Before having children, it was such a strange thing to hear that once you have kids your friends can disappear (didn’t mean to rhyme that! Ha!). And boy, is that true. I guess I couldn’t know what it was like until experiencing it. My best friend had two babies before I had any of mine, and I love them like they’re my own. They are my family, my heart. So the whole friends disappearing thing didn’t make any sense to me. My bestie has also always treated Nathan like her own. She was my rock when Teddy passed away. We FaceTimed every single day when I quarantined after Nathan was born–she was our sanity. It was a long three months of not seeing anyone, not letting anyone hold our son, because the world was so terrifying at the time. But through every breakdown and special moment in those few months, she was there. I’m forever thankful.

BFF meets baby Nathan - The Good Ones

“When we broke our newborn self-quarantine due to Covid, and Nathan was reunited with his BFF. This photo still makes me cry every time I see it.” – Author’s Personal Collection/Elizabeth Michalski

What baffles me is the friends that disappear before your physical children are even here.

I had a few close friends that are just gone. It’s almost like a picture into what would be the future. The friends that started to retreat after Teddy passed away are the friends who are not a part of Nathan’s life whatsoever. Maybe they just didn’t know what to say. Loss makes people uncomfortable, and the circumstances of us losing our child, when none of those friends have children, maybe made it that much more uncomfortable. Or maybe they didn’t know how to reach out, and as more and more time passed they felt even more awkward. Maybe. But what we needed then was support, and not never-ending space.

I probably sound like I may be holding a little bit of a grudge, and maybe that’s true. A part of me just can’t help but wonder why a friend could just disappear without a word. We lost our child. And maybe in the chaos, I lost a little bit of myself, a part of my heart is missing that I will never get back. But I couldn’t imagine just dropping someone out of my life. I had to, in a sense, grieve those friendships, alongside grieving my son, which shouldn’t have been a thing, but it was. Some of the people who stood up with us to celebrate our love on our wedding day are just a distant memory.

Selfie - The Good Ones

Author’s Personal Collection/Elizabeth Michalski

I understand now, as a mom with a little one in my arms, that life can get busy.

I am the queen of not responding to messages for days because I read them and get sidetracked with Nathan. I constantly forget to pack things, leave important things behind, or can’t remember appointments unless they’re written down. I’m trying to be a good mom, wife, bestie, business partner, daughter, etc., and I’m doing my best. But I value my relationships. I make time for the things and people that are important in my life, and as I get older, I realize that I simply don’t have time to put in all the effort, for those who can no longer give us the time of day.

I had this discussion not long ago with my mom, who said exactly, “There’s a reason you chose who you did, to be your best man and maid of honor. They are the best man and maid of honor for a reason.” To which I couldn’t agree more. Tragedy can bring people together, and it can also pull some apart. But when the dust settles you can see who was, and is, beside you. Our beautiful families, our wonderful best friends, our beautiful children on earth, and our guardian angel. Hold on to those who gave you the most when you couldn’t bear to get out of bed, when you wanted to give up, when you were tired of fighting. Hold onto them, and don’t let go. They’re the good ones.

Some may come and go, but the good ones stay, remind them how much you value them, even if it’s just saying it out loud.

Hanging with sissy post-haircut - The Good Ones

“Hanging with sissy after his first haircut.” – Author’s Personal Collection/Elizabeth Michalski

Delilah is now 25 weeks and has been kicking like crazy. Alex even felt her kick this week which was amazing. This week we had a fetal echo and our 24-week checkup, both of which were absolutely fine. She’s stubborn like her mama, of course, but she’s healthy and happy, which is all that I could ask for. Nathan had his first haircut this week. He’s 20 months this week and my beautiful rainbow baby just seems so much bigger post-haircut (I promise I didn’t cry, well, not until I stared at the before/after photos).  I feel like this pregnancy has been so far, uneventful, which is what we want. Given my anxiety is still here, but maybe a little less heightened being my pot of gold, I’m reflecting a lot more around the pregnancy and the things that have affected me over time. As I hope my words reach another mama, another heart who needs to heal, writing has been incredibly helpful for me. A lot of these words and emotions I keep bottled up to myself, I’m just letting out now. I highly recommend this to any mama, whether it’s for another to read or you to just get it out on paper for yourself. Putting pen to paper (or thoughts to keys) can be very healing.

Until next week.

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