Can Having a Baby Be a Grieving Experience?
I am 38 weeks pregnant, and while I am excited to welcome a baby boy into our family, I am also scared.
Do you remember the definition of grief from The Grief Recovery Institute that I have shared with you time and time again?
“The conflicting feelings that come at the end of or change in a familiar pattern of behavior.” Not the bad, sad, terrible feelings… it’s the conflicting feelings that come when things change.
Guess what? Having a baby is a grieving experience, even if the baby is healthy.
Why? Because it is a mixture of emotions. Excitement and love, fear and uncertainty. How will it be? How will we adapt? Will he be healthy? How will it change our family dynamic? And on and on I could go.
Also, before the baby comes, I will be going through labor. And while I am hopeful that all will be well, in my profession I see a lot of worst case scenarios which does 2 things for me:
1) I take very few things for granted.
2) I honor that we have very little control over what happens to us, but we do get to decide how we will proceed.
I also want to acknowledge that this is a sensitive subject, as I have so many friends and clients who have experienced challenges with fertility, miscarriages, the death of living children, and a number of other grieving experiences that are related.
I also want to say that no two experiences are the same and we don’t compare… not only because it can lead to isolation, but also because it doesn’t allow us to honor each other’s experiences as important and unique.
So before you judge me or yourself, remember to be compassionate, as everyone has a story. Yours is important, as is mine, as is your neighbor’s.
Life is precious, uncertain, challenging, scary, and amazing. The best I have to offer you and myself is to be as present as possible with your current reality.
And please know that no matter what life hands you, you get to choose how you will proceed.
If you are struggling to answer the question, “Who am I now?” check out my 7 Days to Thriving Ebook and mini-course to begin your journey to thriving.