A Flower for a Friend

I wrote this poem four years ago, but I today I felt I needed to share it again.  I composed it for a dear friend who had just experienced her third miscarriage and who expressed to me that it was hard for her to hear others saying “I know what you’re going through,” even if the person was well-intentioned.  Please feel free to share with others, and consider how you might reach out to people in your life who are struggling with miscarriage, infertility, and other types of “invisible grief.”

I don’t know what you’re going through.

But I know how it feels

to grieve without a funeral,

to ask “why?” to the ceiling,

to miss someone you’ve never met.

I have felt the injustice

of reckless insensitivity

of comments that pierce like knives

of children abused, unwanted, abandoned.

I know what it means to carry around an invisible grief on your back every day,

a grief that feels

like it should disable you,

like you should be in a wheelchair.

I’ve memorized all the faces of suffering–anger, fear, jealousy, despair.

People say, “It will get better.”

Which isn’t exactly true.

But you will learn to live with it, like someone who’s lost her right arm learns to live with just the left.

Dear friend, I don’t know what you’re going through.

I’ve never walked the path you’re on.

But I’ve walked the one beside it.

But I have walked the one beside it.

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7 thoughts on “A Flower for a Friend

  1. Pingback: The Catholic synod on the family and abortion | From guestwriters

  2. Pingback: A Flower for a Friend | insurance debunked

    • Thank you very much! I appreciate the positive feedback. It’s a deeply personal poem, so it’s a bit hard to make public. But I realize there are many people who’ve gone through hard experiences, and my hope is that it will speak to them.

    • Thanks, Katie. I feel like I’m in a very different emotional place now than I was when I wrote it, but I keep having conversations with women who remind me that the truth it contains is still relevant.

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