This one is for the parents fresh in their grief. It’s everything you need to know to get started on this path you didn’t choose for yourself. It’s the tender advice that will help you through the moments when you don’t know if you can even breathe.
Please share it with anyone who needs it.
And even if it’s been a while, these are good reminders for you and your heart. You may even hear something no one has told you yet, but you need it today.
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Welcome. When you are fresh in grief, it’s like you got hit by a train and you are in shock, but there are a few things you need to know so you can feel like there is some hope. Even as your heart is shattered. If it’s been a bit longer for you, you may still learn something in this episode that really hits you, something you may have even heard before, but you weren’t in a space to receive it.
Sometimes it takes people years to learn these things and start believing them. I wanna save you a lot of extra heartache, so that’s what we’re gonna do in this episode. If you are fresh in your grief or you’ve been grieving longer, I have got the answers of what you really need to focus on. I am Amy Watson and I’m a life after baby loss coach.
You’ve probably heard of life coaches, but life After Loss really needs something a little more special, and it can only come from someone who has lived it and who has helped many, many other people who are going through it. After our daughter was still born and I shared a lot about our story, people would often refer their friends to me.
They knew I was someone who they could talk to, so I had many beautiful and heartbreaking phone conversations with virtual strangers. But we were connected by the love we had for our children and the experience of heartbreak. As a volunteer, I go into our local hospitals to provide peer support and make memories when a baby is still born or passes away.
I have gotten to meet Little Angels as small as 13 weeks and up to Sweet Toddlers. I find this to be a very sacred experience, to be invited into a room in the most vulnerable time in a family’s life. The mother has just given birth in all kinds of circumstances. She’s tired and weak and sometimes very sick.
Everyone is in shock. I feel honored to be able to comfort and guide them in that very tender place. If that is you just recently mourning your baby, feeling physically and emotionally weak, no matter what your birth experience was or how far along you were, I wanna tell you how very, very sorry I am from the bottom of my heart.
Each baby is precious and unique, and they matter. When I speak to these families, I know that most of what I say they won’t remember. So I keep it really short and simple, and that’s what I wanna do today as well. I’m gonna share what I feel are the most important things for you to know right now. There are so many things to learn about living with grief and parenting your child who isn’t in your arms.
You have a lifetime to learn them, and I have over a hundred episodes to help you. But if you feel like you can’t even breathe right now, this is gonna loosen things up for you. So I invite you to take a few deep breaths in and out. In and out. Relax your shoulders. If you aren’t driving, close your eyes for a moment.
Good. Whenever it feels like too much, remind yourself to do this. Now I’m gonna speak to you directly. I hope you have people in your life who told you these things. If you don’t, it’s okay. I’ve got you. You are not alone. Maybe loss is so personal. It’s very common to feel isolated, especially if no one knew you were pregnant.
Maybe you don’t know anyone else who has experienced a loss like yours yet there are millions and millions of people who know your pain. Maybe not exactly, but close enough to understand. When you’re grieving, it’s even more difficult to reach out. You don’t have the energy. You don’t know how to even express what you need because you don’t know what you need, except you want your baby back.
I wish I could give that to you. I do. I can’t though. I can tell you that there are so many people who love you and will hold you up along this path, and you will find them. Anytime you feel like you are completely alone, remind yourself that you are not. It’s just not true. Use this podcast as the voice of someone who truly cares about you.
It’s okay to feel lonely. That’s part of grieving. Don’t try to talk yourself out of it, but always know that you are not alone. You are a parent. You are a mother. Even though your baby died, you still get to claim the title that you want as much as you want to. A lot of lost parents really struggle to define their family.
It’s okay that it’s confusing to you and to people who can’t see all your children. When you allow yourself to claim your motherhood, it allows you to grieve. So many people will downplay their pain and try to talk themselves out of it. It doesn’t matter when your loss happened or how it happened, you get to decide who you are.
No one else can do that. Even if you keep all of this in your heart, hold on to who you are and who you want to be. There is gonna be a period of time, usually about a month, but it could be longer or shorter. When you feel like you are in a fog, nothing seems real. It’s like you’re living someone else’s life or your own worst nightmare.
Food doesn’t taste good. You’re going through the motions of life, but it’s all just flat. You may be very emotional one moment and feel dead inside the next. You wonder about going to sleep and waking up where your baby is. Everything hurts and you can’t imagine a time when it doesn’t. There are people around supporting you.
You make all the decisions you have to about what to do next, what to do with the baby. You are making funeral plans while you’re in labor. Your milk may come in if you were past the first trimester. People bring dinner and flowers. It all still doesn’t seem real. I believe this fog is a gift. It forces you to slow down and do only the essential things, gives you a chance to rest and to let yourself heal.
It shuts down parts of your brain you just don’t need right now. Don’t get frustrated with it. You may not be able to remember things or follow through. You may wanna stay really busy or you may have no motivation at all. This is normal. Let it be what it is. Know that it will not last forever and it will not always be this hard.
Unfortunately, the fog seems to wear off right about the time. Support winds down too, and everyone keeps moving along with their life and you’re left trying to figure out how to live. This life. Again, you need support. Find it. Whatever feels right to you. There’s no right way to do this. Quality is better than quantity when it comes to ongoing support.
You don’t need everyone in your life to understand. You just need a few people that you can count on. And be really open to it not being the people you thought it would be. The ones closest to you are also grieving and they really need you to be okay so that they can be okay. Just love them for that and find someone who gets it.
I would love to be one of those people for you. When we work together. I will show you how to find yourself in this grief. I’ll teach you how to be incredibly compassionate and patient with yourself. I’ll show you how to. Have hope when everything seems hopeless. I’ll help you navigate those close relationships that can be difficult.
When you feel alone and misunderstood and unsupported, you thought you knew who would be there for you. It’s okay that you were wrong about that. If you are listening to this right now and resonating with what I’m saying, I also want you to notice that this podcast was put in your path at just the right time.
Take the next step and reach out to me. You can DM me on Instagram. I’m at amy dot Smooth Stones Coaching, or go to my website, smooth stones coaching.com. Those links are in the show notes. This is not your fault. Not even a little bit, not even if you had to make impossible choices about your baby. It’s not your fault.
It’s not your fault. It is not your fault. When I lost my baby at 14 weeks, I carried a lot of regret with me for years. It was so much pain and heaviness that touched every part of my life, even though it didn’t look like it on the outside. Guilt and regret are burdens you can let go of. If you keep reminding yourself that you did everything you could with what you knew at the time.
Tell yourself you are a wonderful mother. Even on the days when it’s hard. Especially on the days when it’s hard, there’s no upside to blaming yourself. It’s so normal because of the way your brain is wired, but just because it’s normal doesn’t mean you have to live with it. If you wanna stop blaming yourself, I actually have a free mini course on my website.
It’s really short videos that come to your email inbox. After you watch each video, there is a question to ponder In just one week, you will know why it’s so easy to blame yourself and how to stop doing it. The last thing I want you to know is that you are valuable and worthy just the way you are today.
You don’t need to do anything differently. You don’t need to grieve differently. You don’t need to know how to navigate this yet. The mess, the pain, the hormones do not underestimate the amount of hormones you are dealing with, the tears. It’s all part of being a human. We couldn’t know the joy without the sorrow.
The sweet would mean nothing without the bitter, and I know it feels really, really bitter, but your baby. They are the sweet. I promise you that in time and as you are mindful and move through your grief, never trying to be rid of it, but learning to bring it with you, you will smile again and not a fake smile you put on because you know people don’t actually wanna know how you’re really feeling, but a true smile that reaches your eyes, there’s no rush.
Give yourself the space you need. Rest, heal. Take care of only the essentials. Believe in yourself. Believe that you are not alone. I believe that there are angels and people who care about us on the other side, even our children who will come and hold you up the days you feel too weak to stand. If you pay attention, you will feel them.
I wish I could hug you in person, but for now, please just feel the love I’m sending you and. Everyone else who knows what it is to love and lose someone before you really got to know them. I invite you to share this episode with anyone who needs it, who has a broken heart, and who’s missing their baby right now.
I will see you next time. Are you tired of feeling like your baby death was somehow your fault? Go tostones.com and get my free mini course. How to Stop Blaming Yourself After Loss.