I remember being with family and friends on Felicity’s 2-month birthday. I was feeling like I wanted to talk about her all day, but no one asked. In those moments, the grieving person is really trapped.
If I bring this up, and steer the conversation away from politics or the weather, am I going to be seen as trying to dominate, or make the conversation all about me, or seen as trying to bring everyone in the group down?
If I bring this up, am I going to make someone else uncomfortable?
If I bring this up, the conversation changes drastically. Is that okay with everyone? Is that socially acceptable in this group right now?
Man, does this ring true!! I feel like a drama queen if I actually feel like talking about it. I feel like I'm being over dramatic. I feel like I'm being Debbie Downer. I feel like I can't honestly share my feelings. I feel alone.
Alone in the church foyer at 10:35a on Sunday seems like an oxymoron. But last Sunday that's how I felt. I didn't feel comfortable going into the circle of my friends, of whom most are new and expectant moms (and I didn't get an invitation to do so - and that day I needed one - as needy as it sounds). I didn't feel comfortable waiting in line to pick up my children from Sunday School. I didn't feel like I belonged anywhere. I had no where to go in a room full of people.
The grieving woman lives in a constant paradox—I am no longer the woman I used to be, and therefore, I am not “normal,” but also, I’m just another woman/wife/mother trying to live my life like everyone else.And I understand why it may feel like a "minefield." You don't want to approach a grieving mom because you might make her cry, you might make her feel bad, she might swipe your newborn baby, she might yell at you. Molly offers some great conversational tips and even suggests writing a card:
It can be 2 lines long! It can say something like, “I thought of you and your baby today. You are a good mom to your children.” Don’t worry about it having to be deep or ultra-spiritual. Chances are your friend will feel blessed knowing she’s not alone in remembering her baby (who she thinks of all the time).Please read Molly's post if you need encouragement to talk to your grieving friend and how to prepare yourself for anything...even an explosion. It's just nice to know that you're not alone at a time like this.
(If you want to read more of my thoughts on Molly's series, click here.)