There are so many people that have helped me through the last year. Offered unconditional and nonjudgmental support. They tell me they love me. Let me know they still think about Zoey. They share my sense of humor. But there have been a few along the way that have done the opposite. I try to focus on the positive, but I’m going to address the people that need to learn when to stop talking. Consider it a public service announcement. And if you see yourself in my writing or recognize one of these comments as your own, please know I’m doing my best to understand that you are also on a path. It’s very different from mine. You cannot understand mine unless you traveled it and I’m trying so very hard to recognize that you really do mean well.
Do not tell me that you bought Zoey a gift, but since you didn’t see me before she died that you’ll just “hang on to it” because you’re “still praying for me”. My daughter is not replaceable. Having another child will not change losing Zoey.
Do not ever say to me, or any grieving person, “at least” anything. There is no “at least”. Yes, I believe she’s in heaven. That’s a beautiful sentiment. Sometimes believing it is the only thing that allows me to keep moving. But I’d still rather have her here. And if for one moment you think you’d feel differently if in my shoes, you are mistaken.
Along the same lines, if you feel the need to start a sentence with “I shouldn’t say this, but…”. You’re right. You shouldn’t say it.
I also feel the need to reiterate a point I made soon after Zoey died: I don’t need to be fixed. I’m on this path and I’m right where I need to be.
I’ve been very open writing and sharing our journey through pregnancy and Zoey’s life. I appreciate the love and support sent my way from so many people. I want this to be a healing project for me. But with healing, comes wading through the darkness. It’s easy to just not read what I’ve written if you don’t like the tone or it’s too sad. But I can’t escape it. Expressing it is my way of processing. Any given moment, I’m handling her death with as much grace as I can muster.