What do you see? A mom, a wife, a sister, a friend, a daughter an Aunt? Would you look at me and wonder if all the children that are huddling around me are all mine? Would you question in your head if there were more children at home? With Dad? Would your curiosity be so peaked you would ask me if they were all mine? Would question if they were from the same dad? Would you ask me if I had more? Want more?
These things have all happened to me and with many more questions to follow. The stares, the questions, the looks, the finger pointing. Does it bother me. Not at all. I am usually an open book. My family is large, we draw attention, on most days things are pretty quiet and we can get in and out of a store without much hassle. Some days are worse then others. For instance, at the peak of suppertime and gearing up for bedtime. Doing anything remotely important as far as errands goes is, take or be taken. Though if you ask anyone, I am always up for a good challenge.
I start out easy. Giving bits of information. Challenging those I speak too. How much can this person handle I ask myself. Will they listen, ask questions, walk away? I start to open my world to you. I tell you how I have lost a child to miscarriage on Mother's Day. The sadness I felt, the hurt. The loneliness. How my husband and I got married after having our children. Still you stay. Wanting more. I have trusted you enough to tell you more.
I tell you I have another child. A child I lost. I tell you she was diagnosed with Trisomy 18. You ask what this is. I give you the information. Watch as you tell me you have never heard of such a thing. I am not surprised. Everyone I have run into the last 7 years has never heard of it. I take this opportunity to educate you. To get the word out. Suddenly the "mystery" and "want" of knowing more about my family; even if just a glimpse has been changed. Somewhere along the lines I said too much. You start to look flushed in the face, your palms get sweaty, you start too look at the ceiling, the floor, your grocery cart. Before I know it, you have said the ever dreaded words of "I am so sorry" and quickly make an excuse to walk away. As if what I just said to you will now happen to your family. I sometimes say "Please don't go. Talking about it doesn't upset me." But its too late, you have moved on. You have taken with you a little bit of my family. But more importantly, a little bit of my heart.
Throughout the last 7 years, I hold my head up proud knowing I am a mom to 7 beautiful kiddos. Though I wondering who is important enough to tell and who will be the ones to just walk away. I still tell others often about Anabelle. About how much of a miracle she was to our family. That even though the sadness of loosing them will always be a part of me. I look at all the other moments I had in my life and am always thankful God gave me the strength to fight for what I believed in.
So next time you see me in the store, the mall, the playground, or out and about with my family. If you stop and see me and ask me about my family. Please don't walk away when I talk to you about my children. Though they are not here, they are a part of me and my life. Death is not a disease you catch. It wont come knocking on your door if you hear me tell you about it. Its not going to find you and take your child away. I will never know why I was chosen. All I know is that I was. Stay by my side, talk to me. Ask questions, learn. But please, don't walk away.