Today Brittney and I are continuing to share the story of Isaac, Brittney's firstborn and our first grandbaby who was born sleeping.
In the last podcast we shared about how God met us in our darkest places of grief and brought hope in the midst of deep loss. We are continuing our conversation about the grieving process and the struggles and victories that came with subsequent pregnancies.
Our hope and prayer is that, even if you have never experienced this kind of loss, you will find hope and be reminded of how very faithful our God is and that you will know His faithfulness in your own circumstances, whatever they are. We also want to give insight into what this experience was like so that if you ever need to walk alongside someone as they go through it, you will have a better understanding of the process and God can use you to bring grace and love into that place.
Here is a list of possible ways to help a mom walk through the grief of losing a child:
*Keep in mind that sometimes a mom can struggle to share her grief OR let herself cry when she needs to. You may be able to help her feel the freedom to do that.
*Don’t feel like you have to have answers. Don’t say things like, “God knows what’s best”. Just hug her, tell her you are sorry, tell her you have no words. PRAY A LOT for her whenever she comes to mind. Pray that God would bring her comfort as only HE can and that He would continually meet her in a very real and powerful way. Pray for God to show you how you can love her best through it.
*Ask to see pictures of the baby and ask about the baby’s name and why that name is special to them? How much he/she weighed, how long he/she was. If you get to see pictures, talk about all the sweet things about her little one, you know, the things every new mother wants to hear…” look at all that hair!” “He looks like his daddy” “She’s beautiful!”.
*If you have a chance, ask if you can come hold the baby. It can take a lot of courage, but whisper a prayer, trust God and GO! Most mommies love to see other people enjoy their baby (just like any new mommy) and in this situation, it is very short-lived for them, so seize the moment if you can. Encourage the parents to take their time with the baby and not let anyone hurry them. Have someone take LOTS of pics!
*Remember the Mother’s Day/Father’s Day after or give a gift in memory of baby for Christmas... Remember to celebrate or acknowledge the baby’s birthdays. Often people stop checking in after a couple of months, so be sure to check in on her regularly after that.
*Don’t assume that when she gets pregnant again, the hurt is healed. As we are finding out, pregnancy after a loss is an emotional roller coaster for the mommy. She needs extra encouragement and prayers during this time as well. Encourage her (or at least pray for her) to bond with her baby in spite of feeling fearful. Maybe buy at least one gift for the baby during the pregnancy as a show of faith and hope.
(For links to resources mentioned in the podcast, please go to durendawilson.com)