But I’m the MOST important

Opinions are like assholes – everyone has them. And many feel compelled to share them. Though, in this way, I’m not sure opinions are like assholes, because who actually wants to share his/her asshole? But wait… Maybe… I guess I shouldn’t have taken it this far…

But anyway, I knew when I made my rainbow post I’d receive some opinions about it, despite my efforts to display some sensitivity, which is precisely why I included this paragraph: “For anyone who’s potentially offended to discover our news here, please don’t be. We’ve told hardly anyone to date. So if you’re reading this, whether you’re a family member or a stranger from half way across the world, you are important. The most important, actually.”

And most either took this paragraph at face value or at least gave us the benefit of the doubt that we’re doing the best we can in handling a situation we’ve found to be very emotionally charged and challenging. And some were actually stoked to discover our news this way. And as predicted, it’s been confirmed others probably won’t find out our news until late this summer.

But, of course, some ignored this entire paragraph and became all hot and bothered and were like, “How DARE you not tell me via a hand-delivered, platinum-plated tablet, with words crafted in yellow diamonds! I deserved to know FIRST!!! I’m FAR more important than those who you refer to as ‘most important!’”

And I think this is a function of some not truly understanding what pregnancy after loss entails.

So Mark wrote this email to someone to try to further explain our reasoning behind our actions (i.e. smooth things over). And I think he pretty much nailed it. And I’m also so impressed with myself for marrying someone who’s so much nicer than I am, because my first instinct had been to simply send a group text saying, “#sorrynotsorry.”

So I wanted to post an excerpt from Mark’s email, because I’ve seen others post their husband’s words on their blogs, and I remember wistfully thinking, “It’s so freaking great to hear the man’s perspective.” So I figured I’d post my man’s perspective. (Which I’m actually thinking, in the context of my blog, might not be especially unique, as I sometimes possess the humor of a 17-year-old boy, but oh well…)

So here it is…

**********

Dear __________,

I hope all is well. I know that you recently read Christine’s blog and learned that we are expecting our second son. This entire pregnancy, albeit still so early (19 weeks), has been nothing like Christine’s pregnancy with Matthew. I can’t even begin to articulate over email how mixed our emotions are. We are truly blessed to have the gift of another child, yet we are scared each minute that he may not make it into our arms.

There is nothing normal about this pregnancy. We wish each and every day that we were joyfully sharing our news of our pregnancy while holding Matthew in our arms, but this is not our reality. With Matthew, we tried to do everything “by the book,” and the unfortunate reality is that it didn’t end well.

We care so much about the family that we decided to make our announcement to the world at a family birthday party. We called friends and family to share our news and welcomed gifts and cards. This time, we elected to handle things differently, not out of anger or malice, but in a way that we were most comfortable with.

There are some loss parents who go an entire subsequent pregnancy without telling anyone until the child is safe in their arms. Although both of us wanted to crawl into a hole and hopefully come out in nine months with a healthy baby, we decided to tell our parents, albeit much later than last time, and announce our news on Christine’s blog.

Christine’s writings are a true reflection of our daily lives as well as the emotions and feelings that we deal with regularly. For her, it is a crucial part of her grief journey and a way in which she stays close to her son. If she had it her way, she would have never announced it on the blog, but it became too difficult to write about her life without sharing the news. The blog allowed her to fully articulate the mixed bag of emotions that comes with this pregnancy in a way that a phone call would not have been able to do.

I will admit that there was a miscalculation. We were under the impression based on information from others that you read Christine’s blog and therefore confident you would find out the news fairly quickly. If we had known that you had misplaced the link, we would have re-sent it long before Christine planned to post her announcement. We wanted all of our family and friends to at least have the ability to follow our journey and read our announcement.

Regardless, I assure you that if/when our son makes it into this crazy world in July/August, we want you to be a part of his life. Our method of announcing the news has no bearing on this…

…Hopefully this long winded email has been helpful.

I want you to know that emails and texts to both Christine and me are always welcome. We have not cut people off, but grieving people just don’t generally reach out.

We have our anatomy scan today, so please keep us in your thoughts and prayers.

Hope to see you soon.

Mark

**********

Hopefully this all makes it more clear – we shared our news in the only way we thought we could. It’s this simple. Truly.

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15 thoughts on “But I’m the MOST important

  1. A brilliant mail. I have always thought that if we ever achieve a rainbow pregnancy the only place I will write about it is on my blog. I pour my heart out there, and honestly, I cannot understand why any close friend or family member would do anything other than read every post in an attempt to know how we are and how they can support us. The reality is that less and less of them do with every month that passes- I really struggle with how we let people into the (hopefully) future good times in our life when they have opted out of the bad times. How we allow them the (hopefully) snuggles with our future rainbow babies when they have tried to push aside Max’s existence. You are so right for doing what feels right for you xxx

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    1. Thank you so much. I feel like I could have written your comment, because I agree with all of it. And I struggle with this very issue and all the resulting complicated feelings quite frequently, which is precisely why I shared the news in the way I did. Yep, we can only do what feels right, and I think that will be what I continue to do. Sending love and light to you. xoxo

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  2. Oh Christine, I can hardly put into words how sorry I am that given all you’ve been through you’re having to cope with people like this. How dare they expect anything from you about your rainbow – for he is your rainbow and you do absolutely whatever you need to do to get you through what must be the most terrifying and wonderful thing all together. The people who really count surely would never expect anything, just be there to support and care for you in the way you need them to. I don’t know your personally but I’ve enjoyed your blog so much, you’ve been a breathe of fresh air to another loss mum on the other side of the Atlantic, just wish I could give these people a slap for you to be honest! Thinking of you and sending you warmest hugs X

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    1. Cath, Thank you so much for your kind words and support – it means the world to me! I enjoy your blog too and am so thankful to have connected with some amazing bereaved parents from across the world, you being one of them! I don’t know what people did to cope with these tragedies before the internet. It would have been even more brutal than it already is. So I know right? My reaction was kind of like, “You mean there are people close to us who are concerned (as it relates to my pregnancy) about things OTHER than Jay making it here alive and healthy?!”

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  3. I’m totally appalled that someone felt that how/when they received the news of your second pregnancy was something that mattered enough to complain about. And Mark’s email is wonderful.

    I told my parents and then let my mom tell people, and David told his family when we were almost 20 weeks. There’s no gleeful celebration of pregnancy. It’s more like grit your teeth, hold your breath, and keep your eyes on the prize. I’m sorry you have to spend energy placating self-absorbed family members.

    I hope baby Jay gets here safely and they give you money for his college fund.

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    1. Seems like you handled sharing your new similarly to the way I did. It’s so hard for me to tell anyone, actually. It’s also hard for me to speak about it aloud, which is why I write about it here mostly instead. Yes, the method of announcement seems trivial compared to important issues such as him making it here healthy and breathing and screaming. xoxo

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  4. Hi Christine, I’ so grateful that you are blogging through the journey of grieving and going through this pregnancy. Thank you. I’m not pregnant yet although I wish I did. Its been nine weeks since our Hannah’s passing and I still don’t have AF. But reading your blog’s been very encouraging. I’m praying for you and sweet Jay. Can’t wait to see his pics on here this summer.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Helen, Thank you so much for your kind words. I’m so very sorry for your loss of your precious Hannah and that you know this pain and also now walk this brutal road. I’m glad you’ve found some encouragement here. Feel free to reach out anytime – you’re not alone. Sending hugs. xoxo

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  5. It’s beautifully expressed with a masterclass in diplomacy but I can read between the lines on this one and tell the restraint is wafer thin.

    You would have been well justified in your #sorrynotsorry / it’s not about you response. It’s tiring how much grief is about managing others reactions to it.

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