Friday, September 14, 2012

Dead Baby, Dead Baby

That's right, I wrote it.  Dead baby.  That's what goes through my head sometimes.  Not as much right now, but certainly in the first month or two after Ethan's death, it was all I could think about.  My baby died.  I have a dead baby.  How the hell did my baby die?  As I have started to heal, as slow as that process may be, that phrase doesn't come to mind as much any more.  But, occasionally it does.

Listen, I know how crazy it sounds.  How outrageous it is to read or hear someone say "dead baby."  Say it out loud.  Go ahead, try it right now.  Dead Baby.  You will feel yourself cringe slightly.  I do it to.  As if it is offensive, certainly one of those never-to-be-mentioned topics.  But guess what, that socially awkward topic has been my life for the last 3 and a half months.  And it will always be a part of my life.  That's right, my baby died so I get to say "dead baby."  If it makes others feel uncomfortable, I guarantee it is worse to have reason to say it.

Sometimes I think I walk in the room and people start thinking to themselves "dead baby, dead baby, dead baby."  As if it is the elephant in the room.  This phenomenon seemed to happen more when it was the first few times I had been around a particular audience after Ethan's death.  It was as if people thought I would fall apart, or spontaneously combust.  If I am being honest, there were more than one occasion when I did emotionally fall apart, but it certainly wasn't because someone did or did not mention my was because my son had actually died.

Everything is shaded differently now.  Shaded from Ethan's beautiful life.  Shaded from Ethan's tragic death.  Time is split in three segments for me.  Life before Ethan.  Life with Ethan here on this Earth.  And life after Ethan.

Ethan's death is the watershed moment in my life.  There is no denying that.  I am forever shaped by the life of my son, and forever shaped by his death as well.  That is not to say that I cannot, have not or will not be happy again.  Certainly not.  But that is to say that the old Annie is forever shaded by what happened, and that is not necessarily a bad thing.  But today I do find it sad.  Ethan's life and his death are so monumental that my world, my friendships, my being will always be impacted by all of this.

"Your death shaped me, but it is your life that changed me for the better.  It is for that reason your death will never overshadow your life."  -- Mary Thompson.

Well said, Mary Thompson.  Well said.

1 comment:

  1. it has been 17.5 months since my Alexander died - I still can't believe it some days. He was sick yes, but yet he was so happy. How did my beautiful 21 month old boy die? Why did he die? There are no answers.

    Grief is not something you get over - it is something you go through. (not sure who said this)