Going through a miscarriage is challenging for many women. I know it was for me. I already had one child, which added a different dimension to the experience. I remember times when I wanted to fall apart and felt that I couldn’t because I needed to hold myself together for my toddler.
I was so miserable about losing this baby we named “Grace.” I cried a lot. One day my daughter, Katie, saw me crying and I knew I had to let her know that she would not be a big sister yet. I held Katie in my arms as tears trickled down my cheeks. I let her know that the baby needed to go away for now and would hopefully return one day.
Even though Katie was young when the miscarriage happened, there was a strong pull in me to include her in the mourning process. I knew on some level that Katie could sense that something happened to the baby. She could tell that her father and I were distracted and not as present as we could be. There was no use in trying to hide the miscarriage from her. She was aware of a shift in the energy in our home.
My partner and I talked about honoring Grace somehow. We chose to have a ceremony by a tree in our backyard. It was important to me to have Katie involved in this family gathering, as she was connected to Grace on an energetic level as well. My partner, Katie and I each said something to the baby and wished her well. We told her that she was welcome to come back to our family. This was an important component to our healing, as individuals and as a family. By creating closure with this incident, we could then more easily create the space to invite a new baby into our family.
No matter how young or old your children are when you miscarry, I encourage you to be honest with them and explain what happened in age-appropriate ways. Children can sense and feel what is going on with us and many of us try to hide things from them. I encourage you to find ways to talk with your children about this incident so that they are not left in the dark. At the minimum, if you feel sad or angry, I encourage you to let them know this if they ask or seem to be walking around on eggshells. They will feel your energy – like an elephant in the room. It’s best not to sweep these sorts of things under the rug. We might think that we’re protecting our children by not telling them what happened; yet on some energetic level they will already know.
If you choose to honor the baby who left — which I encourage–, I invite you to include your children in the process. There are lots of ways to honor a baby who miscarries. Some ideas include having a ceremony out in nature, creating a memory box for the baby and writing a letter to the baby. Perhaps ask your children if they have an idea for honoring the baby.
If your children want to talk about how the miscarriage affects them, I encourage you to find space for this. Emotions are energy. If they are not given space to be processed, they can fester and create energetic blockages. Sometimes it’s helpful to have a professional, such as a therapist, facilitate a conversation about miscarriage – especially if we’re having strong reactions regarding this topic.
In a nutshell, it’s paramount to take care of yourself through this process. It’s also helpful to let your children know what’s going on in an age-appropriate manner.
Please share how you chose to talk with your children about a miscarriage.
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