Words of Comfort

By Jennifer Higgs

Jennifer Higgs is an Associate with Valley East Today, specializing in Customer Relationship Management services for local businesses. She is also a regular columnist with the Online Magazine and her articles will appear on a regular basis.

I was in an online chat room, one I had been chatting in with the regulars for awhile now, and one of the ladies had started talking about her grandsons’ funeral, scheduled for a few days later.  I read her words in shock and sorrow.  Her newborn grandson had died shortly after birth.  Her grief was almost audible, even though I could not hear her voice.

As I read on, a conversation she was having with one of the other regulars, she asked several different times,” How could this happen to him?”, “ How could this happen to my daughter?”, “Why would this happen to a baby?”.  With serious contemplation, I felt the need to reply because I had had to face this kind of question before….

I was 18 and having a baby alone.  I felt devastated and ashamed about being a single mom.  How could I be both mom and dad, and how could I have been abandoned this way?

And like an angel from above, my sister introduced me to her friends’ older sister, same age as myself and was going to be a single mom too.  We became instant friends.  We felt our babies kick, complained about our stretch marks and encouraged each other in many ways but she always seemed more confident than I was.  She knew she would be able to handle being a single mom and she could not have cared less if the father was around or not.  I pulled the strength from her I did not have within.

At six months into our pregnancies, she found out her baby would not survive.  The baby had a fatal condition that could have killed my friend as well.

After months of little contact with my friend during her grieving and the remainder of my healthy pregnancy, we sat down and talked.  We talked and cried and we finally grieved together the baby she had lost so shortly after it had come into her life.

She said one thing to me that I will never forget for as long as I live.  She told me it had been too hard to be around me while I was still pregnant because she could not understand why I was allowed to keep my baby when she was not allowed to keep hers.  She spoke these words from somewhere deep in honesty and grief that I barely recognized her voice.

I did not have an answer at that time but I had spent a lot of my time over the next few years thinking about what she had said and I finally came to form a belief….

As I sit at my computer, feeling a tremendous burden to invade this sorrow filled conversation between these two women I had never met, needing to share what I felt was an honest answer to all her “WHY” questions.

This is what I shared with her;

“ I truly believe that when little ones, the ones that have only been on this earth such a short amount of time, are taken from us it is because they had been loved so immensely.  God says to them, ‘Little one, you were sent to this earth to learn the most important lesson in life, LOVE. And now you have.  It is time to come home’”.

I sent the message off and for what seemed an eternity all was quiet on the computer screen.  When the grieving grandmother finally responded, it was not to me and there was no mention of my heart felt message.  She continued her conversation with the woman she had been chatting with prior to my interruption.

I felt sick to my stomach, for days I felt horrible.  I meant no harm, only comfort, but I was sure that I had made her feel worse.

I avoided that chat room for a couple of days for fear that she would confront me in anger.  The next time I went into that chat room, the day after her grandsons’ funeral, she was there and she did single me out.

This is what she shared with me;

“I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for those words of comfort.  The night you wrote those words, I told them to my husband and he wrote them in our grandsons’ eulogy.  Thank you”.




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