Mixed messages

I am so shaken by this.  I don’t know someone could do something that is comforting and hurtful at the same time.

I hosted a sewing circle in honor of Noah today for Teeny Tears bereavement diapers. I sent out e-mails to our very large mom’s group, and was really happy with the turn out. It was clear from everything I sent out that I was doing this in Noah’s honor.

A bunch of moms came to help sew, trace and cut fabric and watch the kids that came with. There was no pressure to come or anything, just a few invite e-mails to the group of 30+moms. I did also invite all of the moms in the small playgroup that meets once a week. I don’t know all of the moms really well, it was organized by a friend, and I wasn’t sure if they were on the main e-mail list.

Toward the end after most of the mom’s had left, I noticed something that upset me. We have a 4 picture frame on our piano of Noah. Someone had laid it down on the piano (where it was standing up) and taken the open music from the piano and laid it over the frame so it covered up 2 of the 4 pictures, the 2 where you can actually see Noah. (The 2 still showing were one of us holding him, but you can’t see him, and one of an angel made out of his hand and footprints.)

I am livid. I feel like no one should have touched his picture. If they didn’t want to see it/didn’t want their kid to see it they could have made an excuse and left. Most of the kids were also playing in the backyard, so they could have kept their kid out there.

I’m really grateful that everyone came and volunteered and helped, but I’m really upset by this. I can’t imagine that seeing Noah’s picture was as upsetting to them as this action was to me.  I don’t know for sure which mom it was, but I have some suspicions. Do I say anything? Try to let it go?

And what do I do now?  I’m hosting the small playgroup co-op next week.  Two of the moms out of the five I know really well and they and their boys are over here all the time.  But the other 3 I don’t know well.  Should I warn them that I have his picture up in the living room (the main play area other than outside?)  What do I do if the other mom whose turn it is to help supervise is upset by it?  I can’t really ask her to leave, because I would then have too many kids on my own.  I’m not taking it down.  I could potentially put it up higher so it is less at eye level for the kids, but I’m not going to put it away.  My child died.  Is it really my responsibility to protect other people from that reality?

Every time I feel like I’ve anticipated all the painful situations, another one jumps out and takes me by surprise again.

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9 thoughts on “Mixed messages

  1. Oh no. I’m so sorry. I don’t know what I would do, either. Maybe putting the picture on the wall would help, in that it’s more out of reach, and harder to quickly do anything to it.
    In a comment on another blog I read something along the lines of “My baby died. I live with this uncomfortable truth 24/7. Others can be uncomfortable for a few minutes.” I thought that was fitting for so many of the awkward and sad situations we find ourselves in.
    Hugs to you. I really hope the next meetup doesn’t leave you with such a bad aftertaste.

  2. Oh my goodness, my blood is boiling right now. I couldn’t even finish reading your post after I saw what someone did! I am so angry! What is wrong with people?! You give me those ladies email addresses and I will get to the bottom of this! Are you sure a kid didn’t do it? I hope it was just some silly little kid playing around.

  3. How terrible! I can’t imagine how anyone could be that rude and touch someone else’s things. If the people coming to the next event are any of the ones that were at this one (and therefore possibly guilty), I would send an email to all of them and mention the incident and how much it hurt you and how you do not want a repeat of that situation. I would definitely NOT move the photo. It’s your home, your son, and your grief. If it makes them uncomfortable then they don’t have to look at it.

  4. I agree with the commenter that suggested sending out an e-mail. You can be direct in saying that your son’s photo should not be messed with and that if someone is uncomfortable seeing it, that they can move out of view or pass on the visit. Maybe someone else there saw what happened and who it was and will let you know. I know I would want to know. It’s not right to literally cover-up someone’s lost child. I would be very offended. I’m really sorry this happened.

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