Here in the US, we are coming up on another Thanksgiving, and for those of you coming to this site right now, thanks is not something you may feel like giving.
Before I say anything else, I want to assure you: That’s just fine. You don’t have to feel thankful. You don’t have to count your blessings every single moment. You can, when you need, grieve for the holiday you thought you would have, either glowing and pregnant, enduring jokes about eating for two, or with that new baby, walking into relative’s home to the exclamations over the new family member.
Do not feel you have to save face. Do not feel you have to hide how you feel. And if your family gathering involves pregnant women or new babies, this may be the year to volunteer in the kitchen. I always start cutting onions if I can’t control myself, for the concentration and the excuse for tears.
If you find yourself in a tough situation, look around for a sympathetic relative. Maybe it will be the boys, and you can run off with them to watch a football game rather than fuss over the small children. Maybe it will be a forgotten aunt. Take time to really get to know her this year.
Don’t expect that everyone is going to understand. Your sister-in-law might feel slighted if you don’t want to hold her newborn. Walking out of the room during a discussion of what to name a baby might cause a little stir.
Try not to get into any confrontations about it. Just smile and make a simple excuse. Plan ahead so you can bow out of uncomfortable moments gracefully by maybe preparing some complicated dish of your own.
Your years will come. Have faith in that. And while you’re washing dishes or stuck watching UT beat the Aggies, think ahead to that, to your turn, and even if your family thinks you are being dramatic or over emotional, they are your family. You were born into it, and your future babies will be too. Love them even if they don’t understand.
6 thoughts on “Managing the Holidays without Baby”
That was so well said. Everything you said hit right on the mark. It’s been a little over 4 months since my m/c and I still have some bad days (more good than bad).
With everything that has happened this year, my family switched things up and my parents and my husband and my dog and myself drove 10 hours to my sister’s place for thanksgiving. I was so glad for the change. I didn’t want to be around any preg relatives or new babies. This way it was just my immediate family and a few of my sister’s friends.
Love you web site. Thank you for the wonderful information. I hate the fact that you and I and so many more women needed this site. God bless.
Thanks for posting the above in regards to the holidays. I’m having such a terrible time adjusting to the holidays this year, since losing our daughter 10/06/08. The above suggestions are so reassuring…I just hope that my family will understand why I’m not ‘in the mood’ this year.
I wish I had read this earlier! This is exactly how I felt over Thanksgiving – and I have not been looking forward to Christmas for that reason. Thank you for sharing this. Your website has been such a blessing to me. It’s the best miscarriage site I’ve found!
I am so glad that I found your site. I only wish I would have found it earlier. This is another holiday season for me, in which I feel this same way. It’s really hard because our baby would have been a year old. All of the emotional rollercoasters going on with the pregnancy loss and struggle to conceive again is unbearable at times. Your site, especially during this time, is helpful.
I know just how you feel! I lost a baby at 3 mos. back in May and would have been due on Dec. 17, 08…I became pregnant again! and sadly miscarried on the due date of the previous baby. Eventhough I have 7 children, I still felt an extreme loss. After 4 miscarriages I still feel like someone is missing. Trying to hold back tears as I watch my pregnant sister’s belly grow and see pictures of her sono on her fridge. Maybe I’ll have another…not getting any younger-I’m 40.
Ironically, the very action of holding a child or hanging out with your pregnant friend is God’s plan to help you become pregnant again – hormones. Just as women’s menstrual cycles become in sync with others over time when in close proximity so too does a woman’s fertility cycle “increase”. If you cannot bear to attend a baby shower etc go in the spring to a farm and frolic with the newborn lambs etc. This too can help relax and even out hormones according to some doctors. I went through a miscarriage very recently and am 40. I gave birth to a healthy baby 2 years prior so the reality of losing this child did seem easier but naturally at times I do second guess myself and wonder if I accidentally caused it (overheating, careful caffiene intake but intake nontheless). It is hard not to define ourselves by the number of children we have if we want them. But we are not really more or less important by how many children we desire, not in others eyes and not in God’s eyes.