I asked my husband to write out his account of losing Chiara two years ago. I wanted to confirm my version of events, see what might be different, and wanted to be sure not to lose a single detail of our time with her. It was very hard for him to write her story. He carried a notebook in his bag for two years, to and from work, on vacation, every day, but he just couldn't write it down. Last week, on Chiara's second birthday, he furnished this poem he wrote, describing her birth. It brings tears every time I read it, but it's so beautiful, and it captures the moment perfectly.
Thank you, my Love. We'll forever share this memory of our dear daughter. It is my saddest moment, and while I would prefer instead that we welcomed her living and breathing and full of the promise of a beautiful life ahead, I am so grateful to have shared the sacred moments of her birth with you, to have made her with you, parented her with you (however briefly), and to mourn her with you. It is a privilege. Thank you for the gift of this poem.
Surrounded and yet
never more alone in our pain and fear
on the day we met you
and said goodbye.
From your hidden ocean world into ours
you came, like a human heart laid bare
but without vital rhythm
without a sound
without a breath
without the invisible orbiting hopes and dreams
projected onto children as a promise of our chance to touch the future.
Yours was only the present.
As we held your hands and rocked
and clutched at our chance to hold you and be with you as your parents.
Still, your birthday.
Forever after a day we will honor our loss
as it is all we still have.