I recently ran across a picture of a friend-of-a-friend on Facebook. The picture showed husband and wife in a hospital holding a newborn. Wow, they looked a lot like Kimberly and I. The guy even had a red-ish beard and glasses. Then I noticed that they didn’t look happy. The child they were holding was lifeless. I had chills, seeing another family having gone through the same tragedy we just went through. Turns out it was a lot like our situation. Their child had also suffered a cord failure, theirs at 35 weeks, and ours at 36. Both boys. Both just over 6 pounds. They are a strong Christian family. Their loss was their first child, ours our fourth.
I contacted them via email, as did Kimberly. Not how you want to make new friends. Still, it is encouraging in a strange way to know that another very similar couple within 20 miles is feeling a lot of the same things we are.
They asked how we were healing. Good question. Sometimes it feels like we’ve healed as much as we can heal. Our boy is gone, we don’t have lingering questions or anger, nothing really unresolved. So what else can heal? Other than time dulling the pain. I can make it through the days and most nights. Not sure I want to heal any more than that. I’m sure this is some kind of rookie griever mistake, but I want to feel some of the pain, if only to remind me how important Isaac is to us. I’ve heard people say that they grieve the loss of a child as long as they live. Stories of octogenarians found crying over stillborn children from 50-plus years earlier.
And I’m not sure that’s such a bad thing. It doesn’t mean we’ll be sad all the time, or that we have no joy, or that we don’t trust God. But in those times when his memory is strong and we are alone with our thoughts, I imagine there will always be room for a few tears. What kind of parents would we be if remembering our son never brought sorrow? I think anything else would be denial.
That said, we are grateful for the gift of Isaac. God blessed us with a beautiful boy, if just for a day. We are thankful for the memories we have of Isaac, for the spiritual growth this experience has afforded us, for the blessings of friends and family, the chance to see God’s hands and feet in action, for the promise of eternal life through Christ Jesus and the opportunity to see Isaac again, and for the things that God has yet to do through this experience.