Sunday, December 7, 2008

Please don't ask me if I'm better

Recently, many more people than usual have been asking me when I expect I'll "feel better." It surprises me, because even the people who have been the most supportive, and understand on some level that grief is a journey, have been asking me this question. Usually they don't ask directly, but rather ask what the timetable for 'feeling better' is like for mamas who have lost their babies. I don't get angry about this question anymore, but rather it just feels irrelevant. Mostly because 'feeling better' is not something I expect from myself right now, and given the range of emotions I feel in any given day...sadness, anger, despair, shame....'feeling better' just isn't a goal I've set for myself. It seems like our society only values feeling good as a valid emotion...we're expected to either hide or fix all the dark emotions. Slowly but surely, I've been reading Miriam Greenspan's Healing through the Dark Emotions and its very validating. Because they only way I can imagine surviving losing Ezra, is to allow myself to just be where I am right now, which is just so very very sad.

6 comments:

Monique said...

All too true - I`ll never ask if you're feeling better, just how you're feeling and be accepting and take you any way I can get you. And now I have a new book to read, thanks for sharing.
xoxo

Hope's Mama said...

I'm right there with you Sarah. I posted about this early on. You are so right about people only being comfortable with the good emotions. And I hate people trying to compare grief to grief - eg if they lost a grandparent, friend or uncle or something. Losing a baby is so different and I don't think there is a "better" just a new normal. And we are all a long way from that new normal. And that's ok.

Lani said...

I hate that one. I have been getting it every day. Are you feeling any better today? um, no! I'm not feeling better, my baby died 3 months ago, how on earth can I be feeling better? ugh. I'm right there with you. So sorry about your little Ezra. Our beautiful little Silas died 10 hours after he was born on Sept 25, 2008 due to a shoulder dystocia birth. it sucks and we deserve to take all the time we need to grieve. I will definitely check out the book you are reading. I'm reading "Awakening to Grief" by John Welshons and I'm really finding it helpful.

Barbara said...

It's so helpful to log in to this place to read that we're all feeling similar emotions.

We all know that you're not "feeling better", "getting on with life" nor rushing to "move on" because neither are we. And why should we?

You take your time, put one foot in front of the other and feel what you feel.

And feel the support that's here for you.

Laura said...

It's always ok to be sad. Don't try to stop your emotions.

BlackCommentator.com Readers' Corner said...

Dearest Sarah,

No one can tell you that you will ever "get over" losing Ezra, just as, had he lived, there would never be another day in your life without him. Why would you ever want to "get over" the time you spent with your precious Ezra or feel that he is completely gone from you?

I can't tell you the pain will end, but I do know that in some way, biological and spiritual, your pain becomes part of you and you come to live within it - even come to understand it as part of your relationship with your beautiful boy.

And there will be joy again. Although you can't see it yet, it's there, ahead of you, and when you find it again, Ezra will still be right there with you. In some strange way, you will share that joy with him, when the time comes. That's part of living with your grief and coming to feel it as a part of you.

Sarah and David, I don't pretend to know your loss. My loss of a child occurred much earlier in pregnancy, and so I can only imagine that what you're going through is ever more painful.

Do you happen to believe that you will one day be reunited in some way we don't understand? That belief has become part of me, too, and I look forward to it coming to fruition one day, especially now that I'm so much older than I was then.

Please know you have people who love you and care about you - without judgment. You just do and feel what you need to.

May God hold you especially close.

Love,
Nancy