I love them. I always have.
Yet, as much as I love the way words are composed on the page or in a poem or song or a blog or my very favorite- a handwritten note,
In my life, I've experienced the death of loved ones- grandparents, my biological dad, friends. We've walked through grief with our people- death of parents, siblings, grandparents, and various other family members.
We here UTRTR often talk about the hope of heaven with our children. Not 'hope' as a synonym for 'wish.' But 'hope' as in the 'promise of something yet to come.' In this case, heaven.
So, here we are, a month after walking through the most devastating loss we've ever known. The loss of a child we wanted so much, a child my husband knew about before I did. In fact, these were his words, "I looked at you last night, and I knew you were pregnant. You were glowing." The only child he experienced the same moment I did discovering his observations were correct. This child we fell in love with as soon as the first faint line appeared and grew as quickly as the faint line darkened.
We had five glorious days of joy. I wouldn't trade the reaction of our people, particularly our fr-amily, for anything.
The whoops. The laughter. The hugs. The squeals of delight. Oh my! As I type, I am smiling.
One week after we'd told them about our newest blessing, we were being hugged, cried for, prayed over by those very same people who'd shared in the joy of a 4th baby for us as they mourned with us that we wouldn't meet this baby this side of heaven.
Time and again, we were hugged tightly, both of us, and told "I'm sorry," or "I'm sorry. I'm praying for you."
And those were the perfect words.
A few times, people told us, "I don't know what to say....I'm sorry."
Like not having words was wrong. It wasn't. We didn't either. Those last two words were all we needed. To know that folks mourned for and with us.
So, when you're not sure what to say, particularly after a loss like this, the perfect words are "I'm sorry."
And it's ok to say, "I don't know what to say" (because the hearer probably doesn't have any words either but "Thank you"), but don't just say, "I don't know what to say."
For lack of a better word, that's lame.
Tell them that you are sorry.
If you want to say something like, " We are grieving with you" or "Our hearts ache with yours," that's ok, too.
Truly, nothing besides "I'm sorry" is necessary.
And pray for those precious people in their loss.
And tell them that, too.