It’s been too long since I last wrote. I want to try and go back to writing at least every three days because it helps me so much to get my feelings and emotions out. I’ve been feeling very sad today, so I’m hoping that writing will help me feel a bit better. There’s been a lot going on and there is a lot floating around in my head that I want to write about – I’m hoping I can tie it all together.
I’ve never been quite sure of what I believe in from a religious perspective. When asked, I would give very vague responses. The first book I read when Maya died was When Bad Things Happen to Good People by Harold Kushner. It provided me with so much clarity on grief, religion, and on spirituality. This post is not about that – I’ll have to write that one later.
One thing that the book helped me to understand is fate. I’ve always believed in fate. I believe in certain things happening in a certain sequence to make other things happen. I believe it was fate that I met my husband as there were many things that had to fall into place for us to meet. I believe that it was fate that I ended up teaching science this year.
When Maya died, I struggled with my belief in fate. Was it my fate to have a daughter who died? Was it her fate to bounce around, kick, and squirm in my belly for 8 months only to live on earth for 9 brief hours? It couldn’t be. So I made the decision – fate is not responsible for everything. The fact that Maya died was not fate. It was a horrible, awful, tragic thing that happened. Period. Still, I wanted to continue believing in fate, as it helps me have hope for a brighter future.
A few weeks ago, I was perusing facebook early in the morning when I saw a post in my newsfeed from Forever my Sweet Pea. For those of you who don’t know, Project Sweet Peas is a national non-profit organization offering support for parents of infants who are in the NICU and for bereaved parents. Forever my Sweet Pea is their bereaved parent/family program and its page on facebook is run by someone who is local to me and who actually graduated from the same high school that I did. Anyway… perusing facebook and the posting was an ‘advertisement’ for wooden keepsake boxes. I read the posting and then looked at the picture and this is what I saw:
I had to do a double-take! The box in the picture had Maya’s name and birthday on it! I was first overjoyed to see her name! That’s all any babyloss mom wants to see. Then, I was confused. Did they find my story? Eventually, I found out that a girl who I went to high school with arranged to have this box made for me. She knows the woman who runs the local chapter of Project Sweet Peas and the Forever my Sweet Pea page .
The fact that I happened to be on facebook that morning to see this post and got to see Maya’s name? Fate.
The fact that the girl I went to high school with happens to know the woman who runs Project Sweet Peas? Fate.
The fact that the woman who runs Project Sweet Peas heard my story twice from 2 different girls who I went to high school with? Fate.
And… there’s more.
The box arrived and was filled with a whole bunch of wonderful stuff. Some of it was personalized for Maya. There was a book that I had wanted to get for myself, and an announcement pillow with the same theme as her nursery. Fate. I couldn’t believe it. It was such a kind and unexpected gesture.
Now, the girl who arranged to have the box made was a girl I graduated from high school with. We knew each other and were always friendly, but we were never super close. We are friends on facebook. This summer, she gave birth to twin girls. She was deeply affected by Maya’s story. I had no idea. I messaged her back and forth on facebook to thank her and tell her how much the box means to me. She shared with me how much Maya has affected her. I have not seen this girl in person in over 4 years.
Amazingly, another friend from high school was getting married last Friday, just days after I received this box. We were both attending the wedding. Fate. I was so thrilled that I could thank her in person and give her a big hug.
The wedding was beautiful and it was so nice to see all my friends. I spent over an hour chatting with this girl. We talked about Maya. She told me how connected she feels to me and my daughter. My husband chatted with her husband who was also incredibly compassionate. We vowed to stay in touch and get together. I honestly felt like I was in kindergarten again making a new friend. I was giddy with excitement. She gets it. She understands. Though she has not experienced the loss of an infant, she is a mother. Mothers get it.
I tell this story because if it weren’t for the countless friends and family who have supported Hackie and I through these last 4 months, I’m not sure I’d be surviving. Sometimes I feel like I have been physically lifted and moved along as I navigate this journey through grief. I believe that fate is responsible for all these wonderful people being so present in my life. I am grateful for facebook, because without it, many of these people would not have even known I was pregnant.
Because of Maya, I am making new connections, and I am making new friends. I am grateful for those who have come into my life. I am grateful for those that share with me how Maya has affected them. It makes her life matter, and that’s all I want.