I want you to know that I heard you. I heard your sobs as I was leaving the OBGYN’s office after my annual exam. I saw who I presume was your husband pacing the hallway outside the bathroom door, just two doors down from the office I had just exited. I saw the look of despair on his face as he touched the bathroom door, perhaps hoping he could touch you in that moment instead. As I waited for what seemed like forever for the elevator to reach the third floor I watched you both, not as a nosey spectator but as another loving soul that has been in your shoes.

I’ve walked this path too, mama.

You see, I know why you were crying in that bathroom. I know because I had spotted the two of you in the waiting room prior to all of this. As the nurse called all of us ladies back one by one, I knew that you were one of the women who was there for the obstetrics part of the what the providers do. At least this is what I’d bet my money on. When I came back out to checkout, I didn’t see you until I heard your cries from the hallway bathroom.

I’ve walked this path too, mama.

As I waited for the elevator to come up to get me, I really did think about seeing if there was anything I could do for you and your husband. But, as I was pondering the appropriate etiquette for situations like this, the elevator arrived with other passengers waiting and my decision was made for me. As the doors closed and I took the ride to the first floor, memories flooded my mind. So many memories.

I’ve walked this path too, mama.

Memories of a hospital bathroom after a doctor’s appointment, where I had to collect myself after finding out my own baby had died without my knowing. I remember grabbing a towel out of one of those automated dispensers, running it under the cold water and wiping my red stricken face in hopes it would calm the tears and somehow make me feel better. The staff had let me take the doctor’s entrance out of the office, so I wouldn’t have to face all of the other expectant moms waiting to hear their babies heartbeats, when I had gone in to hear only nothing.

I’ve walked this path too, mama.

I don’t have to imagine what you might have been feeling in that bathroom. Although we’re all different in our grief, most of us feel very similar things after learning that our babies have died. We feel sadness for a life we won’t know, we feel anger for this having happened to us, and we feel anxiety for not knowing what the coming days will look like. In that moment, we also feel the need to go home and crawl into our beds and cry our hearts out in our most sacred spaces.

I’ve walked this path too, mama.

To top it all off, there’s that sweet man on the other side of the door. The one pacing the hospital hallway and trying to reach the woman he loves through the wooden door. For he has lost something too—the chance to hold his baby and do all of the special things only dads get to do. He’s also hurting. He hurts for the loss, he hurts for the pain that his wife is now in, and he hurts because there is nothing he can do about it.

We’ve walked this path too, mama and daddy.

I want you both to know that I saw you. I could be completely wrong, maybe you got some other kind of bad news or were just having a bad day, but my intuition and ability to read situations given what I saw in the waiting room, tell me you were walking the path I walked not once, but twice. I want you to know that you are not alone. There are so many of us who have cried in hospital bathrooms and paced in corresponding hallways. Others of us have woken up with blood all over our beds and our hearts crushed into a million pieces. Others of us have given birth to full-term sleeping angels, perfectly formed only to be sent back to Heaven before breathing life here on Earth.

We’ve walked this path, too.

The beautifully broken road of miscarriage, stillbirth and infant loss is a terrible road to walk. But just know, you will never walk it alone. We’re all here, walking this road, a road we didn’t start out on but were forced to take the day we found out our babies had died. It changed our path and our hearts, but the only solace is knowing that you are not alone.

After all, I’ve walked this path too, mama.

From the very bottom of this fellow broken-hearted mama’s heart, I’m so sorry for your loss.

You may also like:

To the Moms and Dads Who Suffer Loss: You Are Not Alone

A Mother’s Love Can’t Be Measured In Weeks

A Letter to My Mama, From Your Baby in Heaven

Let Us Be Women Who Embrace the Mothers Who Grieve

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Britt LeBoeuf

Britt is a married mother of two from northern New York. She has an undergraduate degree in Human Services. When she's not chasing down her two young children, she writes for sites such as Her View From Home, Scary Mommy, Filter Free Parents and Sammiches and Psych Meds. Check out her first published book, "Promises of Pineford" on Amazon too. On her blog, These Boys of Mine, she talks about parenting only boys, special needs parenting, mental health advocacy, being a miscarriage survivor and life as a crazy cat lady.