The one that attaches itself to your future the very minute that your child dies. The one when people expect you to be you again. When it is no longer acceptable for you to want to stay home in your own cocoon of solitude which is away from pregnant women, babies, infants and young children (boys in my case). The point where your smiles can no longer be pasted on and your laughs can no longer be forced. The point when you are supposed to apply your mascara in the morning and have lush black lashes all day long. It is when you are supposed to emerge from your chrysalis of comfort re-energized, reinvigorated and ready to not only face life but to live life fully once again with your head held high, smile in place, heels on.
Except I am not there yet. Not even close to be honest. No one asks if I need help any longer, if I need a break, if there's anything they can do. My last and most true supporter has now also abandoned me, perhaps fed up with my grief or maybe with what my grief has done to me. This point probably sucks worse than the immediate aftermath of my child's death. Then I felt protected and surrounded by love. Now I feel alone in the desert, thirsty but too tired to even search for water anymore, desperate for an oasis to find me.
I want, no I need, for it to be okay to not want to be in public because I still dread seeing pregnant women and hearing babies cry, for it to be okay to avoid scheduling play dates for my daughter with her friend's mother because that woman has had five healthy children in eight years (two boys and three girls), for me to take my children to the park less because it is a magnet for pregnant women and young children who are all so much happier than I am, and for me to cry for my sons and sometimes for myself. I am trying to emerge but it's so hard and so much harder when all I feel is the weight of others' expectations.