Monday, August 13, 2012
The New Normal
After the loss of a child, whether from miscarriage, or stillbirth, or even a living child, one of the first questions is often "will I ever feel normal again?" and while that might seem like a yes or no question, it is much more complicated than that. Feeling normal again, entails going backwards, it means getting back to where you used to be, and the harsh reality is that this is impossible. You cannot go back to where you used to be, because you aren't who you used to be; loss, grief, and mourning changes you, you become a new person, with a new life. That new life contains many new things, many things that weren't a part of the old normal; it contains hurt, grief, sorrow, loss, loss of innocence, and the single most thing that will change you the most is the child who you are no longer able to carry. Each one of these things changes the core of who you are, it changes how you view the world, it changes how you relate to people, it changes how you love those close to you, it changes your level of compassion, it changes the way you think and feel, you are a new person; even if you could go back to your old normal, it wouldn't feel right, you would feel out of balance and out of place. Rather than going back to normal, you will move forward into normal, a new normal, where you learn to function in spite of the grief, where you push forward through the painful days and relish the days you can smile, where you have greater compassion for the hurting souls around you, where many old problems seem trivial and many new ones feel insurmountable, where you love a child who is a part of you, but not near you. While you can never go back to the old normal, there will come a day when you are able to get out of bed without trying, when you find yourself laughing, when the sadness doesn't cripple you, and yes there will come a day when you realize you just don't hurt as badly as you once did.