In a few hours, my husband returns to his “first” day of work - his “first” day of work after the birth/ loss of our sweet girl. Since my early and unexpected hospital admission mid-July due to a complication with our pregnancy, my husband has remained by my side everyday. After we lost Haven, we mourned and grieved by ourselves for only a total of five days before family members began to arrive and stay at our home to celebrate life events with us. Since then, we have been very fortunate to have surrounded ourselves and been supported by a combined amazing group of family and friends. Their laughter, energy, hugs + more along with constant prayer and investing time in the Word have been our sources of strength and comfort through this trying season.
Paul having to return to work so soon after what has only been a month & a week brings me a great deal of anxiety and fear. Anxiety and fear on learning how to grieve without my husband being readily, physically available at my side - to hold my hand when the tears start falling in random bouts during the day, to hug and just cry with me or to just to see his head bow down simultaneously with mine in silence and in prayer.
At the beginning of my mama grief/ loss journey and doing my research on healthy ways to cope with infant loss and on other new mamas’ experiences, I noticed that the papas and dads were quieter and not as vocal about loss and grief as women are. I think the reason for this is due to the fact that men and women cope and go through seasons much differently.
With this post, I honor, respect and love my husband more and more each day. Not just because of how much he’s loved, served and cared for me with so much grace and ease since the start of our first pregnancy but because in how he continues to do just this and more everyday. I believe this to be one of the beauties and blessings of our journey and life with/ after Haven – to teach us everyday, to make us love each other more, hug each other a little tighter, bring us closer (not just physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well), have a stronger marriage and friendship and to focus our lives and our little family on what is ultimately the most important – keeping Christ first and making sure that He remains at our center through both our highest of highs and our lowest of lows in this life.
To you, Paul and all the other fierce papas on a similar journey – I recognize, acknowledge, and admire the strength and courage you possess and put on in facing your own grief/ loss journey. You are not missed nor overlooked.
“It takes a strong man to be a father. And an even stronger man to be a grieving father.”
Paul, I love you with all my heart and being. Thank you for being the best to me, always. I hope you have a beautiful “first day” back to work.