As I think back on the blink of time that we had with Ethan and Jacob, I am sad we didn't have more time with them. We got 11 minutes and 36 hours with our children. That is not nearly enough. I have spent more time with random strangers than I got with my own children. Many times I wonder what they would have been like, and wish I had more time to know their little personalities. I wonder how they would have been to raise. I wonder if they would get along with Blake when we decided to transfer him. What would our family be like with three boys?
I also wanted to include some tips for dealing with infant loss. We had a lot of people respond in really wonderful and really odd ways. Here are some helpful ideas for others. This is from facesofloss.com.
Acknowledge their profound loss, right away. You may be afraid you’ll say something ‘stupid,’ but the worst thing you can say is nothing at all.
Don’t say, “let me know if I can help.” They are not in a place where they can give direction right now. Offer an idea instead. Say, “I am going to bring you dinner Thursday night,” and just do it.
Send a card.
Drop off a care package. Include some junk food, a couple light-hearted movies, and maybe even a bottle of wine.
Buy them a memorial/remembrance gift. Perhaps a necklace, request their baby's name be written in the sand, or donate to a charitable organization in honor of their baby
If you’re close, ask if you can come over and just “be” with them.
When you see them, don’t be afraid to speak their child’s name. Saying you've been thinking about their baby means more than you'll ever know.
Keep texting, calling, emailing and facebooking to let them know you are thinking about them, even after it’s been a few weeks or months. Even when they appear to be “over it” or back to their old self, they will still be hurting, and will still need to know people have not forgotten about their child.
Try to remember and acknowledge important dates, such as their due date, loss date, Mother’s Day, and Father’s Day.