Living A Life That’s Incomplete–Why It’s So Hard When Your Child Dies And Why Life Is Still Worth Living

The death of a child is hard--but why is it so hard?

Child loss is hard. We know this.

It’s a universal understanding that losing a child is one of the most difficult experiences a person will endure, but still, a question arises.

Why is this so hard?

I’ve heard this question about grief and child loss asked again and again.

I’ve been asked by those who have lost children and those who have not. In my moments of deepest despair, it’s the question I have asked myself.

It is a question with an answer that is rife with pain and heartbreak.

Why is this so hard?

This is so hard because we just want our babies back.

It’s hard because we miss our babies and we can’t see them.

The difficulty with child loss exists because we are wishing for something we can’t ever have. We miss the children we lost so deeply and all we want is to hold them again. We will never again hold our babies here on Earth.

Every grieving parent is living a life that seems impossible and they do so in a way that makes it seem possible.

Yes, it is possible to live without your child, but it is still so very hard.

As grieving parents, we have been sentenced to a life of longing but we do not let that keep us from living. Our lives are incomplete, but we fill our days with thoughts and notions to ease our aching hearts.

We collect keepsakes and fill memory boxes. There are support groups to join and books to read. We will create art inspired by the babies we’ve lost and we will start charities in their honor.

In these endless moments without them, we spend our time devoted to making moments for them.  

Moments that will never be complete, because we will never be whole without them.

It is so hard.

We will do a million things to heal our broken hearts, but we will never be able to undo their breaking. Denying our heartbreak would mean denying the reason it broke in the first place. Our grief and the many ways we grieve allow us to honor them.  

We know it will not bring our children back to us, but living our lives is what brings us back to them. Every moment without them is one step closer to every moment with them and that is why we keep going.

Even though, it is so hard.

Originally published on Still Standing Magazine.

Photo by Bonnie Kittle on Unsplash

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