When a baby dies inside your body, others will soon forget. You don't. You can't. But you pretend you do because if you told them how much you think about your baby they avoid conversations. And you need conversations. You need to hear other voices besides the one inside your head. You need people to get close enough to touch you even if by accident. So when they ask how you are it is important to give the right answer. So they can relax. It's good to make others relax. It eases the pain for awhile to focus on making someone else happy. I don't know why that is true but it is.
No one knew I cried every night. Not even my husband. I learned to lie still until his breathing slowed into long steady full breaths. I learned to control body shakes and let the tears stream down in silence. Only once he woke and sensed something was wrong. But did not know what it was. And that was when I understood my grief belonged only to me.
It was like this when she was alive inside me. Everyone else awaited her arrival to introduce themselves. But we had been sharing space. And our spirits were side by side and sometimes they emerged into one and the thrill of that made me giggle. If anyone was close by and asked, I did not want to explain. So I told them a joke and they laughed too.
I loved our alone time together, before others could lay claim to love you. They sometimes forgot you were coming but I never did. So when you never arrived, it was easier for them.
I don't mind. The time of us cannot be taken. During the night when the pain permeates every fiber, suddenly I feel the joy of you again. And know how real it was. How real it still is. There is a wonderful man sleeping next to me. I bury my face in the pillow to muffle my laughter.
Photo Image, found through google images, The Populist