Each year, around 2 million parents lose a child during pregnancy — that’s one baby every 16 seconds. Instead of experiencing the joy of holding a newborn, grieving mothers are left at their wit’s end, thinking that it was their fault when it really wasn’t. Once this immense grief begins to pass, it’s important to let them know they’re not alone.
We at Ternuritas found a letter from a mother to her unborn child, and in it, she seems to have been able to put into words the feelings that parents who experience miscarriages deal with.
We never did get to meet properly, did we? And yet, we were together for every moment of your life. You slipped away from me, quickly and quietly, without making an impression on the world. No one even knew you were there, except your daddy and me. But you should know that you were loved. I like to think that you know that already.
Some would say that you were barely there long enough to make any great impression on me. But the thing is, even in such a short space of time, I made a space for you in my heart.” “Even before you were conceived. As soon as we knew we wanted you, subconsciously, I started clearing some room. I discovered that it wasn’t hard to make a spot for you. My heart effortlessly stretched to make room. It seemed that, almost overnight, I had this special space in my heart, just for you.
But now that space is empty. I have tried for years now to fill the hole you left. I thought, perhaps, when your brother was born he would take that space. But when he was conceived, my heart grew and created a special spot just for him, and yours was left untouched.”
“Now my days are filled with the normal ups and downs of motherhood. My heart and mind are often consumed with loving and caring for your brother. The empty space you left is no longer at the forefront of my mind. But sometimes, when it’s quiet and the house is still, that empty space in my heart echoes so loudly that it can’t be ignored. The hollow grief washes over me once more and I am stunned by the intensity of its power.
I have found that it is better not to fight these moments. Instead, I sit quietly and think of you and what might have been. Sometimes I even read the storybook that I bought when I was pregnant with you. I have accepted that it’s okay to still feel sad about what we lost.”
It seems that no matter what happens, or how much time passes, I cannot fill that void that you left. So I have decided that I will leave that space in my heart exactly where it is. I will stop trying to fill it with other things or pretending it isn’t there. It is your space and I am going to leave it just for you. I will carry you there always, in that space, in my heart.
Do you know of anyone for whom the road to motherhood wasn’t paved with joy? What was it like in your case?