baby but we had an angel instead or You are the Mother of all Mothers. Get something personalized. This mommy will love anything with her child’s name or birth date on it. It doesn't have to be expensive to touch the heart.
(The angel in the picture was so kindly given to me by my aunt. She stands next to Solomon's memory box and ashes)
Cook a meal. The last thing this mommy should worry about is food. This support will mean the world to her, I promise.
Send a card. If you all you write is “I’m sorry for your loss”, this is enough.
Pray and tell her you are praying. Pray she find strength and peace. Pray the next couple of months will be gentle on her. Pray she will get through this.
Follow up. Call or send text messages. It is ok to ask how she is doing. Even if she doesn't respond, knowing you are thinking of her will be appreciated.
Don't let your loss of words turn you away from someone you care about. Don't miss out on the biggest opportunity to show love and support to a mother who really needs it. <3