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Mothers: Some are strong at the broken places

“The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.” - Ernest Hemingway 
Mothers inspire us in little ways because the ripples of love that they send out into this Universe is tremendous. Mind blowing, really. Reading about a mother (whose daughter died and she found strength by writing) got me thinking seriously about how we handle the tragedies in our lives and yes, in a way, it moved me and inspired me.

You lose your iPhone and you think the world has ended. But do you realize that you may be able to buy it again? Or some one may gift it to you when you least expect it. Anything can happen to bring it back.
But what about a mother who loses her child to Death for no fault of her own? How does she find the courage to live? Every morning when she wakes up, she hopes to see the baby she thought she had borne. But there is no such a baby and the world, despite all it's fancy words of sympathy and condolences, moves on and doesn't bat another eyelid for her or shed a tear or offer a word of solace. Well wishers may even have the audacity to tell her that she can have other children as though one child can easily replace another. The mother who lost her baby remains trapped in a time warp that stills her existence and stunts her growth and confidence. Who's at fault here? How does a mother cope with the loss of her baby?
When you make issues out of nothing, think about the lives of others for once. The battles they have lost, the inner spark they relentlessly worked hard to move forward amidst a thousand sorrows and the hard work as well as the sincere efforts they have made to make the world a better place for ordinary people like you and me.
I don't know if such mothers exist in big numbers. But here's a mother who has done it and shares her story tooI admire this mother. I do know what kind of courage and conviction it takes to even try and overcome that kind of an anguish. 
Summing up, this is an affirmation of what I believe in strongly: 

“We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.” (Romans 12: 6-8 NIV)

When things go terribly wrong, how do you cope with it? What's your story?

Comments

Jairam said…
This was such a wonderful post and stuck a personal chord with me. My mother lost a baby approximately a year and a half before I was born. 33 yrs have passed since this incident but even today on that particular date, she remembers the baby, and even the birth of my daughter, her grand daughter has not taken away that pain. So I can completely understand this post.
harimohan said…
Swapna a very touching post and good to know about swimming with Maya which will try to read .
Well another mother I can think of is Premila my wife who still lives with the memory of her shilpa every day but has created a centre for children like her Shilpa with so much dedication and today it still continues to serve after 16 long years under the Amritha group ,I still rememebr the comments we faced immediately after shilpas loss some said you should start living now of course meant well ,some said what are you feeling so sad about after all she was not a normal child ! and some were just silent and empathetic ,loss of any loved is painful and the rare some turn this love to something positive others grive and with time forget ,nothing wrong with both ,lovely qoute by Hemingway in your post so true !
@Jairam - Thanks so much for sharing your mother's experience here. I can understand how agonizing that must have been. While she is blessed to have you, the child who passed away into another world can never be forgotten from a mother's heart and soul. The worst grief for a woman is to witness the death of her child. Nothing in this world can take away that pain, that helplessness and that despair. It's the one absolute heart breaking pain that time can never repair. My loving greetings to your mother and to your whole family.
@Harimohan - Thanks Hari uncle. And yes, I know about you and Premila aunty and how she was able to brave the tragic loss by creating something for the well being of special children. It is very rare to see some one able to given something so positive and meaningful into the world in the face of such a tragedy. Truly, a blessed couple and Shilpa is so blessed to have been born to such loving parents like you and premila aunty.
SG said…
Excellent post. I heard this incident but still gives me trouble in my mind. A relative of ours in a village in India gave birth to a baby. The baby did not have a hole in the back to go for the nature's call. It is a remote village and they could not do anything except to watch for 4 days the baby suffer suffer suffer and then die on the fifth day.

The mother and father were devasted. Not the death itself. But watching their child suffer for 4 days. Finally, death was a relief.
Vishnu said…
Hi Swapna, I have a friend who lost an adult son and has yet to recover from the loss. I tried to interview her about the loss and she gave me some ideas on how to overcome it but she says it's still very hard. Every small thing and big thing, and every daily reminder, and every day that had any significance was difficult for her.

She tried to keep herself busy and active and got involved in causes and volunteer work she cared about. She also joined a couple support groups with parents in similar situations which helped her a lot. She has now become more of a mentor to other parents who had recently lost a child.

Although many days were tough for her to even get up or leave her house. It's a day by day journey for her and has taken many years. She is progressing very slowly in moving forward (understandably).

I don't think words can explain the grief or daily pain a mother faces with the loss of a child.
@SG: For some reason, I missed reading your comment and happened to find it now, apologies for such a late response. After reading about the incident you shared, I can connect with how the parents felt and the pain they went through seeing their child in such pain. In such moments, even parents are forced to plead to the Higher Force called God to let go of the suffering and let their child be released from life itself. It's perhaps the most painful decision for parents to make. Thank you for dropping by to read and comment on my post.

@Vishnu: You are right. It's a day by day journey and the progress to overcome that pain is perhaps a never ending one for a mother. But in recent years, I met many young mothers who opt for abortions, feel no remorse at all and look to life with absolute fun and happiness. While I admire their inner strength to be able to do that, a part of me lingers on with a life that they consciously chose to let go of or in harsher words, "eliminate." These are choices that seem to increase with the times that we live in. Not for me to judge whether its good or bad but at the end of the day, a human life is precious, a baby's life more so because two people brought that baby into existence in the first place.