Written by Sarah Pridham, mum of Jasper, for Still Aware.
There are many things that I have learnt during my journey of baby loss – life lessons I guess you could call them. My blog over the next couple of months will be touching on some of the Life Lessons, or things that I have learnt.
“No matter who tries to teach you lessons about life, you won’t understand it until you go through it on your own” – Author Unknown.
Growing up, one of the most common things I would hear adults say was in reference to the lessons that they have learnt throughout their life so far, they would always say that as you grow up, you will learn things as you go and these become your life lessons. They give you the experience to grow as a person and to gain knowledge in different aspects of life. Little did I know that at 27 years old I would learn some of the biggest life lessons of my life – yes, a very young age, however when you experience such a tragedy you have no option other than to learn from it.
So here is Life Lesson #1 that I learnt from my loss journey – The love between a mother and child is eternal.
What do I mean from this statement? Well, quite simply love never dies, there will never come a time that where I stop loving our son. Love is forever, and therefore I will continue to love him every minute, hour, day, week, month and year that passes by. Bereaved parents love their children unconditionally always and forever, just as parents of living children do – what society still doesn’t seem to be able to fully comprehend is that bereaved parents are still parents, just parents to children that you cannot physically see.
I will always want to hear and say his name just the same as other parents do, I want to speak about my angel as normally and naturally as other parents speak about their children. Whilst there are many differences, there are also many similarities – I love our son just as much as any parent loves their child, the only difference is that our child is an angel, and unfortunately talking about those types of children is still quite taboo in society. Just because talking about him may make some people feel uncomfortable, it doesn’t make his life mean any less (and to be honest it no longer bothers me if it does make someone feel uncomfortable, I will always do whatever I feel like I need to do for our son to make his memory and legacy live on).
Our son’s life was cut short, but his love lives on forever through me. This is what parents of an angel do – they ensure that their child’s legacy and memory lives on forever through them, in anyway that they can.
Always and forever applies to all parents, whether bereaved or not or whether their children are physically with them or not. No one can ever take that love away.
My advice from this life lesson to any bereaved parent out there is to ensure that you surround yourself with people who want to include your angel, who are happy to talk about them, say their name and who don’t make you feel like you are doing something wrong by making their memory come to life, even if they are no longer with you.
Unfortunately, those that have not lost a baby do not seem to understand how important it is to bereaved parents to have their baby still included in the family. I no longer have time for people that will not include our son or talk about him or honour his memory – I protect my son the same way any parent protects their child, if not more because he deserves to be included, loved and remembered for as long as I continue to breathe and walk this terrible journey of life after loss.