Wishing you courage

"Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying 'I will try again tomorrow'."
- Mary Anne Radmacher

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

My obsession with reading every book on deadbaby grief I come across continues.

Today's excerpt comes from "Still to be Born: A guide for bereaved parents who are making decisions about their future" by P. Schwiebert and P. Kirk. I was given this book at last weeks SHARE meeting.

"Those who have never had to suffer the intense pains of loss tend to underestimate the time required for "grief work" to be completed. That is because they are projecting an assumption based on their own limited experience, for indeed it does not take long for them to "get over" someone else's loss.

The same is true, but to a lesser extent, where friends and relations - other than a spouse or child - are involved. Most people find that it takes no more than from forty-eight hours to two weeks to get their lives back to a normal routine after suffering the death of a close friend or relative not in the immediate nuclear family.

For bereaved parent, however, the readjustment of one's life following a loss of a child takes approximately eighteen to twenty-four months. This does not mean that after twenty-four months the death is forgotten; it simply means that this much time is needed to come to terms with the loss."

This passage compares other deaths with infant death and I'm afraid it may minimize the impact of other deaths but I have not lost a close friend or relative before so I can't know how accurate the claim of 48 hours to 2 weeks until a "normal" routine can be re-gained is. I can attest to the freaking long time it takes to come to terms with the loss of a baby - even though I never even saw him alive outside of my uterus.

So at 10 months post that hellish day of delivery it is both comforting and depressing to think that I can expect 8 to 14 more months of this. And I'm not holding myself to any sort of timeframe like this is how much longer my grief work must take to prove how much I loved my son, really, after spending 10 months in bereavement I am much more stable than early on but honestly I don't see the end of the tunnel yet. Coming to terms with my son being dead is not going to happen in the next couple of months.

The thought "I hate my life" runs through my head at least once an hour, but the passage above at least makes me curious to know if this loathing will still be present after 14 more months.

1 comment:

Reba said...

I do not think we will always hate our lives. Though I love the idea that there's a potential end-date for this hell. Someone once told me that it takes twice as long as the relationship lasted to get over a break-up. So I was sort of hoping that's how grieving for the twins would be. That 8 months later, maybe I'd feel more human.

Of course, 8 months later for me will be xmas. I can't even think about the holidays without my mind going blank with fear. Maybe the timeline from your book is more realistic...