I got to be a mom… for a moment

Last week, she gave me condolences about my loss. It always warms my heart for a patient to take a second out of a time that is really meant for her and say something. I have a sign at the check-in desk, informing patients I had a loss. Some days I receive no comments and my daughter’s existence remains silent, other days I could have three or four people say something. But this patient became special, when she went a step further.

“How big was she?” she asked.

My heart swelled! It’s didn’t end, when I said my usual, “thank you. And thank you for saying something.” I got to say more!

“Five pounds four ounces,” I announced proudly. “She was born at 36 weeks, so she was a little early.”

“She was beautiful.” She had not only taken the time to read my sign, but she had looked at the photo beneath the words.

“She was, wasn’t she? Thank you! She looked big for her weight. She was a little chunker!” I grinned.

For that moment, I got to be a mom. Those four little words opened me up, allowing the pride and love I have for my daughter spill out. I hope she knows how much her extra effort made my day.

Have you had any experiences like this, where you felt more like a traditional mom than a babyloss mom?


14 thoughts on “I got to be a mom… for a moment

  1. Such a precious conversation!
    I feel very fortunate to have had many times when i have felt like just Paul’s mom…
    It is amazing how good it feels to be able to share those moments that are probably borderline insignificant for many moms whose babies are alive and well. I am glad you got your moment yesterday i hope you’ll get more soon.

  2. I love that a patient asked you questions about Mabel. Send her my way or tell her give my friends and acquaintances some tips.

    I sadly have not had anyone ask about Thomas. The only “mom” times I have had is when I run into people that remember that I was pregnant, but don’t know my son died and they ask basic enough questions that I can just answer in passing without having to drop the “we lost him” bomb. Those times feel oddly good, but they’re strained with the stress that they will keep asking more questions and I’ll have to let them know the disappointing news and deal with their reaction.

    I am glad you had this opportunity to boast about Mabel and feel like a proud mama instead of having to take care of others shock about her death and/or feel like you need to stand your ground.

    • yes! there is a lot of stress in any question someone asks- do they know? how do I tell them? will they run away? will they say something painful? every interaction brings those up

  3. I LOVE when I get to talk about my son like a “normal” mom. Unfortunately, those moments are all too few and far between for us, aren’t they? Also, just so you know – Mabel was such a big girl! I was 5 lbs 13 oz at birth, and I was full term! You certainly fed her right in there :).

    • they are few and far between. she was big, huh? I come from a family of big babies (I was my mom’s runt at 8.5lbs and this generation of babies is 8-10+ lbs too) so she was little in comparison. But she was on track to being a 7lb baby if she went to her due date- which is totally big for a baby with down syndrome!

  4. In my new position at work, I was able to tell the fast but rather complete story of my son. They include me in mother conversations a lot. I feel legitimate there. Everywhere else I feel like I’m pretending, so it feels good to be recognized.

  5. This year, a fellow loss mom wrote me an email and asked if I was “Chiara’s mom”. It was the first time I’d been called that. I loved it. It felt so good. I have living children, so I am mom every day, but my daughter is rarely visible, rarely mentioned by others (although we talk about her every day).

    I’m so glad this patient asked you how much Mabel weighed, so glad you got be Mabel’s mom in those moments, and I hope that there are more of those moments to come.

    • I wish you did too! I wish we all had more moments like this. I find its a blessing and a curse, my job- I interact with so many people on a daily basis- sometimes 25-30 patients a day. The downside is I have more painful and awkward interactions than the average person, but the upside is I have more heartwarming ones too.

  6. Oh how lovely! I can hear your joy at being able to talk about Mabel sing out from your words. I’m always so pleased when I get a chance to talk about Hugo and his antics – it makes me feel ‘normal’, for a few precious moments and I can feel my face light up x

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