Tuesday, October 9, 2007
You Can't Miss What You Never Had?
I have the dubious fortune of having a dear friend who has also lost a child. I don't want to share too many details without her permission, but C lost her infant daughter at about 2 weeks of age. We were friends before children came into either of our lives and now have this bond that neither of us ever imagined. While I wish we did not share this, I am thankful to have her. She is one of two friends I have that still say Owen's name out loud and are willing to talk about him. Anyhow, the other day we were emailing and I admitted that I felt I didn't miss Owen. I felt horrible about admitting that, and sort of embarrassed too. I felt like I was doing something wrong, I mean how could I not miss my son? I knew I loved and love him, shouldn't I miss him? After thinking about it for several days, I think it's how I was defining missing that was wrong. I was trying or expecting to miss him the way I would miss J & K if the unthinkable happened and they were gone. I would miss specific things about them - the things that make them who they are. However, with Owen born still, I really don't know those things about him. I never heard him cry. I don't know what he liked or what made him fussy. I never saw his eyes open. I don't know what his breath smelled like. All I can do is imagine who he might have been. I've decided to change the way I think about it and give myself permission to miss what I never really had.