A heartfelt message from loss mama Erin Epstein
We put on a happy face and hide the pain we feel inside, even from ourselves.
From the outside looking in, we do a good job of making life look wonderful.
We’re so grateful to be able to travel, go out to dinner and enjoy time with friends and family. However, what people don’t know is the real pain within. People assume you have everything you could want. What they don’t know is that we would trade the trips, the nice dinners out, and all of the random activities, for the one thing that we don’t have.
We would sacrifice anything to rock our baby to sleep. For long days and sleepless nights. We would do anything for the chance to bring our baby home, take walks, and have family dinners. We yearn for the day our child takes their first steps, and for pictures on the first day of school. We wish desperately that instead of loss, we had small children taking up all of our time. We wish the repeated attempts to grow our family would be successful. We wish that we didn’t need to find distractions to get us through the time between treatments. We are so grateful for the memories we have made, but still wish there were two little feet joining us on our excursions.
From the outside looking in, it may all seem perfect. I guess it’s a reminder that not everything is what it seems. We cannot judge others from what we see on the outside, looking in. Although we are grateful for what we have, our deepest desires seem to be taking longer than we had ever bargained for.
We try to live life to the fullest despite our circumstances. We create experiences and make memories so that we can feel as though we are still living despite loss, despite infertility. We invest in our relationship and grow as a couple as we navigate these grueling waters. While there are no children to care for at this time, there has to be more than just waiting, and working, and waiting some more. One day we will look back and be so happy for the pictures of beautiful places stored in our memory book. But all the while, we were desiring something more. However, we must continue these distractions and ways to lift ourselves up. We must live, despite the loss. We must find joy and happiness while we await our BIGGEST joys in life. This is how we get through it. This is how you survive loss after loss after loss; you find a way to LIVE.
But for one moment, we’d love to know how it feels to sit at home on the weekend. We’d love to know how it feels to sit on the couch, holding our newborn baby, taking turns to feed them and change their diaper. We’d love the chance to forgo a night out with friends to be home tucking our children in at night. We’d love to know how it feels to send them off to school and spend our evening hearing about their day. We would love a day when we aren’t reminded of all of the memories we are missing out on, and the time that doesn’t seem to stop ticking.
You may envy what is seen from the outside looking in. You may (hopefully) never know the pain others truly experience unless you have walked in their shoes. One way of life may look appealing to some, while others are praying that life looked just a little bit different.
Instead of planning the next trip or the next getaway, we hope that our next plans will be even greater. Every day, we keep waiting, trying for, and hoping that our greatest desires come true.