My Darkest Days

The day my Dad died and the day my son was born were the two worst days of my life.

It’s a horrible comparison, isn’t it? That the loss of my father and the birth of my son are parallel experiences is a shameful admission. But it is a truth. They are both days that unwillingly changed my life forever, that filled themselves with grief and exhaustion, and cloaked themselves in a dense fog that left me outside of my own experiences.

They are both days in which I can only remember bits and pieces. My memory has stored the fragments only to bring them out randomly throughout my daily life. Try as I may, I can not piece together the entirety of these days. These days that forever changed who I was and who I am to become. These days that shaped my life so significantly; I can not remember.

The parts I remember, I remember vividly. If I allow myself to go to those places hidden deep within myself, I can see parts so vividly it feels like I just relived that moment. If I allow myself to go back to that moment, I am left in tears and the pain is so intense it feels current.

But there are parts that I don’t remember. It is these parts, the fragments of time taken away from my memory, that haunt me. I wish I remembered what it was like to see my father for the very last time. I wish I remember meeting my son.

But I don’t remember. Those days were so filled with tragedy and exhaustion and intervention that I don’t remember some of the most important details of my own life. And I grieve that.

I grieve that I was so overtaken with the news of the loss of my father that I wasn’t able to fully concentrate on that day. I grieve that I was so inappropriately drugged during my labor and delivery process that I don’t remember meeting my own son. I missed saying goodbye and saying hello to two of the most important people in my life.

I remember some foggy moments. I remember, even in the grief induced haze of losing my father and the drug induced haze of not meeting my son, that they were significant moments that I was not fully there for. I knew, that somehow, when the fog lifted, my life would be permanently, irreparably changed.

The aftermaths have been different, of course. The joy of being a mother has far outweighed the tragedy of being a father-less child.

But those days, those significant days encircled in the malicious fog that I can never fight my way back through, still leaves me grieving that which I can not remember. Those treasured lost moments that left their significance but not their impression. Those precious moments that have been taken away, ever so subtly, and took pieces of me with them as they floated away with the fog.

Comments

  1. I am so so SO sorry that you had to experience this. I can feel the pain through your words.
    I know that what you lost on that day, by not really getting to celebrate your baby and letting go of your father, was immeasureable. I don’t know if this will comfort you, but it always comforted me when I think back to the time when my son was born…that there are so many more days ahead of you to love on him. I know that it won’t give you that time back. It will always be a pang in your soul. But knowing that there are so many more tomorrows, so many more memories….will keep pushing you forward.

    xoxo

    • Oh, Kimberly, thank you so much for your sweet words. It is comforting to know that I have so many more days to spend with my son and it makes the time with him that much more precious. I am so glad I am finding so much support in this blogging atmosphere where it is ok to tell the truth about post baby experiences and find that there are other amazing women who went through it, survived it, and are still fabulous mommies. Thank you so much for reading and for your encouragement!

  2. Your newest reader, and now one of your biggest fans since writing this honest and brave post. Your writing here is beautiful, haunting, and powerful. After this glimpse into your birth story, I am instantly connected with the same regret and sadness about not experiencing that amazing life event to the fullest. I am bursting with love for my little boy and am so happy in my everyday life and role as a mother, but the 5 total days I was in the hospital during larbor/delivery/recovery were also the darkest days of my life. I bet so many women would inquisitively stare at me, not understanding how I could admit that the birth of my son was the worst day of my life, but at least there is ONE person out there who can understand now :) None of my friends or family had this type of experience, and at the time it was baffling and a struggle to really wrap my head around the fact that I felt so completely in despair, but now I know that it wasn’t my fault. It was the drugs, labor complications that required the drugs, and almost complete lack of sleep, water, and solid food that broke me down and robbed me of enjoying the first days of my child’s life :(

    I’m so happy that we got beyond this challenge! Thanks again for sharing!!

    • Your comment made me a bit teary! Thank you so much for your sweet compliments. I am so glad to find you, and other women who shared difficult birth experiences. That is part of the reason I wanted to start blogging; to finally make myself be brave and tell my birth story, and to hopefully connect with other women who don’t think I’m crazy. I feel that you are “supposed” to say that having a baby and being a mommy is the best thing that ever happened to you, and when it isn’t, you can’t talk about it. I have suppressed it for so long, and am finally going to let it all out here. I also haven’t gotten a lot of support from friends and family about it because no one else I know had this experience either. My mom even told me to “get over it”….. but that’s probably a whole different blog post. :)
      I’m so happy we have both gotten beyond it too, and am so happy to have found you through blogging! Thank you for reading!

  3. This is so beautifully, and heartfully written.

    I feel like I’m walking by your side, feeling your hurt.

    (I want to hug you!)

    • Thank you so much for your sweet words! It such such an honor to receive a compliment from you, because I think you have a way with words that is breathtaking. I would love to hug you too! :) Thanks for reading.

  4. I hate that you had to experience either of these events. I am happy that you have begun to found your words and hopefully they will bring some healing. Loss in any form is difficult…losing your father and losing the experience of giving birth are very difficult things to grieve. You’ve found your way in your own time and will continue to as time moves forward. Love you.

    • Thanks, Jess. :) I am so glad to be writing again; and so glad to fins support here in this little corner of the internet. Your last sentence is an important take away that I keep telling myself; it’s OK for me to process and grieve both experiences in my own way and my own time. Lots of love to you too!

  5. I’m so sorry you had to feel this. It breaks my heart reading this.

    • Thank you so much for reading and for sympathizing. I was so nervous to post this, but am so glad I have found all of these supportive comments here. Thank you for being a part of that!

  6. I’ve been reading your blog for over an hour now and it’s almost 2:30am! Seems like we have so much in common, which is exciting to me because I too was the guinea pig for…well just about everything, pregnancy and marriage and “life” in general among my friends and it seems some of them have faded away due to that. It’s nice to relate to someone. I too, lost my Dad, suddenly and extremely painfully when I was 17. It’s been many years now and not a day goes by that I don’t think about him and go through the grieving process over and over again – denial, anger, sadness, questioning, etc. It has definitely, absolutely, so precisely shaped who I have and will become. Stay strong & brave, keep your writing!

    • What an honor that you devoted so much time to reading my words!! You have just made my day. I am so sorry for your loss. I think that part of what makes it so hard, is that even though you know you will one day lose your parents, you always think that it will happen when they are older. When it happens when they, and you, are so young, it imprints you in a way that changes you. I am so glad to meet you and can’t wait to continue to get to know you better!

Trackbacks

  1. […] Everybody has events in life that shape them. For me, it was the death of my father when I was 18 and the very awful birth experience I had when […]

  2. […] again. You are not supposed to say that even though you love your son, the day of his birth was one of the worst days of your life. You are supposed to “get over […]

  3. […] 1st is hard for me. It is the anniversary of one of the worst days of my life; a difficult birth experience I still have not mustered the courage or words to […]