What not to say.


So I’m lying on the couch, totally immobile. I’m waiting for you to come help, like you said, at 7:30. At 9:30 my wife calls you, her mother, to find out where you are. When you finally arrive to find me lying on the couch, trying to play with my kids without actually moving, you say,

See, this is why I was worried about you having a third child. You gesture at me, broken. This is why I worried. Because if you were like this and needed me to help, how would I take care of three? I’m getting old. It would be too much work for me. This is why I’m glad you aren’t having another one.

I lay there, holding steady, while another part of me is wounded and raw and curling up to protect myself against your totally selfish and unthinking words. Because who cares if your daughter and her wife are heartbroken, if it saves you a little bit of work?

I don’t say anything like, I know you don’t mean to be hurtful, but I’m still very upset about TMD not being pregnant. Devastated, actually. So your words do hurt me.

Instead I say,’I wouldn’t leave a baby with you anyway. Little babies need their mums. And babies are the easy part. It’s older kids that need you to move around.’

You raise your eyebrows when I say babies are easy. And I remember how hard you found mine, even when multiple adults were around. But I didn’t find them hard. Or a chore.

I laid on the couch, immobile, with two little lovely people cuddled into me. It was a perfect time, a time I cherish, a time I won’t be able to have again….not with my ever growing kids, not with the other child. I feel our family isn’t complete, I feel hurt, I feel like I want to say words to you that you will find so hurtful. But I keep my mouth shut and think about writing it here, writing it for my friends, writing it to capture this raw pain.

And I won’t say this to my children in the future. If their dreams are punctured, their souls tired, I will say, ‘I’m sorry. I love you and I’m sorry this has not worked. Can I do anything to help?’ I may think about me, about the impact their dreams have on my life, but the only words I will ever give to a grieving child will not be about me.

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7 Responses to “What not to say.”

  1. Lyssie Says:

    It’s not the same but I can sympathise, I had a similar thing with my grandma with a few months ago (about 6 months post miscarriage I think) over me not being fit to parent because I’m losing my hearing. People don’t realise how hurtful they’re being when they say these things.

  2. mamacrow Says:

    ((((HUGS))) it’s very hard when people are coming from a completely different perspective – that is, theirs. I’ve been finding the four agreements thing very useful, one of the agreements is to take nothing personally because everyone is ‘dreaming their own dream’ (that is, has their own constructed reality)

  3. morasmum Says:

    I am sorry you are hurting. I hope your heart heals soon

  4. hannahweller Says:

    Dear Existere..
    Although I do have an opinion, it’s not my place to comment on your post as this is the first time you have heard from me – even though I feel I know you so well!
    I read 2 years worth of your blog in 4 months during my twin pregnancy and then TWO WHOLE PEOPLE arrived in my life and consumed ALL my time and energy!!! Haha! So now they are 9 & 1/2 months old I am starting to be able to breathe again and rediscover some things I loved – like noseying in on your life!! I tried to DM you on twitter but I can’t do that unless you follow me so please could you either do that or could you tell me another way I can contact you?? Privately – If you don’t mind… X

  5. Liv Says:

    That lack of consideration truly sucks 😦

  6. catsandcradles Says:

    Wow. That definitely trumps my mother-in-law telling me right after I miscarried that “God didn’t cause it to happen, but he allowed it to happen”. (I think she might even have been trying to be comforting there, but wildly missed the mark.)

    I’m so sorry. I’m sorry the ivf didn’t work, and I’m sorry that your mother-in-law is being hateful.

  7. mendylady Says:

    Love and light. ❤

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