The Club


19 comments
Disclaimer: After reading this post several times and pondering over whether to take it off or not, I've decided to leave it but with a disclaimer - This was not in any way meant to be accusatory of anyone! We have have been so blessed to have people surrounding us who have taken that step forward to come speak to us and share with us. So many have reached out and continue to reach out. I wrote this after relating to many of the words I read in a book I was reading.....they struck me, and I guess I wrote from the perspective I was in at that moment. So, please know these words are not meant to offend...just to portray an honest, real outlook.
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So, over the last few days, I've had this really indifferent feeling. I don't know what it is. But I know what it isnt:

- Acceptance of the situation
- A sense of "moving forward" or "getting over it"
- Relief

None of those apply to me at the moment, nor will they apply to me anytime soon. I hope people understand that with grief, there is no timetable...there is no point that marks the day I will "get over this". So, when you see me, please don't look at me as if you're afraid of me....or as if I'm going to just break down in tears at any second....and please don't avoid me. I get that you don't know what to say, and I get that it might be hard for you deal with.

Ahem: I'm living it, people....

So many people tell me they just don't know what to say. Neither do I. What am I supposed to say, other than thank you, when you come to me and share your condolences? Thank you for having the courage to come to me and say anything. Saying something is better than saying nothing. Otherwise, I feel as if you are avoiding me.

I don't know why I felt the need to type all of the above. It wasn't what I intended to write about tonight, but it just came out. I guess it came from reading a book for most of the day - The SIDS and Infant Death Survival Guide. Many of the contributors mention being made to feel as if SIDS was contagious because people avoid them or give them "that look" (and yes, "that look" is real, and many people have given me "that look" since all of this happened).
SIDS survivors don't need pity; they don't need anyone to feel sorry for them. We just need people to check in on us, tell us you're praying for us, get us out of the house from time to time, send a card that says you're thinking of us today.

It's easy to feel as if I'm not a part of the loop anymore. At church, I'm no longer part of the "baby club". Do you know how hard that is for me? Walking into church each Sunday without Ayden just kills me. And as I walk through those doors, I'm reminded that no one looks for Ayden anymore, but people look for the other babies...the ones who are still here. I watch the other parents with their babies....reaching milestones, celebrating holidays, dressing babies up for Halloween (Ayden was going to be a sock monkey - we bought his costume last year. I was so looking forward to seeing him wear it), getting excited about Christmas.

I'm not excited about any holidays. Honestly, I wish we could just skip them. I don't want to celebrate. My child is no longer with me; how can I celebrate?

I'm part of the "Mommy Club", but I don't fit in there anymore. I'm still a mommy, but I don't have my baby to show for it. I don't have a baby to be a mommy to. Do you know how incredibly heart-wrenching that is to me? To feel as if I don't fit or belong anywhere....to want to mother my child as I so naturally feel lead to do, but I can't because he isn't here with me anymore!

And then there's Jeremy, who is in the "Daddy's Club" - a group of men at our church who are such wonderful Dads. He so looked forward to joining the Dad Club, and now, he's a member, but with no child to father. Do you know how painful that is for him?

We only fit into one club right now.....the club NO parent ever wants to be in. But, by reasons beyond our control, we are now in the Bereaved Parents club, and I hate it every day. I imagine Club sign-ups....all the lists of clubs and the lines waiting to be signed. All the sheets are filled up, except one - no one wants to be in that club. So, members are chosen at random, without being asked, and that's how we've ended up here, in this club. This is a club of brokenness, tears, suffering, pain, isolation, loneliness, anger, bitterness, and longing. When you're in this club, you have no choice. You've entered into a lifetime membership.....

I didn't mean for my post to be all about what we don't have. I didn't intend for it come off offensively. If you took it that way, I apologize. However, if you can try to imagine yourself in my position....I think you'd completely understand where I'm coming from. I do not in any way feel badly towards other parents. I'm glad they haven't had to suffer as we have, and I hope they never will.

This is just hard. I didn't ask to be here. I didn't ask to be a member of this club. But, I'm here...and I'm trying to do as well as I possibly can with it.



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19 comments:

  1. Oh, Lindsay...it IS the most horrific club to belong to. And yes, we certainly are not in it by our own choosing. Holidays--ah, I hear you. Our precious children are missing and the holidays seem to magnify that heartwrenching fact. I read your words and so many are familiar. I have been and will be praying for your sweet heart.
    Love in Him,
    Mis
    www.miskamiller.blogspot.com

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  2. You should write what you feel and don't worry if it offends anyone. You have a right to feel the way you do. My heart aches for you and Jeremy. I continue to pray for you.

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  3. I obviously don't know you in real life but I am sure NO ONE expects you to apologize for how you feel. Nothing you said is offensive, it is all something that no one can imagine or wants to imagine unless you have been there. I am still praying for you & your husband. I think of your sweet boy everyday, he has made an impact on my life and I so wish that it wasn't in this way.

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  4. Oh Lindsay...my heart continues to go out to you. I can't even begin to imagine your loss. Truthfully, I don't even know how to respond because sadly there are no words to take away your pain. I too belong to a 'club' that no one wants to voluntarily join. My
    12th angel just went to Heaven. This week I suffered my 12th miscarriage and boy it doesn't get any easier. I too have questions and can't comprehend why I am part of the 'club.' By God's grace though, I have 2 healthy boys ages 3 and 5. They are absolute miracles.

    Thank you for sharing your feelings. I hope that you are comforted by the fact that your thought about daily and your little boy in not forgotten. Hugs!

    Stacey from CA

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  5. Oh Lindsay! How I wish you, or any parent didnt have to be a part of that club! My heart just aches for you.

    I met a mother from my sons school who had a baby die from SIDS 3yrs ago. She kind of mentioned it casually but I was very intrigued. I honestly wasnt sure what to say and I definitely thought about EVERY word before I spoke it. I remembered how you have said that you enjoy talking about Ayden and want people to remember him and ask about it. So, I asked her about her son. I have no idea how she was able to keep it together as I was near tears the whole time we spoke. The only thing I didnt ask was his name....I feel really badly about that now. Maybe the next time I talk to her Ill ask her.

    Anyways, I just want to let you know that while I dont know you I will NEVER forget about your son. I pray for you and him nightly. I hope that Halloween isnt too hard for you. ((hugs))

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  6. I'm so sorry Lindsay. No parent wants to be in that club. I still pray for you guys on a continuous basis.

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  7. I am so sorry you had to be a member of this club. I know how you feel about peoples "looks" and actions. I don't want to have to say this, and it's sad that I feel the need, but sometimes people can act, well, dumb! SIDS is NOT contagious people! And they are not making the situation any more bearable by not saying anything at all. You are right, avoidance is the WORST thing they could do to y'all right now. It's down right cruel. And for it to be people in church, a place of gathering TOGETHER in the name of God, all that is GOOD! How do you think Jesus would treat you and Jeremy if you saw Him today? Do you think He would ignore you, or give the "look"...I seriously doubt that! Are we all suppose to be striving to be more like Jesus? Especially in church! I wish I had an answer for you on why people act the way they do, but I'm still trying to figure it out. It does get better, though, I promise.

    Sorry I sound so angry in this comment, but your post brought tears to my eyes. I guess I have come to be somewhat protective of you, and hate to see anyone treat you and Jeremy with anything but respect, compassion, and love. And even though I'm sure these people are not trying to be hurtful to y'all, they just need to stop acting...well, dumb! I'm sure they do care about the two of you, and don't know what to say, but shouldn't avoid ya'll or give you the "look"!

    This is not your "forever" life, I promise!

    And you do have tons of people in your life right now who care deeply and love the three of you very much.

    I love you - Kelley

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  8. Lindsay,
    I totally understand where you are coming from and I would feel the same way. Nothing you say would/should offend anyone. This isn't fair, I don't understand why it happened to you, you sound like a wonderful mother and Ayden is so lucky you are his Mommy. When I write you I always reread what I have wrote because it just never seems right. I am praying for you guys and thinking of you.

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  9. Dear Lindsay,

    Grief sucks and it is relentless. Please don't apologize for the things you feel or write. This blog is an outlet for you... a part of your therapy. I can't imagine that anyone comes to your blog for their own gratification.

    I know that I show up every day because your honest and articulate words have me hooked. I come here and every day that makes me love and cherish my own son more. I come here and I see pictures of your precious miracle Ayden and I think to myself, "how can he be gone? why was such a beautiful and healthy boy taken? how can a mother survive such a loss?" That's me. Someone who doesn't know you. Someone who was never blessed to have met your beautiful son. So if those are the questions that go through my mind, it wouldn't make any sense if they weren't amplified a billion times for you.

    I also come here always hoping to see that you had a good day or a good hour or a good moment. I come here waiting for the day that you write to us about how Ayden finally found the perfect soul for his baby brother or sister that is now growing in your womb. And I come here knowing that most days are valleys and not peaks. I come so that you know that there's just one more stranger out here who cares.

    Like I said, grief sucks and it is relentless. You are doing it as well as anyone can... better than many. But it's still sloppy because that's how it's meant to be and anyone who's suffered their own grief knows it.

    Sorry for rambling... don't know why I do that sometimes. I'm praying for you.

    Love,
    Christena

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  10. Still thinking and praying for you daily.

    Tayarra

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  11. You have been on my heart so much this week. We will keep praying for you and I agree, this is your blog, your outlet so let your heart pour out here and don't worry about offending others.

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  12. Girl...tell it like it is...we can handle it...throw it our way so you don't have to keep bouncing the ball around on your side of the court. THAT can get exaushting...we're here...we're listening...even if we're people you've never met. And we're praying...
    Kathryn Farris
    Kansas City, MO

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  13. You are such an articulate writer. What a gift!

    Your post resonates with me on many fronts as you can imagine.

    It was this morning I think when I was driving to work thinking for like the 100th time. THIS IS MY LIFE. How did this happen? Every so often it is like I realize it all over again. That this is never going to go away. It sucks.

    We are parents, me, you, Jeremy, and Steve (my husband) but like you said we have nothing to show for it.

    Anyway, I just wanted to say my heart goes out to you. Thanks for blogging your honest feelings.

    Big hugs!

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  14. Prayers still coming your way!

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  15. It sucks Lindsay.

    I am so grateful for the way that you write. They are your honest feelings and that alone means whatever you write is not offensive. Period.

    I loved visiting with you and Megan yesterday. Thank you. And when I go forward for "that" prayer, feel free to join me.

    Love you
    Jill

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  16. Still praying for you. I appreciate your honesty...don't feel the need to put a disclaimer on YOUR blog. If people don't like it...don't read it! :)

    But I think you made a great point about how to talk to a grieving mother. Something all of us need to be aware of. I continue to pray for you and hope that you find a place where you do belong. The feeling of not belonging is a lonely, miserable feeling. Just know you belong to God's family.

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  17. Thank you all....you just don't know how much of a help you are to me.

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  18. Oh Lindsay... I so know what it feels like to be a member of a club you do not want or asked to be a member of.

    I wish that I could tell you that you will "get over it" one day... but you will not. But you will learn to deal with the loss and live with it. In time you will adjust to the "new normal" life that you have been thrown into.....in time...time.

    I feel your pain. Lowes is the hardest store for me to go to sometimes and sometimes it is the most comforting. Rich and I would get breakfast on Saturday and go to Lowes to plan our next project together. I still get a little irritated when I see other couples there together. Reminds me of the club I belong to...and my eyes just roll....

    I know it feels odd and weird to be where you are. The reminders of how your life was before you lost Ayden can be overwhelming.

    There is no time frame for grief. Only when we are together forever will the grief be truly over.

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