I sit and listen to anyone. About their every day lives. The loss of family members, how things after their deaths have changed, makes them wish for different things, more photos,more memories, more time.
I’ve often joined in, I can relate when someone mentions their grandparent. I can understand when their dead parent is mentioned. Swap stories people are keen to hear.
But then something they say triggers a thought to losing our daughter, I bring her to the conversation too.
And yet still 4 years and 4 months later people get awkward. You can see in their faces they’re uncomfortable, the squirming of their bodies, wishing I’d stop,that I’d change the subject or better still disappear.
The disgust in their face,that they hope I didn’t notice.
Makes me feel awkward and uneasy. Because I mentioned her.
Because I dare to speak of her name or share a happy memory of her.
People don’t seem to realise the way attitudes are,are really hurtful.
My few minutes of talking to their few minutes of awkwardness is engraved into my memory.
Their painful facial expression, isn’t that of pain, but of disgust.
Don’t think that bereaved parents don’t notice these things. We do.
The taboo that is darker than most.
Nobody wants to hear it,to talk about it.
It is as if it never happens.
I don’t talk about my child to make anyone feel awkward,embarrassed.
I don’t talk about my child for drama or an attention seeking activity.
I don’t have to justify myself to anyone,not really.
I talk about my child because she lived,she was here,may have only been for five weeks, four years ago,but she is still my third born.
She breathed,she fed burped too.
I cannot just throw her away.
I’m told I won’t forget.
But there are days where I feel my memory of her life slipping away. I fear I’m going to forget something about her being.
But also I don’t think about her daily either.
I’m not alone in these thoughts.
I’m not alone in wanting to speak about my precious baby.
Please, stop the awkward fidgeting, the worry about over sharing. The obvious eye rolling.
We’re not blind or contagious.
If it is okay to speak of your dead parent, the loss of your grandparent twenty years ago.
Then it is acceptable for me to mention my child.