It’s Tuesday again, and time for another loss mom interview. Today, we’re interviewing author Jennifer Ross. I’m so glad I connected with her because like me, she’s writing her story down for the world to read – her book is now available for pre-order on Amazon!
Here’s her story…
- Many women have had more than one loss. Tell us about the loss that impacted you the most.
In January of 2008, I suffered an early miscarriage before I became pregnant with my son, Isaiah. I was already the mother to 3 boys at the time, and after the loss I was a complete mess. I remember going to bed at night and tears running over my pillow as I tried to go to sleep. I would ponder who the child would have been. Was the baby a little boy, or a girl this time. As a mother, I knew what I had lost. It wasn’t just a precious life that I lost, but my dreams of mothering this child as well. As days and weeks passed, I slowly accepted my loss and trusted God in His perfect will.
In March of 2008, my husband and I were expecting again. This time I was extremely nervous after experiencing an early miscarriage only weeks prior. Within days of making my 8 week appointment, I called and asked if I could come in sooner. They completely understood and had me come in at 5 weeks. When I was checked by ultrasound at that 5 week appointment, the doctor found a bleed in my uterus, directly above the placenta … This was NOT good news! I continued to bleed from week 5 all the way through to 19 weeks and 3 days. The bleed had created a blood clot that grew atop my placenta. I was rushed by ambulance on the night of August 2, 2008. The blood clot had torn from the placenta earlier the following morning. In the late morning of August 3, 2008, I was told that I had a condition called Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation. Due to the continued bleeding from the placenta, my body was beginning to clot the blood throughout my body. My doctor told me that they needed to get the placenta out immediately.
My son was going to loose his life … so mine could be saved.
Those words still flood my eyes with tears. I have never experienced no greater pain in my life.
If I had to tell about the loss that impacted me the most, it would undoubtedly be the loss of Isaiah. Though I could not control what was happening to my body, I still felt like it was a piece of me that failed him. My body was to keep my son alive, and that it couldn’t do. I struggled with a wrenching guilt that would daily pierce my thoughts, and something I still struggle with 5 years later.
- What did others do or say that helped and/or hurt you during or after your loss?
Some things that hurt me that others would say to me after my loss would be the following classic statements:
*God doesn’t give you more than you can handle.
*At least you have other healthy living children.
Yes, these statements are correct, but absolutely heartless comments to speak to a parent that just suffered the loss of a child, especially if you have never experienced a loss, because if you have, I can guarantee that those words would never exit your mouth. A loving hug and listening ear can be a priceless gift to offer a bereaved parent.
- How does God, religion, or faith play into your loss and how you cope?
God has been my absolute *ALL* throughout these last 5 years. The special thing with God … I don’t need to explain one ounce of my pain. He already knows. He knows my thoughts, the pain that consumed my soul for years and watched each tear fill my eyes, as they ran down my cheeks. Whether I am standing at the grave of my son, laying awake at night staring at the blue numbers on the clock, or smiling as I watch my other boys playing-wondering what Isaiah would have been like, God is ALWAYS there. I am truly never alone. I like to think that there is a small piece of Isaiah with me all of the time. If God is always with me, and Isaiah is with God, then we are still together. Not physically, but through the greatest thing one can carry-love.
- Have you done anything special to remember your loss or to help you move forward after your loss?
I have done a couple of things to help carry on the memory of my son. I got a tattoo covering the top of my back 2 years after his death. It is a rainbow, his name, date of birth/death, and his very footprints that the hospital gave me. I have a sunshine on my back too. I got that years before my loss. I had the rainbow put right next to the sun. The sun is colored in the many different colors of the rainbow. The rainbow has been very significant to me throughout my loss. Three rainbows were viewed the morning after Isaiah died, all within 30 minutes. My tattoo is perfect… to me.I also wrote a book, Isaiah’s Story, to give life to the life that my son didn’t get to experience here on earth. I wanted to give a bereaved mother/father a safe place to go with there pain, and to know that someone else has walked the same path that they travel. There are women out in the world that have suffered the same kind of traumatic birth as I have endured. It was very difficult for me to talk about in the early years of loss, but as I have shared openly, I have grown comfortable in “putting it all out there.” I have been told that I wear my heart on my sleeve. It’s my prayer that in doing that, others find comfort through my words. I’ll be the voice for those who just can’t get the words out. Lastly, I wanted to give God glory through my pain. Until I enter heaven, I will never know why my son died, but until then, I will fully trust God. He never wastes one single pain in this world.
- If you could go back and not have had the loss you mentioned in number 1, would you? Why or why not?
If I could go back and change the loss of Isaiah, I honestly don’t know what I would choose. That sentence may seem cruel for a mother to write, but I am not the author and finisher of life. God has a plan for my life, just as He had a perfect plan for the life of my son. In the first months after loss, I would find myself endlessly wondering why, but I am now at a place in my life where I have found acceptance with the missing of that little boy within my home. His home is heaven, along with a special seat I have made in my heart for him. As I look back throughout these last 5 years, I have seen God use Isaiah’s life in many beautiful ways, and it’s my hope that as the years continue on, God’s perfect plan will slowly be revealed. When I have joined my son in heaven, I know that all will be shown in full. How could I ever tell God that He made the wrong choices in my life … My life is His.
- What advice would you give to women that are dealing with the loss of a child?
The advice that I would give to women that are dealing with the loss of a child … Take it all in. Feel every ounce of pain that fills your heart and soul.
Cry. Cry. Cry … and cry some more.
This is all part of the healing and finding the “new” you. Never again will you be the same. Do not rush the process of grief. Find other women who understand what loss is, because it is something very large, and cannot be fought. Absorb the very essence of what grief truly is, and you will come out stronger than you never new was possible. They say time heals. It’s not the “time” that heals the pain, it’s what you do with that pain during that time.
- What are your plans for the future?
My plans for the future are quite simple. I take the time to pause, and take it all in. The beauty that surrounds us is absolutely amazing. I now can find beauty in the weeds that fill a ditch along the road, a thunderstorm that darkens the sky and even a dandelion that has gone to seed. It seems as though certain things are put into the category of “bad,” if they don’t meet our requirements as beautiful. It’s kind of like loss … It’s not what I wanted as a mother, but I have to search for the beauty that is hidden within the darkness.
Readers, be supportive by leaving your comments below. After each interview, the mom who was interviewed will be available for questions, and we welcome you to connect with these moms further. Remember, if you would like to be interviewed, just contact me.
Click below to see all of my 31 Days Blog Series or click here for yesterday’s post.