Jason and Em and I drove to SD last week to see family and friends. Jason spent a lot of time hunting with his brother, friends and their friend’s fathers. His dad died 9 1/2 years ago and hunting and fishing were two things they really enjoyed together.

I missed grief counseling last week. Obviously I wasn’t physically there, but I missed going. Jason and I had borrowed a couple of grief books to take along on the trip and one day I decided to read them. Three of them were grief books for children. I wanted to pre-screen them before reading them to Em. One of them is entitled something like, We Were Supposed to Have a Baby, but We Had an Angel Instead. It was good. It also sucked. It was the most simple of books, from the big brother’s perspective, and I wound up a heap on the floor because of it. I haven’t decided when I’ll read it to Em.

As we met some new people in SD, Em would say hello and then begin sharing that she had a brother. Two women who may have known our story, I’m not certain, cut Emily off mid-sentence. I was shocked but not shocked. It made my heart hurt for Em because it is important for her to be able to share her side of the story. I think two things happened…one, the women came across as adults who don’t address children, at least not engaging in conversation, and two, they weren’t comfortable with how they would have to respond, so it ‘came across better’ as if they just didn’t hear her or understand her. Believe me, they heard her.

As adults we are barely comfortable with our own feelings and emotions, but let us not stifle a child’s expression of those things…they will be healthier adults, let’s give them an advantage and just listen. No, we can’t solve it or put a bandage on a grief ‘boo boo’, but we’re the only ones that think it needs ‘fixing’…Kids are more pure than that.



9 Responses

  1. How sad for Emily.. That is tough as a parent to have something like that happen to your child. You almost want to say excuse me, did you hear her, she was talking to you. I hope she has thousands of opportunities to share the story of her brother to the world. Just think of the pyramid of lives that sweet little Noah will effect. You have reached so many with your blog and who knows how many Emily will touch. Noah will live on forever and Praise God for his sweet life.

  2. Oh so true Adrienne, kids are so much more pure. I am sorry for that experience that you and Em went through, it does hurt when others don’t want to hear what are in children’s hearts.
    We experienced quite a bit of that type of attitude when our son was sick. People would think that he was so cute until they noticed that he had a trach, then they would stare and shutter and walk away.
    It is too bad that people can’t face what others have gone through and instead choose to ignore it and pretend that they did not see or hear it.
    You are wonderful, don’t forget how much you are ministering to others with this blog. I so appreciate you!
    Beth in Brighton

  3. Dear Adrienne,

    It really makes me sad that those ladies wouldn’t listen to your sweet Emily. Maybe they’ll think about it later and wish they had listened. You’re right – a child’s emotions and feelings are so very real, and it is right for us to acknowledge them. We need to do that. I’m really starting to learn that more with my little girl too.

    I am praying for you.

  4. For Em, it will make it that much more special when adults come into her life who ARE interested in what she has to share. My 10 year old daughter’s Sunday school class is being taught by a friend of mine who miscarried (8 months pregnant) this past spring, and one of the girls in the class, lost her Dad and older brother in a car accident in June. . .My heart BREAKS for these families, but you can be sure they are talking and praying about some very REAL stuff in that class.

    Thanks for all you share with us. Like others have said, I’m sure Em will be a blessing to many (like her Mama). Erika 🙂

  5. glad to hear that you guys got away…it is always good to get out of our normal routines, especially to be near family/friends and enjoy the great outdoors!

    Amen to your last paragraph….. children need to learn how to heal. So many of us adults didn’t learn as children and struggle with it today. Sounds like those ladies should have taken the time to learn from the younger generation.

  6. I can’t believe someone would cut her off… as if your sweet little girl had nothing of significance to say. It was most certainly their loss.

  7. It’s great to see you post again. I know how you feel with the emotional roller coaster. I have been the same way these last few weeks with my mothers passing. I do not think the Holidays help. But got to be strong and keep on trucking for my family. ((HUGS))

  8. I have learned so much through experiences that you share, I pray that if I am ever in the position of those ladies, I will react differently. Just listening is all I can do sometimes, even to a child. I hope I don’t forget that. Thanks for sharing.

    I am sure as a mama, you wanted to do something mean to those women. Really mean. At least tell them off.

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