We, Still Parents, have endured the unthinkable. Literally unthinkable by Nature, by society and by the State (at least in my country).
Our bodies are not prepared for our babies to die. Nature didn’t think of that. Our babies die and still our bodies produce milk. Why? Haven’t you, body, realized that there is no baby to be fed? I had to be under compression for a month and I was so angry and upset at my body for this. Wasn’t it enough that my body had failed to take care of my beautiful baby girl?
My baby girl died three months ago and I still have to wear my maternity clothes and I look as if I were still pregnant. During my pregnancy I put on the weight I was expected to gain. This extra weight was going to be used by my body to produce milk and I was going to lose it as I breastfed my baby. But there is no longer a baby… Nature, where is your back up plan?
Society and state are not prepared as well. At the hospital, the day my baby died, minutes after I had been holding her perfect beautiful body in my arms, I was taken by two nurses to what was supposed to be my room, shared with a mother and her new born child… I’m thankful that one of the nurses saw my face as I was seeing the entrance of the room and moved me away from the maternity floor. Couldn’t have someone thought of this before?
My husband had to deal with all the crazy paperwork and argue with many ignorant bureaucrats for us to get our beautiful baby and arrange a cremation. Since our baby was not born alive, in our country she cannot be registered with her name, she is registered as NN and our surnames. Why can’t she appear with her name, Camila, which her dad and I thought so hard to choose? Is there a need for the State to be so cold with grieving parents?
Most people don’t know about these, among many others, heart-wrenching details. I didn’t know back in my happy pregnant days. It doesn’t help that it’s impossible not to burst into tears while talking about it. It doesn’t help that many are afraid to deal with us and our pain. But still, we should try to speak up, to make these issues known, like so many of you are doing right now. The more we speak about it, the more people will start to grasp a bit the size of our grief. We cannot correct Nature but maybe we can make society and state treat still parents with more care and empathy.