Words are complicated right now and will be for some time, but I wanted to share a little more about what’s happening with us and to answer some questions that people have brought up.
First and foremost, thank you for your love and kindness these last few days. Every message and phone call has lifted us up. We are so lucky to have each of you with us right now.
Sonya is physically healthy – no complications from delivery.
For some reason the babies began the birth process on Wednesday afternoon. At 22 weeks they were not quite developed enough to survive outside the womb. Graham was born at about 10:38 pm on Wednesday night and was unresponsive after delivery. Georgia was born a little before 1:30 am Thursday; she lived for about an hour, and cried out and moved for us in that time. Sonya and I got to hold them, spend time with them, tell them how much they meant to us – the happiest and hardest moments of our lives.
The New Hampshire Cremation Society is providing services (at no charge) so we can keep them at home with us. We don’t plan to have any services, at least not yet.
We’re both taking a little time off to try to process what’s happened. We’ve been told grief comes in waves – that some moments you feel relatively calm and that others feel unbearable â€“ and that’s how it’s playing out. Along with the support from friends and family, we are getting professional support as needed – know that while we’re hurting, we’re not self-destructing or hurting ourselves or each other.
So many people have asked how they can help or how to support us, and this is complicated. We’re feeling so many intense feelings right now that we can’t and won’t always know what will feel helpful on a given day, or in a given hour. But in lieu of a simple answer, I can give a few ideas:
Talk to us. If you offered to be a shoulder to cry on or to talk on the phone, I may take you up on it. If you want to check in, feel free to call or e-mail or send a message. (We’ll let the voicemail get it if we’re not up to talking) It’s ok to ask about the babies – I can’t speak for Sonya, but I’ve decided that if anyone wants to hear about them or about our experiences, I’ll talk. (Update: Sonya says “I’ll talk too”) And conversations about â€œregularâ€ topics are ok too – weird as it sounds, it helps keep our minds busy and brings a little normalcy into a world that doesn’t always feel normal anymore.
It’s ok to tell jokes, to laugh, to share happy news, even to share happy news about babies. As much as it hurts to have lost Graham and Georgia, becoming their parents has brought us more joy than we could have ever expected. Happiness is still OK and it’s definitely still worth celebrating.
Do something good for yourself or for your own loved ones. The babies inspired Sonya and I to be better and kinder people, so that we could be good and kind parents. Wouldn’t it be great if we all lived that way from now on? So hug somebody who needs one. Plant a tree. Try the thing you always wanted to try but never found time to do. Challenge yourself. Life is still worth living â€“ go live it, and share a little of the credit with our son and our daughter.
We’re hanging in there, we hope you are too. Thank you for everything.
Brady and Sonya