I have found support in a couple of places in the year that has passed since we lost Abigail. The first is with a few special friends. Sis. Kate, who I wrote about last year on this subject, has hands down been the biggest help. 27 years ago, she walked this same road, with a baby who was born to soon to live. She would listen to me rant, and share her experience. I would write and ask her if I was going crazy, and she'd tell me it was common to grieving. She'd tell me not to be so hard on myself. She helped me to brainstorm how to remember our daughter, and keep her memory alive as part of our family. She shared her fears when she found herself pregnant again afterward. She was always good to settle my mind and comfort. Kathy was the most supportive person when we first found out. She kept our kids so we could make follow up appointments. She had us over for meals, so that I didn't have to think about food. And 2 short months later when we had to move across the country for a new job, she dropped everything to help me pack. She's hung out with me on facebook chat for some late nights, and left phone messages, and notes in the mail. She has never said one of those dumb things that people often say to a grieving parent. Everyone who's lost a child knows what I mean, the pat phrases, that when you stop to think about them not only don't make sense, but are often actually hurtful. The last one would be Sis. Lydia. She has on numerous occasions, let me talk and talk and talk. Even when there are no good responses or answers. She has never made me feel like it's an inconvenience to her to listen to me. And she has often done little things at random moments, when things were difficult. Whether she just felt lead to or, whether she actually knew I was having a more difficult time. It has meant alot, to have 3 real life friends during this time. So many women seem to lose all their old friends and support networks, because no one wants to touch grief with a ten foot pole, as if losing a child is contagious.
I've also found alot of support in the BabyCenter Community. There are a few groups for baby loss. And I've found several other women who's loses are due to their thyroid, or who experience second trimester loss (which apparently is more rare than loss in either of the other trimesters). Being able to compare doctor's notes, and learn more about what to ask, and look for as we try to get pregnant again has helped alot. Plus they never complain if you have to rant about something.
The picture I'm including today, is of Abigail's memory box that the hospital gave us. It is stuffed full of cards and notes, as well as the pictures we have of Abigail's pregnancy and birth. There are also a few things setting with it, that have been gifts from other friends, all of which mean so much, because it tells me that someone else was thinking of her too.