Tuesday, May 18, 2010

New Series: The Unintentional Hurts

Plenty of people in my life don’t talk to me about what I have been through. I think it is uncomfortable for them because they have no idea if what they are saying is something that is going to make me upset. And then if I do get upset, what are you supposed to do with me then? I have to say that I am pretty fortunate. I don’t have people saying the myriad of horrible things that I hear others in my grief groups complain about with their own friends and family. You guys are a pretty sensitive bunch and take great care with me. I can’t thank you enough!

So how about this: how about I clear the air and let you know what the sensitive things are that get me riled up are so you know what topics to tread carefully on? I call these the “unintentional hurts” because I truly believe that no one is setting out to hurt me in the slightest. Most of them have to do with those of us going on about our daily lives, and something that you say or do (or not say or do) without realizing it is triggering something in me. So here goes…

Unintentional Hurt #1: Turning a blind eye to the SIDS risks.

I know that we roll our eyes when our doctors and others within the child rearing community harp on and on about things being at risk of causing SIDS in babies. (SIDS = Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) I used to do that too. Now, I spend a lot of time in grief groups with parents who have found out the hard way why those warnings exist. Because I already know what it is to lose a child, I will not risk going through this again. I take this stuff very seriously this time. With Aaron, he will not have a crib bumper in his bed, he will sleep in a bassinet rather than co-sleep with Chris and I, he will wear sleep sacks rather than be cuddled in a blanket while he sleeps, and he will not be re-using old baby things that have been around for ages because of the risk of recalls, and other accidents. There are a million-and-five great baby products out there that are cute and seem to make your life more functional, but I would rather have my child safe and alive than risk using these things. The guilt that these parents in my group feel is unfathomable. Why risk that?

I see other parents that, despite all the warnings out there, decide somehow that the worst can’t really happen to them, and my heart just drops. I know better. Why risk doing that to your child as well as to you? This life of trying to live on past your children is no picnic, and I waver on whether or not to say something to them. I guess the moral of the story is, if this is you, please keep these choices out of my view, because it kills me to see it.


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