Thursday, November 3, 2011

Get Over It

It seems by now we've all heard this phrase somehow related to being a birthmom. Like we’re supposed to take some magic pill and suddenly our grief will be gone. Well, the loss of a child ranks way up there on the grief scale no matter how we lost that child. The only way for us to ‘get over it’ in a healthy way is to grieve through the steps.

Some women live in denial for years by pretending it didn't happen. This only creates a false sense of reality. In order to truly grieve, it’s important to acknowledge the birth and subsequent loss of your child. It’s perfectly appropriate to be sad. Or mad. Or whatever you’re feeling.

Cry. Scream. Run. Write. Pray.

Do whatever you need to do to get your feelings out. Rinse and repeat. Be prepared to set aside time regularly to do these things. Be it every day or every week, expect to set aside this time for grieving for as long as it takes to come to a place of acceptance and peace. Be prepared to be okay for awhile and then feel the need to start up your self-care routine again.

It may sound silly to schedule grief on your calendar like you would a root canal, but knowing you are purposefully setting aside time each day to grieve may actually make your day go more smoothly. It may give you a clear head with which to complete the rest of your responsibilities. As long as you are expressing your grief in a healthy way, you’ll be okay. It’s when we try to bury living grief that we get into trouble. Living things don’t stay buried forever. That’s why sooner or later, those who try to deny their experience fall apart. They can’t hide the truth from themselves forever.

So how are you "getting over it"?

1 comment:

  1. When I first gave up my baby 19 years ago, I took on three jobs to stay busy and try to avoid the pain. It really didn't work all that well. I hid my pain in public, but I still felt it...and I cried whenever I was alone. I was lucky to meet my husband shortly after the adoption, and I was able to cry on his shoulder. He helped me to grieve properly.

    Then, when my baby was 18, I made contact with him and he agreed to meet with me, only to change his mind--followed by a month of silence from him and his family. During that time, I felt like I had given him up all over again. I was experiencing strong grief. I cried a lot, using my husband, my mom, and my best friend for support. I also wrote poetry about it, and wrote several letters to his family. I also posted to this site.

    Then I got lucky. His amom called me and explained that he was just scared--he was still pretty young. Then she sent me a letter and a photo. Not long after, I started getting occasional emails direct from my Timothy.

    In both cases, I ended up letting out my tears and relying on others for support. That helped more than anything--but writing out my feelings in poetry and letters also helped. Even if you are not able to write your child or the aparents, you can still write out your feelings--even in the form of a letter to your baby or the parents that you can either throw away or keep for the day you are reunited with your baby. And do not be afraid to cry--especially on the shoulder of someone you can trust for support. Also, posting on this site can be very helpful. The worst thing you can do is live in denial and push those feelings down!! That will NOT make them go away, and it can make you actually sick!