I reach office earlier than my other friends. So, usually I’m alone for breakfast. On one such day, an acquaintance came and joined me at breakfast. I was happy to have a company. We spoke about work, her vacation, our hobbies, and a lot of other things.
We had a good chat at the breakfast table. I enjoyed it.
2 days later, she pings me this:
That was a sweet gesture. I felt good. I smiled reading that. I had assumed that she knows what had happened to me/Ayden because she knew I was pregnant, but there was no question about the baby when we met. But I didn’t think much into it because she’s not a close friend, and didn’t expect much beyond a hello, how are you.
Another instance told by a friend who’s been through 2 miscarriages. A common friend of ours called her casually and in the course of conversation, she asked her – when are you planning for pregnancy again? (our friendship/relationship with her accepts and validates such questions, so that’s fine). Before my friend could respond, she reacted – “I mean, I didn’t mean to say ‘again.’ I’m so sorry…” She was struggling to complete her apology. My friend told her – calm down, it’s ok. It is ‘again’ for me. After sometime she asked her the same question about me as well, and suddenly apologized for saying ‘again’ again. My friend told her – Both of us won’t feel bad about it. At least you are acknowledging it. So, that’s ok.
I met another friend 5 months after Ayden’s passing. This was at a wedding. We spoke very casually about regular things. The next day, at the cocktail party, after a couple of drinks she came up to me, hugged me and said “You are so strong. I know you are going through hell. I have the courage to tell you this only because I’m drunk. Take care.”
If feels good when one makes the effort to acknowledge your unexpected changes in life, without making it feel dramatic. It feels good when you see empathy in words.
Plz don’t mistake it for attention-seeking. It’s definitely not that. If you know anyone going through child-loss, know that they might appreciate you acknowledging their child and loss than ignoring.