I am sorry.
When I saw the headlines everything in me pushed back. How dare the media get it wrong again? You were not expecting your second child, this was your third! You had bravely told us of the loss of your second and once again everybody got it wrong. Someone did get it wrong, me.
You see, it wasn’t until I saw a profound post by Lindsey Henke, congratulating you on your pregnancy, that I realized how much I had become part of the problem. I had become part of the dangerous mob mentality that demanded that we all feel the same about our pregnancies, even our pregnancies after loss.
I had spent time advocating and calling for people to understand just how complicated pregnancy after loss is.
I had spoken recently about the fact that we are not all the same and many women feel many different things about pregnancy after loss.
I had encouraged so many women to be gentle with themselves and do only what felt true to them.
And still, the headlines got to me. I was so sure the media got it wrong again that I never stopped to check, how you felt.
Dear Meghan, I can only imagine how much the ire over those headlines made you feel and I am sorry.
I am sorry that once again your beautiful moment became subject to international scrutiny.
I am sorry that I and anyone else felt that we had the right to feel anything other than absolute joy for you at that moment.
I am sorry that as a community, we are so triggered by words and numbers that we forgot the people trying their best to live full and happy lives. And you and every family experiencing pregnancy after loss deserve just that.
I am also sorry that some of us even dared to criticize you directly.
I had forgotten the incredible strength it takes to be brave right now and to pose lovingly for pictures and to allow the world a glimpse of your joy. You didn’t need to do that. I am sure you could have kept this to yourself but you chose to share your joy and that was lost in online discussions over headlines.
Meghan, please forgive me, I am truly sorry. I should have known better. As a loss mom, as a rainbow mom (a term you may or may not chose to identify with), as a woman, and as a human. I should have done better and I will.
Moving forward, I will understand that whenever people become topics of discussion, extreme caution should be exercised. Even if like many of us, I thought I stood in defense of you.
And while I am at it, I will remember you do not need me or anyone else to defend you.
I will remember that when we say women need to be supported during pregnancy after loss that has to include support for their right to acknowledge or not acknowledge their history of loss.
Even still, I will remind myself of just how nuanced pregnancy after loss is and that everyone can and should celebrate it differently.
But most of all, the next time I hear that another woman is pregnant after loss, I will be so busy being happy for her, praying for her, and cheering for her that I will not have time to banter over headlines and numbers.
Dear Meghan, congratulations to you and your family.
I may have gotten it wrong about other things but never about this. I am so happy for you. I pray that you have the most wonderful pregnancy and that you feel loved and supported by those closest to you. And as for the rest of us, I hope that you can forgive us, and forget us, as we hold no place in your beautiful moment.