sharing your stories and remembering your children
By: Emily Carrington EPLA Founder
Every year I brace myself for Christmas and Easter, for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, but the one that always surprises me is Independence Day.
Yup, that mid-summer holiday celebrating our nation’s independence. The one marked by hot dogs, fireworks, baseball, and family time. It is that last one that gets me -- after three miscarriages, a large part of my family will always be missing.
I was recently struck by this reality when I was looking at some pictures from the summer of 2015. The thought that haunted me was that no matter how happy I looked or how much fun I seemed to be having, the reality was that my children are missing from these pictures. I had lost two little ones approximately a year earlier, my first in May and my second in September of 2014. I would go on to lose a third only weeks after these pictures in August 2015.
I remember how greatly I felt the loss of my children every single day during 2015, but I also remember how amplified that loss was during the week of the 4th of July. Parties, family BBQs, and parades only reminded me that my family was incomplete.
This feeling still sneaks up on me the first week of July. For our family, Independence Day is a big family celebration. We come from as far as Michigan and Tennessee to meet at my in-laws' on the banks of the Ohio River. The only plans for our days together orbit around two things: food & family.
But each year I am reminded that three of our little ones will never be with us. Three of our little ones will never see the great river at sunrise or sunset, or run in the summer sun with their cousins. I feel this weight with each celebration.
I am sure other loss parents have experienced some sneaky rough holidays too, Maybe this week is hard for you too. Or is it your annual Memorial Day Celebration? Or New Year’s or Halloween? Whatever it is, these surprising reminders that our children are gone can hurt.
Emily Carrington is the founder of the EPLA and mother to four children.