"Thank heaven there is tomorrow. Because there is tomorrow, all our yesterdays have meaning and all our dreams have hope."

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

THAT Question

It's that dreaded question. The one that the moms and dads in this "club" hate. It comes in many forms and versions. But it boils down to . . . How many children do you have? or Is this your first? Even two and a half years after Gavin's passing and a year after Jack's birth, this question still makes my heart sink to my gut and my eyes water. It's a physical blow. Painful. Real. And all too often.
What do I say to these well meaning strangers? They aren't aware of the sucker-punch that has just been delivered to my heart. If I tell them the truth I create an awkward situation for all parties involved in this encounter. If I tell them that Jack is my first I feel as though I have betrayed Gavin.
Of course, I desperately want others to know about Gavin and his beautiful life, but all too often talking about him makes others uncomfortable. And what stranger, who in passing is making small talk, wants to hear my heartache?
Do I lie?
Do I tell the truth?
I guess it all depends on my mood and the person involved.
Does that make me a bad mom?
I don't know.


Jodi Pitchforth said...

Wow. That's hard. I can only imagine the lasting pain that you've experienced. You are definitely not a bad mom. My opinion is give the answer that you feel like giving at the time. However, if I am ever "the innocent person that asks a question and gets more than I bargained for" I will tell you I like to hear the truth. It just reminds me that other people have hardships. It reminds me to pray for those who are suffering. So I would say don't hold back on the truth.

Brittanie said...

If it makes you a bad mom, then it makes me one. I know that our sweet babies understand, and know that we can't always rehash their stories and all the emotions that brings. And that's okay. Protecting yourself when you need it doesn't mean you love him any less.

I was at Sam's the other day and the lady behind me was there with her four children. We got to chatting and it went from shopping with kids to large families, and I mentioned I think I only wanted 2 more. She said "Four is a really great number."

I just nodded agreement, when really my heart screamed "But it's supposed to be 5! FIVE is the perfect number!" I stayed pleasant because it just didn't feel like the right time to share. But I cried all the way home.

Malia said...

I think I will always hate that question...I don't know what the "right" answer is because either answer causes pain. If you ever figure it out, let me know. :( I DO think Brittanie is right that our babes understand regardless of the answer we give.

Carrie said...

No. It absolutely does not. You couldn't ever be a bad mom. I like to think of the "casting pearls before swine" verse in situations like this. Not that other people are swine, by any means, but that this is something so sacred and special to you. It is up to you how, when, and with whom you share the story of your sweet boy.

cassi said...

Oh how I think that is the worst question ever. It does NOT make you a bad mom whatsoever no matter what answer you give. I take it situation by situation too. It is something I struggle with ALL the time, and one I think about and dread getting asked everytime I meet someone new (today being one of those days). I agree with everyone that our babies know our hearts.