A Big Step

Tonight I held my nephew Jack for the first time ever. This is only the second time I have seen him in person since he was born. He is four months old and he and Lucy were supposed to be the closest cousins. She would be almost the same size as he is now. He has big chubby cheeks just like I thought Lucy would have, just like she had in my one dream of her. I have purposefully had to keep my distance from baby Jack since he was born because even thinking about him brings me to tears. The first time I saw him I looked at him for about 5 seconds and then ran crying out of the house. It breaks my heart that I associate him with Lucy, which means I associate him with Lucy’s death. I have four nieces and Jack is my first nephew, so I was so excited about being his Auntie. It has been heartbreaking to stay away from him, but I know it would be even more devastating to be around him. The night after I saw him for the first time I honestly felt like I wanted to die because I missed Lucy so much and I felt like I couldn’t live one more second without her in my arms.  I realized I had to set up some boundaries to stay emotionally healthy for my family. My boys can’t have a Mama who wishes she was dead. I cry all the time when I think about Jack because I feel like I’ve lost Lucy and Jack. Lucy’s death was like a rock being thrown into a placid pond and the ripples of destruction have spread out further and further and they seem to touch everything in my life.

Today my brother came and brought his three kids to my Mom’s house. I wanted to go over and hang out, but I knew baby Jack was there, so Josh just took the boys over to play with their cousins and I stayed home. I felt defeated and sad because I hate having to stay away. I wish I could control my emotional reaction, but it’s truly out of my control. Grief has it’s own timetable and I just have to go with it. By evening I had such a strong feeling that I wanted to see Jack and I wanted to hold him. I have thought about holding Jack many times in the past and I weep every time. I started crying just thinking about it, but I got in the car and drove over to my Mom’s to hold my little Jack. Holding him felt amazing and I just cried and cried. He is so cute and he came right to me and smiled at me. It was also so hard because I could just imagine it was Lucy I was holding. That’s how she would feel right now in my arms. How I have dreamed and dreamed about holding her; feeling the weight of her, the warmth of her on my chest. It was a huge accomplishment, though. A huge step in my healing process. Sometimes I feel frustrated with myself because I am still so devastated 7 months later, but while I was holding Jack I was reminded that Lucy is not the only one I have lost. I have lost my baby Jude. I have lost my lifelong dream of a big family and I have lost all those future children I dreamed about. I don’t know if I’ll ever hold my own four month old baby again in my lifetime. There’s a very good chance I won’t and that is a death in itself.

I am very proud of myself for taking such a huge step today and finally holding Jack. I have missed holding him and knowing him for these past four months. A few people have told me that they think one day I will have an extra special relationship with Jack because he reminds me of Lucy and he is Lucy’s age. That always seemed impossible because of my intense pain. Tonight it seems like it could be a reality. I can’t wait for that day when I will be healed enough to have an extra special relationship with Jack, I think he might even end up being my favorite.

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7 thoughts on “A Big Step

  1. Bethany,
    You are so strong. I can completely understand why this has been so tough for you. I can’t imagine having a nephew the same age as my baby girl would be. Today would have been Aubrey’s due date, and I have several friends with babies due this month. Even that is too much for me to face. Your courage amazes me. Praying for you, always.

  2. Hi Bethany,

    Although I cannot understand completely your pain and suffering, I know you are of inestimable worth to your Father in heaven, and I believe the Spirits of your lost children reside with him. God can do anything… If he wants to resurrect your lost children at the resurrection, he can…. There is always Hope.

    John Cooper

  3. I love this. Good for you, Bethany! It is so hard. Sometimes I can tolerate babies and sometimes I can’t. Yesterday I saw lots of babies when I was out running errands and it really wore me down. Today we had people from Josh’s work over to watch football and eat hamburgers. I thought about how different it would be if we had Luke here on earth. His swing in the corner and all these new people wanting to see him and hold him. Getting to slip away and feed him and having a moment with him all by myself.

    I have held Josh’s cousin’s baby who was 10 weeks ahead of Luke and I cried too. Then she cried and wanted to get away from me. I think she felt my heavy sadness. So I’m glad Jack was sweet to you. I hope you do get to have an extra special relationship with him. He is lucky to have such a special auntie. And I DO believe that you will hold your own 4 month old baby again. These pictures are so beautiful and I love getting to see the emotions you are feeling. Thank you so much for sharing such special pictures.

  4. Boy, I know how you feel. I lost my son three months ago. He was my first and only child.

    It is hard to move forward sometimes when it feels like everything is tearing off the “scab.” My Day Job is in customer service and I see a LOT of new mothers with babies. Some days are horribly, terribly hard, I know. Hang in there though. You are right that we all heal at our own pace. Just remember you will get through this. Every step you take forward, every breath you exhale — it brings you another moment closer to a healed heart. That’s what I tell myself when it’s all I can do to just breathe. Every moment counts, and you are stronger than you know.

    Best wishes. ❤

  5. I totally understand how difficult it can be to be around other babies who would be the same age as your child-and how just being around children and families in general can be tough. One of my very best friend shared pregnancy with me and we looked forward to sharing parenthood together-last night was the first time I was able to complete a phone call with her, although tearful-and I just can’t bear to see them and their beautiful baby girl. I want to be their friend and be a part of their livesbut for now I just can’t handle it mentally. I’m still just so devastated that my son is gone and that all I want is to have him back. Sorry to be long-winded. In any case, I understand and commend you on conquering such a big obstacle. I’m glad it was a positive experience. Thank you for sharing your story with me. 🙂

  6. Thank you for sharing your story its really very brave. I had anti k antibodies during my pregnancy with my second child the levels were the highest the doctor had seen at over 2000. We were so lucky that our baby was k negative i didnt find this out until 21 wks so all of the weeks before were very difficult and at times i felt certain that i wasnt going to get through it. I often felt completely helpless and deverstated that my blood could potentially kill the baby. It helped me so much that others were sharing their stories especially as anti k at such high levels is rare. Sometimes its just enough to know that the emotions you are experiencing are normal and completely justified. Good luck and thank you!

  7. Glory to God, this raw pain you have poured into this website mirrors my own pain. I love you. I love your babies. I weep with you and pour out my pain with yours. Thank you for sharing the inner parts of your story His story. I’ve read as much as I could over the past week. It has inspired me to go on! “I will redeem it” psalm 49:15 BUT GOD WILL Redeem!!!!! I hope to meet you and your precious babies in heaven along with my own. I love you. I pray for you. And now let the weak say I am strong because of what The Lord has done! with a broken and grateful heart I join your broken hallelujah and give Him glory because it is STILL due His Holy Name!! Keep praising keep trusting there is inexpressible joy stored up for you in our Fathers house!!! “I would have lost heart unless I had believed I would see the goodness of The Lord in the land of the living”. Also–>Isaiah 26:18-19. Although this pain is perpetual it finds an end when our King returns!! The enemy has no power Jesus has won and He still is our guide (psalm 48:14) It won’t be long any day now we will be going home I love you talk to you later my sister in Christ. Prayers for you my friend

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