Pretending to be a tooth fairy, losing sleep on feverish nights, reciting nursery rhymes; these come with the mommy package.
I expected them. I embraced them.
Choosing an urn small enough to fit within my fist, drifting away in a haze of grief, reciting Philippians 4:6 through labor like a mantra knowing that the child opening my eyes to a new world of painful reality would never open his eyes to meet mine; this also came with my mommy package.
This I did not expect. I embraced it like I might embrace a crown of thorns.
When I was six I decided I wanted to write a book.
I became fixated on the idea and began by copying other authors’ works in preparation for my own childhood manifesto. The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein was painstakingly transcribed word for word into my notebook and I dreamed up stories of my own to tell the world. I filled out an application for the Institute of Children’s Literature and waited anxiously for their reply. When their rejection letter came, I couldn’t understand the reasoning of their denial. I was “too young” they said. Who better to write children’s books than a child?
I never imagined the story of my book would be stillbirth, grief, hope and healing.
Years passed and I tucked my writing dream into an inner pocket of my heart. From time to time I would pull it out and stroke it gently through journaling and later blogging. Then an event happened that was bigger than I had ever faced. My 3rd pregnancy train wrecked in the 37th week and my son Sawyer was stillborn. This grief required something new of me; something raw and deep and painful that demanded to be dealt with. I pulled out my electronic notebook and began to write. This time the story was my own. The words, the thoughts, the emotions were mine. I wasn’t writing to make a book, I was writing to examine my heart of grief from angle that I could understand it better. There was a lot to process and 200+ pages later I had finally flushed out the topic of loss to a degree that I could lay down the notebook and prayerfully reflect. In doing so, the Lord prompted me to share my stillbirth story to show others what the process of loss can look like when we are sustained by our Savior.Continue reading “the hardest thing I have ever written: my stillbirth story”