Mother’s Day is such a wonderful day to celebrate all that moms do. But what about those who want to avoid the brunches and big hoopla because they bring up difficult memories? So many of us are celebrating Mother’s Day even though our moms are no longer with us, or some of us are struggling with the overwhelming ache of sadness because our children are no longer with us.
One of the bravest, strongest, and best moms I know is sharing her story of loss today in hopes that those of you with aching hearts realize that you are not alone. I hope that you take solace in Shauna’s powerful and heartfelt words. Please feel free to leave a supportive comment to let Shauna know that she is not alone either.
The Club—a Mom’s Club of Love and Loss
Usually clubs are fun, social, enjoyable…a choice. But not this club. it is ugly, sad, forced and unwanted. I, Shauna, entered the club September 17, 2015. It started out as a normal busy day which was filled with school pick ups/drop offs, making lunches, getting kids out to school. I was so busy so I didn’t notice whether or not Declan, our son, was active or not. That afternoon I went for a routine OB visit and ultrasound…or what I thought was a routine visit. My life changed forever at 2:35 that Wednesday afternoon. I went in and it was a routine appointment…got weighed, BP check, etc. then came time for the ultrasound…..lay down, maternity pants rolled down, gel on, wand rubbed over and SILENCE. My son Declan Donovan had died. He was a stillborn at 32 weeks. Sadness. Anger. Heartache. Emptiness. That is what I felt. That is what I still feel. Babies don’t die. Old people die.
I’ve come to now know that having a stillborn is not uncommon (1 in 160 pregnancies) but it’s just not talked about. Talking about death is hard…but remember babies aren’t supposed to die, especially in the womb. The death of a child forces you to dig deep inside yourself to find reasons to want to be happy again. I have so many things to be happy about, including my other three beautiful children, but there’s a gaping hole that will never close. It may grow smaller but NEVER close. I hear that you never learn to accept the death of child but learn to live with the hole, the sadness, the loss of dreams and future plans. Some days are better than others. People say stupid things. Relationships change. Innocence lost.
“Child loss is not an event, it’s a journey of survival” – Out of Ashes
Shauna Loftus, forever Declan’s mom
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