At the end of every year, I reflect and look forward to what lies ahead. I am one of those people who tends to set goals for myself, usually small and incremental. Or at least that used to be the case before Nelle died and I spent Christmas of 2015 and 2016 with only one thought: for a healthy pregnancy. The months following Christmas of 2015 brought only more heartache in losing Iris, and while the months following Christmas of 2016 ushered in nearly unmanageable anxiety, at the end of that pregnancy I brought my rainbow baby home. Continue reading
My first grader came home with a project called “My Holiday Customs and Traditions.” It included a list of questions to answer about how our family spends the holidays and a requirement to make a poster to accompany an in-class presentation. The underlying theme is to celebrate differences in both the holidays celebrated and the traditions that the families have created for themselves. Continue reading
The day before Thanksgiving, Ger made a comment to me that Thanksgiving was an “easy” holiday. Unlike the anticipation of Christmas or the stigma of Valentine’s Day, Thanksgiving was just a day to be grateful for what you have, in his mind.
I responded “But what about people who are hurting?” I pointed out people that we know who are going through or newly divorced. Families with tensions and forced interactions. People spending a first holiday without a parent who passed away within the last year. And of course, the countless families in our world who are spending the day missing a baby that died. Continue reading
On this day in 2015, I was at O’Hare airport waiting for a flight to Kansas City. The day had produced the first snow of the year, and not in a small amount. It caused delay after delay, rescheduled flight, getting onto the plane and waiting for more than an hour on the tarmac, only to be told that the flight was cancelled and needing to de-plane. I had been at the airport for about 15 hours at that point, only to go to baggage claim and discover that my suitcase had been lost. Continue reading
Motherhood is complicated. Mother’s Day is complicated. Other holidays have all kinds of triggers for those that are grieving. Christmas can be a time of forced joy when all that’s felt is pain. Thanksgiving centers around being thankful, when often sentiments are far from that place. But no other holiday is as dedicated and blatant as Mother’s Day for a mother who has lost a child. The day when her motherhood is put under the spotlight, with a crowd cheering “Be happy! Be appreciated! YOU ARE A MOM!” Continue reading