Ya know, I've been thinking. I don't think I like the phrase, "I lost a son." I didn't lose him. His body's in Springboro Cemetery, right on top of my Popaw. His soul's in Heaven. With my Popaw. I know exactly where he is. He died, I didn't "lose" him.
That phrase never really bothered me too much, til the other day. Someone in a store stopped to admire the girls, and started in on the questions... how many do I have, how old, etc, and I told her that I had lost my second son, who would be two now. She proceeded to tell me that her daughter in law had lost several babies. Now, I don't know if it's because my own mother in law is less than a joy, always wanting to make everything my fault, therefore I am not fond of mothers-in-law in general, or what, but that phrase, "Lost several babies." rubbed me wrong.
In my life, I've lost lots of things. I lose my keys on a regular basis. I once lost my purse with all my identification and money. (well, more than once, actually). In school I was always losing homework or books. I don't know how many pacifiers I've lost in the last three years or so. Now... think about it. When I say, "I've lost my dang keys!" doesn't that take your mind to my irresposibility, doesn't it put the blame squarely on me? Yeah. Well. I don't like that in connection with my son. With that child who I wanted more than anything in the world.
The world wants answers so badly when babies die, that people are very quick to assign blame. I even had a family member scream at me that I killed him. I have another friend, who, after a second trimester miscarriage, got an email from a pregnant acquaintance, wanting to know what she had done, so this person wouldn't do it and lose HER baby.
The truth is, while my body did cause the death of my boy, NO ONE knew that was going on. There were no warning signs. Yes, it could have been prevented, if that pregnancy had been followed as closely as the twins were, but there was no reason TO follow it that closely. I live with knowing that.
But back to the mother-in-law who told me about her son's wife, "losing" several babies.
The tone of her voice. "My daughter-in-law has lost several babies." Just made me feel like ol' Mom was blaming the son's wife. I don't know what term I'd prefer. "My daughter in law has had several miscarriages." That sounds a little better. Only, have you ever discussed miscarriage with someone? It's like talking about dirty, kinky, perverted sex. Their eyes drop, voices go quiet, some people even blush. Why is miscarriage taboo? Why is stillbirth taboo? Why is infant death taboo?
It shouldn't be. It isn't taboo when 95 year old grandpa dies. It isn't taboo when an adult woman dies of breast cancer. It isn't even taboo when a hard core partier dies of an overdose. WHY is it taboo when a person is under a year old, to mention their death?
I have pictures in my house of my grandpa. He's been dead for over ten years now. I have pictures of Landon, who has been dead just over 2. I have sensed people's discomfort when they see the ones of Landon. Really? Why? I have pictures of the other 3 kids, why is it that his pictures make you uncomfortable?? He looked perfect, beautiful. It's not like he was born with two heads or huge gaping holes in his body... and even if he had, he was my son, and I still would have thought he was beautiful, still would have hung his picture on my wall... still would have his picture on my facebook profile for the month of October.