Remembering Doria

One Father's Journey after the Death of his Daughter

Special Club Holiday

4 Comments

It’s October 15th, kind of a special ‘holiday’ for everyone who’s lost a baby along the way. Not a holiday in the sense of a fun, merry celebration, but a ‘holiday’ where we observe what’s happened and recognize the lives of the little babies who didn’t make it. All of October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, but October 15th is kind of THE DAY. It belongs to our special, elite little club of survivors. It belongs to that special group of people that have normal conversations which can lead others running for the hills. If talking about the loss of your baby is normal, or thinking about it all of the time is normal, this is our day!

Everyone is invited to remember with us today. I think all of us survivors would encourage it. In a way, though, I think it’s best if you can do it from a distance. Not because we survivors would want to push you away. Far from that. It’s that this little club really doesn’t want you to be able to observe this day the same way that we do. If it sounds standoffish, let me clarify 🙂

See, we beat the odds. Our elite little club is filled with stunned people whose babies didn’t make it. For those of us who made it all the way to term but don’t have our baby Doria in our home, this wasn’t supposed to happen. For ‘outsiders’ to fully understand what the day means for us, they would have to join the club. Joining the club means paying the full price of admission, and I don’t think any of us here want you to pay that price. Picture a ticket office saying “We don’t want your money. Don’t buy a ticket.” That’s the policy here. If I could enforce it, I would. No more dead babies. Let’s close off the membership. 

For the membership that’s already paid the price, it’s a morning of mourning followed by a lifetime of remembering. As a friend of mine points out, we didn’t want to pay the price, but here we are. We’re in the club. There are no refunds. We didn’t want to join, but nobody leaves the club. That’s not an option. If it were, I can’t imagine that this club would have a single member left over. There isn’t a price I wouldn’t pay to get out. I know that. I love these people dearly, but it’s not the place I expected to be.

I downloaded a one-year devotional this past weekend. For this morning, it focused on Psalm 6. I’d like to post that here. I remember sharing this with the teens at our church a summer or two ago, and it’s going to be helpful for me today. (thanks to http://www.biblegateway.com)

A Prayer of Faith in Time of Distress

To the Chief Musician. With stringed instruments. On an eight-stringed harp.[a] A Psalm of David.

6 O Lord, do not rebuke me in Your anger,
Nor chasten me in Your hot displeasure.
Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am weak;
O Lord, heal me, for my bones are troubled.
My soul also is greatly troubled;
But You, O Lord—how long?

Return, O Lord, deliver me!
Oh, save me for Your mercies’ sake!
For in death there is no remembrance of You;
In the grave who will give You thanks?

I am weary with my groaning;
All night I make my bed swim;
I drench my couch with my tears.
My eye wastes away because of grief;
It grows old because of all my enemies.

Depart from me, all you workers of iniquity;
For the Lord has heard the voice of my weeping.
The Lord has heard my supplication;
The Lord will receive my prayer.
10 Let all my enemies be ashamed and greatly troubled;
Let them turn back and be ashamed suddenly.

The man after God’s own heart cried enough to soak his couch, and he wasn’t ashamed of it. Looking forward today to laughs and tears, because that’s what we do now. I’d do anything to be annoyed with her screaming, but this will have to do.

Remember a baby today. We’re remembering Doria. We’re praying for all the other members of the club. Feel free to join in. We covet your presence and your mourning with us, just not as a member of the club.

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4 thoughts on “Special Club Holiday

  1. Hello Erik, I am a friend of Peter Taylor’s which is where I found your post. My wife and I are members of the “Club”. We waited twelve years for our promise and his heart failed two weeks from his birth date. I wish I could say that your pain will go, but it won’t. It will fade but there is something about our children that is never lost. Maybe its a God thing. Even now I see seventeen year old boys and wonder if that would have been our Ethan. I think people always think of the mother but few ever consider the impact on the father. After all we are supposed to protect our family are we not?

    What you are doing takes tremendous courage. The best thing that happened to me was when a young man and his wife lost their baby two weeks after us. Spending time with him helped me in my grieving process. Seventeen years ago in the middle of Africa, there was no grief support groups. Having a memorial tree to your Doria is a wonderful idea. 13,000km separate us from our son’s resting place, but God has shown us that it is only his flesh, the real Ethan was on hand to welcome his grandfather home two months ago.

    It is a hard time but one that you will both survive and somewhere someone will read your blogs and find comfort for their bewildering loss.

    May God bless you and Bekky in your journey together.

  2. Thank you so much for this blog (I found it via Reddit). We lost our little son 5 weeks ago, he was stillborn at 7 months. Still can’t get our heads round the loss, he was so wanted and is still so loved. We’re in the UK and have found SANDS to be fantastic, they have an excellent website too.

    I got chills when I read this blog post as our little Ben was due on 15.10.13

    • Kate, I am soooo sorry to hear about Ben. That’s so awful (but you know that).

      We were just talking about it this weekend. So often, it still doesn’t seem real, but we held Doria, so we know it happened.
      I’m glad that SANDS is helping. Really glad.

      I hope this can help you guys. Anything I can ever do, really, fire away. Iowa is a ways away from the UK, but the Internet can do wonderful things 🙂

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