As I stir my mug of hot tea and curl up in front of the fire this holiday season, I will watch my children play with their new gifts and I will look over at my husband and smile over their heads, our faces warm from the heat and our hearts full from days spent with family and friends and laughter and love.
But even as I count my blessings and feel the peace and contentment of my favorite time of year wash over me, a piece of my heart will still be missing.
When a part of you is just wishing for the baby that should have been.
This year, my heart is breaking for all the mothers whose due date will never come. For the mothers who should have been showing off brand-new babies at all the holiday parties or hanging a new stocking or excitedly posting that pregnancy announcement.
For the mothers who are facing a due date this holiday season, a date that they will be dreading to meet, yet telling themselves they can get through. My heart is breaking for mamas who held their babies born too soon and had to say goodbye. My heart is breaking for every mother who has loved and lost a child, who will look and see a place at the dinner table that will remain forever empty.
I could get angry, thinking about it, because what the hell? Isn’t the world hard enough without all of this loss? But instead, I want to choose to believe that love is never lost, that there is no shame in grief, that tears can flow freely and that we are made kinder by the changes that life has brought us. I know that I talk myself down nearly every day because my loss feels so small, so insignificant in the grand scheme of things, even when my heart tells me a different story.