"You get what you pay for, but I just had no intention of living this way." -Counting Crows

Why We're Here...

My husband David and I delivered a stillborn Baby Boy that we loved, and wanted. Our first and only son, Logan, had Down Syndrome. Our daughter's smile is a little light in the darkness. She turned one year old three days after our sweet Logan tip-toed away on January 24, 2009. After 2 1/2 years we found out we were having another baby, whom we affectionatly called Rudy. Just shy of 6 weeks we found out Rudy was Ectopic. Rudy was surgically removed on May 26, 2011 delivering another blow to our already broken hearts.

Courage at the keyboard

Maybe its the year mark. Maybe people feel like enough time has passed now and that they should be granted the freedom to speak their mind, regardless of how it rips open my (very shoddily patched up) broken heart. Maybe people are just that thoughtless. Maybe people find courage at their keyboard the way so many find it in a bottle. I do not know.

I do know this...

It has been a year (almost 13 months to be exact). And no, enough time has not passed for comments such as:

"...not let the loss of Logan be wasted, a missed lesson & understanding, in vain. There's a reason, and God wanted you to find Him in it! God...the Author of life."

There's no point into going into the rest of the argument, and I am not taking this opportunity to bash the person who wrote this, or their beliefs. I will clarify that I do not believe that my anger at God (mind you, not for my son's death, but because he was created using a bad egg knowing full well his demise) will cause the loss of my son to be a waste. I do not believe that God allowed/caused/didn't prevent my sons demise because he wanted to teach me a lesson or understanding, thus I am not sure how his death would be in vain. In vain of what exactly? I do not believe that there is a reason, and I do not believe that God was using this to prompt me to "find" him, and since he is all knowing...he would've known this and that it would have been a waste of time.

The point here is, more or less, a big fat WTF?? I am grappling with the understanding as to why some find it their duty to explain God's mission. Why they are the self appointed ambassador's of his great wisdom. I know that so many turn to faith in the midst of their grief, and I think that it is a wonderful thing...for them. I wish I had the sort of faith that prompted me to run to God for comfort. But I don't. And I really am struggling with why there are so many people out there who are so quick to condemn and shame grieving people when those who are grieving falter in their faith, blame God and are honest in their anger. I could have worn a mask of false faith. I could have pretended to "run to God" or "give it to the Lord" as so many have suggested. I didn't. I have been up front and honest about my lack of faith, anger and questioning of faith. And yes I scoff and roll my eyes at the simple idiocy so many paint God into. I believe and accept the basic principles of Christianity, I just question its ambassadors and their self important need to "comfort" those who are ear deep in a pain that so few can begin to fathom.

Someone said the following to me once. It helps to feel like there are believers out there who aren't all gung-ho trying to argue God's case for him and accept that grief can not be argued out of. I found the words to be profound, and felt like for once an outsider might have actually gotten it.

People really upset me when they don't have enough knowledge to explain things, and they try to make up crappy excuses as to why God "does" something. Who says God "does" everything? And really? Do we have God all figured out to know Him so well as to know what He's thinking and if He's blessing somebody to say these "words of comfort"? People shouldn't preach and try to say something if they don't know enough of what they're talking about. It sours everything, it's NOT the order in which things are supposed to be handled. I'm sorry that you have become the receiver of this kind of treatment, that would get real old, real fast. I am sure, they were talking out of frustration in the argument and not even thinking about everything they were saying, using God to prove that they are right. That you shouldn't be mad at them for what they said, since it was of God. Sure, they believe in and love God, and in their heart they have the faith to put certain situations in His hands. But that's them, and it's a childlike faith. Which of course we are supposed to
have. But for heavens sake, there is a lack of wisdom in trying to win over one who is heart-broken in the middle of an argument and for the benefit of sticking up for God. Sometimes I wish I could get that through people's heads. God doesn't need us to "stick up" for Him. He'll deal with things in His own time and in His own way. WE need to quit getting in the way.


I have been feeling very attacked lately, on several fronts. And I don't get it. The only thing I can conclude is that the general population must think I am "milkin' it" and that after thirteen months I should be well on my way to creating that replacement baby, forgiving God, and moving on. And in my own ways I am. Life is much different for me now than it was even 6 months ago, three months ago. But I still feel the pulsating emptiness that is my son's spot every waking moment of my life. The thing is, I haven't asked for anything from anyone. And all I've really desired in this whole mess is to be left alone by those who can't find it in their selfishness to step aside and let me be. Why is it that I feel like it is expected of me to comfort them? Especially when I never asked comfort of them, only space, and a request that has been denied time and again. I don't know, maybe its selfish of me to not have the time, space or desire to handle or care of the (what I now feel to be) mundane idiocy of those around me. When Logan died it became very apparent to me that I had to use every ounce of energy and strength I possessed to not fall off of the deep end, and I stopped caring how that affected anyone else. And, call me selfish if you will but, I still do not have the strength, desire or will to tolerate or empathize with the drama and chaos of the lives of those around me. Its like I feel as though I am using all of my available resources to keep it all together, to hold myself intact so that I do not explode into a million pieces of sorrow and disappear into the inviting depths of my despair. And if I let one of those resources slip, then all will be lost. The hardest part is that so often the majority of the insult has come directly from those closest to me. Those I depended on to hold on to me, prop me up, save me. This is where I feel the most let down. The few people who should be on my side, are the ones attacking. And the ones on my side, the ones who ended up being the ones who truly held me up, they are all complete strangers. Strangers who relate and "get it" because they've felt this pain, they've stuck around to say "Hey, its ok. You're normal, this is all normal. You'll survive, I did." It adds a new dimension to my pain. Its become so obvious to me why so many become reclusive and alienate themselves after a great loss. I feel that I can only handle so much. I feel as though I am skittish of that final straw. It makes me angry and loathsome and gives me the desire to lash out at people who must feel as though they are being thoughtful and well meaning. It leaves me confused, flabbergasted and appalled. It leaves me just a little sadder than I already was. A little more frightened. A little more fragile, and a whole lot more likely to close myself off from a world that wants to injur my heart further.


margaret said...

Heather I have not yet reconciled my faith since losing my son either. I've been FUCKING PISSED at God some days, ambivilant the next. I don't know what I believe. It is so hard to hear those pitiful platitudes, "It must have been God's will", etc. It makes me angry too, in fact the last person who said it to me got an earful. Nevertheless, I believe in the goodness of people and have come to realize that people start pointing the finger as something being God's will when they can't understand why something so terrible as a little baby boy losing his life would happen. I get it, I do. I'm not over my grief by any means either and it's been fifteen months for me. You have a right to your anger, to your feelings about God period. No one else walks in your shoes and should therefore not be telling you where to be in your grief journey. Sending you my love and keeping sweet Logan in my thoughts

Abby said...

Unfortunately people often say the 'wrong' thing when you lose a baby, whether they are religious or not. I think It's because they don't know what to say.. It has been 14 months for me since I lost my twins and over that time I have tried to educate as many people as I can to say "I know nothing will take away your pain, but I'm here if you need me" Sadly, still not many people do.. They either say nothing or try and fix it with their crappy advice! Hugs to you.. I get it..

Emily said...

Heather, if I ever came across to you that way, I am very, very sorry. In MY situation, God has used this tragedy to pull me back to Him. To take away my great fear of death. And to give me a heart for others walking this walk. But that's personal, not everyone receives the same gifts (probably not the right word, but it'll do for now). Would I trade it all to have her back? In a heartbeat. But since it doesn't work that way, I treasure those precious lessons I have.

But no one should impose that on another. That's His job, and it's disturbing that there are people out there who feel called to pass judgements like that. I often picture God, on His throne, head in His hands because of what is carried out here on earth in His Name. My job is to love you, and pray for you, and serve you however I can. It's not to injure you, or judge you, or make you feel insignificant. Because you're not. To God, you're the most significant person ever.

Just throwing this out there, and I'm thinking it's going to make a post here soon, but don't you ever feel bad for the person talking to us? Had I not "been there", I would have no IDEA what to say to a babyloss mama! It's like there's no safe ground, every direction you turn is filled with landmines. I *hate* when someone tells me how this was God's Plan, even though I believe that to be true. When I meet someone IRL who is just being introduced to my pain, I usually just tell them that I'm okay, I'm not too keen on platitudes, so if you want to talk about Leila, great. If not, let's move on to another topic. It takes the pressure off them and I don't have to hear any canned words.

And, with that, I think I've veered off topic a bit. Sending you hugs, sister, and still lifting you up!

Tracie said...

Wow. I could have written that. People think that since it has been 16 years since our son passed away, I should totally be over it. We only had him 3 days, right? How could we have possibly bonded with him in that short time? They. Have. NO. Idea.
This line that you wrote..."But I still feel the pulsating emptiness that is my son's spot every waking moment of my life."....explains my pain perfectly. Yes, the pulsing has eased and yours will, too. IN TIME.
But people preaching to you about God's Plan isn't going to speed up the healing. It will only prolong it.
I remember telling my preacher at Justin's funeral that if I could get my hands on God, it would NOT be pretty and I had a few choice words for him. My preacher held my hand and said "It's okay, he can handle it. Tell him now and don't leave a single word out." I was shocked to get that kind of support from a preacher but it did help.
I am finally finding my way back to God but it has taken a long time. Why? Some of the blame is placed on the people you describe. Preaching at me only made me want to cover my ears and hide under my covers.
Anyway, I wanted you to know that you are not alone. People who think that your pain will just "go away" are so very wrong. But you will get stronger and you will recover...in time. It all comes back to TIME.

Heather said...

Yes, Heather, YES! My faith is gone, and I do wish I could get it back, but it won't be the same, for better or worse. One more, "God works in mysterious ways" would've sent me off the deep end (or deeper end, in this case). I shut myself off often, too, when I need to. Sometimes I need to just BE, sit, think, have quiet and solitude. Not sure why. I also feel like it takes everything I have to get through the day, and that no-one in my life realy understands hwo hard it is, how often I thin k of my girls, how their comments and even topics of conversation can hurt, sting, burn. I am feeling so similarly to your post, thank you for being honest and sharing your thoughts like that. I wish you weren't struggling like me, but it helps to hear Im not alone in that struggle. I don't apologize either, for doing what I need to do. I take care of my toddler, do a little for hubs and the house, and a few things for me, and whatever else happens, happens. People will have to deal, and that's that. I get comments about how no-one can "reach me" on my phone, which I often un-plug, and Im like "duh!" If I wanted to talk, I'd plug it in!
Sorry for babbling, in a nutshell, I hear ya, sister.

belle said...

i'm sooooo with you too. i've been a christian since a young age, a deeply committed one at that. AND IF ONE MORE PERSON WRITES ME OFF !!!!!!! i'm going to hit the ceiling!

yes, i DO belive that God is big enough that He can not only take our anger, but that He already knows it!

i think "christians" have a lot to answer for because of the way they treat a grieving mom. (i actually think they are scared because there is just no easy answer?!?!?) if one more person tells me to "just give her to God" and "let it go" or "she's in heaven" or any other pat answer that writes off my heart or the significance of her life..... i'm going to "educate" them.... in a nice way i hope.... but maybe not.

i won't ramble on here because i've already ranted and raved on my own blog but i just want you to know that i don't think i'll EVER be the same again and God's ok with that and i'm ok with that. you are not alone. i'll never go back to those mundane things of life either.

(((((hugs))))) to you dear friend, wish we could meet in person and cry together.

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