I have been following a blog called The Beauty of Sufficient Grace and Kelly, the founder, has created Sufficient Grace Ministries to help those that has lost a child. On her blog she has created a study called Walking With You where women tell their stories, read each others grieving, while praying for each other and helping to comfort one another.
Comforting Others With the Comfort We Have Received
(2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
This week everyone is to write about how our marriages have been affected by the loss of our child/children. I tried many times to write this yesterday by thinking ahead what I would write, but the words never came to me. Today I am just going to write and hope that the words just flow into something that makes sense. Before writing how our marriage has changed I need to give a brief history (for those of you that do not know John and I) of mine and John’s relationship.
In September 2001 John and I were sophomores in college and this is when we first started dating. Before then we had known each other for about a year – more as acquaintances. We started dating at 19 and were married at 25; during our dating years we changed so much, but changed together and even though there were difficult times (break-ups, arguments, etc.) we got through everything. So, fast forward to July 2007 – we got married and then John lost his job so we moved in with my parents in order to find better jobs; we planned on being there for about a year until we found a house. One year later, July 2008, we found out we were expecting our first child – oh and still living with my parents.
Maybe this is just me, but I think all couples change while they are waiting for their little one to arrive. There is a new bond formed that joins them together and brings them closer; they are forever connected with that piece of DNA. I watched John transform into a father and he started putting me and our baby in front of everything else going on in his life. There was an adjustment at times and little kinks we had to workout (laundry, go going with friends, etc…) but we got through everything. So – 30 weeks of pregnancy and then you know the story of what happened to our little Hudson.
I have said this many times, but John and I have always had a strong marriage, a strong friendship, and a strong sense of who we are as a couple. For the first time in our relationship others could see our strength. We were put in the spotlight and I knew that what we did and said would be watched closely. So many marriages cannot function after the death of a child and now I can see why – it’s total and complete heartbreak that never leaves. Both of us had to grieve in our own ways and it is not easy to comfort another in their grief while you are grieving yourself. Maybe we’re one of the lucky couples, but we haven’t faced any difficulties – as far as our marriage. Yes, we have had our struggles, but we are getting through everything together.
I attended a wedding shortly after Hudson was born and listening to the vows I started to cry. I know everyone will get misty-eyed at weddings, but I literally wanted to weep. The parts of the vows with “’til death do us part” “for better or worse” – those John and I were actually living – we were personifications of those phrases. Listening to those phrases at other weddings, having said them myself, really makes you take a step back and reflect your own wedding day when you said them and then upon all of the obstacles/hard times you have said since then.